[2024] How to Recover Unsaved or Deleted Pages Document on Mac?

Connie Wisley
March 25, 2024 Preview 61.6K Preview 4
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iWork Pages is the best word processing program preinstalled on Apple device. It has a ton of beautiful templates and perfectly suits the workflow on a Mac. As more and more users work with Pages documents, there arises some common issues: we may leave a Pages document unsaved due to sudden power off, or accidentally closing Pages without saving, or mistakenly delete a Pages document on Mac.

In this guide, we will look at about 10 solutions to recover an unsaved or deleted Pages document on Mac, from using its built in Auto save feature to installing a professional Pages document recovery program.


How to Recover Unsaved Pages Document on Mac?

To recover a Pages document that wasn’t saved on Mac, there are 6 solutions listed as following.

Method 1. The Most Efficient Solution

It has been proved that the most efficient solution for unsaved Pages document recovery is to utilize a professional Data Recovery Program, because Pages AutoSave might fail often.

For Mac users, we highly recommend Cisdem Data Recovery, it provides abundant features to restore 1000+ types of files on internal and external hard drive, including Pages, Keynote, Numbers, PowerPoint, Word, Excel, and others. Also, it supports the latest macOS Sonoma/Ventura and M2 chip.

Main Features of Cisdem Data Recovery for Mac

  • Recover Pages, Keynote, Numbers and 1000+ file formats
  • Recover files unsaved or lost due to power off, formatting, deletion, virus attack, system crash and so on
  • Restore files from both Mac internal and external storage devices
  • Repair damaged videos, photos and office documents
  • Recover unsaved Office documents
  • Recover data from iCloud (built-in apps and iCloud Drive)
  • Preview files before recovery
  • Recover to local drive or Cloud
  • Create disk backup and restore data from the backup easily

Steps to Recover Unsaved or Deleted Pages Document on Mac

  1. Download and install Cisdem Data Recovery on your Mac.
    Free Download macOS 10.9 or later
  2. Go to Hardware Disk, choose the hard drive where you store the Pages documents. Then click Search for lost files.recover pages cisdem 01
  3. Go to Type > Unsaved Documents, or use the filter to find specific Pages document on Mac.recover pages cisdem 02
  4. Preview the Pages document before recovery. Then select and click Recover.recover pages cisdem 03
  5. Select a location to save the restored Pages documents on your Mac.recover pages cisdem 04

Tips: If you cannot find the unsaved Pages document in Unsaved Documents Folder, you can go to Type > Documents > Pages.

recover pages cisdem 05


Bonus: How to Recover Pages Document from iCloud?

  1. Download and install Cisdem Data Recovery on your Mac.
    Free Download macOS 10.9 or later
  2. Choose iCloud from Data Recovery tools, then select a mode and click Next.recover pages from icloud cisdem 01 
  3. Sign in by inputting user name and password. recover pages from icloud cisdem 02
  4. Select Pages app or iCloud Drive category, then click Next. recover pages from icloud cisdem 03
  5. Double click on the Pages document to preview, select and click the Recover button to get your documents back. 


Method 2. Use Mac Auto-Save

Auto-save is a part of MacOS, allowing an app to autosave the document users are working on. When you are editing on a document, the changes are saved automatically, there will be no “Save” command appears. If you have turned AutoSave ON and want to recover an unsaved Pages document free without software, use this feature.

  1. Go to find a Pages Document.
  2. Right click to open with "Pages".
  3. Now you will see all the Page documents that you leave opening or unsaved are opened. Choose the one you want to restore.auto save01
  4. Go to File > Save, and store the Pages document that is unsaved onto your Mac.pages auto save


Method 3. Try Open Recent Function

Another quick trick is to make use of the built-in function of Pages --- Open Recent Files. This is how to recover a Pages document that wasn’t saved.

  1. Open Pages.
  2. From the top menu, go to File > Open Recent. There could be multiple Pages files that you worked on.try open recent function
  3. Browse them to open and recover the exact one you need.


Method 4. From Temporary Folder

If you have re-launched the Pages application, but it doesn’t open the unsaved files still, you will need to find the unsaved Pages document in temporary folders.

  1. Go to Finder > Applications > Utilities. 
  2. Find and run Terminal on your Mac.
  3. Input "open $TMPDIR" to Terminal, then press "Enter".recover from tem folder01
  4. Find the Pages document you didn’t save in the opened folder. Then open the document and save it.recover from tem folder02


Method 5. Via iCloud Backup

If you have synced the Pages document from your Mac to iCloud by saving this file in iCloud Drive folder on your Mac, even if you left the Pages document unsaved on your Mac, the latest edited version will be displayed in iCloud Pages in real time. 

updated edit

You just need to open a web browser and sign into icloud.com, then check the synced version and download a copy.

