What Is a CAB File? How to Recover Deleted CAB Files?

What is a CAB file? How to recover deleted CAB files? Read this article to learn the best way to recover CAB files and know how to install/open/extract/convert CAB files.


By Lori / Updated on May 16, 2024

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Can Deleted CAB Files Be Recovered?

Losing CAB files can disrupt your workflow, especially if these files are integral to software installations or system updates on Windows systems. How to recover deleted cab files in Windows 10/11?

Recover Deleted CAB Files

Fortunately, there are several ways to help you recover these files, from quick fixes like checking the Recycle Bin to more advanced solutions like using specialized recovery software like MyRecover. Scroll down to get the corresponding 3 easy methods to get deleted or lost CAB files on your PC back.

❗ Important! If you lose CAB files, please note the following:

  • Avoid using your drive that saved your CAB files immediately.
  • Don't add new files to your storage devices.
  • Avoid formatting your drive that saved your CAB files again.
  • Don't save recovered files to their original place.

What Is a CAB File?

CAB, short for Cabinet, is a file format native to Microsoft Windows, used primarily for archiving and compressing files. CAB files are often employed to package software distributions and updates, making them a common sight during software installations, particularly those involving Windows operating systems.

How to Recover Deleted CAB Files Effortlessly (3 Ways)

Here are 3 simple methods to recover archive files like CAB files. Among all deleted CAB file recovery methods, it is recommended to use archive file recovery software like MyRecover to recover deleted CAB files or other archive files such as ZIP or RAR files as this way is the most effective.

Way 1. Restore Deleted CAB Files from the Recycle Bin

The first method is to recover deleted files from the Recycle Bin. If you haven't emptied your Recycle Bin, there's a good chance you can find your deleted CAB files there.

>> Open the Recycle Bin and locate your CAB file. Right-click on it and select Restore.

Recycle Bin Restore

⚠ Note:

  • After restoration, the file will automatically return to its original location, where it’s ready to be used again.
  • For Mac users, a similar procedure can be used with the Trash Bin to recover files. Find and right-click the CAB files in Trash, and select Put Back.

Way 2. Recover Deleted/Lost CAB Files with MyRecover (Hot)

For most users, finding a powerful CAB file recovery software like MyRecover is the easiest way to get back deleted, lost, or unsaved CAB files, especially if these files are not stored in the Recycle Bin. It can help you to restore deleted or lost files from storage devices such as an HDD, SSD, USB drive, SD card, and more.

  • Recover various archive files like CAB, ZIP, RAR, ZIPX, TAR, 7Z, ACE, and other compressed files.
  • Advanced scanning methods: Quick Scan & Deep Scan help you find all the deleted and lost files on your selected drive.
  • Apply to various data loss scenarios: accidental deletion, unintentional formatting, system crash, firmware bug, virus infection, etc.
  • Allow you to filter and preview files by Files Type, Size, Date, etc. to save your time and energy.

Please download and install MyRecover to recover CAB files easily! Give it a try.

Download Software Windows 11/10/8/7/Server
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Step 1. Run MyRecover on your computer. Hover the mouse over the drive that saved your deleted or lost CAB files. Then, click Scan.

select d drive to scan

Step 2. It will scan your drive automatically and thoroughly to locate all the recoverable data. You can use the Search Box or the Filter feature to quickly locate CAB files.

scan lost data

Tip: Preview or filter your desired file based on Files Type, Date, Size, etc.

  • Type: Select the file type (Documents, Images, Videos, Audios, Mails, Webpages, Compressed files, etc.)
  • Date modified: Set the date (today, yesterday, last 7/30 days, etc.)
  • Size: Filter the file size (<128KB, 128KB~1MB, 1MB~ 512MB, 512MB above, etc.)

Step 3. You will see a list of files that MyRecover found on your drive. Select your CAB files by clicking Recover X Files and choose a new location to save the recovered files.

recover lost data

  • You could recover deleted CAB files for free, up to 500MB. If you want to enjoy unlimited data recovery, please upgrade to the advanced editions.
  • What’s more, You could use this way to recover deleted/unsaved Microsoft Word, Excel, PPT, PDF, PPTX, JPG, PNG, MP4, MOV, MP3, CDA, MSG, EML, and more.

Way 3. Recover Deleted CAB Files Using File History

File History is a built-in Windows feature, that automatically backs up files like documents, pictures, videos, music, compressed files, and desktop folders after turning on File History. By enabling File History, you can restore previous versions of files/folders, sourced from restore points and file history. Here are the simple steps to recover CAB files.

Step 1. Type file history in the search box and open Restore your files with file history.

Step 2. Choose Restore personal files.

Restore Personal FIles

Step 3. Select the CAB files you want to restore and click the green Restore button.

Restore Deleted File

🤞Tip: Time Machine is the backup feature found in Mac, here are steps to recover deleted CAB files on Mac.

