It is possible to recover permanently deleted files from Mac for free. This post offers reviews on the top 10 Free Mac Data Recovery software. Read on and pick up the most suitable one for you to rescue Mac data without paying anything. It is the best way to recover deleted files from Mac.
When it comes to the free data recovery software for Mac, Recoverit Mac Data Recovery is reckoned to be the best one. With a 96% recovery rate, it enables you to recover lost or deleted data on Mac without any effort and knowledge. It is a 100% safe and reliable free Mac file recovery program to help you retrieve any data from Mac hard drive or any external device on Mac.
Apple File System (APFS) is now the default file system for the latest macOS, coming with safer data storage, faster write-and-read speed, and larger space available. However, the encryption feature makes data recovery more difficult and even impossible on iMac and MacBook. Recoverit is the software for you to recover lost data from APFS-based Mac. Even more, it supports the Mac data recovery from other different file systems, like HFS, HFS+, FAT/exFAT, and NTFS.
Besides, it supports to recover data from various devices in different situations, such as accidental deletion, power failure, computer shutdown, damaged and corrupted hard disk drive, formatted hard drive, virus attack, lost partition or other data loss scenarios.
On top of that, the best free data recovery tool for Mac is capable of recovering data from a variety of data storage devices, for example, Mac hard drive, external hard disk, USB flash drive, SD card, media players, digital cameras, Drone cameras, camcorders, Android phone, etc. That's why you can be reassured no matter where you lost your Mac data.
Advantages: all-around scan and deep scan; thumbnails and preview of lost files; recover 1000+ formats of files for free in all situations; intuitive interface.
Improvement: RAID hard drive recovery is not supported; recover 100 MB Mac files for free.
Ontrack EasyRecovery is a user-friendly program for you to perform Mac file recovery precisely under different data loss scenarios, especially for accidentally deleted files. The free Mac file recovery version, with a 1 GB limit, supports you recovering lost data from Mac-based device or recovering deleted backup files from Apple Time Machine for free.
You can use the free version of this Mac data recovery tool to recover hundreds of file types on different macOS like macOS 10.15, 10.14, 10.13, 10.12, 10.11, and legacy OS. The quick scan and deep scan options search through the storage device more effectively, including internal hard disk, removable media, and RAID hard drive.
Moreover, the free Mac data recovery software claims that it can recover lost data from a hard drive that is encrypted or password protected. After the test, we find that it does sometimes. Like Recoverit Mac Data Recovery, EasyRecovery for Mac also provides the preview function of recoverable files and recovers files with the original file names.
Advantages: hundreds of supported files, data preview function, a full version of the software available for use in the trial version.
Improvement: low success rate, time-consuming recovery process.
Mac Free Any Data Recovery can help you reclaim a variety of files from the depths of damaged drives. It is one of the first free data recovery software that provides free trials for users - this data recovery solution is one of the few that allows users to experience the full version of the software for free. This Mac data recovery software is easy to use and kept simple with two scanning modes: quick and deep.
The common files can be recovered with the free data recovery software for Mac, including photos, videos, music, emails, PDF documents, Office documents, RAR/ZIP files, game files, system data, and so on. It supports the Mac data recovery on Mac OS X 10.9 (Mavericks) or later. So if you want to recover your lost data from Mac OS X 10.8, it is not the option for you.
Advantages: very speedy scan, retrieve a wide range of files, preview files before Mac recovery.
Improvement: recover 20 files for free only, need to upgrade to the paid version for all features.
This Mac data recovery tool provides a free trial for you to scan and preview lost files due to hard drive crash or corruption, formatting, unintentional deletion, improper operation, factory reset, macOS upgrade, and virus attack. It provides five recovery options: Basic Data Recovery, Mac Trash Recovery, External Drive Recovery, Formatted Drive Recovery, and Advanced-Data Recovery. But, after our test, we think that you can directly use the option of "Advanced-Data Recovery" to make sure your files will not be further damaged after the repeated scan.
It is an easy-to-use software that allows you to recover a wide range of files quickly. Like Recoverit, the well-recognized powerful data recovery software, it requires you to take 3 steps only for recovering lost data on Mac, that's choosing a data loss scenario, scan and preview recoverable files and finally choose the files to recover. The simple recovery process simplifies your job in Mac data rescue and does save much time.
