Stellar Data Recovery for Mac Review – Popular but Not Flawless

3.29

Out of 5 Total Score

No. 7 Among all macOS solutions

Price range $69.99...$399 • Stellar Data Recovery Inc. • macOS

Last update:

You would be hard-pressed to find any list of the best data recovery software applications that doesn’t include Stellar Data Recovery for Mac. But is the software recommended so often because of its capabilities or because of Stellar’s ongoing marketing efforts? 

Stellar Data Recovery for Mac – Gallery

Weighing the Pros and Cons of Stellar Data Recovery for Mac

PROS

  • S.M.A.R.T. There is a built-in S.M.A.R.T. module. Unfortunately, it only supports internal drives.
  • Preview in safe mode. There is an option to preview files in safe mode in order to prevent crashes cause by corrupted data being opened.
  • Backup creation. When making a byte-by-byte copy of a drive, you can specify the range you want to copy.
  • Learning new signatures. The application can learn new signatures for scanning based on provided sample files.
  • Search settings. Both at application startup and in the preferences, there is an option to disable individual file signatures, allowing you to search for only certain file types.
  • Scanning of disk surfaces. The program has an option that makes it possible to scan the disk surface for bad sectors.
  • Disk cloning. Stellar Data Recovery for Mac can create byte-to-byte clones of storage devices.
  • Fast scanning speed. The data reading speed is very fast, but the analysis of the obtained data is slow.
  • Scanning screen. The scanning screen is quite informative and uniquely designed.
  • Icons mode. Icons mode making it possible to disable the generation of icons, forcing the program to show the associated application for a given file type.

CONS

  • Long disk refreshes. When a new disk is connected, the program completely refreshes the entire list of connected devices, causing a long hang.
  • Automatic updates in the free version. Only the paid version of the software can automatically check for updates. The free version can’t.
  • Loses license information. License information becomes invalid after every update and must be entered again.
  • Slow previews. Previews take a lot of time to generate.
  • Preview limits. The preview feature only works for files under 100 megabytes, and only some file formats are supported.
  • Scan speed. Although the scan speed is very fast, it takes a long time to analyze the data, which leads to long delays until scan results are displayed.
  • Recovery speed. Recovery speed is very slow.
  • General convenience. There’s no way to preview and recover files while scanning is still in progress.
  • Scanning of disks without a file system. Stellar Data Recovery for Mac can’t scan disks without a file system. Such disks are simply not listed. To scan a disk that doesn’t have a file system, you have to format it first, which may lead to data loss.
  • Crashes during a scan. The application failed to scan all 10 provided test disk sets provided, crashing each time.
  • Dark mode only. The application always start in dark mode and there’s no way to switch to light mode.
  • Launch without password. The app ask for the admin password every time it launches.
  • М1/M2/M3 support. Doesn't work without Rosetta on Apple silicon devices.
  • T2 deep scan. Deep scan of system disks on T2 devices displays only existing files, not deleted ones.
  • Loading sessions. The session download menu is hidden and very uncomfortable to open.
  • Signatures. Very few signatures (118) are recognized.
  • Extra features. Additional tools (image burning, boot disk creation, photo and video repair) are hidden deep in the interface of the program, and it takes some effort to find them.
  • Scan entire disk. The program does not let you scan the whole disk if it has partitions. You have to scan each partition separately.
  • Hidden disk names. By default, Stellar Data Recovery for Mac only displays Volumes during device selection, and you have to enter an advanced source selection screen to see hardware disks.
  • Search for lost partitions. Search for lost partitions is not part of general drive scanning. You need to invoke it separately.
  • Recovery quality. The overall recovery quality is low in relation to the price of the product.
  • Changelog. Changelogs are not available for previous versions of the product. The site only says what's changed in the current version and there is a one-month delay before the information appears on the site.
  • Auto rescanning. If the connection to a disk is lost during scanning/recovery/backup, the program won't react and will silently act as if it the scan is still in progress.
  • Bad sectors. If a disk has bad sectors, the application will not inform about it and will continue working as if everything was fine, which can cause more damage to the disk and data.
  • Hex. A hex file viewer isn’t present.
  • Language support. The app is translated into only 6 languages.
  • Full screen application. It is not possible to enter full screen mode.
  • End of recovery. When the program finishes writing the recovered files, there is no end to the process of recovering the files. The copying process just silently closes.
  • Found tree. The found tree feature is very slow when used with large data set, but the last item in the tree is always cut off by the bottom scroll bar.