  • Activate Time Machine with the Command+Space shortcut.
  • Search for the folder that contained the lost CAB files.
  • Browse through the backups, select the needed files, and click 'Restore'.

How to Install/Open/Extract/Convert CAB File?

CAB files are compressed archives commonly used by Windows for software installations and updates. Here’s how to install, open, extract, and convert CAB files on different platforms.

How to Install CAB Files on Windows 10?

Installing CAB files on Windows might require a few additional steps beyond merely executing an installer. Here are three straightforward methods to help you install CAB files:

Method 1: Using Command Prompt

  • Search for "cmd" in the Windows search bar, right-click on Command Prompt, and select 'Run as administrator'.
  • Type the command dism /online /add-package /packagepath:"PUT-CAB-FILE-PATH-HERE" and press Enter. Locate the CAB file path by navigating to its folder in Windows Explorer and copying the address from the address bar.
  • Wait for the command to execute and the installation to finish.

Method 2: Using File Explorer

  • Navigate to the CAB file using File Explorer.
  • Right-click on the CAB file, select 'Extract', and choose the destination for the extracted files.
  • Once extracted, you can execute or install the files based on your needs.

⚠ Note: Many CAB files are part of larger software updates or installations that include .msi or .exe files. In these cases, simply running the provided installer file will automatically process the CAB file contents.

How to Open CAB Files?

Cabinet files (CAB) are fully supported by Windows, so you don't need special software to open them there. Just double-click the CAB file, and Windows File Explorer will show its contents.

For macOS or other systems, you'll need a third-party tool to open CAB files. Some options include:

  • 7-Zip for Windows
  • The Unarchiver for macOS
  • WinZip for both Windows and macOS
  • ZDevs ZArchiver for Android

How to Extract a CAB File?

You can extract a CAB file using Windows Explorer:

  • Press Win + E to open File Explorer and navigate to the folder containing the CAB file. Double-click the CAB file.
  • Press "Ctrl + A" to select all contents inside. Right-click on the selected contents and choose "Extract".
  • Choose a destination folder for the extracted files. Click "Extract" to complete the process.

How to Convert a CAB File?

There aren't any specific programs to convert CAB files, but you can use online converters. Some popular ones include zamzar.com, cloudconvert.com, fileproinfo.com, anyconv.com.

How to Prevent CAB Files Loss?

If your CAB files are permanently deleted, you could seek professional data recovery software like MyRecover to recover them easily. We also provide some tips for you to avoid losing CAB files.

1️⃣ Regular Backups: Regularly back up your CAB files to different storage media. This could include external hard drives, USB sticks, or online cloud storage services. You could try this highly-praised free backup software for Windows AOMEI Backupper Standard to ensure data security.

2️⃣ Use Multiple Storage Options: Don't rely on a single backup. Store your backups in at least two different locations to reduce the risk of loss from hardware failure or other issues.

3️⃣ Update Security Software: Keep your antivirus and anti-malware software up to date to protect your files from threats that could corrupt or delete them.

4️⃣ Manage File Versions: If you frequently modify CAB files, consider using version control or file history tools. This way, if a file gets lost or corrupted, you can revert to an earlier version.

5️⃣ Physical Security: Ensure physical security for your storage devices, especially if they are portable. Keep them in a safe place to avoid damage or theft.

Closing Words

In this post, you now know the comprehensive information about CAB files. Recovering deleted CAB files is feasible with the right approach, whether it's through immediate actions like checking the Recycle Bin, using free and advanced file recovery software like MyRecover, or using Windows file history. Always ensure regular a file backup to minimize data loss and facilitate easier recovery processes.

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1. Where are CAB files stored?

CAB files, often used during software updates and system tasks, are typically stored in the C:\Windows\Temp\ folder. It is safe to delete these files from this location unless your computer is currently installing updates or software, as they may be in use.

2. Can I recover deleted CAB files from a formatted drive?

Yes, data recovery software like MyRecover can retrieve files from formatted drives. However, recovery is only possible if the data hasn't been overwritten. To increase the chances of recovery, avoid using the drive after the format.

3. Is it OK to delete CAB files?

CAB files are used by Windows for updates, device installations, themes, and other applications. If these files are using a significant amount of space, you can delete them from the C:\Windows\Temp\ folder. Just make sure there are no ongoing installations, as deleting them could interrupt the process and cause errors.

4. How to delete CAB files in Windows 10?

Step 1: Press Win + E to open File Explorer.

Step 2: Navigate to the Temp folder by entering C:\Windows\Temp\ in the address bar and pressing Enter.

Step 3: Right-click the CAB file you wish to delete and select "Delete" from the context menu.

Lori · Editor
Lori has received professional technical training since joining AOMEI and aims to help users troubleshoot problems with data recovery and protection. She focuses on simple, efficient, and practical methods, and provides professional advice. Being able to help readers and users is her ultimate goal.