How to Recover Data from Mac Hard Drive after It Dropped

How to Recover Data from Mac Hard Drives after It Dropped

Have you dropped your Mac Hard drive and lost all your data? Certainly, you must be willing to recover all your valuable data. No worries, in this guide you will have all the finest methods to recover your lost data from dropped Mac hard drive.

Wondershare Recoverit Authors

Sep 28, 2020 • Filed to: Answer Hard Drive Problems • Proven solutions

Q: "It is quite a gesture of carelessness, but I accidentally dropped my Mac hard drive, in result I lost all my precious data on the hard drive. The data has very much significance in my life as all my family pictures and my trip photos are in it. I have saved my data for 2 years in this drive. Now that it is all lost, I'm desperate to know if it can be recovered or not. If yes, then I want to know the quickest and simplest ways to do that. Recovering my data will surely be a blessing for me."

Yes, you certainly can recover all the data you lost after you dropped your hard drive. This must be kept in mind that the hard drives are a sensitive device, they can be affected even by a slightly harsh physical interaction. Well, if you already have lost your data, there is nothing to be worried about. Firstly, you must know what the scenarios are where you are prone to dropping your hard drive. Furthermore, you will get to know about the best possible methods to recover all the data you lost after your hard drive dropped.

  • Part 1. Common scenarios for external hard drive dropped
  • Part 2. How to recover data from the dropped hard drive?

Part 1: Common scenarios for external hard drive dropped

There are multiple scenarios where people have dropped their external hard drive. The fact is for every person the scenario might be different. After studying many cases of the number of individuals, there are some of the most common scenarios where people drop the external hard drive. Technical forums have discussions threads wherein apple users describe the various situations where they had dropped the external hard drive, these are some of them:

  1. The most described scenario is where people say that they have picked up the Mac book and were unaware that there was a hard drive attached to it. The hard drive fell on the floor and then the results are such where the hard drive gives a humming sound and white light.
  2. There are situations where the external hard drive is present on a table, and due to any reason, it fell on the floor. After that, people report that the hard drive doesn't work on the Mac, the drive is not detected by the Mac.
  3. After falling off the table, the external hard drive makes a beeping or a clicking sound in some cases.
  4. In the same situation mentioned above where the hard drive fells off the table, the drive gets powered on. However, the hard drive still works but it is not recognized by the Mac. It spins for a while and then stops after giving a clicking sound.
  5. In some cases are the external hard drive fells off from your pocket, once it is dropped its case comes off and it starts making a beeping sound when you connect it to Mac book.
  6. There are some rare cases, where people have dropped the external hard drive while taking it out from their bags. People report that the hard drive gives a beeping sound and is not recognized by the Mac book after that.

Part 2: How to recover data from the dropped hard drive?

So now you know the common scenarios where people have dropped their external hard drive. It is better to learn from the scenarios mentioned above, to avoid any bad experience in the future. Furthermore, coming to the most significant part of the guide where you will get to know various methods to recover your data lost after dropping the hard drive. Every method is effective for every different person going through this devastating dilemma. People need to know that recovering data from the hard drive is itself a sensitive task. To get your data back safe and sound, you must understand your situation and apply the best suitable method for it. There is a list of methods to recover your lost data, but few of the most effective ones are mentioned in the guide. Follow these solutions carefully and get yourself out of the trouble in no time;

Connect the external hard drive to another Mac

Okay now that you have dropped your hard drive, the first thing you need to do is stop the panic and stop yourself from going into experiments. The first thing you must do is that you should take your external hard drive to another Mac in office, college, home, or anywhere. Try to connect the external hard drive to another Apple Mac. If you successfully connect the hard drive and the Mac recognizes it, before blinking you are suggested to make a backup of your data on that Mac. This is because the hard drive might not work properly twice, or you can just create a backup on that Mac and copy the data back into your Mac once you have replaced the hard drive. Sadly, if you cannot connect your external hard drive with any of the Mac, then you must try some else method mentioned below.

