What is Mac recovery mode and how to use it

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If your Mac doesn’t boot normally, it’s likely that its startup disk is damaged or corrupted. Well, the causes that can trigger this problem could be a corrupted file or a slight power surge that you might not be aware of. Either way, macOS Recovery Mode can help resolve such issues without resorting to extreme measures like reinstalling macOS.

With the Mac Recovery Mode feature, you can fix this problem and repair your startup disk, restore from a backup after a fatal error that prevented it from booting properly, or reinstall macOS. We will explain what macOS Recovery Mode is and the steps required to use it when diagnosing and troubleshooting any issues or reinstalling macOS completely.

What is macOS recovery?

Mac Recovery Mode is a special mode of macOS that loads native recovery tools that help you restore from a Time Machine backup, get online help, reinstall macOS, or erase a hard drive. , etc.

the recovery tools they are loaded from a special disk partition containing a recovery image and a copy of the macOS installer.

If you are unable to recover your computer by other means, recovery mode is useful for diagnosing disk problems, theinstallation of the previous macOS run on your Mac or for online help.

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Mac recovery mode includes four main features:

  • Restore from Time Machine backup: Time Machine copies all of your files, operating system, and settings, which you can then copy to an external hard drive and use it to restore data from your Mac. This erases the current disk.
  • Disk Utility– This feature scans, checks and repairs drives from the recovery screen if there is a problem. It’s faster and more convenient than wiping down and reinstalling your computer.
  • Reinstall macOS: This function erases the current operating system and its data, replacing it with a clean version. Before using it, upload your files to iCloud or other storage, then reinstall the operating system.
  • Get online support– This feature allows you to use Safari to troubleshoot any internet connection or any other issue you are having with your computer.

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When to use macOS Recovery?

MAC Recovery Mode debuted with OS X 10.7 Lion in 2010. It contains the latest version of macOS you have installed, so you can solve any problem with your computer. You may never need to use it unless you want to do the following:

  • Clean up your computer to give it away or sell it. Recovery mode allows you to wipe and delete all your data and your Apple ID.
  • Troubleshoot problems such as startup errors.
  • Use Disk Utility to make repairs when disk problems occur or the Disk Utility tool cannot repair problems with the drive.
  • Go back to an older version of macOS.
  • Perform a fresh install of macOS to resolve any issues that are slowing it down.
  • Erase your disk.
  • Internet connectivity troubleshooting.
  • You want to restore your Mac from a Time Machine backup.

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Step 1: Start recovery mode by shutting down your Mac and restarting it. At startup, hold down the Command and “R” keys to enter recovery mode.

2nd step: When you see the Apple logo, the rotating globe, or any other startup screen, release the Command and “R” keys. If prompted, enter a password (administrator user or firmware password) for the Mac and continue to the next step.

Step 3: If you see the macOS Utilities window, it means startup is complete. Here you will see the four services offered by Recovery Mode: Restore from Time Machine Backup, Reinstall macOS, Get Online Help, and Disk Utility. There are additional utilities including Network Utility, Bootable Security Utility, and Terminal in the Utilities menu on the menu bar.

Step 4– Exit recovery mode by going to the Apple menu and clicking on Restart or Shut down. Before exiting, you can choose another startup disk from the Apple menu.

To exist different key combinations to use on startup, depending on what you want to do with recovery mode. The Command + R shortcut helps you install the latest version of macOS that you had on your Mac before the problem occurred.

The Option / Alt + Command + R shortcut works when updating to the latest version of macOS that is compatible with your Mac. The Shift + Option + Command + R shortcut works when installing the macOS version of your Mac or the closest available version if it is not available as Download.

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What to do if unable to boot into macOS recovery mode

If macOS Recovery does not work, force boot into Internet Recovery Mode. You can do this manually by holding down Option / Alt + Command + R or Shift + Option + Command + R at startup.

When you do this, you will see a rotating globe instead of the usual Apple logo on startup.

If that doesn’t help your Mac start up, try boot using an external Mac startup disk or a bootable installer.

NOTEAn Internet connection is required to use Internet Recovery, get online help, or reinstall the macOS utility.

When to use Internet recovery

Internet Recovery is useful when your Mac cannot create a partition for Recovery HD because the drive is partitioned with Boot Camp Assistant and modified, or you are using a RAID volume that does not support the recovery partition.

Even if the partition was created successfully, recovery mode may not be able to access it due to severe system errors or damage to the drive.

In such cases, your Mac will automatically start Internet Recovery, but if there is a working recovery partition, you will not be able to access this mode. Reinstall the original version of macOS that came with your Mac, the factory-installed version. And it might not be the latest version.

Internet Recovery uses a code embedded in your computer, which includes an image for the specific operating system. When you enter this mode, a request for the correct reinstallation codes is sent by broadcasting this image to Apple’s servers.

Booting into macOS Internet Recovery Mode takes longer than a normal partition-based recovery. Plus, it requires an internet connection, so make sure yours is strong and stable, and your Mac has adequate charge.

Restore your beloved MAC to full health

Recovery mode is the last resort you can use to fix problems starting up your Mac. Running regular scans for problems before they get worse is a better way to ensure that you don’t have to use this tool in a short period of time.



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