How to Recover Your Missing Photos after Upgrading to Windows 11?


The latest Windows OS version, Windows 11, consists of several productivity tools and security features. It was introduced to the public on October 05, 2021. Many users are upgrading to Windows 11 to take advantage of these features. Usually this upgrade process is easy and smooth. However, in some scenarios, you may see files, including photos missing after the upgrade. This post aims to answer the key question of how to recover photos after upgrading to Windows 11.

How to Recover Photos after Windows 11 Upgrade?

Here are some ways that can help you recover missing photos after Windows 11 upgrade.

1. Sign in With the Right Profile

If you have signed using a temporary account or an alternate account, you may not see the photos and other important files in the account. Every account acts as a standalone system and every file you save using the accounts gets saved in it. Thus, after Windows 11 upgrade, you need to check if you have signed with a temporary profile. Follow these steps:

Sign in With the Right Profile

  1. Click on the Start Button.
  2. Choose Settings >> Accounts >> Sync your settings.
  3. If you get this message on the top of the screen “You are logged on with a temporary profile. Roaming options are currently unavailable”, it indicates that you have logged in with the temporary account.
  4. Restart your computer and sign in with your regular account. This will help remove the temporary account and you can see your photos and other documents again.

Note: If you have saved any files in this temporary account, ensure to take a backup before restarting the computer to avoid data loss.

2.  Use Search Feature in Windows 11 to Check the Photos

You can use the Search feature to find the lost photos or files, if you’ve already logged in with the regular account.

  1. Click on This PC/My Computer icon on your desktop.
  2. Type the photo name with the file extension and allow the system to search it for you.
  3. If the search result is not the one you have been looking for, you can click on the More option to choose the type of data you want to recover.

Use Search Feature in Windows 11 to Check the Photos

  1. You can choose Photos to see the file that you may be looking for.
  2. Click to open the file. You can see the file location in the right section of the screen.
  3. Click on the location address that appears on the screen to see the photo.

3. Enable Windows Administrator Account

If you have been using an administrator account in Windows 7, 8.1, and 10, and have upgraded to Windows 11 recently, then the administrator account may be disabled. This may lead to temporary data loss. In this scenario, you need to log into your old account and copy the photos to a USB drive and move it to the Windows 11 account later. You can follow these steps to enable Windows Administrator Account.

  • In the Search box, type computer management and choose Computer Management.
  • In the left pane, choose Local Users and Groups >> Users. You will see the down arrow icon if the administrator account is disabled.

Enable Windows Administrator Account

  • Open a new window by double-clicking on the icon. You will see “Account is disabled”. Deselect the checkbox against it.
  • Sign out of the account and then sign in again to the account. Next, copy the files to the USB drive.

Recover Lost Photos Using a Backup File

4. Recover Lost Photos Using a Backup File

If you fail to recover deleted photos from any of the above ways, then using a backup file is the best option. Follow these steps to recover the photos after Windows 11 upgrade.

  1. Click on Start > Settings > Update & Security > Backup.
  2. Select Backup and Restore (Windows 7).
  3. Choose to Restore My Files and recover your files following the instructions that appear on the screen.

5. Use Data Recovery Software to Recover Photos

In many scenarios, photo recovery is not easy after the system upgrade. This is where a reliable photo recovery software comes in handy. There are several data recovery software, including Stellar Photo Recovery, iBoysoft Data Recovery, iBeesoft Data Recovery, and Tenorshare 4DDiG Data Recovery Software that assure quick data recovery. Among these, Stellar Photo Recovery is designed to recover deleted/missing media files, including photos, videos, and audio files in various scenarios. The software can recover unlimited file formats, including JPEG, GIF, PNG, RAW, etc., from SDD, HDD, 4K hard drives, SD cards, USB drives, and so on. This software can easily recover photos and media files that may be deleted or lost due to virus attack, Windows update, Windows re-installation, etc. This software has a free version that you can download on your system to evaluate its functionality.


It may happen that some photos or files are missing after upgrading your system to Windows 11. This is because your data has moved to the other area of the system. The post offers five ways to recover photos after Windows 11 upgrade. However, the best way to recover deleted photos after Windows 11 upgrade is by using a picture recovery software.



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