Stellar Data Recovery Summary

👍 Worth a try

Stellar Data Recovery for Mac is an excellent option for those seeking hassle-free data recovery on their macOS operating system because its key strength lies in its simplicity and rapid scanning capabilities.

The intuitive and accessible interface lays out all necessary functions clearly, so the learning curve is largely insignificant. This is particularly evident in its well-designed scanning screen, which is informative and unique, but other parts of the UI, such as the file selection screen, are similarly well thought out.

While the software’s data recovery performance doesn’t quite live up to its usability, it’s not horrible. The biggest issues we encountered were the application’s tendency to crash during scans and the slow preview generation. 

However, the software compensates with several useful extra features, like the S.M.A.R.T. module, the option to scan disk surfaces for bad sectors, or the ability to learn new file signatures. These and other extra features greatly enhance its overall versatility and utility, making it worth a try. 

TitleResult
Compatibility Good
Recovery Rate Good
Usability Excellent
File Type Support Good
Scan Speed Excellent
Free Trial Yes
Starting Price $69.99 / 1 year
Money-Back Guarantee Yes

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Stellar Data Recovery for Mac

Stellar Information Technology Pvt. Ltd.

Visit website

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What Is Stellar Data Recovery for Mac

 #

The fact that there have been 11 major releases of Stellar Data Recovery for Mac should tell you a lot about the application’s maturity and its developers’ ongoing commitment to making it better. Here are some of the most important facts about this data recovery software that you should know before diving deep into our detailed review.

Stellar Data Recovery for Mac Factsheet

RequirementsmacOS 10.11-14.0
Latest version 12.0.0.0 • Released 20th Jan, 2024
Download size102 MB
CategoryData Recovery Software
UI languagesEnglish, German, French, Italian, Spanish, Japanese

Sibling version

Stellar Data Recovery for Windows

3.31

Stellar Data Recovery for Windows is among the most frequently recommended data recovery software applications for Windows. But as this review reveals, recommendations should always be taken with a grain of salt because they can be seriously misleading. Read full review

No. 13 Among all Windows solutions

Stellar Data Recovery Logo

How Much Does Stellar Data Recovery for Mac Cost

Distributed as Freemium Some features are provided free of charge, but money is required to unlock the rest
Trial version availableTrial version available
Trial version limitations

With trial version you can:

  • Recover up to 1 GB of data on Mac – no activation required
Paid plans
  • Standard
  • Professional
  • Premium
  • Technician
Price range $69.99...$399.00
License model Subscription + Lifetime
No credit card to tryNo credit card to try
Money back guaranteeMoney back guarantee

The free version of Stellar Data Recovery for Mac can recover up to 1 GB of data, but it lacks some of the best features the software has to offer. Multiple premium plans are available for those who want to unlock all capabilities, but only the most expensive plans are actually feature-complete.

Exploring Stellar Data Recovery for Mac Pricing Options

11 Year License $69.99
2Lifetime License $129.00
3Details
  • Recovers deleted files
  • Supports APFS, HFS+, FAT32, NTFS and ExFAT
11 Year License $89.99
2Lifetime License $149.00
3Details

Everything in Stellar Standard Data Recovery plus:

  • Recovers data from lost volume
  • Recovers from CD/DVD
  • Create Recovery drive
  • Create image/Load image
  • Monitors Hard Drive Health (SMART) & HDD Cloning
11 Year License $99.99
2Lifetime License $199.00
3Details

Everything in Stellar Professional Data Recovery plus:

  • Repairs Corrupt or Distorted Videos
  • Repairs Corrupt or Distorted Photos
  • Repairs Multiple Videos or Photos simultaneously
11 Year License $149.00
2Lifetime License $399.00
3Details

Everything in Stellar Premium Data Recovery plus:

  • Clones Macintosh HD

Discounts and coupons

DiscountDescriptionLink
-20%
Stellar Data Recovery for Mac 20% Discount

Coupon code - ColormangoStellarPST25.

Get the Deal
-24%
24% Discount on Stellar Data Recovery Professional for Mac

Coupon code - JANDELIGHT.

