Can Internet Recovery Recover macOS Deleted Files?

  • Vishal

    Written By Vishal linkdin

  • Rohit Arora

    Approved By Rohit Arora linkdin

  • Updated on

    Updated on February 11, 2021

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    Min Reading 3 Min

Summary: Internet recovery is a helpful feature in all macOS and OS X. The purpose of Internet Recovery is to troubleshoot macOS and restore Mac to default settings.

However, some users have raised frequent queries related to the recovery of deleted files through Internet Recovery. Is it even possible? Well, this blog shares detailed information on how you can restore deleted files through Internet Recovery. Further, you will learn about a Mac data recovery software that overcomes data loss situations under critical circumstances.

Start by downloading the software mentioned above on your system.

Can Internet Recovery Recover macOS Deleted Files?

Difference between Internet Recovery and Recovery Partition

Recovery Partition contains an updated copy of the macOS installer that you can use to re-install macOS version (present on your computer) when your Mac is not running well. On the other hand, Internet Recovery also allows you to re-install the macOS version in case your internal drive is corrupt. Further, Internet Recovery is useful if you have replaced the internal drive with a new & higher capacity storage drive but forgotten to create a bootable version of your macOS on USB media.

In Internet Recovery, the system downloads the version of macOS version from Apple servers that came with your particular Mac. This means it will not be the most recent version of macOS, unlike Recovery Partition that stores the updated macOS version installed on your Mac. In addition, Internet Recovery tests the memory and hardware components for any issue that standard recovery does not.

Boot into macOS Internet Recovery

Follow these steps to enter the Internet recovery:

  • Power off your Mac, and then turn it ON. As it starts, immediately press & hold the ‘Command + Option + R’ key when you hear the startup chime
  • Keep holding the keys until you see a globe on the screen that says, “Starting Internet recovery. This may take a While”
  • After a while, a Wi-Fi menu appears in the next step. Connect to Wi-Fi, as Internet Recovery requires a stable internet connection to load recovery tools from Apple’s servers. Alternatively, you can use an Ethernet connection (recommended)
  • Once connected, your system will download a recovery image and boot from it. This may take a while (depends on the internet connection speed)

Recover Files from Internet Recovery (via Backup)

When your Mac boots using recovery system image downloaded via Internet Recovery, it displays Utilities window. This window contains options to restore your Mac using Time Machine backup and option to reinstall a new copy of macOS or OS X.

Restore from Time Machine Backup

You can choose to restore your Mac using the Time Machine backup from the macOS Utilities Window. This works only if you have a Time Machine backup available. To use this option,

  • Connect the Time Machine backup drive
  • Click “Restore From Time Machine Backup” in OS X Utilities window
  • Follow the Time Machine wizard to restore your Mac

Repair Disk Errors using Disk Utility

In case, the Macintosh HD gets damaged due to disk permissions and consistency, you can use Disk utility’s ‘First Aid’ option. This may fix the issue with your Macintosh HD and let you boot the macOS.   To use Disk Utility,

  • Click ‘Disk Utility’ in OS X Utilities window
  • Choose the Macintosh HD from the sidebar and then click the First Aid button
  • Click ‘Run’ and wait
  • If the Disk utility reports the disk has been repaired, you can boot your Mac

Recover Files with Mac Data Recovery

Your Time Machine backup device could be unavailable; however, you need to restore the data urgently. In such an awkward situation, try a reliable third-party tool such as Stellar Data Recovery Professional for Mac.

I. Start by downloading the software mentioned above on your system.


II. Unzip the zip file to extract StellarDataRecovery.DMG


III. Now double-click the DMG file and drag Stellar Data Recovery to Applications. Next, Launch the software.


Watch the below video to know how you can leverage the data recovery software for Mac file recovery:


Internet Recovery helps you restore your Mac when the standard recovery partition or the entire Macintosh HD gets corrupt or else gets damaged due to various reasons. Internet Recovery loads system Image file from the Internet and thus requires a stable internet connection. It loads the Image that gives you further options to either reinstall macOS, use Disk Utility to fix the Macintosh HD, and use Time Machine backup to repair and restore your Mac. However, in the absence of Time Machine backup, you cannot restore your precious data. For such situations, you can use Stellar Data Recovery for Mac software to recover all your lost data from your Mac. In addition, this software can recover data from lost, deleted, and encrypted partitions.

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