(Free) 12 Solutions to Repair JPEG Photos on Mac and Windows

Connie Wisley
October 16, 2023 Preview 43.5K Preview 7
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Photo corruption or damage occurs a lot, despite our efforts to avoid such situations. If you are looking for solutions on how to repair corrupted JPEG or other photos on Mac and Windows, this article will be helpful to you. 


What is A Corrupted JPEG? Why Photos Get Corrupted?

A corrupted JPEG is an image file that cannot be opened and viewed at all, or an image file that has unusual image color, strange lines or shapes, blank spaces, blurry pixel, etc. And most of the time, you have corrupted images that cannot be recognized by your image viewers, like in Mac Preview, Windows Photos or other apps.

But how does a JPEG photo get corrupted? There are several main reasons leading to this:

  • Virus attack
  • System shutdown, power off or deleting a file when the file is still open
  • Improper file saving, file editor app suffers a glitch while saving 
  • Interruption during file transferring
  • Not removing storage devices from Mac or Windows safely
  • Bad sector on storage disk


Best JPEG Repair Tool for Mac and Windows

Increasingly, users prefer to a professional JPEG repair tool to fix corrupted photos on Mac or Windows. Why? Because it helps users to repair damaged JPEG and other photos not only saved on the computer’s internal hard drive, but also on external storage devices connected to their Mac/Windows. What’s more, it has a higher recovery rate and performs fast to repair the images.

Cisdem Data Recovery is an easy-to-use tool to recover photos, videos, documents and more from internal/external hard drives, USB flash drives, SD card, digital cameras, etc. Its powerful scan engine can find virtually all deleted and lost files. 

It can also repair JPEG, JPG and other image files. After Cisdem scans the storage device where the damaged JPEG files are saved, it will automatically recognize the corruption and try to repair the problematic pictures. Once you can preview the JPEG images, it means they are fixed properly and you can recover them to your local drive or cloud platforms. In addition to image repair, Cisdem can also deal with the repair of damaged videos in MP4, MOV.

How to Repair Damaged JPEG Files on Mac or Windows?

  1. Download and install Cisdem Data Recovery onto your Mac or Windows PC.
    Free Download macOS 10.9 or later Free Download Windows 11/10/8/7
  2. Go to Hardware Disk and choose the hard drive where you stored the corrupted or damaged JPEG files.repair jpeg cisdem 01
  3. Click on Search for lost files, Cisdem will use both quick and deep scanning tool to find all photos, it will repair JPEG images in the scanning process.repair jpeg cisdem 02
  4. Go to Type > Pictures > JPEG, use the filter to find specific corrupted photos. repair jpeg cisdem 03
  5. Preview and recover damaged JEPG photos on Mac or Windows.  
    Double click on the JPEG files to preview them. Then click Recover to save the JPEG files back to a safe location.repair jpeg cisdem 04

Tips: Some corrupted photos may be displayed as blank, you can continue to preview with Preview app or just recover, and they will be repaired after recovery process.
repair jpeg cisdem 05


Repair Corrupted JPEG Images Online Free

If you are looking for a solution to repair a corrupted JPEG online for free, you can try JPEG or image repair tools, for example, online.officerecovery.com. It helps to repair corrupted JPEG, JPG, GIF, TIFF, BMP, PNG and Raw images. However, it can only repair damaged photos one by one. And very often, online tools will fail to recover the corrupted photos on Mac or Windows, then you have to pay for a non-refundable $99 service fee to get help from a data recovery technician, which we don't recommend.

How to Repair Damaged JPEG Photos Online Free?

  1. Go to https://online.officerecovery.com/pixrecovery/.
  2. Click "Choose File" button to upload a corrupted JPEG or other photo file for repair.repair photo online 01
  3. Click Secure Upload and Repair to start the repair process.repair photo online 02
  4. Download the repaired image onto your computer.

Of course, if you believe that you could get out of trouble by repairing damaged JPEG files online free, there are still several other website tools to be tried. Here they are listed as:

  • Repairit online photo repair
  • Aspose JPEG repairing
  • Creativecloud Adobe Photoshop


How to Repair JPEG Photos on Mac?

