How to Recover Deleted Files from Trash on Mac?

Perhaps you accidentally delete an important file without realizing it at first and without taking a backup for data recovery. It’s also possible you lose data due to virus attack or software error. If you’re wondering whether it’s possible to recover deleted files from trash on Mac, you’re in the right place.



Common reasons behind data loss


Data loss can happen for plenty of reasons, no matter which operating system you use. Here are some common reasons why Mac users lose data.


Delete files accidentally


Human error is one of the leading causes of data loss. Users may click the wrong button or press the Shift + Delete shortcut by accident and they don’t notice their mistakes for days or even weeks.


Software bugs


Some serious software bugs can cause application to crash, which results in the loss of unsaved word and a lot of swearing. Thus, as a Mac user, you need to avoid using unoptimized software. You can update them to the most recent version of macOS.


Hard disk crash


Actually, the older your hard disk is, the higher the chance of it corrupting suddenly. You need to keep an eye on your disk’s status and take a backup in advance.


Solutions to recover deleted file from trash


There are several ways to help recover deleted files from trash on Mac. To assist you in making right decisions, we’ll share four possible solutions to recover deleted files. You can choose a proper one according to your actual situation.


Check the Trash


When you delete an important file accidentally, you can check whether it’s included in the trash. It’s much easier for you to recover deleted files from the trash. All you need to do is open Mac Trash and check whether the files you are searching for are there or not. Next, choose the files if they are included in the trash. Finally, right click on files and choose “Pull Back”.



Use Time Machine Backup


What if the deleted files are not included in the trash? Does it mean the files are lost forever? Fortunately, you can recover them in no time if you have a backup. Mac users can backup and recover files by using Time Machine. It’s designed to automatically backup all files users have on their system.


Step1. Launch Time Machine on your Mac. You can click on the clock icon located on the Mac’s menubar, choosing Enter Time Machine or search for Time Machine using spotlight

Step2. Locate the files you want to restore using the timeline on the right edge of the screen.

Step3. Click restore button to restore deleted files and they will be returned to original location

Step 3. Finally, click the “Restore” button, and then the deleted file will be returned to its original location.


Use Terminal command


If you want to recover deleted files on Mac without any software, you can try Terminal command. If you have emptied the trash, this method won’t work.


Step 1. Go to “Finder” > “Applications” > “Utilities” and  double-click “Terminal”.

Step 2. Type command cd .Trash and press the “Return” key on your Mac

Step 3. Input “mv xxx../” and hit “Return”. (xxx means the name of the deleted file)

Step 4. Type “Quit” in the Terminal to exit the Terminal window.



Use a third-party software


If you have emptied the Trash or don’t have any backup, a data recovery software like RecoveryMaster comes into play. It allows you to recover deleted files from emptied trash on Mac. It only require simple steps to restore emptied trash.


Step1. Download, install and launch RecoveryMaster

Step2. Select the trash for scanning

Step3. Select and preview the deleted files before recovery

Step4. Click on recover button to get files back and save them to another location


During scanning process, you can pause, stop or resume scans. RecoveryMaster enables you to recover deleted, formatted or lost files from various storage devices. It also applies to other data loss situations like hard drive failure, system failure, virus attack and more.




Taking regular backups of your computer is critical to protect your data. But if you need to recover files that are not included in a backup or perhaps you have emptied the Trash, a data recovery software such as RecoveryMaster can be helpful. It can help you recover deleted files from trash on Mac easily.