Advantages: intuitive design, easy-to-use, powerful recovery capacity, preview before recovery.
Improvement: free version only allows files scan and preview, not compatible with other types of operating systems, and has no filtering option for scanning.
This Mac hard drive recovery software that allows you to search for and restore data that are lost from damaged drives and accidental deletion from the disk they are stored in. Its free version allows you to recover 2GB of data and it can perform a quick scan, deep scan, deleted files scan, and clone recovered file.
It comes with 4 options at the beginning to meet your different needs, namely, Start Recovering Files, View Previous Scan Results, Clone, and Create Recovery Drive. The data rescue software for Mac can recover data backups from Time Machine, recognize the duplicate files, and eliminate the recovery of duplications.
Advantages: Intuitive interface, offers a low entry-level pricing plan (PaperByte?) for those who do not need to recover massive amounts of data.
Improvement: slow scanning and recovery speeds, need to fill in an application form to use the free version, only scan and preview available with the free version, only support 100+ file types.
Disk Drill Mac is a great Mac data recovery software that does not only provide data recovery solutions but also data protection capabilities with its Recovery Vault feature. This will prevent accidental deletion and backup failing disks. Like most great data recovery software, it allows users to preview files to help you decide which files to recover.
The same as many other Mac data recovery tools, it provides a quick scan and deep scan options. With the quick scan, you can recover missing files on Mac in a quick way, while the deep scan technology can dive deeper into your device for lost data. Also, like Recoverit, it supports you recovering files from emptied Mac trash easily and quickly.
It works well with Mac 10.8 or later OS and allows you to filter files and recover data selectively. The drawback is that only 200 different file types are available for data rescue through the Mac file recovery software, including pictures, videos, and documents.
Advantages: comes with a SMART disk to monitor your hardware's disk status, a preview of files, Recovery Vault feature.
Improvement: free version only allows files scan and preview, difficult to navigate, scan result does not show original file names and folder paths.
This free Mac data recovery software is one of the many freeware available to recover deleted data and lost files on your Mac. You will be able to apply the tools to a wide range of file formats that have been compromised by a corrupted hard disk, virus attack, system error, power failure, etc. It can be used on non-Apple products as well.
It is the free undelete Mac software, compatible with Mac OS 10.7 through High Sierra. What makes it stand out from other Mac data recovery software is the Bitlocker Recovery feature. It allows you to recover Mac data from a deleted or lost Bitlocker encrypted partition. The drawback of the feature is that you have to offer the password for decrypting data.
Advantages: high success rate, easy-to-use user interface, full version available for a free trial.
Improvement: slow scan speed, can only use a free trial for a limited amount of time.
It is one of the truly free data recovery software out there that offers data recovery capabilities of the OS X operating system. You can scan and recover an unlimited amount of data using this tool.
You can recover data from resized partitions, formatted hard drives, memory cards, and iPods. You can also recover photos, videos, music, documents, and applications on Mac HFS/HFS+/FAT/NTFS file systems.
Advantages: completely free, easy-to-use user interface.
Improvement: does not allow you to preview files, not support the newest Mac OS.
PhotoRec Data Recovery is a free data recovery tool for your Mac. It can recover data that was lost due to a variety of reasons. It offers users 8 recovery modes for users to support you restoring Mac files lost due to deletion, formatting, lost partition, virus attack, and system crash.
Different types of data can be recovered on Mac, including photos, videos, audios, and emails. The recovered data remains intact in the original condition. The biggest drawback is that it is very hard for even an experienced person to use the Mac data recovery tool. Recovering Mac files with PhotoRec is a little like using the computer command line to perform the recovery process. And it is very easy to do wrong operations and cause further damage to your data.
Advantages: The ability to preview files before recovering data on Mac, free Mac data recovery without any limit.
Improvement: slower than average scan and recovery speeds, not user-friendly, need professional skill
The Mac data recovery tool is one of the best software users can use to get back deleted or lost files from your Mac machines. The name of this app is very significant as it equates to recovered files with a phoenix rising from the ashes!
