Software to recover files & fix data corruption on OS X Mac


Data loss and data corruption are two separate instances of data disaster that results in financial loss and loss of time. An equal amount of resources & energy may put into work to recreate data from the scratch.

How Data Loss might arrive on OS X–Though data is pretty much secure on Mac, still their exist plenty of reasons which may result in loss of files & folders. Other than accidental deletion of the file, a data may be lost due to overwriting with a new file. Other drastic situations may arise from formatting of volume, Trojan attacks, and abrupt shutdown of system making the files go lost.  With advent of advanced hard drive technologies, data transfer & storage have become hassle free tasks. But on the other hand, quick corruption in the hard drive technologies have resulted in unmounted volumes. These unmounted volumes go undetected by the OS X and thus data persisting inside the drive is never shown to the user.

An unmounted volume is a result of corruption in directory structure of the drive. Though it is a logical error, disk utility or an advanced volume manager could fix it. Other than logical, a physically damaged hard drive may also fail to mount. Both the situations are drastic, resulting in immediate loss of data.

Tools to get data from an unmounted hard drive:

1.    Stellar Phoenix Mac data recovery ($99)

Claims to recover data from a logical corrupted hard drive (unmounted disk) within 3-4 steps. The software runs on Intel & PPC machines and could perform deleted, formatted & lost volume recovery. In the time, Stellar Phoenix Mac solution has gained quick popularity amongst many OS X users who brought their data back from the ashes.

2.    Disk Drill($89)

Another tool that promises to recover data with simple steps. Disk Drill supports latest Macs and could perform all sorts of recovery including Deep scan of media devices. Supports unmounted recovery of volumes.

3.    Prosoft ($99)

As it sounds, Prosoft Data Rescue does good job rescuing files from a logically defective hard drive.  Apart from this, it follows other conventional recovery options like deleted, formatted and lost volume/data recovery.

Note – All of the above software restrains them projecting recovery of files from a physically damaged hard drive. So, if your hard drive produces strange noise or is sure to be physically damaged then don’t use any of the above software, as it would be of no real benefit.

How File Corruption might occur on OS X Mac–An OS update, even an application update might sometimes results into corruption of certain files. While the files are still present (not lost), they may not launch, as they should. Some important part of the file may have been permanently damaged halting the smooth opening of that file.  Other causes of corruption may be partial removal of an application, malfunction of the header files, overwriting of some components of a file etc. What a damaged file requires is a ‘rebuilt’ of lost & broken components.  

A perfect example of a damaged file is an Image file (JPEG) format. Once corrupted, it fails to launch or part of the image file is badly disfigured.

Of course, a Mac is smart but none application possess the power to reconstruct the broken images. This results in arrival of 3rd party utilities –  

Fixing corrupt JPEG files on Mac

·      Stellar Phoenix JPEG Repair for Mac ($39)

While there are plenty of JPEG repair software but most of them exist for Windows OS. Seems like only Stellar Phoenix has the JPEG repair tool for OS X Mac.

Fixing corrupt MOV files on Mac –

·      Yodot MOV Repair ($69.95) – Scan & fixes MP4, MOV files on Mac OS X.
·      Stellar Phoenix MOV Repair ($69) – Find all corrupt .MOV files from Mac hard drive & repairs them.
·      Remo Repair MOV ($69) – Locates MOV files and fixes them in no time.

All above 3 MOV repair tools are powerful enough to find corruption & fix them. However, each one them show a repaired preview of file for unregistered version of the software.

Fixing damaged PDF files on Mac -

Unlike JPEG repair, we have plenty of option to choose from utilities that fixes bad PDF files on OS X.

·      VeryPDF PDF repair for Mac ($29.95)–Good choice for repairing multiple damaged pdf files on Mac. Removes PDF permission passwords.

·      Stellar Phoenix PDF Repair for Mac ($49) – Stellar Phoenix uses it’s well-established brand name & technological expertise, which brings in this repair utility for Mac OS X. It perform repair on bunch of pdf files, though doesn’t support password protected PDF repairs.

 Let us also evaluate back up software for Macs

Way before Cloud came into existence, Mac users widely depend upon 3rd party cloning apps to safeguard there hard drives. This method of data backup is traditional, reliable and user-friendly. Though it does require some cost including cost of data back-up software, an external hard drive or usb to save the data using a backup application. Still, backup software for Macs are huge hit amongst OS X users.  

Some trusted Mac backup software

·      Carbon Copy Cloner ($39.95)
·      SuperDuper ($27.95)
·      Stellar Drive Clone ($39)
·      Disk Utility (in-built)
·      Time Machine (can be in-built)

I would like readers to further contribute their experiences and suggestion related to above mentioned file recovery & repair utilities for Mac OS X. Any feedback in spite of good or bad is whole heartedly welcome. Cheers!!