Despite the advent of online music streaming and internet radio services, many people prefer downloading music for offline listening. What’s more, there are many songs and artists whose music is simply not available online, making offline music libraries very much relevant even today.
The only problem with storing your music offline, be it on your computer or mobile device, is the fact that you can lose access to your files at virtually any moment because of a simple user error or a much less simple hardware failure.
Can Music Files Be Recovered?
Generally speaking, music files can be recovered. When you delete a music file, it’s just like when you throw a sheet of paper into a garbage bin. The sheet of paper doesn’t magically dissolve into thin air the moment you let go of it. Instead, it sits in the garbage bin until you take the garbage out and make it someone else’s problem. Until then, you are free to take the sheet of paper out at any moment.
3 Methods to Recover Deleted Music Files
Method #1: Recycle Bin
The Windows operating system comes with a temporary storage area for files that have been deleted by the user but are not yet permanently erased from the file system, called the Recycle Bin.
To recover deleted music files from the Recycle Bin:
- Open the Recycle Bin.
- Locate and then select whichever music files you need to restore.
- Right-click or double-click on the selection and choose Restore.
- The Recycle Bin instantly restores the deleted files to their original locations.
The macOS operating system also has its own temporary storage area for files that have been deleted by the user but are not yet permanently erased from the file system, the Trash folder.
To restore deleted music files from it:
- Open the Trash by clicking its icon in the Dock.
- To restore deleted music files from the Trash, select them and drag them back out into the folder where they belong.
Method #2: Professional Data Recovery Software
Not all deleted files end up in the Recycle Bin or Trash. When you delete files on Windows using the
“SHIFT + DELETE” command, the files don’t move to the Recycle Bin at all. Instead, the space they occupy on the hard drive is marked as unused, and they become hidden from the operating system. You can achieve the same thing by using the
“Option + Command + Delete” keystroke sequence on Mac computers.
Whenever you can’t undelete music files by simply restoring them from the Recycle Bin or Trash, you need a capable data recovery software tool such as Disk Drill to help you out. Featuring several powerful data recovery algorithms, Disk Drill can recover music files even from failing and unreliable storage devices, and it supports a wide range of music file formats, including MP3, MIDI, AAC, M4A, FLAC, WAV, WMA, Ogg Vorbis, ALAC, AIFF, and others.
To recover deleted MP3 files with Disk Drill:
- Download Disk Drill and install it on your Windows or Mac computer.
- Launch it and click the Recover button next to the storage device where the deleted or lost music files were previously located.
- Disk Drill will scan the storage device and present you with a list of recoverable files. All you have to do is select which music files you want to recover and begin the recovery process.
In addition to music files, Disk Drill can recover hundreds of other file formats from virtually any storage device, and it comes with a number of useful disk tools that can help you avoid losing music files in the future. In other words, Disk Drill is a fantastic choice for all kinds of data recovery tasks—not just MP3 recovery.
Method #3: Free Data Recovery Software
Another data recovery tool that you should know about to recover deleted MP3 files and other music file formats is TestDisk.
The purpose of TestDisk is to recover lost partitions and make non-booting disks bootable again. This handy open-source data recovery tool is licensed under the terms of the GNU General Public License, and it has features for both novices and experts.
How to Avoid Losing Music Files
In order to avoid losing music files in the future, you should back up your music library on a regular basis and enable data protection in Disk Drill. To be more specific, you should enable Recovery Vault and Guaranteed Recovery, which are two different ways to avoid future data loss supported by Disk Drill.
It always feels horrible to lose your favorite music, regardless of how it happens. Fortunately, not all data loss scenarios are destined to end badly. If you have the right data recovery tool, the probability that you will see your files again is high. Disk Drill is our favorite data recovery tool because it hides all the complexity that goes into data recovery behind a single button. Despite delivering professional results, Disk Drill is nowhere as expensive as professional data recovery services, and there’s even a free version that you can use to recover up to 500 MB of data without any limitations.