Get the Deal
Have you found a better discount coupon and would like to share it with our readers? Then don’t hesitate to get in touch with us, and we’ll update this section promptly.

Developer — Stellar Information Technology Pvt. Ltd.

The developers of Stellar Data Recovery for Mac, Stellar Information Technology Pvt. Ltd., are headquartered in India, and they’ve been around for almost three decades now, focusing mainly on the development of data recovery software. The company also runs a data recovery business in the Netherlands, and they have what seems to be a virtual office in the United States.

1% 10.6% than avg

Online market share

Reflects the share of online traffic within the niche occupied by data recovery software, based on data taken from ahrefs.com (from Google US search engine).

2800 554.8% than avg

Brand name popularity

Based on the number of brand-related search queries on Google US according to ahrefs.com.

Even though Stellar is based in India, their marketing largely targets western customers, which is evident from the affiliate program they run and their numerous partnerships with English-speaking websites.

Developer website stellarinfo.com
Support email support@stellarinfo.com
Founded

1993 • 31 years on the market

HQ location

D16, Sector-33, Infocity Phase II, Gurugram-122001, India

Phone +1-732-584-2700
Social media LinkedIn YouTube

Stellar clearly puts a lot of hard work into its social media presence, which spans multiple major social media sites. The good news for its customers is that the company also understands the importance of providing great customer support across multiple channels. 

How to Use Stellar Data Recovery for Mac

Tested on: macOS 12.3 (21E230)

Unlike many other sites that claim to publish trustworthy reviews, we actually comprehensively test the software we talk about, and Stellar Data Recovery for Mac is no exception. 

Step 1

Installation

Our test of Stellar Data Recovery for Mac began on its official website. There, you can either download the free version, which offers limited functionality and can recover only up to 1 GB of data, or you can choose between several different premium subscription plans. 

Regardless of which option you choose, you will end up with a disk image containing the application file. To install Stellar Data Recovery for Mac, you simply need to drag the application icon to the Applications folder. 

When you launch the data recovery software for the first time, you will be asked to give it Full Disk Access and permission to access removable volumes. Stellar Data Recovery for Mac requests these permissions only once, but it does require you to enter the admin password every time the application starts.

Step 2

Source selection

Selecting the right storage device is fairly easy, but you need to know how the volume on which the deleted files were stored is called. If you only know the name of the storage device itself, you can switch to an advance source selection screen (see the screenshot on the right).

The reason why Stellar Data Recovery for Mac displays volumes by default is simple: the data recovery software can't recover entire storage devices in one go, forcing you to complete the recovery of lost data one volume at a time.

Step 3

Scanning process

To start scanning for lost data, all you have to do is click the Scan button. Stellar Data Recovery for Mac will then display a scanning progress screen, showing a wealth of information so that you always have a good idea of how well the scan is progressing. 

If you want to, you can turn on real-time previews, but you should know that the feature can slow down the scanning process. Since individual previews are gone in the blink of an eye, we don't think keeping the preview feature turned on makes much sense. 

Overall, Stellar Data Recovery for Mac is a fast data recovery software application when it comes to scanning, but the analysis of found files takes much longer than it should. 

Step 4

Managing found files

Once Stellar Data Recovery for Mac is done scanning, the application takes a while to generate file previews so that you can conveniently browse recoverable files and select those you want to get back.

Plenty of sorting and filtering options are available, so finding the files you're looking for shouldn't feel like looking for a needle in a haystack.

Unfortunately, there are a few annoying limitations that complicate the management of found files a bit, such as the fact that the preview feature only works for files under 100 megabytes, and only some file formats are supported.

Step 5

Recovery and post-processing

Assuming you've successfully found the deleted files and added them to your recovery queue by checking the checkboxes next to them, you can retrieve them to a safe location by clicking the Recover button. 

When you do that, Stellar Data Recovery for Mac will prompt you to select a suitable destination and click the Save button to save the selected files. If you pick the same destination as the source volume, you won't be allowed to recover your files at all. Instead, the software will simply inform you that recovering to the same volume could lead to data loss.

While it's admirable that Stellar wants to protect its users from data loss caused by their ignorance, we don't like that there's no option to continue anyway, which might come in handy in certain desperate situations. 

Is Stellar Data Recovery for Mac Safe?

