Lost Word file - pretty serious!

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by Luke30, Oct 28, 2012.

  1. Luke30 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2012
    #1
    Hi all,

    I'm looking for some help with a disappearing file, which represents a good 10 hours of my life, and I'd be very grateful for some help.

    I habitually hit cmd + S to save files, and I back up on Dropbox. However, when I went to Open the .docx file yesterday, it wasn't anywhere to be found. Not in "all my files", not in the recycle bin. I then looked in the hidden files in Library (I use OS X Lion) and saw a file called "AutoRecovery save of Imprinting draft Oct.docx", i.e. the very file I was looking for (hence, I am sure I have the name of the file correct, and I know I did save it at least once). I thought this was what I needed, but clicking on it gives the error: "The alias "AutoRecovery save of Imprinting draft Oct.docx" can't be opened because the original item can't be found".

    Any idea why my Mac decided to delete my file without a trace? And any ideas on how to get it back? I have Googled for a couple of hours now and tried various things without luck. I have tried looking for "Word Work files" in the trash as suggested by some guides - for some reason the only ones that are there are from months ago, even though I have created and edited dozens of documents more recently. So no luck there.

    Also, three of my Facebook friends reported the exact same experience, i.e. Word files disappearing for no reason without trace. Very strange and disheartening.

    Thanks and all the best,

    Luke
     
  2. Gregg2 macrumors 603

    Joined:
    May 22, 2008
    Location:
    Milwaukee, WI
    #2
    I've heard of this happening too. Sorry to say, I think it's gone for good. It may have taken 10 hours to create, but it won't take that long to do it again since you've already done it once. That's not of much comfort, but it's all I've got.
     
  3. Luke30 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2012
    #3
    Thanks for your reply Gregg.

    Anyone else had this problem? That's four people now that suspect their Word files are being lost without trace. Is it just Word, or other things too? And is that file in the Library labelled "AutoRecovery save of blahblah.docx" just a red herring? Pretty annoyed with the new Mac right now - I never lost an important file in 15 years of using PCs.
     
  4. mfram macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2010
    Location:
    San Diego, CA USA
    #4
    Have you been using Time Machine? That should backup the entire machine about once an hour.
     
  5. neonblue2 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2006
    Location:
    Port Pirie, South Australia
    #5
    If you have been using Time Machine but the drive wasn't plugged in you can still retrieve the file. Since Lion Time Machine makes local backups on the hard drive it usually backs up to an external drive.

    For example, I'm at work right now and my Time Machine drive is at home yet I can still go back and get files I deleted almost a week ago by entering Time Machine.
     
  6. rjbritt071 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2012
    #6
    Also, if you've been storing it on dropbox, you can find deleted files by going to the web interface, and next to the search box there is something that says "show deleted files" and you should be able to recover any deleted files that way. Hopefully that will help you out. I'm not sure how long dropbox keeps them though.
     
  7. Gregg2 macrumors 603

    Joined:
    May 22, 2008
    Location:
    Milwaukee, WI
    #7
    Yeah, I've only heard about similar issues with Word. That's a Microsoft program by the way. ;)
     
  8. wackymacky macrumors 68000

    wackymacky

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2007
    Location:
    38°39′20″N 27°13′10″W
    #8
    you can't get to it by the "open recent" menu? Just a thought if it is misplaced.

    If it was open for 10 hours there must be an autorecovery somewhere.
     
  9. xlii macrumors 68000

    xlii

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2006
    Location:
    Millis, Massachusetts
    #9
    You could also try using spotlight and search your entire drive for it.
     

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