How To Recover Unsaved Excel Workbook Automatically

Excel provides an auto recover unsaved workbook feature for you to recover the unsaved excel workbook. This feature is very useful. It can save you a lot of time when you exit Excel without saving the workbook changes. This article will tell you how to use it.

1. Enable Excel Auto Recover Feature.

This feature is enabled by default, but you can change it’s default settings to make the autosave more frequently. Below are the steps.

  1. Open the excel file which you want to enable the auto recover feature.
  2. Click File —> Options —> Options menu item at excel top left corner.
  3. Click the Save menu in the popup Excel Options dialog left side.
  4. To enable the auto recover feature, you should check the Save AutoRecover information every [ ] minutes checkbox on the Excel Options dialog right side Save workbooks section. And if you want excel to save your work more frequently, you should change the minute’s number to smaller such as 1 minute.
  5. You also need to check the checkbox Keep the last AutoRecovered version if I close without saving below the above Save AutoRecover information every [ ] minutes checkbox, otherwise excel will not save the last workbook version in a temporary local excel file.
  6. Please remember the AutoRecover file location directory path carefully, you will find the auto-saved recovery excel file in that directory.
  7. If you want to save the auto-saved temporary excel recovery file longer, you can scroll down and change the number value bigger in Cache Settings —> Days to keep files in the Office Document Cache list input box.

2. How To Use Excel Auto Recover Feature To Recover Unsaved Excel Workbook.

  1. Open excel file and click File —> Info —> Manage Workbook —> Recover Unsaved Workbooks menu item.
  2. Browse the AutoRecover file location directory path ( which you configured in File —> Options —> Save settings in section 1 ) in the popup open file dialog window. And open the .xslb file( the saved recovery file ).
  3. Now you can see the unsaved content displayed in the worksheet again. But this excel file is just a temporary file, you need to save it to another excel file to save the unsaved changes.

3. Auto Recover Excel File Example.

  1. Configure the Save AutoRecover information every [ ] minutes value to 1 minute in excel File —> Options —> Save settings.
  2. Do something in the excel file such as input some data.
  3. Wait for 1 minute and exit the excel file without saving it.
  4. Open the excel file again, and load the recovery file as section 2.
  5. You will find the unsaved data in the excel workbook.
  6. You can save the changed data in a new or exist excel file now.
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