94%

Avg score Not perfect but definitely safe and trustworthy.

Safe and Trustworthy
👾 Malware
10/10

The last thing you want is for the cure to be worse than the disease. Stellar Data Recovery for Mac stands strong in this regard, showing no traces of malware in our extensive testing. It's a clean, safe tool that ensures your data recovery process doesn't come with unwanted digital baggage.

🔒 Privacy
9/10

Your privacy is paramount, and Stellar understands this well. Our in-depth analysis indicates that Stellar Data Recovery for Mac doesn't play fast and loose with your data. Still, we had to deduct one point because Stellar is based in India, and the country is still figuring out what personal data protection really means.

📊 Data Integrity
9/10

Stellar Data Recovery for Mac generally maintains a tight ship when it comes to preserving the integrity of your data during recovery. However, it's important to note that, like many recovery tools, it doesn't exclusively use non-destructive methods. This means there's a slight, but notable, chance of data alteration during the recovery.

👨‍💻 Developer
10/10

Based in India, Stellar has carved a niche for itself in the data recovery sector. The company is known for its reliability and strong worldwide customer support. 

SUMMARY

Scoring high in critical areas like malware protection, developer reliability, and maintaining user privacy, Stellar Data Recovery for Mac is a safe and trustworthy choice as far as data recovery solutions for macOS are concerned. The majority of negative user reviews found online, like this one, focus on the software's automatic subscription renewal. However, this practice has become somewhat of a norm in the industry, reflecting a broader trend towards subscription-based models for software services. 

Deep Dive: Stellar Data Recovery for Mac - Full Review and Analysis

Now that you’ve seen Stellar Data Recovery for Mac in action, it’s time to analyze what a single data recovery test can’t possibly reveal to learn how good the software really is.

67%

Karma

13 rating criteria

Partly thanks to its impressive marketing efforts, Stellar is a well-known developer of data recovery software applications, and finding both professional and user reviews that describe the pros and cons of its products, including Stellar Data Recovery for Mac, is easy. 

Just be careful which reviews you read because Stellar runs an affiliate program that allows people to earn money by promoting the software on their blogs, social media sites, forums, and other online places.

Despite being based in India, Stellar provides phone support to customers from around the world, with live chat and helpdesk options also available. 

#FeatureResult
1Update frequency Every 6 months
2Updated recently Yes
3Changelog available Available (View full update history)
4Latest macOS supported Yes, all good
5Runs natively on M1 Macs Does not support
6Genuine or clone? Genuine
7Brand name popularity Unpopular
8Online market share Poor
9Maturity Mature
10Extensive knowledge base Available
11Helpdesk support Available
12Live chat Available
13Phone support Yes
59%

Bang for the buck

8 rating criteria

Because Stellar Data Recovery for Mac can recover up to 1 GB of data free of charge, the software is often recommended to people who want to recover a small amount of data while paying as little money as possible (ideally nothing at all). 

The only problem with the free version is the fact that it doesn’t support most features that are included in the paid versions. For example, the free version can’t recover data from lost volumes, create a bootable recovery drive, or repair corrupted videos and photos. 

To unlock these and other capabilities, an annual subscription is required. Just be careful which one you choose because only the most expensive subscription plans are feature-complete.

#FeatureResult
1Competitive pricing Yes
2Price-quality ratio Good
3Free trial Yes (unlimited time but limited features and amount of data)
4Is it free? The trial version can recover up to 1 GB of data
5Pricing policy Multiple subscription plans
6Unlimited recovery in full version Yes
7Free upgrades With an annual subscription plan
8Commercial rights in the cheapest license No
70%

Usability

18 rating criteria

Stellar Data Recovery for Mac scores a lot of points for its above-average usability. The application has a modern user interface that makes it easy to locate most main features and begin the data recovery process. 

By default, Stellar Data Recovery for Mac uses the Quick scan mode to locate recently deleted data. When the mode fails to deliver any results, the software automatically suggests the user to perform a Deep scan. 

Data recovery results are conveniently organized in folders, and it’s possible to narrow them down using scan results filters. Convenient thumbnail previews are displayed for supported file formats.