Advantages: fast, reliable, easy-to-use.
Improvement: no automated previewer, the free version is for scan and preview only.
|Software||Recovery success rate||Price||Supported macOS||Preview before Recovery||Support devices|
|Recoverit Data Recovery||
|Free/$79.95 for unlimited files recovery||macOS 10.10 ~ macOS 11||Yes||Mac/HDD/SSD/USB/Memory card|
|Free for 1GB data/$99 for full version||macOS 10.15 supported||Yes||SSD/HDD/USB/Memory Card|
|Mac Free Any Data Recovery||
|Free||Mac OS X 10.7 - 10.10||Yes||Mac/USB drive/iPod|
|Cisdem Data Recovery||
|Free trial/$49.99||Mac OS X 10.10 - 10.15||Yes||Mac/hard drive/USB drive/Memory Card|
|Data Rescue 5||
|Free demo/$399.00 for professional license||macOS 10.12- 10.15||Yes||Startup drive/External storage|
|Free trial/$89.00||Mac OS X 10.8.5+ and later||Yes||Internal/external drive/Android/iOS|
|M3 Mac Data Recovery||
|Free for 1GB data/$89.95||Mac OS X 10.7 - 10.15||Yes||Macintosh HD, hard drive, external hard drive, USB/SD card|
|Lazesoft Data Recovery||
|Free||Mac OS X 10.5 - 10.9||Yes||Internal/external hard disk, USB drive, memory cards, iPods|
|Free||Mac OS X||Yes||Hard disks, CD-ROMs, memory cards, DD raw image, USB drive|
|Stellar Phoenix Data Recovery||
|Free trial/$79.99||Mac OS X 10.7 - macOS 10.15||Yes||SSD, HDD, SD card, USB drive|
Although there is a free file recovery software for Mac, you may wonder if there is a way for you to recover deleted files on Mac without any software. To be honest, it is very nearly impossible to recover permanently deleted files without software. However, if your files are not permanently deleted from the Mac, you can try to restore the deleted files without software by using Terminal.
Type mv xxx ../ and replace the xxx part with the name of the deleted file; Hit Enter;
Now you can open Finder and search for the deleted files by name. The deleted file will appear.
You might have noticed that although there are lots of "free" Macintosh file recovery programs, they are not completely free. Most of the free Mac data recovery programs offer the free version with limited features or provide a free trial of the full version with limits.
You can find some open-source data recovery tools that enable you to recover deleted files for Mac completely free, but open-source tools can be modified freely and are not supported by professional developing teams. Most of the completely free data recovery programs have been updated for years. Therefore, using completely free recovery tools is not safe and might fail to get back the files you need.
Data recovery is trickier for Mac computers than Windows since SSDs are more commonly-used in MacBook and there is System Integrity Protection (SIP) on OS X El Capitan and later. With SIP enabled on your Mac, applications are unable to access the essential data in the system disk, which is a must for accessing the deleted files.
To use data recovery software on a Mac, you need to disable SIP first. Although SIP is disabled, it doesn't necessarily mean that the deleted files can be recovered. What a data recovery program does is to detect the bits of the deleted files from the hard drive and piece them back together. That's why the data recovery program usually takes hours or days to deeply scan the hard drive. Data Recovery is a time-consuming process.
After testing and reviewing the 10 best free Mac data recovery software, we can conclude all the key attributes that a piece of powerful Mac data recovery software should have.
After viewing the above content, we think that everyone has their own choice. You can choose your software according to your own needs. For example, if you are a professional computing expert, you can choose PhotoRec Data Recovery. It needs professional skills and has a very complicated recovery process, but it can help you recover files on Mac for free. However, if you want to recover Mac data more quickly and easily, it might be not a good option.
In contrast, Recoverit can help you recover lost or deleted files on Mac in 3 steps. It requires no professional skills in computing and technology. It also enables you to preview different types and formats of data on Mac.
All the free Mac data recovery software above mentioned can help you recover lost data on Mac. If you want an easier and effective way to recover your deleted or lost data, we recommend Recoverit Data Recovery software. It is a reliable and safe Mac data recovery program. Download and try it for free now