MacBook is used widely around the world. Some users reported that they come across a dead MacBook and want to recover data from it. This article will show you a good way to recover important files from the dead MacBook using MiniTool Mac Data Recovery, a piece of professional data recovery software designed for Mac system.

You may have read many articles and posts about the steps to carry out the process of hard drive recovery on a Mac. But do you really understand the useful ways to recover data from dead MacBook? A lot of people would answer No.

  • As one of the myriad of ordinary users, you may sometimes find it not so easy to recover data from MacBook pro hard drive on a computer which is functioning well.
  • And the things will become even more complex when you need to recover data off a hard drive that won't even boot.

Doesn't this sound reasonable? But now, in this article, I will overthrow your idea – recovering files from dead MacBook could be an easy job with the help of MiniTool Software.

Apple provides a special tool to assist the problem of transferring data from dead MacBook Pro to another MacBook Pro. It sounds easy, but the difficulty is that under most circumstances, common users only have 1 MacBook at hand. In this case, how to recover data from MacBook Pro hard drive? I advise Mac users to give a shot to Stellar Data Recovery for Mac.

You can use it to create a bootable disk to recover data from a dead MacBook pro successfully. In the next section, I'll show you how to recover data from dead MacBook Air by using both Mac Data Recovery & the special tool provided by Apple. Please don't worry; the operations for a dead hard drive recovery won't be complex even for users who have no hard disk recovery experience.

Now, let's learn how to recover data from Mac hard drive to PC or another place.

To recover data from a broken computer running Windows or a Windows laptop, you should use MiniTool Power Data Recovery instead (Best Solutions To Laptop Data Recovery – 100% Quick & Safe tells exactly what you should do).

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Recover Data from Dead MacBook

When your MacBook is working normally, you will not expect that it may become dead all of a sudden one day. But the truth is, accidents may happen at any time and give you a blow when you haven't backed up or fully backed up your important data inside. (MiniTool ShadowMaker is a good backup tool for you.)

backup is important

In this case, the only choice seems to be getting data off hard drive quickly. Most people are willing to resort to Apple to take care of their Mac laptop hard drive recovery.

Here, I will first show you the solution that I recommend; it is suitable for users who want to control the cost of recovery. Then, I'll introduce the solution provided by Apple.

How to Recover Data from Dead MacBook Air to External Disk

How to recover data from a dead hard drive on MacBook:

First step: please find another Mac computer and create a bootable drive for Stellar Data Recovery for Mac.

Bootable Media Builder

Second step: then, remove the drive from current Mac properly.

Third step: use the bootable disk to get access to the internal hard drive in the dead MacBook.

  1. Insert the bootable disk to your dead MacBook. Meanwhile, connect a removable disk to restore recovered data.
  2. Restart the MacBook by pressing the Power button and pressing & holding the Option key immediately.
  3. Release the key and select RecoveryDrive when you're in the startup manager screen.
  4. Press Return and wait.

Data Recovery From Corrupted Internal Hard Disk – Ultimate Guide!

Mac Data Recovery

Fourth step: select StellarDataRecovery on the macOS Utilities screen and click Continue.

Fifth step: specify the file types you want to recover -> click Next -> choose the target drive -> click Scan -> browse the scan results -> check the file you need -> click Recover -> choose a storage path -> click Save and wait.

Sixth step: at last, you should remove the external disk from the dead MacBook after laptop repair was finished completely. Now, you can connect it to another computer to see whether all files you need are recovered.

That's how to recover data from a dead hard drive.

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Please note:

  1. If you're running a Windows computer which has run into an unbootable system issue, you should read this page carefully. It will not only teach you how to recover data from dead hard drive, but also show you the possible causes and useful precautions for the unbootable problem.
  2. In addition, How To Recover Files After Factory Reset Laptop tells you what you should do to recover files from the Windows laptop that has been factory reset.
  3. Please be alert if you have a failing Mac hard drive; just click here when you need to recover data from it.

Recover Data from Mac Hard Drive to PC

MacBook has a built-in hard drive which makes it difficult for us to take out. Considering this, Apple provides a solution to help – connecting the logic board of dead MacBook to another MacBook through a USB-C adapter.

USB-C adapter

Well, in order to access data on a dead MacBook Pro, you must satisfy the following 2 requirements:

  • The one-year hardware warranty or AppleCare is still valid.
  • You have another MacBook at hand or are able to buy a new one.

Obviously, this solution provided by Apple is not available for all MacBook users. What's more, some users who meet the conditions refuse to adopt this way to recover hard drive. Why?

  • Some of them may think that buying another MacBook is totally a waste of money.
  • Others have their own unique reasons.

