Every time you delete a file on a Windows 10/11 PC, either by right-clicking on the file and then clicking the Delete option or by selecting the file and then hitting the Delete key on the keyboard, the file is moved to the Recycle Bin.
While there is a provision under Recycle Bin settings to completely delete files instead of moving to Recycle Bin, the option is turned off by default in Windows 10/11. In short, unless you delete a file using the Shift + Delete method, Windows moves selected files to the Recycle Bin.
Deleting files to the Recycle Bin is safe as you can restore deleted files if you need to access those files for some reason in the future. And you can quickly delete all files in the Recycle Bin by right-clicking on the Recycle Bin icon and then clicking the Empty Recycle Bin option.
Now, if you have accidentally deleted some files but are not sure what files you deleted, you can easily view all recently deleted files. Please note that you can view only recently deleted files that have been moved to the Recycle Bin and not files deleted using the Shift + Delete method.
View recently deleted files in Windows 10 and Windows 11
Complete the given below directions to view recently deleted files in Windows 10/11.
IMPORTANT: This method is applicable only if you deleted files to Recycle Bin. If you used the Shift + Delete method or any software to permanently delete files, this method can’t help you view recently deleted files.
Step 1: Open up Recycle Bin by double-clicking on its icon on the desktop. If you can’t see the Recycle Bin icon on the desktop area, please refer to how to add the Recycle Bin icon to the Windows 10 desktop guide.
Step 2: Right-click on the empty area, click Sort by, and then click Date deleted. That’s it! You can now see all recently deleted files with the deleted date next to each file.
To restore a file, simply right-click on a file and then click the Restore option to restore the file to its original location. If you want to restore multiple files at once, simply select the files that you want to restore, right-click, and then click the Restore option.
As you can see in the picture, Recycle Bin displays the original location right next to the file name.
Between, if you are looking for a good data recovery tool, do check out the free version of Disk Drill software.