Disk Utility can't repair this disk. Back up as many of your files as possible, reformat the disk, and restore your backed-up files. ― A Disk Utility error message
macOS Disk Utility is a versatile utility to perform disk-related tasks on Mac. It can be used to repair internal hard drive and external storage devices. However, sometimes the repair could fail, and you may see an error message reading, “Disk Utility can't repair this disk.”
This article will show you 4 fixes to “macOS Disk Utility Can’t Repair This Disk”, including both internal and external hard drive.
When you try to repair your disk on Mac using Disk Utility, if the First Aid fails, you may receive an error message telling you that Disk Utility stopped repairing Macintosh HD. This error can occur with internal hard drive, external hard drive, SD card, USB flash drive, etc. If it’s the internal hard drive, you may also see information saying “The volume Macintosh HD could not be repaired.”
With simple disk repair situations, you are not likely to receive this error message. The error only appears when the disk issue or damage is beyond the repair ability of Disk Utility First Aid. Such issues include file system corruption, dead hard drive, etc.
Yes, the error is fixable in most cases. The rest of the article will show you how to fix it.
The causes of the error or the fixes (such as disk formatting) for the error could lead to data loss. But in many cases, it won’t. If unfortunately, you have lost some or all of your files, you can restore them from backup. If there is no backup, don’t panic. You can get your data back using reliable data recovery software for Mac.
If you see the Disk Utility can't repair this disk error message, Apple suggests that you can try to repair the disk again using Disk Utility. So, before trying the other 3 solutions provided in this article, you can try out this easy fix. If this fix doesn’t work, just read on.
While, how long does Disk Utility first aid take depends on the capacity and condition of your hard drive.
If the first solution to fix “macOS Disk Utilty Can’t Repair This Disk” with First Aid failed, then you can use single-user mode and the FSCK tool.
This solution is available on every Mac computer. You can only access the FSCK tool through the common line that appears complex. But this tool is actually pretty simple to use. If you are not familiar or confident with common line usage, don’t worry. The instructions below will walk you through the process.
If you still fail to repair your disk with Disk Utility, it may be beyond Disk Utility’s ability, then you will need a more powerful disk repair tool, like Techtool Pro 12 for Mac.
Techtool Pro 12 from Micromat is a famous program to test and repair mac or hard drives on mac, it also supports the latest macOS10.15.
It helps to:
If the above solutions can’t fix your problem, here is the ultimate choice: format the disk and restore files from backup. This solution applies to fix macOS can’t repair disk of internal and external hard drive, also applies to portable storage devices such as USB as well. Here you can find the step-by-step instructions to fix macOS can't repair your disk by formatting.
It’s very important to back up your files because formatting and reformatting your hard disk or other storage device will delete all the data stored on it. The backup tool you can use is Time Machine. It is built to Mac operating systems since Leopard and makes it easy to back up and restoring files on Mac. If you haven’t used Time Machine before, before backing up, you need to set it up first.
To backup manually, just unselect the Back up Automatically option. Instead, select the Show Time Machine in menu bar. If you need to back up, just click the Time Machine icon and select Back Up Now.
Tip: By default, Time Machine backs up everything on your Macintosh HD. But you can exclude folders or item from backup in Options. As long as there is enough space on the external hard drive, it’s still recommended to backup all the data so that you won’t lose your precious data in situations like Disk Utility can’t repair this disk.
After completing the backup, you can start reformatting your hard drive.
1. Go to Disk Utility. Click the Erase tab, and a dialog box will show up.
2. In the Name field, you can name your drive. In the Format field, Disk Utility will automatically choose a compatible format/file system for you. If the disk that has the Disk Utility can't repair this disk error is your internal hard drive, just stick to the file system given. But there can be different situations.
|Disk||Use on||File system to select|
|Mac internal hard drive||―||Stick to the format given|
|External hard drive, SD card and other storage devices||Mac only||Stick to the format given|
|External hard drive, SD card and other storage devices||Mac and Window||ExFAT|
3. Click Erase.
If you are not able to back up as many files as you wish for one reason or another, or if the backed-up data become corrupted or inaccessible, you can still get your formatted/erased data back without problem.
This tip will show you how to easily recover your data from formatted disk during fixing the Disk Utility can’t repair this disk error.
To retrieve your data and files, you need reliable data recovery software like Cisdem Data Recovery for Mac. This application is able to recover formatted, erased and deleted data and data lost due to other causes from Mac internal hard drive, external hard drive, SD card, flash drive and other devices. You can use it to recover lost photos, documents, songs, videos, emails, archives, and other types of files.
From the five recovery solutions provided, you can select the Advanced Data Recovery option.
In the “Where did you lose your files?” window, select the disk that has been formatted to fix the said error. Click Scan.
During scanning, this app will provide you with real-time scan results. You are able to preview the files before they are recovered. For your convenience, the files will be displayed in tree view, grouped by file types, file formats and files’ original paths.
On the top of the left side panel, select the hard drive in question and click Recover.
If, in your case, you only need to recover certain files, you can use the filtering and searching features to quickly find the files and select them.
With just three simple steps, you can get the lost files back from the formatted hard drive. If you see the “Disk Utility can't repair this disk” error message and format your drive according to the message’s suggestion without backing up files important to you, you can use Cisdem Data Recovery for Mac to effectively recover them. It works for internal and external hard drive, memory card, pen drive, etc.
macOS “Disk Utility can't repair this disk” is a common and fixable error. In a situation like this, don’t panic. Just try out the solutions and instructions mentioned in this guide. Disk formatting is a common and very useful way to fix disk errors. Although you can easily get formatted data back using recovery software, it’s always a good idea to back up your files on a regular basis, especially the crucial ones. This will save the day with any data loss situation. If data loss does happen, Cisdem Data Recovery and other powerful recovery software will help.
Rosa has worked in Mac software industry for more than eight years. She believes that the purpose of software is to make life better and work more productively. In addition to writing, Rosa is also an avid runner.