Disk Drill on the Mac App Store

Thank you for choosing Disk Drill app from the Mac App Store. You are minutes away from restoring your data, but first we would like to walk you through the data recovery process. We ask that you join us in this guide to ensure that you get the most out of Disk Drill and do not experience issues with file recovery.

One common issue is “storage devices not listed” on the Disk Drill’s drive list, and it has a very simple fix.

This simple tutorial will not only discuss a solution to the above issue, but it will also show you how to get your data back in a few easy clicks. If you still have issues after completing tutorial or need additional help please feel free to contact us, the CleverFiles team is always on standby and happy to help.

Option #1: The easiest way.

To get your lost data quickly without creating an uncompressed disk image you will need to download the Helper app (~700KB) from CleverFiles.com. Once you install the Helper app, restart Disk Drill, now it can access and list your disks and partitions.

If the above link does not work, you can download the app by copying and pasting the following website address into your browser:


The Disk Drill Helper app is completely safe and digitally signed by Apple. We distribute it via our secure servers to ensure that its always up to date and you get the latest version! The add-on app was created by the same developers that brought you Disk Drill on the App Store. To make it easy for you we provide the helper app as a PKG file which installs in just a few seconds.

You will find all your disks ready for recovery including all your internal, external, camera, USB drives, and just about any other connected storage. You should also have access to most of Disk Drill Pro’s features.

You can also grant the needed permissions to CleverFiles Disk Drill from the Mac App Store by simply downloading Disk Drill Basic Edition from CleverFiles.com. You can do this by dragging it to your Applications folder and just running it once. You would proceed to use the copy of Disk Drill you purchased on the Mac App Store afterwards.

That is all you need to do to start recovering your data and files. Happy recovery, if you need help just drop us a line!

Option #2: Recover from a Disk Image.

When you download an app from the Mac App Store it is “sandboxed”, this means that it cannot ask for your root (master) password. This is for your protection against malicious apps but it does prevent our recovery app from accessing your disks directly to read and recover your data, a crucial part of the file recovery process. Since Mac will not grant the necessary root (admin) privileges to reclaim lost files there is no way for Disk Drill to read your data! To perform successful recovery Disk Drill (CleverfFiles) needs a binary copy of the target storage device, often called a “read-write uncompressed byte-to-byte disk image”. You will need to create this image file manually before you can start recovering your lost data.

Create uncompressed disk image file with Disk Utility

You can create the disk image(s) using the following steps:

  1. Run Disk Utility, it’s a standard Mac OS X system app.
  2. Go to File > New > Disk Image from “YOUR_DISK_NAME”.
  3. Create the new disk image with “read-write” as the Image format. Do not choose “Compressed” or “read-only”, these options will not copy vital lost data.
  4. Set encryption to “none”.
  5. Save your disk image to any drive except the affected (original) one, an external hard drive is usually ideal. Mind the required disk space, it has to be bigger than the disk image you are creating.
  6. Return to the Disk Drill window and load the new DMG file by drag and drop or open it using File then Open in the menu options.

Congratulations, you are now ready to recover your deleted data! You should have no issues loading your disk image into our apps if you follow the above steps. This method also has the added advantage of speed, recovery is generally much faster from a disk image. You do not have to worry about bad sectors slowing down your data recovery as with other methods.

Option #3: Create a Disk Image via Terminal.

If the Disk Utility disk image does not work, you still have other data recovery options. You will still need a disk image, in this case we will be creating one via Terminal. Sometimes the Disk Utility method will not properly copy all of your deleted data to the image file thus causing issues when you try to perform recovery.

Terminal gets around the access restrictions to guarantee all your data recovery efforts work as expected. It does require more work, familiarity with command line commands and some precautions to avoid damaging your disk in the process, but it will get you your files back. It’s still very simple and straightforward, we promise!

  1. First, you must find out the “BSD device node” for the disk or partition that has your data. You can do this through Disk Utility (as in option #2). You do this by clicking the disk in the drive list and then choosing “Get Info” from the popup menu. This will show you a long table of data. You need to find and make note of the “BSD device node” entry on this list. It will say something like “disk3”, write this information down for later.
  2. Launch Terminal and create the disk image. You will need to type (or paste) the following command to start the process:
    sudo dd if=/dev/disk3 of=~/Desktop/disk.dmg bs=128k

    You can change the disk image file name and location as you see fit. You can adjust the path in the above command.

  3. Creating the file will take some time to complete, once finished you will find your disk.dmg file stored safely on your Desktop.

Option #4: Get in Touch.

If none of these solutions work or if you still have questions, feel free to drop us a line. You just have to mention that you need help with our App Store edition of Disk Drill and our tech support team will go through the process with you so you can get your data back with our data recovery app as soon as possible.

Still have questions? We are always here to help!

Just a few more notes on the topic:

Once installed, how do I remove Disk Access Module?

To remove the Disk Access Module (our Helper app), you just remove the “/Library/Application Support/CleverFiles” folder and the “/Library/LaunchDaemons/com.cleverfiles.cfbackd.plist” file. You must then reboot your Mac to complete the uninstallation.
.updated: November 18, 2020 author: CleverFiles Team