How Do I Restore Notepad++ On a New PC?

  • Whenever I open Notepad++, all the tabs I was previously working on open up with their content intact, even if I didn’t save anything before closing the application. I love this behavior and have abused it for years by writing notes in new tabs and then not saving them.

    Of course, this has come back to bite me in the ass. My PC failed me recently, and I just finished setting up a brand new one with all new storage and a clean install of Windows 10.

    So how do I get back my old tabs with unsaved content from my previous storage media (where the old Windows 10 still resides)? I was expecting to find something under %AppData%\Notepad++, but that directory does not exist :(

  • @Frank-Gore

    what do you mean by %APPDATA%\Notepad++ doesn’t exists?
    Doesn’t exists on the new hdd? On the old hdd? Nor neither?
    Did you install npp using %APPDATA% configuration?

    If your previous installation disk is mounted to the new operating system
    you need to look for the path which was something like


    and then look within the backup directory

  • C:\Users\username\AppData\Roaming\Notepad++ is not on the old hard drive at all. It’s on the new hard drive, but I can’t find it on the old one.

    I’ve been running Notepad++ for many, many years on Windows 7 which was upgraded to Windows 10 earlier this year, and only updating occasionally. I always installed Notepad++ updates using the default settings. Is it possible that the directory is elsewhere since I started on a much older version?

  • @Frank-Gore

    if you always used the installer then it might be that the backup directory is located under the
    notepad++ installation directory. You could also run a search for a directory called backup
    on the old hdd. Good luck.


  • I don’t get this… all I can find of Notepad++ on the old hard disk is the Start Menu folder (which appears to be empty) and a PreFetch file in the x:\Windows\PreFetch directory. This makes no sense at all. There’s nothing in either of the Program Files directories. How can all trace of it have vanished overnight?

    I’m browsing the contents of the disk using Ubuntu because Windows absolutely refuses to open up that partition. I’m using the command line “find” utility to search the entire partition.

    I’m so confused. Where could Notepad++ have disappeared to?

  • @Frank-Gore

    maybe let’s go back two steps.
    Do you run a live cd with ubuntu accessing the old windows installation?
    Did you put old hdd into new pc having linux/window installed together?
    Did you try gparted?
    If Windows refuses to open that partition didn’t you get any error?


  • I’m running Ubuntu from a live CD on the old computer that “died”. Its configuration hasn’t changed since I stopped trying to revive it. I never figured out what happened to the old computer, Windows just crashed one day and forced a reboot, then refused to start again, and all attempts to repair it failed (both through built-in tools and recovery media). It wouldn’t even tell me why it “failed”, just that there was an error and it needed to reboot. The only thing I haven’t tried is re-installing Windows from scratch because I didn’t want to lose the existing data on the drive. There were other hardware issues already (bad video card, for one), so I just gave up and took the opportunity to have one of my employers buy me a whole new system.

    I tried putting the old SSD on the new system to browse it and recover the files, but all Windows told me was “Unable to open”. There was no more specific error message, and I didn’t check any error log for more info. I tried changing file permissions, but that didn’t help. Finally I put the SSD back into the old system and put in a live CD to browse the file system. I have access to “everything” (which essentially means “everything I can remember”), but apparently Notepad++ has vanished. Makes me wonder what else may have vanished too… it’s too bizarre that only Notepad++ is magically gone. I use it every single day.

  • @Frank-Gore

    what about opening the registry using wine (I’m not sure if it is part of the livecd)
    and looking where notepad was installed?


  • Wherever it was installed, the binary should still be called notepad++.exe. I should be able to find that by searching. It’s simply gone… I’m perplexed.

  • In theory, yes, but what if you did use an improper command?
    Btw. Which command did you use . I mean the whole find command.


  • find /media/ubuntu/WIN10 -iname “notepad++

    (find all instances of notepad++ regardless of case within the directory tree starting at WIN10)

    As I mentioned above, the only results I get are the empty Start Menu directory and some prefetch file, nothing else.

    I just checked the old registry and there’s still an entry in there for Notepad++ in the Program Files directory, so that’s definitely where it should be. It just no longer exists. That’s some seriously selective file vanishing… I think I’ll have to admit defeat and accept that those tabs are lost forever :(

  • Doesn’t look promising. The last thing which comes into my mind is to use data recovery tools/cd.
    But I assume you already tried that as well, didn’t you?


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