How to Recover Formatted Mac Hard Drive

By formatting a hard drive on Mac, you can fix a few hard drive issues and protect it from virus attack. But one issue ensues - data loss. Get through this article and get the ways of recovering formatted Mac hard drive data.

Aug 29,2019 • Filed to: Solve Mac Problems • Proven solutions


Is it possible to recover files after formatting Macintosh HD? The answer is definitely YES! In fact, Mac hard drive formatting doesn't wipe your files (unless the files are overwritten by other files). When you format a Mac hard drive, the file system of disk is replaced with a new empty file system. Thus, the entries of all the files and directories saved on the hard drive are cleaned and they are inaccessible.

However, the disk maintains an index file, telling the computer's operating system the place that a particular file is stored. When you format the Mac hard drive, links between index and file are deleted. Those lost files are still physically intact, and you can recover formatted Mac hard drive before they are overwritten by new files.

Part 1: Recover Formatted Hard Drive on Mac with Recoverit

If you have backed up your Mac files, you can restore formatted files easily from the backup files. If you don't have any valid backup, you will need formatted Mac Recovery software to help you retrieve data back. Recoverit Data Recovery for Mac is a reliable Mac hard drive data recovery program, and 100% safe to help you recover formatted Mac hard drive. No matter formatted, deleted or lost files due to different reasons.

Video Tutorial on How to Recover Files from Formatted Hard Drive

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Part 2: How to Recover Files from Formatted Hard Drive on Mac

If you want to recover files from Mac formatted hard disk, then the following steps can help you do the job easily and timely. Now, download, install and launch Recoverit Mac Format Recovery to get formatted data back in less than no time.

Tips: Remeber do not install Recoverit Mac Data Recovery to the same partition or place where you lost your data to avoid overwriting your original data.
  1. Select a formatted disk
  2. Select the hard disk drive that you formatted accidentally, and click on "Start" to scan the lost files.

    select a formatted disk

  3. Scan your formatted hard drive or devices
  4. Recoverit will start an all-around scan to search your files from formatted drive. The deep scan thoroughly searches even scraps of data and thus requires a bit longer time.

    scan formatted hard drive

  5. Recover fromatted data from Mac hard drive
  6. After the scan completes, all recoverable files list on the left pannel. You can filter the file types and preview the specific recoverable files, select the formatted ones you want to retrieve and click "Recover" button to get your data back.

    preview and recover formatted data

Part 3. Tips on Formatting Mac Hard Drive

There is a built-in tool named Disk Utility in Mac which allows you to perform the format process by hitting on the "Erase" tab when specifying the disk or the volume. Formatting can fix some of the hard drive related logical problems, but also erase all the saved files and folders in the Macintosh HD, so usually you may not format Macintosh HD. Formatting is only performed for your certain purpose, such as:

Related: Further read and know more complete details on how to format hard drive on Mac.
- 2 minutes to read it.

Reasons for formatting hard drive

  • To remove a deadly virus, which even can't be cleared with an anti-virus software.
  • Reinstall operating system to fix boot errors or restore missing system files.
  • Replace damaged file system or Macintosh HD structures.
  • Clear all data that you don't want from the Mac.

Formatting hard drive can indeed help fix some minor errors on Mac computer. However, it can also bring about data loss. In order to avoid losing important files from your Mac, some reasonable precautions should be taken.

Precautions against data loss

  • Confirm if you really need to format Mac hard drive over and over again.
  • Confirm if the data already existing on the hard drive can be entirely erased.
  • Format the exact hard drive you want to erase data and remove issues.
  • Back up all imporant data to different safe data storage devices just in case.

To conclude

Now, you have known how to recover formatted Mac hard drive and why you need to format a hard drive. You can continue using Recoverit Data Recovery to retrieve deleted, lost or corrupted files from a hard drive that is damaged, crashed, not detected, etc. This Mac format data recovery software can also be used for recovering files from emptied trash on Mac or reccle bin on Windows PC. Download it and get data back right now.

Note: Recover Lost Mac Data under Mac OS X 10.13 (High Sierra)

Due to macOS High Sierra (macOS 10.13) requirement, Mac users are not allowed an access to the built-in system drive from any apps. Therefore, if you need to restore lost data from the system disk under macOS 10.13, please "disable System Integrity Protection" first.

How to disable "System Integrity protection"? Please follow the steps below.

Step 1Reboot the Mac and hold down"Command + R" keys simultaneously after you hear the startup chime, this will boot OS X into Recovery Mode.

Step 2When the "OS X Utilities" screen appears, pull down the "Utilities" menu at the top of the screen instead, and choose "Terminal".

Step 3In the "Terminal" window, type in "csrutil disable" and press "Enter" then restrart your Mac.

Sue Wen

staff Editor

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