How to Recover Permanently Deleted Photos from PC/Laptop

Summary: This blog shares the sure-shot solution to recover permanently deleted photos from your Windows PC, computer, laptop or any other storage drive with the help of photo recovery software.

How to Recover Permanently Deleted Photos from PC/Laptop

Case 1: ‘I made a huge mistake. In a hurry, I deleted the wrong photos from my PC and then emptied Recycle Bin. Is there any way I can recover permanently deleted photos from PC/Laptop?’

Case 2: ‘My Windows 8 system files seem to be corrupt due to virus. I can’t see some of my valuable photos in the drive. Also can’t find them in Recycle Bin. Are they permanently deleted? How can I recover my deleted photos?’

‘Recover Permanently deleted’ photos imply when you delete images with Shift + Delete key or remove them from Recycle Bin too. Running system cleaner apps on your PC also result in permanent deletion of photos. Other than these, viruses, formatting, corruption, sudden power failure, malware, bad sectors in the drive lead to permanent loss of stored image files.

Unlike temporary deletion, in which photos go to Recycle Bin from where you can easily restore them, permanently deleted photos are difficult to recover.

There are few techniques like ‘recovery from Windows file history’ or ‘restore the previous version of Windows’ but most of the time attempting them is like a wild goose chase.

So is there any method that can recover permanently deleted pictures?

Yes…A sure shot way is to trust a professional photo recovery application for the purpose. They are designed to recover lost or permanently deleted photos from your computer drive, regardless of the cause of photo loss. Tools like Stellar Photo Recovery can restore photos shot with any DSLR, Android, iPhone, webcam, CCTV, etc. that too with their original name, date and time.

Note: It’s important to immediately stop using your PC after the photos were lost, unless you’re going to perform a recovery process. This will prevent overwriting of data and maximise the chances of photo recovery from your computer.

How to Recover Permanently Deleted Pictures– step-by-step

Step 1: Download and launch Stellar Photo Recovery on your Windows PC.

Free Download Stellar Photo Recovery For Windows

Step 2: Select the location on your PC from where you lost photos. Click Scan.

Stellar Photo Recovery - Preview  recoverable photos & Click Deep Scan

Step 3: Once the scan is completed, Preview your recoverable photos. If you don’t see the required photos in the list, click the Deep Scan option at the bottom for a thorough search.

Stellar Photo Recovery - Preview  recoverable photos & Click Deep Scan

Step 4: Select the required photos, click Recover.

Step 5: Click Browse and select a location on a different drive to save the recovered photos.

Stellar Photo Recovery - Save the recovered photos

*The trial software scans the media and shows a preview of all the recoverable files. Once you are able to ascertain the effectiveness, you can save the recoverable files by activating the software. Don’t save the recovered photos in the same drive from which they were deleted or lost.

Key benefits:

  • Restores RAW file formats of popular DSLRs like Canon, Nikon, Sony etc.
  • Get back photos with original name, date and timestamp
  • The software is quick to restore hundreds of photos of any format
  • Restore images without losing their original quality

Other methods you may try to recover permanently deleted pictures

Although these methods don’t promise permanently deleted photos recovery, but there’s no harm in trying them. Who knows they may work in your case!

You can use Windows data backup utilities like ‘Windows Backup and Restore’ (in Windows 7) , ‘Restore Previous versions’ , Recover from Google Photos, Recover using command prompt to get back lost photos.

These features are helpful, when you have manually set them up on your PC, before the photos were lost or permanently deleted.

1. Recover photos with ‘Backup and Restore’ in Windows 7
  • Go to Control Panel.
  • Click to follow System and Security > Backup and Restore.
  • Click Restore my files.
2. Restore deleted photos with ‘Previous Versions’

Windows has a ‘Restore from Previous Versions’ feature that includes copies of files automatically created by the PC backup. These files are also called shadow files. Previous versions include files saved on a backup (if you are using Windows Backup) as well as restore points.

  • Right-click on the folder from which you lost or deleted photos.
Windows Folder Restore ‘Previous Versions’

  • Select Restore previous versions.
  • In the dialog box, choose the version of date when your photos were present in the folder.
Windows Properties - Previous Versions
  • Click ‘RestoreNote: Before restoring a previous version folder, select the previous version, and click Open to view it and ensure it’s the version that contains your deleted photos.
3. Recover Photos from Google Photos
  • Go to
  • Select the photo you want to restore.
  • Select save to the device.
  • Photos will be saved in your PC
Recover Photos from Trash in Google Photos
  1. On your computer, open in your browser.
  2. Click on the Menu on the top left corner.
  3. Select Trash.
  4. Select the pictures you want to recover. Place your cursor over the photo, click on the Done icon.
  5. Click the Restore icon on top right.

The photos will be restored to your Google Photos library and added back to their respective albums. Read more on How to Recover Deleted Photos from Google Photos.

Quick tips –

  • Check your online account – Your photos will be uploaded in the online Google Photos account. But if you are unable to get it through desktop app then you can always check in your account.
  • Review Picasa web- Search for your photos in Picasa as well, as almost all older versions of PCs have an inbuilt Picasa app. If your Picasa was in sync with your system, there is a great chance that you can get your photos from the

Wrapping up

The DIY Stellar Photo Recovery is not only effective in tough situations but also an efficient tool that recovers all types of photo formats in no time. The professional photo recovery tool recoups permanently deleted photos from any Windows desktop, laptop or storage drive.

Free Download Stellar Photo Recovery For Windows

To add on, usually we don’t realize the importance of backup, until the moment we get into a data loss situation. Windows has its own data backup utilities such as ‘Backup and Restore’ and ‘Restore from Previous versions’ but we tend to ignore them. If you have turned them On in your PC, these could serve as efficient ways to recover permanently lost or deleted photos.

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