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  1. #1

    Member Since
    Apr 25, 2012
    Exclamation Hard Drive cannot be repaired by disk utility, how can I recover files?

    My Mac recently stopped booting, I managed to boot the 'Recovery' partition and launch disk utility. It said that there was a problem with it and it needed to be repaired. I clicked repair but it showed a message saying it couldn't be repaired and that I should backup my files.

    I'm not new to mac and I'm used to problems like this on PC but it's never happened to me on Mac before so I need some help.

    How can I gain access to the files to back them up if I can't boot into the HDD?
    I've got another mac laptop (PowerBook G4) but I don't have a firewire cable to do target mode. Any help would be greatly appreciated.


  2. #2

    wolfpuppies3's Avatar
    Member Since
    Oct 07, 2010
    Virginia, USA
    15" MB Pro, 2.66 i7 ; 11 MBA 1.8GZ i7; 13"MBA 2GZ i7 8 GB mem 512GB SSD, 2 iPad3s, 1 iPad Mini
    Restore from your Mac Time Machine.

  3. #3

    Member Since
    Apr 25, 2012
    Quote Originally Posted by wolfpuppies3 View Post
    Restore from your Mac Time Machine.
    I don't have a time machine backup

  4. #4

    chscag's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jan 23, 2008
    Keller, Texas
    2017 27" iMac, 10.5" iPad Pro, iPhone 6s+, iPhone 7+, Numerous iPods, High Sierra
    If the hard drive needs repairing, restoring from Time Machine is not going to work anyway. However, you should be making backups - regardless.

    I've got another mac laptop (PowerBook G4) but I don't have a firewire cable to do target mode. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
    I don't see that you have any other choice. Buy a firewire cable and boot using Target Mode and recover what data you can.

  5. #5

    harryb2448's Avatar
    Member Since
    Nov 28, 2007
    Nambucca Heads Australia
    iMac, i7 4GHz, 32GB memory, 1TB Blade Drive, OS X.13.5
    Bit late to suggest using an external HDD as a Time Machine or cloned backup.

    Commercial data recovery costs an arm and a leg. DataRecovery3 has a trial version if you like to give it a try. If you can read the files on the drive, may well be worth the $99 price tag:-
    Hang on to those original install discs like grim death! Using OS X.7 or later make a bootable USB thumb drive before running Installer!

  6. #6

    mrplow's Avatar
    Member Since
    Oct 01, 2007
    Mac Mini i5 (2014 High Sierra), iPhone X, Apple Watch, iPad Pro 12.9, AppleTV (4)
    Quote Originally Posted by MarryWilson View Post
    When data in the MAC operating system corrupts, you need to use a professional MAC recovery software to rescue the data. There are several third party recovery software that provide high- tech MAC recovery utility to recover lost data from HFS and HFS+ volumes. Kernel for MAC data recovery software recover MAC data from crashed hard drive, corrupt partition table, boot sector and formatted partitions.
    That isn't necessarily true. It really depends on the fault with the drive and whether the data required is corrupt.

    You can take the disk out of your Mac - this is pretty easy if you have a MacBook. Once out you can connect the drive to a sata-to-USB adapter or put it in a hard disk enclosure then connect it to you other MacBook. From there, depending on the level of corruption you should be able to copy data from the disk.

    As it looks as though you will have to replace the drive anyway you could also install or have installed a new disk in your Mac, install Lion and then connect the old disk using the above methods and copy the files straight back to your Mac.

    Please use the reputation system if you think you've been helped - bottom left of this post

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