  1. Visit https://www.icloud.com/, sign in with your iCloud account, then go to Pages.recover unsaved pages icloud 01
  2. Go to Recents, select and open the Pages document that is left unsaved on your Mac.recover unsaved pages icloud 02
  3. Then click the 3-dot icon to download a copy to your Mac, the unsaved Pages document will be restored to your Mac.recover unsaved pages icloud 03


Method 6. Retrieve the Untitled Pages Document that Wasn’t Saved on Mac

In the case you just create a new Pages document, you don’t have enough time to name the file before any problems happen, and hence have no idea where you stored the Pages document, here is the solution to recover the untitled Pages document that wasn’t saved.

  1. Go to Finder > File > Find.finder-find
  2. Choose "This Mac" and select file kind as "Document".recover untitled pages02
  3. Right click on the blank area of the toolbar, choose "Date Modified" and "Kind" to arrange files. Then you will be able find your Pages document fast and easily.
  4. Open the found Pages document and save it.


How to Recover Disappeared/Deleted Pages Document on Mac?

Besides leaving pages document unsaved on Mac, we may sometime mistakenly delete Pages document or an iWork Pages document just went disappeared for unknown reason.

The methods to recover deleted/lost Pages document are quite different from those for recovering unsaved Page document. It may require a 3rd party program or a backup. You can use Cisdem Data Recovery to restore deleted or disappeared Pages document as well, but here we will introduce 4 free methods to retrieve your Pages document.

Method 1. Undo Delete

If you don’t perform any other action on your Mac after deleting the Pages document, you can undo the deletion from Finder menu.

  1. Click on Finder icon.
  2. Go to Edit, choose Undo Move to recover the deleted Pages document.undo delete pages


Method 2. From Trash Bin

This is an easy yet easily-overlooked way to recover a deleted Pages document. In fact, when we delete a document on the Mac, it is just moved to the Trash bin instead of being permanently deleted. For permanent deletion, we need to go to Trash bin and delete manually. If you haven’t performed the step of "Delete Immediately" in the Trash bin, you can still recover the deleted Pages document.

  1. Go to Trash Bin and find the deleted Pages document.
  2. Right click on the Pages document, choose "Put Back".mac trash back
  3. You will find the recovered Pages document appears in the originally saved folder.


Method 3. Recover Disappeared or Deleted Pages Document from Time Machine

If you are the one get used to back up files with Time Machine, you are able to recover deleted Pages document with Time Machine backup. Time Machine is a program allowing users to back up their files onto an external hard drive and find the deleted or lost file back when files are gone or corrupted for some reason.

  1. Plug the Time Machine backup external hard drive to your Mac.
  2. Go to Applications, run Time Machine.recover pages time machine 01
  3. Go to the folder in which you store the Pages document and open it.
  4. Use the arrows and timeline to find your Pages document fast.
  5. Once ready, click "Restore" to recover deleted Pages document with Time Machine.recover pages time machine 02


Method 4. Recover Deleted Pages Document from iCloud

If you’ve enabled the sync-up from Mac Pages to iCloud Pages, even you deleted a Pages document on Mac, the iCloud backup file is still there, you can transfer a copy to your Mac.

  1. Log into https://www.icloud.com/.
  2. Go to Pages, select and download the Pages document to your Mac.recover pages icloud backup 01
  3. (Optional) If you can not find the Pages document in Browse folder, go to Recently Deleted > ... >Recover and recover the deleted Pages.recover pages icloud backup 02

Also, if you once sent this deleted Pages document to a contact before, there would be a shareable link, you can check your emails or any other app that you once sent the link.

recover pages icloud backup 03



In conclusion, no matter you want to recover unsaved Pages document on Mac, or recover deleted Pages document, as long as you use the appropriate method, we are able to find them back. Also, we should always remember that, backup all your important files before your files are gone forever.

Connie Wisley
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Connie has been writing for Mac productivity and utility apps since 2009. Each review and solution is based on her practical tests, she is aways energetic and trustworthy in this field.

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Comments (4) Leave a Reply

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  • Megan

    I found this page useful. Love the tutorial video inserted. I have got back my deleted Pages document successfully.

    1 years ago commonReply

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  • Gregersenartpoint

    Note: to ensure a better recover lost Pages document, you’d better not any anything on your Mac after you lost the Pages document and try the following steps quickly, the sooner the better.

    4 years ago commonReply

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  • amanda

    If you have emptied the trash can, then you should check out the part 3 to recover Pages document on Mac.

    4 years ago commonReply

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  • JImena Velazco

    I just have to say, thank you so much to whomever provided this cheat code to gain access to a Pages doc that did not save. You are a lifesaver!

    4 years ago commonReply

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