How to Recover Erased Programs on My DVR

DVD control panel with a STOP sign image by Peter Ivanov from

DVRs record TV programs so you can watch them at any time. Unfortunately, sometimes you go to watch a program only to discover that you've accidentally deleted it, or someone else with access has.

Thankfully, most DVRs made since 2007 automatically save recently deleted programs in another part of the hard drive for retrieval. It's like the "trash bin" on a computer. Each DVR has a different setting for deleting the programs, which ranges from a number of days to an amount of space taken up on the hard drive. The sooner you retrieve a deleted program, the more likely it is to be there.

Turn on your DVR and go to the main menu. Different DVRs will have different settings, so refer to your manual for clarification. It's also possible that if you have an older machine, it does not save shows.

Navigate to the main "Shows" menu, which displays all of your current shows. Scroll down to the section of the screen that says "Recently Deleted," "Deleted Programs," or possibly "Trash" or "Recycling Bin," and click "OK."

Scroll down to the show you want to restore and click "OK." A menu will pop up asking whether you want to delete the program permanently or restore it. Highlight the restore option and click "OK." Continue doing this for any more shows you want to restore.