How to Recover Deleted Microsoft 365 Files?

Created by On December 20, 2023 |  Last Updated On March 30, 2024

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How to Recover Deleted Microsoft 365 Files

Many organisations and individuals have a Microsoft 365 account because of its wide choice of tools. We can store files, emails, project data, images, and company documents through it.

Dealing with critical data loss inside your Microsoft 365 may be difficult and highly stress-inducing. This immediate loss might cause you to feel desperate and irritable.

Today, we will learn how to retrieve deleted items as it is possible to recover deleted items.

Understanding Data Loss in Microsoft 365

Before diving into recovery methods, let’s identify the types of files commonly lost in Microsoft 365:

  • Documents: Word files, PDFs, spreadsheets, presentations
  • Emails: Important messages, drafts, attachments
  • Photos and Videos: Personal memories, project visuals
  • SharePoint Files: Team documents, reports, resources

These files can disappear for various reasons: accidental deletion, system crashes, file corruption, or even intentional deletion. The good news is that Microsoft 365 offers built-in tools and advanced techniques to bring your lost data back to life.

How to Restore Data Files in Microsoft 365 Using the Recycle Bin:

Think of the Microsoft 365 Recycle Bin as your computer’s safety net. It’s where deleted stuff goes first. Follow these steps.

How to Restore Files in Microsoft 365 Using the Recycle Bin
  1. Go to your SharePoint or OneDrive by signing into your Microsoft 365 account.
  2. Click on Recycle Bin on the left.
  3. You’ll see a list of deleted stuff. You can sort it by name, place, or when it got deleted.
  4. To bring something back, select it and click Restore at the top. It goes back where it was.

How to Restore Data Files in Microsoft 365 Using Version History:

With Version History, you can turn back in time. It helps you recover old versions of your files in OneDrive or SharePoint. Here’s how:

How to Restore Files in Microsoft 365 in OneDrive
  1. Again, go to your OneDrive or SharePoint by signing into your Microsoft 365.
  2. Select your files, if you are not finding Click on My Files on the left and search for it.
  3. Click Version History on the Top or Right-click the file you want to rewind and choose Version History.
  4. A list of old versions appears. You can sort them by date, name, or size.
  5. To bring back an old version, pick it and click Restore. The old one replaces the current one.

Have your Microsoft Word accidentally shut down, and you have not saved any files? Do not worry. Check out this article to learn How To Recover Unsaved Word Documents in 2024.

How to Restore Data Files in Microsoft 365 in OneDrive:

If your whole OneDrive gets messy, don’t panic. “Restore Your OneDrive” helps you return and fix it in time. Here’s how:

How to Restore Files in Microsoft 365 Using Version History

1. Sign in to Microsoft 365 and open your OneDrive.

2. Click the Settings (it looks like a gear) on the left.

3. Select Option

How to Restore Files in Microsoft 365 in OneDrive

4. From the menu, click Restore Your OneDrive.

5. You’ll see changes made to your OneDrive in the last 30 days. Pick the time to restore.

6. To see what changes will happen, click Preview Changes. You’ll get a list.

7. Click on the “Restore” button to start. Now, recovery will activate successfully.

Most of the time, recovery will be quick, but sometimes, it may take to recover the file.

Use Admin Privileges to Recover OneDrive Data

There is still hope if you accidentally deleted a file and cannot retrieve it. You can still restore deleted items in OneDirve via the admin panel.

1. Log into

2. Click the “Show all” option. 

3. Click on “SharePoint” from the list. 

4. Click “More Features” and navigate to User Profiles -> Manage User Profiles.

5. Search for the user here and then select “Manage Personal Site”. 

6. Under “Site Collection Administration, ” click Recycle Bin and restore the file.

How to Recover Microsoft 365 Teams Data

Method #1- Recover Chat Messages

You might be thinking does Teams have a recycle bin? The good news is that you can recover your chat messages. However, they do not go to the recycle bin as there is none for text messages.

If you have your Compliance enabled, you can recover the messages. Go to Microsoft’s Compliance Center and search for deleted messages using the Content Search feature. You must also install the Microsoft Office 365 Export Tool to export the data.pst file.

Method #2- Recover Files

Once you delete a file, Microsoft will hold onto it for a while. You can use that opportunity to recover deleted documents.

1. Open the channel or the Team from where you have deleted the files. 

2. Click “Open in SharePoint”.

3. Click on “Recycle Bin”.

4. Click the files you want to restore and click the “Restore” option. 

How to Recover Outlook Deleted Items

Many companies use Outlook, which contains thousands of crucial emails. However, you can recover deleted emails in Outlook 365.

Method #1- Via Deleted Folder​

Accidentally deleted emails go into the Deleted Folder. You can navigate to the folder, search for the email from the search bar or scroll to find the email.

Then, right-click the email you want to recover and click “Move.” Choose the inbox folder to move the email into it.

Method #2- Via "Recoverable Items"​

It might surprise you that you can recover deleted email in Outlook 365 even if you have deleted them from the “Deleted Folder.”

1. Go to the “Deleted Folder” in the folder list.

2. Click “Recover items deleted from this folder” from the ribbon at the top. 

3. All recoverable emails will appear there. Select the one you want to recover. 

4. Click the “Recover Selected Items”. To recover all emails, click the “Recover All Items” option. 

Note: Mac users must recover Outlook data via the web platform, even when using the desktop application.

How to Recover Deleted SharePoint Files

How do you access deleted items in Microsoft 365, even if they are not in the Recycle Bin? When you are in the Recycle Bin, and the file is not there, click the “Second-stage recycle Bin” option at the bottom. A list of files will appear. Choose the file and restore it by right-clicking on it.

How to Prevent Data Loss in Microsoft 365

Although recovering lost files is essential, avoiding data loss altogether is even better. Here are some suggestions:

1. Turn on AutoSave: Whatever Microsoft 365 application you use, ensure you enable the autosave feature to save your work automatically at set times, reducing the chance of losing unsaved data.

2. Backup Regularly: Regularly back up important files, especially if stored locally. Archive them onto an external hard disk or into a Dropbox cloud storage account every few days. For more guidelines, check out this article to learn how to back up Microsoft 365 data. 

3. Carefully Empty Recycle Bin: Before emptying your Microsoft Recycle Bin, double-check to ensure no important file is in it.


Microsoft 365 is a widely applied toolkit that provides several services in one set. Like any other data, you can lose Microsoft data if the system crashes or you do not save the files.

Through these techniques, whether it is about Outlook emails, Word files, SharePoint files, OneDrive files, or perhaps Teams data, you can restore Office 365 data. But remember to follow the guidelines in this article to increase your data security and minimise the probability of data loss. 

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