4 Best Ways to Restore Deleted Downloads Folder Mac for Free

By Vernon Roderick, Last updated: June 16, 2020

The Downloads folder can mean a lot to many users. It’s where most files go when you download something from the internet. And we all know that this folder is built-in, meaning it is already there before you even got your Mac.

Despite being built-in to the Mac computer, it is still as vulnerable to data loss as other folders on your Mac. In fact, quite a few users have already been complaining about losing their Downloads folder out of the blue.

This article will talk about how you can restore deleted Downloads folder Mac so you may also restore the files contained within the folder. Let’s start with what I consider the best solution.

Part 1: Restore Deleted Downloads Folder Mac with Mac Data RecoveryPart 2: Restore Deleted Downloads Folder Mac from TrashPart 3: Restore Deleted Downloads Folder Mac from HomePart 4: Restore Deleted Downloads Folder Mac with Time MachinePart 5: Conclusion

Part 1: Restore Deleted Downloads Folder Mac with Mac Data Recovery

Our very first entry involves a third-party tool that specializes in file recovery. File recovery software is known to have the capability of recovering files and even folders altogether. As such, a data recovery tool is a must, and for that, I recommend FoneDog Data Recovery.

FoneDog Data Recovery is a tool that is capable of restoring files from their original state. It supports all kinds of files and can even include folders. Since it supports Mac, it is the perfect tool for the job. Here’s how you can restore deleted Downloads folder Mac with this tool:

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Step 1: Choose File Type and Storage Drive

Open the FoneDog Data Recovery software on your computer. Now on the main page, there will be a selection of file types and storage drives. For the file type, I suggest selecting the Check all file types option since the Downloads folders are likely to have all kinds of files. For the storage drive, select the drive where the Downloads folder is located, which is most likely to be the C: drive.
Choose File Type and Storage Drive

Step 2: Scan for Files

Once you have configured the settings on the first page, click on the Scan button. This will initiate a Quick Scan by default. However, you may continue with Deep Scan if you want to get more results.
Scan Files

Step 3: Restore Deleted Downloads Folder Mac

The scanning will start after you click on the Scan button. At that point, you will get a list of files on the next page. However, all you have to do is look for the Downloads folder and click on its box. Then, click on the Recover button.

It should be very easy to restore deleted Downloads folder Macwith this tool. However, some people may find it very difficult to trust a tool that they haven’t heard of before. If that’s you, then this solution may not be the most suitable option for you. So you may want to look elsewhere for the best solution.
Restore Deleted Downloads Folder Mac

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Part 2: Restore Deleted Downloads Folder Mac from Trash

The keyboard of Mac is the same as of Windows’. They both have the Delete key that is used to delete items on your computer. That’s why if Windows users can unintentionally delete folders in their computer, Mac users can also do the same. If your case is an unintentional deletion, there is a high chance that you will be able to restore deleted Downloads folder Mac.

This is pretty common since there are two ways to send files and folders to the trash. The first one would be by pressing the Command + Delete, and the second one is selecting Move to Trash. Files and folders that go through this process will always be sent to the Trash, but since it is common, a solution was made immediately.

If that’s the case, you can restore deleted Downloads folder Mac by first opening the Trash by clicking on its icon on the Mac Dock. Once you are in the Trash, you can restore deleted Downloads folder Macin several ways:

  • Select the Downloads folder and press Command + Delete. This will return the selected files or folder into its original location.
  • Drag back the Downloads folder outside. This of course will not return the folder into its original location, but into the place where you drag it into.

This is a very quick solution since it won’t take long even if the Downloads folder is filled with files. However, there are many occasions where you won’t be able to use this method. You now have the Downloads folder again. Now, what if you can’t find the Downloads folder in the trash? How will you restore deleted Downloads folder Mac then?

Part 3: Restore Deleted Downloads Folder Mac from Home

Although most files that are lost get sent to the Trash, sometimes you just need to look harder since it was probably sent somewhere else and not deleted. This is the problem with some users. They often assume immediately that the files are deleted just because they can’t find it the same way they did before.

Fortunately, there is a way to automatically go to where the Downloads folder is located and possibly put it into the Dock once again. This is so you can restore deleted Downloads folder Maceasily. Here are the steps to do put the Downloads folder into your Dock again:

  1. Open a session of Finder on your Mac.
  2. On the menu bar of Finder, click on Go.
  3. From the resulting dropdown menu, select Home.
  4. Now you will see a list of folders inside the Home directory. You can now find the Downloads folder here.
  5. Simply click and drag the Downloads folder and drop it into the Dock.

The Downloads folder is now on the Dock once again. With this, you can restore deleted Downloads folder Mac by simply finding it and not recovering it from deletion. However, there are actually two possible reasons why you can’t find the Downloads folder in the Trash. The first one would be because it wasn’t deleted in the first place, which is that case you can solve it with this method.

The second reason would be if it was permanently deleted, thus explaining why it wasn’t sent to the Trash. This is often the case when the user presses Shift + Delete instead of the Delete key only.
Restore Deleted Downloads Folder Mac from Home

Part 4: Restore Deleted Downloads Folder Mac with Time Machine

How do I restore my Downloads folder? If your case involves deleting the Downloads folder permanently, there is only one solution left, and that would be to revert your whole computer altogether into its original state. In other words, you have to turn back time on your computer, which will return the Downloads folder along with other files and folders.

Altogether it is quite extreme; there is an easy way to do this. And it involves a function that is literally named “Time Machine”, and you can probably guess what this function can do.

Time Machine is a built-in function in all Mac devices that allows users to turn back time on their computers. It is often used to solve any issues that may be related to the operating system.

Follow these steps if you are ready to restore deleted Downloads folder Mac:

  1. Connect the Time Machine disk into your Mac. It should be the disk that you used when creating the Time Machine backup.
  2. Go to the Applications folder.
  3. Select Utilities and open the Migration Assistant.
  4. Follow the onscreen instructions until you get to the main page of Migration Assistant.
  5. Select From a Mac, Time Machine backup, or startup disk and click on Continue.
  6. Select the backup that you would like to use, preferably the one where the Downloads folder still exists and you already have the new files. Click on Continue.
  7. Select the files you want to include. I recommend including Applications, the option with your profile name, and Other files and folders. Click on Continue.

This will not only restore deleted Downloads folder Mac, but it will also restore other files that you have lost, regardless of whether you intend to recover them or not. The only downside of this is that you will lose some of your files, most likely the ones that you didn’t have before or the ones you have recently downloaded or transferred into your Mac.

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Part 5: Conclusion

A lot of users complain about not being able to access their Downloads folder the same way they did before. This often leads to many complications, but that just goes to show how important the Downloads folder is to Mac users.

Although it is quite difficult, you can always learn how to restore the deleted Downloads folder Mac. Once you have gained such skills, you can always keep tabs on your Downloads folder and possibly retrieve it if the worst comes to pass.

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Vernon Roderick

Technical Expertise for PC/Website Optimization

One of my passion is to develop software of my own

I write articles to share knowledge about IT technology and some experience in developing my own software, and developing my own software is one of my passions for work.

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