Recovering Lost Files in UNBC File Shares

Common Causes of Missing Files

The three most common scenarios we see when files go missing are:

  • Files being accidentally deleted
  • Files being accidentally dragged and dropped into a different folder
  • File permissions being changed and the ability to view the file being removed accidentally

Most of these scenarios are accidental, however if the error is noticed relatively quickly after happening, we are able to recover the files. If the files have been missing for months the recovery options become more limited, although there are steps that can be taken.


Self-Serve Solutions to Recover Missing Files

Searching for the Missing Files

If the files have been accidentally dragged into another folder, they can often be found quickly by browsing through the folders which the files could have been dragged into.  The locations we usually check are:

  • The folders at the same directory level as the files missing
  • The directory level above where the files are missing from 


Using Restore Previous Versions

The storage backing UNBC's file shares supports the use of Windows Restore Previous Versions. This tool allows you to browse through all the old backups we have of the file share in a read-only browser. From there you can copy any of the files from any of the backups and paste them into the current version of the share, effectively restoring the files to that previous version.

Below is an example scenario in a G: drive folder outlining the steps you would take. In the below example we will be restoring a missing text file asdfasdf.txt which has been deleted from the folder shown below.


  1. Browse to one directory level above the share location where the files are missing from. In our example we navigate up to the New Folder which would normally contain the asdfasdf.txt file
  2. Right click on the directory which contained the missing files and select Restore Previous Versions.


  1. In the window that opens you will see a list of copies of the folder from different dates.  You can select any of these copies and they will open a new file browser window allowing you to see the files contained within that copy.  Select the copy of the folder which contains the missing files.
  2. Right click on the files which are missing from the current version of the share and select Copy.



  1. Return to the original file browser window which has the current version of the share and Paste the copied files into the location they are missing from.

Note: Because the Restore Previous Versions file browser is read-only you do not need to worry about accidentally damaging the backup version of the files

If none of these self serve solutions work for you, please contact IT Support and we will assist you.

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Article ID: 1964
Wed 9/8/21 3:12 PM
Fri 9/10/21 2:24 PM