Top 3 Mac Trash Recovery Methods for Emptied Trash Bin 2020

We have all been there, where we delete a document that we think we no longer need and instinctively empty out the trash bin only to find out the very next day, we need that document for one reason or another.

This can be incredibly distressing if the document is of sensitive information, is required for a work project or school assignment, or is not something that we can reproduce easily. So, we’re going to talk about the Mac Trash recovery here.

1Can You Recover Files Deleted from Mac Trash?

There are many Mac users wondering if they can recover their files after they’ve already emptied the trash. The answer to this question is yes but not in your traditional way. When a file is deleted you remove the entry, not the actual file. This makes the space available to be written over with new data. It is at this point that you want to utilize a third-party application like AnyRecover to trace the entry of the file, and restore it back to its original space. There are three Mac Trash recovery methods available for you.

2Three Options for Mac Trash Recovery

1Option One: Use AnyRecover for Mac Trash Recovery

If you’ve emptied out your Mac trash, there is still a chance to recover the files before the data is overwritten by using AnyRecover for Mac, a third-party program that can recover all types of files and formats including documents, videos, images, audio, email, and other files such as archives.


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  • Best way for emptied Trash recovery, allow you to find all your lost files back.

  • Comb through your partition byte-by-byte with Deep Scan technical.

  • Reconstructs every little piece into a known file structure to ensure all your files are complete.

  • Up to 98% success rate in Trash recovery, has been proved one of the best data recovery software.

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Steps to Recover Files from Emptied Trash

First, you need to download AnyRecover for Mac.

Step 1. Select the Trash Recovery mode.

anyrecover home mac

Step 2. Select the file type you are looking to recover. This makes the scanning process go quicker as the program will only pull up those types of files. Then click Scan to start the process.

trash recovery select file type mac

Step 3. Once the scan is complete, a list of results will be presented to you. Preview these files to ensure that they are the ones you are looking for.

trash recovery scan complete mac

Select which ones you would like to recover from the list and hit the Recover button to retrieve the files.

2Option Two: Macintosh Trash Recovery with Time Machine (Specific Files)

If you have emptied out the trash bin but have made a recent back up of all previous versions of those files, you can restore them by using Mac’s built-in Time Machine program. Time Machine allows you to restore specific files from backups or even restore the entire back up. Please note that you will need to know what file you are looking for in order to do this correctly.

Step 1. Turn on your computer and connect your Time Machine backup disk. Make sure that the disk is turned on.

Step 2. Open up the window that contained the documents that you want to restore. If it was an image, you will want to open up the gallery and if it was a document, the documents folder. If you are using an application that saves various versions of your documents, you can open up any of these versions.

Step 3. Mouse over to the Time Machine menu and choose to enter the Time Machine.


Step 4. If you had chosen documents, this would open up the documents folder in Time Machine.


Step 5. Use the timeline on the edge of your screen to see all files that are in your Time Machine backup as they were on that specific date.  Use the up and down arrows on the screen to jump through the windows to find the item that you want to restore.

Step 6. Select the item and press on your space bar to preview it.

Step 7. Click Restore to restore the selected item or control-click to view other available options.

3Option Three: Macintosh Trash Recovery with Time Machine (All Files)

If you are unsure of what specific files you need to restore because you can’t quite remember the name of the file or what type of file it was, you can restore all files from your Time Machine backup. This is a good idea if you find that original files were deleted or have found that your hard disk has been replaced, erased, or malfunctioned.

Step 1. Turn on your computer and connect your Time Machine backup disk. Make sure that the disk is turned on.

Step 2. You will be brought to the migration assistant. Select the "From a Mac, Time Machine backup, or startup disk" option.


Step 3. Click on your Time Machine backup and hit the "Continue" button.

Step 4. You will be brought to a list of backups, choose the correct one and hit  "Continue".


Step 5. Select which information you want to transfer. Select all and hit  "Continue".


Bonus: How to Correctly Back Your Mac Up

The first thing you will need is an external storage device. Once you have this, connect it to your computer and select it as your backup disk. The Time Machine program will then automatically make backups to it. Here is how you set it up.

Step 1. Connect your external storage device to your Mac.

Step 2. When you connect the device, you will be asked if you want to use the drive to backup Time Machine. Select encrypt backup disk and then choose "Use as Backup Disk".


Step 3. If you are not asked to use your drive for Time Machine backup, simply open up the System Preferences and then click on Time Machine.


Step 4.  Click on "Select Backup Disk". Select your external drive from the list of available disks and encrypt your backups.


Step 5. You may be prompted to format the drive. This will erase the disk first so that it is clear for use. After this, Time Machine will begin the backup process immediately.

Wrapping It Up

Although it might be worrying or devastating to think that your deleted files from trash are not recoverable, with a program like AnyRecover for Mac and Time Machine, you can restore them to their original locations in their original versions. Just make sure to catch the files before they are overwritten!

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By  Simon Marcus , to Deleted Files Recovery

Posted on May 20, 2019  ( Updated: Dec 16, 2019 )

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