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Everything You Need to Know About Recovering Deleted Messages on Facebook Messenger

Key Takeaways:-

  • The chats or conversations that you delete from Facebook Messengers get permanently deleted but are irrecoverable.
  • There are some ways that might help you in restoring the deleted Facebook Messenger messages.
  • You should not install any third-party app in the hope of getting your deleted Facebook messages back as that can get your account hacked.

Have you ever mistakenly deleted any of your important Facebook chats and regretted that later? This has happened with most of us, but thankfully there are a lot of options to recover permanently deleted FB messages on messenger. This guide talks about some workarounds that you can use to retrieve a deleted Facebook Messenger message. 

Before you begin with the quest to recover the deleted messages, it should be kept in mind that recovering deleted messages from Messenger is not a simple task and also there is no assurance of getting success. Still, it is better to give a try to the methods explained further as for some users they have helped in recovering deleted Facebook messages. Make sure to go through it till the end as you will also find some important tips and tricks that are going to enhance your experience with Facebook Messenger in the future. 

Note- Facebook stores all your deleted data for a maximum period of 90 days and if you are trying to recover your deleted messages after this duration is over, the chances of restoring messages are quite less.

Steps you Need to Take to Recover Permanently Deleted Messages of Facebook Messenger

Step-1 Check if the Message is Actually Deleted

The first step towards recovering deleted Facebook messages is to ensure that you have actually deleted them. It is possible that you have unknowingly archived the message instead of deleting it (that happens with emails as well). 

An archived message in Facebook Messenger is not permanently deleted but is only hidden. It mostly happens when you are going to press delete but accidentally hit the archive button. 

When you long-press a chat to delete it, the first option says ‘Archive’ while the second option is ‘Delete’; hence pressing the former instead of the latter is a common mistake (have a look at the screenshot below).

How to Check Archived Messages?

On a Computer

Follow the step-by-step instructions to restore the Facebook messages that are not deleted but have got archived:

  1. Log in to your Facebook account
  2. Click on the ‘Messenger Icon’ in the top-right corner
  1. Click on ‘See all in Messenger’ option given at the bottom
  1. Click on the ‘three-dots’ given next to chats and then select ‘Archived Chats’ from the menu.
  1. There you will be able to see all the chats that you have archived; if you want to move it back to where it was, just reply to the chat, and it will automatically get unarchived and will be sent back to the Messenger active chat list.
On Android

Follow these steps on your Android device to find deleted Facebook messages:

  1. Open the Facebook Messenger app
  2. Tap the ‘Profile’ icon in the top-left corner
  1. Tap the ‘Archived Chats’ option
  1. Long press the chat that you want to restore and press ‘Unarchive’

Here is a step-by-step video:

On iPhone

Here’s how to recover deleted messages on Messenger iPhone by unarchiving messages:

  1. Open the Facebook Messenger app on your iOS device
  2. Tap profile picture
  3. Tap ‘Archived Chats’
  4. Swipe the archived chat from right to left and then tap ‘Unarchive’ to send it back to active Messenger chats.

That’s how you can find and recover deleted chats via unarchiving messages on different devices.

Step-2 Download your Facebook Data

When you delete a Facebook conversation, the messages get permanently deleted, but thankfully, the messages stay there for some time in the Facebook servers; you might be able to find or see deleted messages of Facebook Messenger by downloading your Facebook data.

How to Download Facebook Data?

On a Computer

Follow the step-by-step instructions to restore the deleted Facebook messages by downloading your data: 

  1. Sign in to your Facebook account on a web browser
  2. Click on the drop-down menu icon and then click on ‘Settings and Privacy’
  1. Further, click on ‘Settings’
  1. In the sidebar, click on ‘Your Facebook Information’
  1. Then click on ‘Download your Information’ option from the list
  1. From the list, select Messages and deselect any other category you don’t want to download, and then click on ‘Create File’. You can also select the date range for which you want to download the messages.
  1. When the file will be ready, Facebook will notify you that it is ready to download; you might need to wait for some hours for the download to get complete and once it is over, you can check for the deleted messages in the downloaded report.
On Android

Follow these steps on your Android device to find deleted Facebook messages:

  1. Open the Facebook app
  2. Tap the three horizontal lines to open the menu
  3. Scroll down and tap ‘Settings & Privacy’
  4. Then tap ‘Settings’
  5. Scroll down and under ‘Your Facebook Information’ section, tap ‘Access your information’
  1. At the bottom, you will get the option to ‘Download your information’
  1. Upon pressing the option, you will be directed to a new screen where you have to select the ‘Message’ category, and you can deselect all the other categories if you don’t want to download them.
  1. Then scroll to the bottom of the screen and press ‘Create File’ option to download all your Facebook Messenger messages.

When the file will be ready, Facebook will notify you that it is ready to download; you might need to wait for some hours for the download to get complete and once it is over, you can check for the deleted messages in the downloaded report.