#FeatureResult
1Modern user-friendly interface Yes
2Dark mode No
3Easy-to-locate features Yes
4Automatic implementation of multiple appropriate scanning methods without user interaction No
5Auto-resuming scans of failing drives No
6Auto-resuming backups of failing drives No
7Convenient source selection on start So-so
8Convenient file-by-file preview of recoverable items Yes
9Convenient thumbnail preview of recoverable items Yes
10Mount recoverable items as disk No
11Built-in updater Yes
12Multiple view modes in scan results Yes
13Hex view for recoverable items No
14Filter recoverable items by type Yes
15Search recoverable items by file names Yes
16Sort results Yes
17Multilingual UI Yes
18Simple deployment Yes
39%

Recovery performance

128 rating criteria

Stellar Data Recovery for Mac has a lot of potential, but all this potential is undermined by its lackluster data recovery performance. The Quick scan feature seems to be particularly useless, forcing the user to perform a Deep scan virtually every single time. 

Perhaps the best recovery feature Stellar Data Recovery for Mac has to offer is the ability to learn new file types from provided samples, but this feature isn’t something most regular users would ever need. What regular users would definitely appreciate is the ability to recover corrupted photos and videos. Unfortunately, photo and video repair capabilities are limited to the premium versions of the software. 

#FeatureResultDescription
1Quick scan BadFailed to deliver any results.
2Deep scan BadFailed to deliver any results.
3Signature scan FineStellar Data Recovery for Mac delivered average results during our real-life recovery challenges.
4Other types of scan FineStellar Data Recovery for Mac has a Deep scan feature that delivers acceptable results.
5Device support FineMobile devices and encrypted storage devices are not supported.
6Other notable recovery features FineThe software can learn to recover new file formats from provided samples.

Scan results

Summary of our scan results.

This table presents a quick summary of the scan results we gathered when testing the data recovery software. 

#FeatureQuick ScanRecovery of recently deleted filesDeep ScanThe ability to restore original folder structure and file names
1HFS+ partitions
Application crashed
Application crashed
2APFS partitions
Application crashed
Application crashed
3FAT32 partitions
Application crashed
Application crashed
4exFAT partitions
Application crashed
Application crashed
5NTFS partitions
Application crashed
Application crashed
6EXT4 partitions
Application crashed
Application crashed
0%

Every lost minute can significantly worsen the outcome of a data recovery attempt, and Quick scan certainly doesn’t waste your time because it’s designed to find as many recently deleted files as quickly as possible

Average Score

0%

Most consumer-oriented data recovery software applications can attempt to not only restore deleted files but also recover their original file names and folder structure

Average Score

#SignatureDescriptionScan Score
13FR

Hasselblad 3F RAW Image File

0
2ARW

Sony Alpha RAW File

5
3BMP

Bitmap Image File

5
4CR2

Canon RAW Version 2 File

4
5CR3

Canon RAW Version 3 File

0
6CRW

Canon RAW CIFF Image File

0
7DCR

Kodak Digital Camera RAW File

3
8DNG

Digital Negative Lossless RAW Image File

3
9CinemaDNG

Adobe Industry-wide Standard File Format for Digital Video Files

0
10ERF

Epson RAW File

5
11EXR

High Dynamic-range File Format

0
12FFF

Hasselblad RAW Image File

0
13GPR

GoPro RAW Format File

0
14HEIC

High Efficiency Image File Format

0
15IIQ

Intelligent Image Quality RAW File

0
16INSP

Panoramic Image Insta360 File

0
17JP2

Bitmap Image Format JPEG 2000 File

0
18JPG

Joint Photographic Experts Group Compressed Image File

5
19KDC

Kodak Digital Camera RAW Image File

5
20MEF

Mamiya RAW Image File

5
21MOS

Leaf and Mamiya RAW Image File

5
22MPO

Multi Picture Stereoscopic Object File

0
23MRW

Konica Minolta RAW Image Format File

5
24NEF

Nikon RAW Image File

3
25NRW

Nikon RAW Image File

0
26ORF

Olympus RAW Format File

4
27PEF

Pentax RAW Image File

3
28RAF

Fujifilm RAW Image File

5
29RAW

Native Digital Camera File

3
30RW2

Panasonic Lumix RAW Image File

2
31RWL

Leica RAW Image Format File

0
32SR2

Sony RAW 2 Image File

5
33SRF

Sony RAW File

5
34SRW

Samsung RAW Image File

0
35TIFF

Tag Image File Format

3
36X3F

Sigma Camera RAW Picture File

3
37X3I

Sigma Super Fine Detail Picture File

0
45%

Most modern digital cameras and increasingly many mobile devices let their users capture raw image data in a variety of raw file formats, so having the ability to recover them can be extremely helpful