By default, you will open a JPEG photo on Mac via Preview app, but suddenly you get an error message "It may be damaged or use a file format that Preview doesn’t recognise". 

preview open corrupted jpeg

It is annoying but still possible to fix a corrupted JPEG or other photo on Mac with 5 different solutions free of charge.

#1 Update Photos App

We need a photo tool to open and view the photos, if a photo viewer cannot function properly, it won’t help to open and view our JPEG or other photos on Mac. So, first of all, check if your Mac Photos app is the most updated version, if not, update to the latest version to make it work properly. But you cannot update Photos app individually, you need to update the system to the latest macOS.

  1. Launch App Store App on your Mac.
  2. Go to Updates, click Update to upgrade your macOS along with the Photos app.update photos app
  3. Open the JPEG photos again on your Mac.open photos

#2 Save to Another Folder and Reopen

Corrupted JPEG and other photos may be caused by bad sectors, therefore, you can copy and save the photos to another location and reopen.

  1. Create a new folder under the path where all files can be viewed and opened normally.create folder
  2. Copy and paste a part of corrupted JPEG photos to the newly created folder.
  3. Reopen them in the new folder, if they can be opened properly, copy and save the rest of corrupted JPEG photos to the new folder.


#3 Change Photo Format

The format compatibility may lead to photo corruption too, especially when your photos are saved in Windows-based image formats. Therefore, when your JPEG photos get corrupted on Mac, you can change their original formats, by modifying the file extension or directly converting the photo.

Change File Extension

  1. Right click on the JPEG or other image file.
  2. Choose Rename.rename file
  3. Change the file extension to .jpg or .png or other macOS-friendly image format.change format

Convert Photos

  1. Open photo with Preview.
  2. Go to File > Export.convert photos
  3. Choose JPEG or other supported format.change format output


#4 Repair Photo Library

If the photos in your Photos app still doesn’t work properly, your Mac Photos Library may be corrupted. Sometimes, there will be an error message telling a user that some data in Photos Library can't be read or written. Despite the cause of malfunction, it’s suggested that you should use Photos’ built-in repair tool and see if it can fix the problem.

  1. On your Mac, hold down the Option and Command keys while you launch Photos.
  2. You will be presented with the Repair Library dialog box.
    Click Repair, which might be followed by a request to enter user password. 

repair Photos library

  1. The progress bar in the middle of the interface will inform you of the repairing process.
  2. Reopen the JPEG photos in your Photos App.


#5 Rebuild Photo Library

If the Photo Library repair doesn’t work, you will have to rebuild the Photo Library. But before the rebuilding, you are recommended to export your corrupted photos to a specified folder first.

  1. Open Photos App.
  2. Choose all the corrupted JPEG photos you want to fix on Mac.rebuild library01
  3. Go to File > Export > Export XX Photos…rebuild library 02
  4. Click Export and choose the output folder to export your corrupted photos.rebuild library03
  5. Then quit Photos App.
  6. Press and hold Option (Alt) Key, and open Photos App.
  7. Choose Create New, rename and select the location.rebuild library04
  8. Click OK, then run Photos App, go to File > Import, add the photos to Photos Library for opening.


How to Repair JPEG Photos on Windows?

Like on Mac, image corruption happens on Windows PC as well. So 4 specific solutions are still available here to fix damaged JPEG or photos in other formats on Windows. 

#1 Change Picture Viewer

At times when you open the JPEG file, you get an error message, but the same image file can be opened perfectly fine with other picture viewers. This means the issue is caused by the problematic local app. Then we should change to another image viewer.

  1. Right-click on the damaged photo and choose Properties.change picture viewer 01
  2. Click Change button to change the default photo viewer.change picture viewer 02
  3. Select OK to confirm the change.change picture viewer 03
  4. From now on, your JPEG image will open without error.


#2 Run CHKDSK Scan

Alternatively, you can try to run CHKDSK Scan to fix damaged JPEG or other photos. CHKDSK command will be performed to access your JPEG file, helping to know how to repair photo damage resulted from bad sectors on the storage device.

