This post teaches you how to recover previous version of a Word document if you accidentally saved over a document. Check the 4 methods below. To recover mistakenly deleted or missing files like Word files from computer, USB, etc. you can try the free data recovery software – MiniTool Power Data Recovery.
Accidentally saved over a Word document and want to go back to the previous version? This post introduces 4 methods to help you to restore the previous version of a Word document that was saved over.
How to Restore Previous Version of a Word Document?
- Use Ctrl + Z to Undo the Editing
- Restore Previous Version of Word Document from Backup
- Recover Accidentally Saved Over Word Document from Temp Files
- Perform a System Restore
Method 1. Use Ctrl + Z to Undo the Editing
If you haven’t closed the Word document yet, you can use the Undo Shortcut to reverse a save action. Just press Ctrl + Z keyboard shortcut to recover the previous version of Word document. If this action doesn’t help, you can try other methods below.
Method 2. Restore Previous Version of Word Document from Backup
If you’ve turned on backup on Windows 10, it may be possible to restore earlier version of the Word file from the backup. This method can work only if you have activated Windows Backup feature. Check how to recover a Word document that was saved over with Windows File History below.
- You can right-click the Word file that you saved over and select Properties.
- Click Previous Versions tab, and you can find if there are any earlier versions of the Word document.
- If you find some different versions of the file, you can select the desired version and click Restore button to recover previous version of your Word document.
However, if see a message that “There are no previous versions available”, then you are out of luck, you may not have turned on the Windows File History feature yet.
- To turn on File History feature, you can press Windows + R, type control panel, and press Enter to open Control Panel on Windows 10.
- Click System and Security -> File History.
- Click Turn on button to turn on File History function.
After you enable File History feature on Windows 10, it will save copies of your files so you can get them back if they’re lost or damaged. You can learn more from: How to Restore Files with File History in Windows 10.
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Method 3. Recover Accidentally Saved Over Word Document from Temp Files
If you have turned on the AutoRecover feature of Word, you may have a chance to restore previous version of your Word document that you saved over.
When the AutoRecover function is on, Microsoft Word app will automatically create some temporary files of your Word document and store them on your computer. You may find some backup versions of the Word file.
To find the temporary files of Microsoft Word/Excel app, you can navigate to the following path on your Windows computer: C:\Users\UserName\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Word\. Find if there is a backup of your Word file, if so, select it and save it.
However, if you haven’t turned on AutoRecover feature, then this method won’t work. Check how to turn on AutoRecover feature in Word below.
- Open Microsoft Word app.
- Click File -> Options. Click Save option in the left panel.
- Check the box of “Save AutoRecover information every”, and set the time interval you’d like to create an auto-saved version of your Word file. Also, check the box “Keep the last AutoRecoverd version if I close without saving”. This can help you recover unsaved Word document when needed.
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Method 4. Perform a System Restore
As you can see, previous versions come from restore points or Windows Backup. Aside from restoring the previous version of Word file from Windows Backup, you can also conduct a system restore to restore computer to an earlier state to see if you can get back the old version of your Word file. This way works only if you have created a system restore point for your Windows computer.
Check how to do the system restore below.
- Access Advanced Startup Options window in Windows 10. You can click Start -> Settings -> Update & Security -> Recovery. Click Restart Now under Advanced startup.
- Click System Restore in Advanced Options window to follow the instructions to select a system restore point to restore your Windows system to a previous state.
Note: This way is risky. Before you restore the system, it’s highly advised you back up your current OS in case something goes wrong and causes the system crash. MiniTool ShadowMaker lets you easily back up Windows OS to create a backup and restore your OS from backup when needed.
How to Recover Deleted/Lost Word Files for Free
What if you mistakenly deleted a file and can’t find it in Recycle Bin, or lost some important files? Don’t worry, you can use MiniTool Power Data Recovery to easily recover deleted/lost files.
MiniTool Power Data Recovery is specially designed for helping users to recover deleted or lost files from Windows computer, USB flash drive, memory card, external hard drive, etc. This software has a very intuitive interface and lets you recover data in 3 simple steps. Download it on your Windows computer and check how to use it to recover deleted or lost files.
- After the download and installation, launch MiniTool Power Data Recovery to enter into its main interface.
- Next, choose a device category in the left column. To recover files from external device like USB, memory card, external hard drive, you need to connect the device to your computer at first. Then, in the right column, select the target drive, and click Scan button.
- Wait until the scan process finishes, you can check the scan result, check needed files, and click Save button to save the files to a new place.
- If you only want to scan a specific file type, you can click Settings button to choose the file type like .doc, .xls, etc.
- To scan deleted or lost files from a specific folder, you can double-click Select Folder under Specific Location in the right column to choose a folder to scan.
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Back up Important Files with MiniTool ShadowMaker
In case you saved over a document by accident and can’t restore it to the previous version, it’s advised you always make a backup of the important file.
MiniTool ShadowMaker is a PC backup program that allows you to back up Windows OS or data. It lets you choose files, folders, partitions, or the whole disk content, and back up to an external hard drive, USB flash drive, network drive, etc.
This software also supports file sync, schedule automatic file backup, incremental backup, and more. You can also use it to backup and restore Windows OS with ease.
- Download, install, and launch MiniTool ShadowMaker on your Windows computer. Click Backup module.
- Click Source section to select the content you’d like to back up. This software selects the system partition as the source by default, but you can select other sources like files, folders, other partitions.
- Click Destination section to choose a destination to store the backups.
- Click Back up Now button to start backing up the selected content to the destination place.
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If you accidentally saved over a document, you can try the 4 methods above to see if you can recover the previous version of Word document. If you don’t close and reopen the Word document, you can easily recover previous version by using Ctrl + Z. But if you saved and closed the Word document, you can only try other ways to get the older versions of the file.