Average Score

#SignatureDescriptionScan Score
1360

GoPRO 360 Degree Video File

5
2ARI

ARRI Professional Digital Video Camera File

0
3ARX

ARRI Professional Digital Video Camera File

0
4AVI

Audio Video Interleave Multimedia Container with GoPRO CineForm Intermediate Codec

4
5AVI

Audio Video Interleave Multimedia Container with MJPG, H.264, MSMPEG4 v2 Codecs

5
6BRAW

Blackmagic RAW Video File

3
7INSV

Insta360 Panoramic H.264 Video File

2
8INSV

Insta360 Panoramic HEVC or HVC1 Video File

0
9MOV

QuickTime File Format with Apple ProRes 422 Proxy, LT or HQ Codec

2
10MOV

QuickTime File Format with Apple ProRes 4444 Raw or HQ Codec

2
11MOV

QuickTime File Format with H.264 Codec

4
12MOV

QuickTime File Format with CineForm HD Codec

2
13MOV

QuickTime File Format with HEVC or HVC1 Codec

3
14MP4

Digital Multimedia Container Format with H.264 Codec

3
15MP4

Digital Multimedia Container Format with HEVC, HVC1 or Apple ProRes Codec

2
16MXF

Material Exchange Format for Professional Digital Video and Audio Media with H.264 Codec

2
17MXF

Material Exchange Format for Professional Digital Video and Audio Media with DVCPRO HD Codec

5
18MXF

Material Exchange Format for Professional Digital Video and Audio Media with ARRI RAW or Apple ProRes Codec

3
19MXF

Material Exchange Format for Professional Digital Video and Audio Media with XDCAM HD422 or HD35 MPEG2 Codec

3
20R3D

Red Digital Camera Company RAW Video File

0
21WMV

Windows Media Video Image with Pro RAW 9 Codec

5
46%

Video file formats have evolved a lot during the last decade, and not all recovery software tools support modern formats used by the latest digital cameras, camcorders, and mobile devices

Average Score

#SignatureDescriptionScan Score
1ACCDB

Microsoft Access 2007+ Database File

0
2KEY

Apple Keynote Office Application File

4
3PAGES

Apple Pages Office Application File

4
4NUMBERS

Apple Numbers Office Application File

4
5DJVU

Scanned Document File Format Intended For Scanned Images

0
6DOC

Microsoft Word 97 – 2003 Document File

4
7DOCX

Microsoft Word 2007+ Document File

4
8FB2

FictionBook 2.0 eBook File

0
9MDB

Microsoft Access 97 - 2003 Database File

0
10ODP

OpenDocument Presentation File Format

3
11ODS

OpenDocument Spreadsheet File Format

3
12ODT

OpenDocument Text Document File Format

3
13PDF

Portable Document Format File

4
14PPT

Microsoft Powerpoint 97 - 2003 Presentation File

2
15PPTX

Microsoft Powerpoint 2007+ Presentation File

4
16RTF

Rich Text Format File

0
17XLS

Microsoft Excel 97 - 2003 Spreadsheet File

4
18XLSX

Microsoft Excel 2007+ Spreadsheet File

4
54%

Documents are among the most commonly recovered file formats because their importance can be tremendous, especially when they're related to work or school. Because of how many document file formats exist these days, older and less developed data recovery software often struggle recovering and recognizing all of them

Average Score

Our experience with Stellar Data Recovery for Mac’s scanning capabilities was like a roller-coaster ride. Both the Quick Scan feature and its Deep Scan counterpart, crucial for recovering recently deleted files, failed to deliver any positive results at all, regardless of which file system we asked them to analyze.

When it came to specific file formats, Stellar Data Recovery for Mac showed varied levels of proficiency. RAW photo recovery was adequate, but it notably lacks support for certain popular formats such as Canon’s CRW and Apple’s HEIC. Its performance in video recovery was average; however, its ability to repair corrupted videos is limited to the more expensive Premium and Technician editions. Document recovery, particularly for standard formats like DOC/DOCX and XLS/XLSX, was satisfactory.