2 examples:

I have a Mac hard drive from a MacBook Pro that does not work. I connected it externally to my PC and tried to copy the files over and keep getting cyclic redundancy checks. So now I need to perform a recovery but none of my recovery software will allow me to recover from a mac onto a PC. Does anyone know of a good program that will allow me to recover these files? I tried using Virtual Lab but the trial will not let me sample the recovery and is too costly for something that might not work.– said by skeptikaltruth on Tom’s Hardware
I figured if anyone could help, it would be you guys. I would imagine a large majority of you are more computer savvy than anyone I know. My MBP crashed almost a year ago, I opened it one morning to find it wouldn't turn on. It doesn't properly boot, it just sounds different. The screen stays black and the light on the front isn't the same, I think it kind of goes in and out. Anyway, unfortunately I've given up on getting the Mac back, but I really need the stuff that was on it. I heard I could put this hard drive in a new MBP when I get one, but that probably won't be anytime soon. What would the cheapest and/or easiest way to retrieve my data? I was hoping a friend could somehow open its files and put it on an xhd? Something tells me it's not that easy though. Any tips or advice would be greatly appreciated.– asked by fiddycent in Apple Communities

I advise users who can't meet the requirements or don't want to finish data recovery from hard drive by using the solution provided by Apple adopt MiniTool software since it is cost-effective.

How Can You Recover Deleted Files On Mac?

Other Solutions to Activate Dead MacBook

If you're not satisfied with either solution mentioned above, I still have other choices for you. However, you need to keep in mind that you should always put data security in the first place. (You can forget about how to recover data from hard drive if you have a full backup of data in dead MacBook or the data in it are not so important to you.)

Now, let's learn how to fix when MacBook won't turn on.

Way 1: Clear Parameters & Files

Step 1: reset PMU (Power Management Unit).

  1. Shutdown MacBook.
  2. Press shift + control + option + Power at the same time.
  3. Hold for a few seconds and then release.
  4. Restart MacBook to check out.

Step 2: reset PRAM (Parameter Random Access Memory).

  1. Shutdown MacBook.
  2. Press command + option + P + R + Power before the gray screen shows.
  3. Hold them until MacBook reboots again.

Step 3: delete Kernel Extension Caches.

  1. Press shift key while MacBook is restarting to enter safe mode.
  2. Open the terminal.
  3. Delete two files (which are mainly used by the driver and some expansion modules) with root privileges by using two commands: su rm /System/Library/Extensions.kextcache and su rm /System/Library/Extensions.mkext.
  4. Shutdown MacBook immediately.

Step 4: restart computer and wait patiently since the restarting process will become really slow after cache was deleted.

restart computer

Please be advised that this method is provided only for users who need to use MacBook urgently; it will not solve the problem fundamentally, so I still advise them to recover data from dead MacBook first and then send it to repair.


Way 2: Make Use of Disk Utility

  1. Reset PRAM & PMU by using the way mentioned above.
  2. Restart MacBook to adjust screen resolution and then turn it off.
  3. Use installation disc to boot MacBook (hold C).
  4. Enter Disk Utility and execute Verify Disk Permissions/Repair Disk Permissions.

Disk Utility

If this still couldn't help, please resort to the next method.

Way 3: Restore System

  1. Backup all important files if you can access MacBook hard drive after trying above methods. (Or transfer data from dead MacBook Pro with the help of MiniTool Power Data Recovery Bootable Edition.)
  2. Boot into the dead MacBook with the installation disc and then reinstall OS X.
  3. Update the OS X (don’t update it to 10.4.9).
  4. Install the applications you need (iStatPro, iStatnano, Temperature Monitor, Core Temp and other apps that need to read Core Duo CPU state are not included).
  5. If MacBook can’t be opened, use the installation disc to boot and enter Disk Utility to execute Repair Permission/Repair Disk.
  6. If Boot Camp is needed, you should adjust the installation process to this step. (After you finished installing, you should repeat step 5.)

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Considering that MacBook could fall victim to sudden failures, just like Windows laptop, it's very necessary to talk about the useful solutions to recovering from a dead MacBook. Reading here, I hope you have the basic mastery of what I’m talking about – recover data from dead MacBook & solve the dead problem.

Now, please allow me to summarize the things you should do after finding your MacBook dead:

First, you need to recall whether you have saved important data to local drive (in most cases, the answer will be affirmative) and whether you have a full backup of them. After all, data is always the most important thing and users often care the most about data security when accidents really happen.

Second, decide whether the data saved in dead MacBook are important to you.

  • If you have important data here and have the latest backup of them (or you don't care any data saved in dead MacBook), you can try to fix the dead MacBook by using any possible methods.
  • If you do have important data here, but have no backup, please adopt Power Data Recovery to recover data to external disk or make use of another MacBook to transfer data from dead MacBook.

Third, follow the methods I’ve introduced in the last part to try to fix the MacBook dead problem and make computer work normally again.

Hope you all can find back precious data and reactivate your dead MacBook!

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