On iPhone

Here’s how to recover deleted messages on Messenger iPhone:

  1. Open the Facebook Messenger app on your iOS device
  2. Then tap your profile picture
  3. Scroll down and tap ‘Account Settings’
  1. Scroll down and select the option ‘Download your information’
  1. Upon pressing the option, you will be directed to a new screen where you have to select the ‘Message’ category, and you can deselect all the other categories if you don’t want to download them.
  1. Then scroll to the bottom of the screen and press the ‘Create File’ option to download all your Facebook Messenger messages.

When the file will be ready, Facebook will notify you that it is ready to download; you might need to wait for some hours for the download to get complete and once it is over, you can check for the deleted messages in the downloaded report.

For a better understanding, you can also watch this video-

Step-3 Explore File Manager to Restore Deleted Facebook Messenger Messages

If you had hard luck after trying the above two steps, you can also try this simple method to recover deleted Facebook Messenger messages, here is how:

  1. Open the File Explorer app on your Android device and go to the SD Card folder in the Storage section.
  2. Open the Android folder; this folder stores the data of all the Android applications.
  3. Look for the Data folder and then search for the fb_temp file in the Cache folder.

Here you may find the backup files of Facebook messages if you haven’t formatted your device recently. So, there are chances to retrieve your deleted messages on Messenger through this method. 

Step-4 Ask for a Copy from the Recipient

Another option you have is to personally contact the person with whom you have exchanged messages on Facebook Messenger to restore the deleted messages. When you delete a message from your Facebook Messenger conversation, it only gets removed from your account and not from the person’s account to whom you had sent it. The receiver will still have the message in their Facebook Messenger unless they have not deleted it as well. 

You can ask them to download the messages and send them to you or you can just ask for the screenshot of the message you are looking for.

Give them the date or the month or the year of the message you are looking for and using the information provided in the second step, they can download the messages for you.

Step-5 Check Email Notifications

If you have created a backup of your Facebook messages in the past, you can also look for the deleted message in your email account. You just have to search the sender’s name, and you will be able to see all his chats, but this option is only helpful when you are looking for the message you have received from someone.

It is always advisable to keep the notifications enabled for your account as it also helps in preventing your Facebook account from getting hacked. 

So these were some of the possible solutions that talk about how you can recover permanently deleted messages on Facebook Messenger. 

Let’s get some more information about Facebook messages that get permanently deleted. 

Can You Retrieve Permanently Deleted Facebook Messages?

Unfortunately, you cannot retrieve a message or conversation on Facebook once it has been permanently deleted unless it was archived. This has been clearly mentioned by Facebook on their website- https://www.facebook.com/help/120994304648896

Also, when you decide to delete a conversation on Facebook Messenger, Facebook prompts you to confirm and reminds you that you will lose this conversation forever as it will be permanently deleted. Here is the prompt that you see when you delete a chat on Facebook:

Are There Any Third-Party Apps that can Restore Deleted Facebook Messages?

You may find apps that claim to see messages that have been removed from Facebook Messenger, but the reality is they are a scam. The apps can only help you to get the deleted messages back only if you have already created a backup of your messages. If you are installing any such third-party app after deleting the messages, these apps are of no use to you. 

So if you have deleted the messages a year or two years ago before installing any backup app, there is no way you can recover your deleted Facebook messages.

Also, if you want to have a backup of your Facebook messages or conversations, you can easily use the in-built option provided by Facebook to download your information; it’s better to stay away from untrusted apps.

Disclaimer- It is never advisable to enter your Facebook login credentials on a third-party app or an untrusted website that is not related to official Facebook; this can get your FB account hacked

How to Create a Backup of your Facebook Messages or Conversations?

This is something you can do to avoid getting into the same situation in the future. It is easy to create a back-up of your Facebook chats and messages and after doing that, you need not worry about losing your precious conversations on Facebook Messenger. Not only messages, but you can also include your posts, photos, videos & comments, friends and every single thing that is there in your Facebook account in your back-up.

You can create a backup of your messages using your PC as well as your Android or iPhone device. Here is how:

  1. Make sure you are logged into your Facebook account
  2. Click on the drop-down menu and then click on ‘Settings & Privacy’
  3. Then click on ‘Settings’
  4. Click on ‘Your Facebook Information’ in the sidebar
  5. Then click on ‘Download your Information’
  6. Now, you can select all the categories that you want to create a backup for such as posts, comments, messages, and so on.
  7. Then you can set the date range if you want to create a backup for only a few days. This will also make the download process fast as there will be lesser data to download. If you are going to download a lot of images, posts, and messages, this is going to take a lot of time.

Tip- You can download your Facebook data after every month or every three months to make the process hassle-free and less time-consuming.

  1. Once you are done selecting the data you want to download, you just have to press the ‘Create File’ button and Facebook will start preparing your file; till the time it gets completely downloaded, it will show as ‘Pending’ under the ‘Available Copies’ section.
  2. After the file is ready to download, you can download it on your device. Enter your Facebook password to download the file.
  3. You will find the ‘Message.html’ file that has all your Facebook chats; to view the chats, you can open it and the chats will open in your browser where you will be able to read all your messages.

Tip- For further issues with Facebook Messenger, you can always visit Facebook Messenger Help Page.

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