The good news is that the application can learn new signatures for scanning based on provided sample files, so you can theoretically extend its reach to more obscure file types. Still, it’s better when data recovery software supports all needed file formats from the start because you don’t want to waste precious time when recovering sensitive data.

Other scan types

Advanced scan types for solving complicated data loss situations Basic data recovery algorithms aimed at recovering recently deleted data cover only a small subset of the data loss issues users experience every day. That’s why developers also implement all kinds of advanced scan types
38%
Average Score
#FeatureScore
1The number of formats supported by deep scan2
2Native deep scan of system drives on M1-powered Macs0
3Native deep scan of system drives on T2-encrypted Macs2
4Native data recovery from local Time Machine snapshots0
5Scan for lost partitions3
6HFS+ directory rebuild0
7Recovered files' labeling5
8Partial file recovery5
9Disk images: scan and recovery5

Stellar Data Recovery for Mac can scan disk image, correctly label recovered files, and scan specific file formats. The software can also learn to recognize new file formats from provided samples.

Device Support

Supported internal and external storage devices Ideally, data recovery software applications should be able to recover from internal and external hard drives, external USB flash drives, memory cards, smartphones, and other commonly used storage devices
43%
Average Score
#FeatureScore
1Internal and external HDD5
2Internal and external SSD5
3USB thumb drives / Classic iPods (non-iOS) / FireWire devices5
4Memory cards5
5iOS devices0
6iOS backups0
7iCloud0
8Android devices0
9Recovery from RAID1, 0, JBOD3
10Encrypted device support0
11Unmountable partitions3

Stellar offers a dedicated iPhone data recovery software tool, so it’s no wonder that mobile devices are not supported by Stellar Data Recovery for Mac. Unfortunately, encrypted storage devices are not supported either. 

Other notable recovery features

Additional recovery features and their performance These additional recovery features are what often separates average data recovery software solutions from those that can satisfy the needs of professionals and power users
30%
Average Score
#FeatureScore
1Overall non-intrusive read-only algorithms0
2Network recovery0
3Effectively filters out corrupted scan results0
4Byte-to-byte device backups5
5Bootable recovery drive creation0
6Runs in macOS native recovery mode5
7Convenient scan session management5
8Bad sector management0
9Recovery chance prediction0
10RAID reconstructor0
11Disk vitals monitoring and tracking during scan0
12Data protection0
13Links to in-lab recovery service for physically damaged devices0
14Scan speed4
15Scan free space only0
16Start file recovery without interrupting the scan0
17Preview recoverable items without interrupting the scan0
18Forensic features0

Paid editions of Stellar Data Recovery for Mac can create a bootable recovery drive, monitor S.M.A.R.T. data, and clone storage devices. The free version, unfortunately, lacks these critical capabilities.

40%

Extras

12 rating criteria

Extra features can greatly increase the value of data recovery software by addressing the core causes of data loss and helping prevent future data loss events. 

#FeatureResultDescription
1Disk space mapping NoNot supported.
2Disk clean up NoNot supported.
3Corrupted video repair tool GoodStellar Data Recovery for Mac is known for its great video repair capabilities.
4Corrupted photo repair tool GoodStellar Data Recovery for Mac is known for its great photo repair capabilities.
5Time Machine backups parser NoNot supported.
6S.M.A.R.T. PartialThere is a built-in S.M.A.R.T. module, but it only works for internal drives.
7Bootable macOS installer NoNot supported.
8Duplicate finder NoNot supported.
9Built-in disk space secure eraser NoNot supported.
10Disk cloning YesYou can use Stellar Data Recovery for Mac to clone any storage device.
11Disk surface test YesYou can use Stellar Data Recovery for Mac to scan and test disk surface.
12Secure data shredding NoNot supported.

It’s nice that Stellar Data Recovery for Mac can clone any storage device and repair corrupted videos/photos, but there are several data recovery software applications that can do a lot more than that.

What Users Say about Stellar Data Recovery for Mac

Overall, Stellar Data Recovery is a great file retrieval tool with powerful advanced options for business. In its simplest form, it enables anyone to retrieve lost data from a computer or external storage device. Paid subscriptions are a little expensive, but the program’s impressive performance and user-friendly interface mean that it gets a thumbs up from us. 

