How to start Mac in Recovery Mode [2023 Updated]

This step-by-step method will start your Mac in recovery mode. Got Mac issues and no way to fix them? How do specialists mend and restore MacBooks?

You’re on the correct track. Recovery Mode was introduced in 2010 with OS X 10.7 Lion to enable Mac users geek out when needed.

What is Mac Recovery Mode?

In simple words, it’s a way for your Mac to recover lost data. The feature works with different tools from a separate disc section that is set up during macOS startup.

The gadget aids several tasks. Let us look at them:

  • Before giving your computer to someone else, erase everything on it. To get rid of your Apple ID and delete your files.
  • Delete everything on your disc.
  • Bring back the older version of macOS.
  • Fix a starting failure issue.
  • Check out and fix a disc.
  • Set up a drive outside of your Mac to start up.
  • Fix network connectivity issues.

Note: Recovery Mode sometimes fails. In such cases, utilise Internet Recovery Mode.

How to boot a Mac in Recovery Mode?

  • Restart Mac.
  • Press and hold Command (⌘) + R.
  • Release the keys at the Apple logo, spinning globe, or starting screen.
  • Enter your Mac password.
  • After entering, the recovery mode screen should look like this!

How to start Mac in Recovery Mode [2023 Updated]

If your Mac restarts without Recovery Mode or the Apple logo, press and hold the keys. The keys must be pressed and released properly. If that still didn’t work, shut down your Mac, turn it on, then hold down the same keys when the screen starts up.

Four primary tools will appear when your Mac boots in recovery.

  • Recover From Time Machine Backup: This function lets you recover your Mac from a Time Machine backup is you have one.
  • Install macOS again: This can help you download and install macOS again based on the keys you press.
  • Get Help Online: You can use this mode to use Safari to explore the web and get help online. You can fix your problem by clicking on the built-in Apple Support links. One important thing to keep in mind is that you can’t use plug-ins or apps in recovery mode.
  • Disc Utility is a choice that can help you fix or remove your disc and other storage devices that are suitable.
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Some other options can be found in the menu bar besides these main tools. You can get to the Startup Security Utility, the Network Utility, and Terminal from the Utilities Menu.

Does Recovery Mode delete everything on a Mac?

If you don’t restart macOS or use Disc Utility without a backup, loading Recovery Mode won’t delete anything on your Mac.

If not, you can safely start up your Mac in Recovery Mode without thinking about losing your files while you’re having a big technical problem.

How to exit Mac Recovery Mode

Make sure you understand each macOS recovery tool before using it. Reinstallation requires backing up your Mac’s data.

Quit if you don’t understand these macOS recovery options and don’t want to lose your data.

  • Click the top-left Apple logo.
  • Restart or shut down to return to the desktop or turn it off.

Changing Startup Disc from the menu is also possible.

How to open Terminal on Mac in Recovery Mode

In Recovery Mode, you can run a terminal:

  • Use these procedures to boot your Mac into Recovery Mode.
  • Then go to the top menu bar and click Urls.
  • Click on Terminal.

How to start Mac in Recovery Mode [2023 Updated]

What to do if Recovery Mode doesn’t work on Mac?

MacOS Recovery Mode may not boot for whatever reason. Finding the specific cause might be difficult, but these solutions can repair it quickly.


A huge “thank you!” to macOS X 10.7 for adding Recovery Mode, which made it easier to fix discs and restart macOS. As you learned in the lesson, starting up your Mac in Recovery Mode won’t hurt your files in any way. It’s designed to help people with technology issues when they need it.

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