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There's now a way to recover those Google Drive files that went missing last month

Google Drive for desktop now has a new version with a recovery tool to restore lost files.
By
December 7, 2023
Google Drive featured stock photo 2
Edgar Cervantes / Android Authority
TL;DR
  • Google has updated Drive for desktop with a new recovery tool to restore missing files.
  • The update comes after users reported lost Google Drive files owing to a bug in November.

Google Drive users lost files randomly due to a bug back in November. According to Google, the issue affected a limited subset of Google Drive desktop app users. If you were one of the affected users, Google now has a way to recover your missing Drive files.

The company has updated a support document with instructions to recover lost files. While the issue is now fixed, Google recommends updating to the latest version of the Drive for desktop app on Windows or macOS — version 85.0.13.0 or higher.

Once you have the latest version of Drive for desktop, you can run the recovery tool as mentioned in the steps below. Google notes that this method does not guarantee you’ll get your missing files back. Only if the recovery tool can find a backup will you have a chance of restoring your lost files. You can also recover missing Drive files using the command line interface on your PC. Here’s how both methods work.

Recover missing Google Drive files using the recovery tool

  • Update Drive for desktop  to version 85.0.13.0 or higher
  • Click the Drive for desktop icon in the menu bar or system tray.
  • Press and hold the Shift key and click Settings.
  • Click Recover from backups.

Once the recovery process starts, you’ll see one of the following notifications — “recovery has started” or “No backups found.” If there was a backup, you should get a “recovery is complete” prompt after some time. If the process fails, you may have to free up some disk space and rerun the recovery tool.

If this method does not work for you, you can try recovering your missing Drive files by running the command line tool. You’ll still need the latest version of the Drive for desktop app before you proceed with this method. Google details the command prompts for macOS and Windows here.