TechRadar

Best customer support. though the software didn't recover data as expected however I am satisfied with their support.

Richmond Chethalan

The first person I spoke with kept telling me to "google" what to do. It was very frustrating. The second person was helpful but they could not move forward until the received the forwarded emails of my purchase from me 🙄

Samantha Browning

The recovery software did not recover the calendar or contacts folders. There were about hundreds of email folders with the name MS-ALK-BGP created which were empty and had to be manually (per Stellar email) removed (not a lot of fun). 

Joseph G.

Video Resources for Stellar Data Recovery: Tutorials and Helpful Guides

To help you better understand how Stellar Data Recovery for macOS works, we’ve put together a collection of useful tutorials and other video resources.

How to Recover Deleted Photos ,Videos & Music files from Mac

Stellar Photo Recovery for Mac is the best DIY software. It recovers Photos, Videos & Audio files from MacBook Air, MacBook Pro, iMac, Mac mini, Mac Pro, etc.

Premium Mac data recovery software that offers file recovery and repair features

Stellar Data Recovery Premium for Mac is an exclusive data recovery software that recovers lost, deleted files from Mac, retrieves data from formatted or corrupt storage media, and performs data recovery on crashed Mac systems.

Bottom line

There’s no shortage of positive reviews of Stellar Data Recovery for Mac, but such reviews don’t change anything about the fact that much more polished and feature-packed data recovery software applications exist. 

Indeed, the user experience and data recovery performance provided by Stellar leave a lot to be desired. It also doesn’t help that the software doesn’t natively support Apple Silicon Macs, which may explain why it’s sometimes so sluggish. 

Still, the rather generous free data recovery limit of 1 GB deserves at least some praise considering that many competition products only let users preview recoverable files without paying.

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are answers to several frequently asked questions about Stellar Data Recovery for Mac.

Yes, Stellar Data Recovery is compatible with macOS and M1 & T2 chip-enabled Macs.

Stellar Phoenix Mac Data Recovery needs to change your settings so that it can access your storage devices and recover data from them.

The trial version of Stellar Mac Data Recovery doesn’t require any activation, and you can easily use it to recover up to 1 GB of data just like you would with the unlimited version of the software.

That depends largely on the size and speed of the drive, as well as the number of files stored on it. 

To recover the main Mac recycle bin, better known as the Trash folder, you need to scan your system drive, which is where the folder is located.

To get back deleted videos on Mac using Stellar Data Recovery, you need to scan the storage devices on which they were located. We recommend using the most expensive version of the software because it has video repair capabilities. 

You should always recover data to any storage except for the one where the data was located to avoid overwriting partially recovered files.

Using the Stellar Mac Recovery app, you can recover up to 1 GB of data for free. To recover more, you need to purchase one of the premium subscriptions.

Stellar Data Recovery for Mac is a fairly reliable data recovery application, but it did crash several times during our testing.

You can download a free trial version of Stellar Data Recovery for Mac from its official website and use it to recover up to 1 GB of data.

To get Activation Key for Stellar Mac Data Recovery, click the “Get it now” button on the application’s “Activation” dialog box and purchase a license.

You can uninstall Stellar Phoenix for Mac by dragging the application from the Applications folder to Trash.

👍 Worth a try

Stellar Data Recovery for Mac Review – Popular but Not Flawless
3.29

Out of 5 Total score

No. 7 Among all macOS solutions

Stellar Data Recovery for Mac may be one of the most popular data recovery software applications for Mac, but it’s certainly not one of the best. 

Visit developer's website
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David Morelo
Author

David Morelo is a professional content writer with a specialization in data recovery. He spends his days helping users from around the world recover from data loss and address the numerous issues associated with it.

When not writing about data recovery techniques and solutions, he enjoys tinkering with new technology, working on personal projects, exploring the world on his bike, and, above all else, spending time with his family.

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Nikolay Lankevich
Nikolay Lankevich
Approver

Nikolay Lankevich has over 15 years of strong experience in various fields and platform includes Disaster Recovery, Windows XP/7. System analysis, design, application (Inter/Intranet) development, and testing. Provided technical supports on desktop and laptops on Win-XP and Macintosh for about 2000 employees.

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