Use a USB-SATA / IDE adaptor

If your hard drive is not even connecting to any of the Mac, then you might use a USB-SATA/ IDEA adaptor to know if your hard drive is working or not. USB-SATA or IDEA adaptor is used to connect your hard drive to a computer or a Mac, it is the best way to know if the drive is detectable by the device or the hard drive has become useless. USB-SATA is a cable available on every computer store, but before using this method you must have some technical know-how of using the for connecting the hard drive. As mentioned before, the hard drive is a sensitive part of the computer or Mac. Follow these short steps to proceed:

Step 1 Connect the hard drive to the Mac via using the SATA to USB converter. Using the SATA to USB converter will make your hard drive as external hard.

add corrupted video files

Step 2 There can be a case where your hard drive might not support SATA or would be compatible with PATA/IDE 3.0. In this scenario, you need to buy a compatible disk cable to connect your hard drive to Mac.

Step 3 If you succeed to connect your hard drive to the Mac using SATA to USB converter, then you need to go to the disk utility tool. If you have attached all the cables and USB port cables are attached properly, then the hard drive will surely be recognized.

Step 4 Now finally that your hard drive is connected to another Mac, without thinking twice copy your valuable data to the system immediately.

Use a commercial data recovery software

If you have already tried the above two methods and sadly you were unable to connect your hard drive, then you need to use a commercial data recovery software. There several data recovery software present in the market, but you need to use the best one in your scenario. The data recovery software will be able to recover your data once you're able to mount the dropped hard drive on the disk utility. Use the remarkable data recovery software mentioned below to get your data back;

Recoverit data recovery is remarkable enough to recover more than 1000+ types and formats of data. Recoverit can recover data from almost any of the storage devices used in the 21st century. Recoverit for Mac is a widely known software all around the world. There are very few steps to be followed. Use these steps to restore your data from the dropped hard drive.

Step 1 Launch recover it on Mac

First and foremost, the task is to download and install the recovery software on your Mac. Once it is installed, you can just double click the icon to run the application.

add corrupted video files

Step 2 Select the device

Once you've opened the application, the steps are easy and simple after that. You need to select the drive under the "Devices" option in front of you. Make sure you select the hard drive you dropped and tried to connect to another Mac. Once you have recognized your dropped hard drive. Click on the "start" tab to move forward.

add corrupted video files

Step 3 Scan the location

Recoverit is famous for its deep scanning process. Once you have pressed the tab of "start", the software will start the deep scanning process for your dropped hard drive. You can even either pause or resume the scanning process.

add corrupted video files

Step 4 Preview and recover files

The scanning process might take some time. After the process has been completed, you will be able to preview all the data you had lost when the drive was dropped and found after the deep scanning process. You can preview multiple types of data, may it be videos, pictures, or audio. Before thinking twice, you need to select the button of "recover" to enable the final and the most important recovering process. The recovery time of the data will depend upon the size of the data on the hard drive you have connected. Lastly, save your recovered data at the desired location.

add corrupted video files

Move the read/write head of the external hard drive to their original position.

This is the last method for you to try if all the above methods have failed to satisfy you. In this method, you can move the read/write head of the dropped external hard drive to its original position, which can make your hard drive detectable, and then you can copy your data files on the Mac. This method is only for data recovery professionals or anyone who has the technical know-how and not for home users. Follow these steps carefully to move the read/write head of your external hard drive to its original position.

Step 1 Firstly, you need to remove the screws on the back of the external hard drive using a T6 screwdriver.

Step 2 After removing off the screws, take off the hard drive casing ad keep it aside.

Step 3 Now check if the read/write heads have hit the disk and stuck there.

Step 4 If yes, then move them back to their starting position where they are supposed to be when the hard drive starts, in other words, move them to their original position. Use the T6 screwdriver and the central spindle to do so.

add corrupted video files

Step 5 While doing all this, be careful not to scratch the surface of the platters.

Step 6 Make sure that the platters can move freely.

Step 7 Put the cover back using the T6 screwdriver to tighten the screws of the case. Now it's ready to be tested again.

Step 8 If you have followed the above steps properly, then you should be able to detect your hard drive on Mac.


The hard drive is a sensitive part of the computer and Mac. You need to take actual care of it whenever you have it around. The physical impact of the hard surface not just affects the life of the storage device but also the integrity of the files stored on it. You should tackle all the scenarios mentioned above in the guide. Unfortunately, if you have dropped the drive these methods will be effective for you. In case none of these methods work, it means your hard drive is physically crashed. Immediately reach out to a professional data recovery service provider to recover the lost data from such crashed hard drives.

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Sue Wayne

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