It’s a sad and frustrating occurrence that happens to the best of us…you’re working hard to wrap up a document due by the end of the day when your computer crashes, the lights go out, or the program you’re working in just locks up unexpectedly. Once everything is back up and running, panic sets in as you realize you didn’t save your work. Perhaps you deliberately closed the program, but accidentally hit Don’t Save instead of the Save button (I know I’ve done that before). Regardless, it is a disheartening feeling to think that all that hard work was just flushed down the drain in an instant.
Luckily, several programs in Microsoft Office 2010 provide us with a safety net for those occasions when we lose what we’ve created. When creating documents in Word, Excel, and PowerPoint, Office can automatically save documents in a temporary location so you can retrieve the file in the event it is prematurely closed. In order to do this, however, you need to make sure Office is configured to auto recover and auto save your documents.
- In each program, select the File menu and click on Options from the left hand menu.
- Click on Save from the left hand menu.
- Ensure that both Save AutoRecover information every XX minutes and Keep the last autosaved version if I close without saving are checked.
- Click on OK.
Recovering New Files
New files you’ve developed that haven’t yet been saved can be recovered by completing the following steps:
- In the program you’re working in, select the File menu and click on Info from the left-hand menu.
- Click on Manage Versions.
- Click on Recover Unsaved Documents. (In Excel, this is called Recover Unsaved Workbooks and in PowerPoint it’s called Recover Unsaved Presentations).
NOTE: You can also select File — Recent and then click on Recover Unsaved Documents at the bottom right corner of the screen.
- In the dialog box that appears, click on the file you need to recover to highlight it and then click on Open.
- The file will then open in the program you are using and immediately prompt you to save the document. Click on Save As in the status bar at the top of the screen and save the document to a location of your choice for future access.
Recovering Current Files
If you’re updating an existing file and forget to save changes, you can recover the changes you made by completing the following:
- Open the file you were working in, select the File menu and click on Info from the left-hand menu.
- Under Versions, click on the most recent entry labeled (when I closed without saving).
- The file with the changes you made will automatically display. Click on Restore in the status bar at the top of the screen.
- You’ll receive a popup that states, You are about to overwrite the last saved version with the selected version. Click OK.
- Your document is now saved with the edits you previously made, but didn’t save.