How to Make a Boot Disk for Mac OS X

Disk Drill 3 is now capable of creating your own bootable Mac OS X USB drives for data recovery. Chances are, the Mac with the disk, where the data was lost, will be able to start from the boot drive created. We officially recommend running data recovery on your startup disk ONLY when your Mac is booted from a different drive, using external docking stations, or Disk Drill's own bootable data recovery freeware. OS X 10.8.5-10.12.x required as a source of system files.
How to Make a Boot Disk for Mac OS X
The initial recommendation given to anyone who lost important data and would like to proceed with the data recovery is always to stop using the drive where the data was stored as soon as possible. You can turn your computer off, remove the drive in question from the docking station, do whatever may be required to prevent any further utilization of that drive. Set it aside, calm down and download a bootable data recovery app using any other computer. Disk Drill is by far the most convenient and up-to-date macOS bootable file rescue solution. It'll make your Mac boot from USB in just a few clicks.

Starting with Disk Drill 3, anyone can create a bootable Mac OS X drive in a matter of minutes. Make sure you have an extra storage device, which is at least 2GB in size. Connect it to any Mac, run Disk Drill and use the "Create Boot Drive" option on the main toolbar.

Disk Drill let's you run all its data recovery algorithms via a bootable Mac USB drive. This ensures the maximum amount of data stays intact during the recovery process, and other background processes or the operating system itself do not overwrite any recoverable pieces of information. Please note: Disk Drill does not provide any option to create bootable CD/DVD drives due to them becoming less popular and accessible in modern computers.

#1 Download and Install Disk Drill on any computer

Data recovery cannot always be done on a running system. It's always a smart move to reboot using Disk Drill's Data Recovery Boot Drive and proceed from the minimal OS X boot from USB. Make sure the drive with lost data is completely disconnected. Get to any Mac, and download free Disk Drill. Install and launch it. Choose "Create Boot Drive" from the main list of available tools and follow the instructions.
  • 1Download Disk Drill
  • 2Drag to Applications Folder
  • 3Launch Disk Drill

#2 Connect a USB drive

So, you are ready to increase your data recovery chances and would like to make sure you restore every file and folder. You are on the right track! Get any extra USB drive or external disk, connect it to your Mac, and get ready to convert it into a bootable data recovery kit.

#3 Make a bootable drive for Mac

To create a bootable Mac drive you need any disk with Mac OS X 10.8.5 or newer (10.9, 10.10, 10.11 El Capitan, 10.12 Sierra included) either running as your main system, or just being installed on a drive that's connected to your Mac at the moment. Go to "Create Boot Drive" feature, and choose the drive you would like to copy the OS X system files from to the new drive that we are building. Once the source disk is selected, proceed with choosing the destination to make a USB bootable drive. Make a bootable drive for Mac

#4 Aid in recovering your main disk

Thanks to the bootable USB drive you just made with Disk Drill, you can now safely recover Mac data from any startup disk that is already unmounted to prevent any further data loss.
Disk Drill's data recovery boot disk is also an ideal solution when systems with deleted data that needs to be recovered fail to boot from the internal drive. Once your Mac USB bootable drive is created, you are ready for data recovery at any time. Aid in recovering your main disk

Prevent Data Loss in Future!

Disk Drill Basic is free and features unique data protection algorithms: they are Recovery Vault and Guaranteed Recovery. In case of accidental data loss, if enabled, they ensure your hard drive recovery runs as smooth as never before. Recovery Vault is your database of file parameters that are not recoverable with a deep scan. Guaranteed Recovery is your extended Trash that always stores deleted files before they are gone for good, even on SSD drives with TRIM enabled.
Prevent Data Loss in Future

#5 How to boot Mac from USB

Insert the newly created bootable drive into the Mac where the lost data still resides. Reboot it holding down the Option (⌥) key. The list of available drives to boot from will be displayed. The one you created at previous steps that provides you with data recovery capabilities is called "Disk Drill Recovery". Go ahead, select it and boot your Mac up. Disk Drill software is already preloaded into the system that loads. Just run it as you regularly would to recover the lost data.
Make sure you try all available data recovery methods to get your deleted data back. Also note: Disk Drill does not provide any ways to install a new instance of Mac OS X using the bootable drive that can be created with it. The main goal of the OS X USB boot disk is lost data retrieval and running Disk Drill in a ready-to-use standalone recovery environment. How to boot Mac from USB
Now anyone can make Mac USB bootable disk for everyday use.

Disk Drill is a data management multi-tool

With all the data recovery, data backup, disk management and optimization features Disk Drill becomes your all-in-one stop to perform disk imaging and secure data recovery at any time. Disk Drill is a well-known product available for multiple platforms for years.

Take care of your important files now!

Disk Drill 3
Bootable Data Recovery for Mac
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Don't just take our word for it:

  • Selina S. Tyle
    If you ever need to recover data from a damaged disk (or take some extra measures to protect against that happening on an intact one), I give my personal recommendation to Disk Drill. 80% or more of the data on the drive was recovered complete with metadata and file structure. A good chunk of the remainder was found in a deep scan, although this will have to be looked through by hand because the recovered files are named generically. I was able to mount the recovered results as a virtual disk, and right now am transferring everything I cared about losing to a new drive. Effective and simple, that's about all I ask from a good piece of software.
  • Angelique Malabey, SJSU
    In my field of study, data is important so protecting it is crucial. I needed a program that could help me recover sentimentally important pictures from an old hard drive that had been corrupted. I have tried many recovery tools but they were either inadequate or very expensive. During a class discussion, I was introduced to Disk Drill by CleverFiles and I decided to give it a try. Not only have I been able to recover most of my lost files, but also clean up my current hard drive. Disk Drill goes beyond just helping you recover files you can also establish a form of backup, clean up your drives by looking for and removing duplicates. I love how intuitive the program is as well as very user-friendly. I am still a novice when it comes to Disk Drill, but that is okay since if you do get stuck they came prepared and have help links just about every where. I look forward to recovering files from other devices such as old Android phones and iPhones. I love that the program can be used across the board with most of your devices. Disk Drill turned out to be more than what I had expected and I look forward to seeing what other things I can do with Disk Drill.