  1. Make sure that you connect the storage device that contains JPEG images to your Windows.
  2. Run Command Prompt as administrator.run chkdsk scan 01
  3. Type chkdsk (drive letter)/r in the CMD window and press Enter.run chkdsk scan 02
  4. Restart your PC and try to open the photo files again.


#3 Perform Command Prompt

The third option to repair corrupted JPEG photo files also involves CMD utility. This method can works in an easy way though it uses command lines.

  1. Open CMD as described in the previous solution.
  2. Execute the command: SFC/scannow.perform cmd
  3. The system will be scanned completely including where your JPEG images are stored.
  4. You’ll be asked to restart the computer if any corrupted files are found. Finally the system will repair the photos.


#4 Use Windows Error Checking Tool

Windows PC possesses a built-in tool for error checking, which can also be used to handle corrupted JPEG photo repair.

  1. Go to File Explore, find and right-click on the storage device where your JPEG images are saved, next choose Properties.windows error checking tool 01
  2. Select Tools and click the Check option.windows error checking tool 02
  3. Click on "Scan and repair drive".windows error checking tool 03
  4. If any errors have been found in the device, they will be fixed automatically.
  5. Restart your Windows PC to view the corrupted JPEG photos.


Do JPEG Repair from Backup

We should never deny the great importance of data backup. If you have made any JPEG backup before corruption on Mac or Windows, the repair process would be much easier by restoring photos from backup. 

Some common backup ways include Mac Time Machine, Windows File History, and cloud services such as Google Drive, iCloud, OneDrive, etc. You’re also allowed to use a professional third-party tool for a more reliable backup. This is how to back up JPEG image files effortlessly with Cisdem Data Recovery.

  1. Launch Cisdem program.
  2. Go to Disk Backup > Create Backup > Next.cisdem disk backup 01
  3. Select a volume that contains your JPEG photos > click Create Backup button to start.cisdem disk backup 02
  4. Make sure you have granted Full Disk Access to Cisdem Data Recovery. Click “I have granted” to continue.cisdem disk backup 03
  5. Set the backup file name and backup type as you prefer. Click Save to finish, and now your JPEG files have been backed up and stored safely.cisdem disk backup 04


It was a disaster to have images corrupted or damaged in the old days, now we have professional tools developed to repair JPEGs or other images, even there are online free services provided. There are known and unknown reasons causing damaged photos on Mac or Windows, it seems to be inevitable, so we should have the habit of backing up files on regular basis.

Connie Wisley
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Connie has been writing for Mac productivity and utility apps since 2009. Each review and solution is based on her practical tests, she is aways energetic and trustworthy in this field.

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Comments (7) Leave a Reply

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  • Lily

    Getting corrupted photos always makes me hard-pressed. Solutions introduced in this post are perfect. No worries anymore.

    1 years ago commonReply

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  • Tremblay0

    I Found that Cisdem Data recovery has the most reasonable price. Well...the question is how about the support service, after-sale support, I mean. Your early reply will be appreciated!

    8 years ago commonReply

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    • Rosa Reyes

      30 Days moneyback guarantee and life-time free upgrade can be provided by Cisdem.

      8 years ago
  • Bernadette

    Hi, just want to ask, I am using the trial version of cisdem data recovery. When i clicked the recover button at the end, it appears that i have to enter the key code. Is it really needed for the trial version? or i am force to buy? Hoping for your response. Thank you.

    8 years ago commonReply

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    • Rosa Reyes

      Hello, Bernadette! Yes, you need to pay at a very low cost in order to get all your lost files back by using Cisdem DataRecovery for Mac. I mean, the most competitive price when compared with other applications used for Mac data recovery.

      8 years ago
  • Leonon Dupuis

    I have tried the stellar firstly and I found its interface not so friendly. But Cisdem is easier to use and the price is satisfactory. I should have down loaded Cisdem earlier and save me $$$.

    8 years ago commonReply

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    • Tonia Fryman

      Hi cisdem.com administrator, Keep up the good work!

      1 years ago

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