APFS encrypted volume doesn't work, how to fix and recover data?

By Juno | Posted to Mac Data Recovery on November 28th, 2018 |

I update to macOS High Sierra and my internal SSD automatically converts HFS+ to APFS (encrypted). Yesterday one of APFS encrypted volumes doesn't work, I can't access all saved data on the volume. Anyone can help me? Thanks in advance!

APFS is designed with first-class encryption feature to encrypt your data at the file system level. However, when APFS encrypted volume doesn't work, we'll see that the APFS encrypted volume not mounted in Disk Utility, or APFS encrypted volume unrecognized, unreadable, inaccessible, etc. This article will explain why APFS encrypted volume doesn't work and how to fix the issue without data loss.

Why APFS encrypted volume doesn't work?

APFS encrypted volume not working issue is usually caused by corrupted volume header, invalid node structure, invalid fsroot tree, APFS encryption interrupted, etc. These factors often result from virus attack, sudden power failure, improper operation, etc.

Data Recovery when APFS encrypted volume doesn't work

When APFS encrypted volume doesn't work, if you didn't back up critical data from the volume, you should stop using the volume and perform data recovery as soon as possible. Because any operation, including repairing, reformatting and so on, will overwrite the old data. As a result, you will lose your data forever.

iBoysoft Mac Data Recovery is highly recommended to recover data from encrypted APFS startup drive/external drive, no matter APFS encryption get froze/pause/stuck/interrupted or APFS encrypted volume won't accept password. Besides, iBoysoft Mac Data Recovery can recover data from formatted, unmountable, unreadable, inaccessible APFS drive, recover deleted/lost APFS partition.

Moreover, iBoysoft Mac Data Recovery also supports data recovery from HFS, HFS+, exFAT, FAT32 drives on macOS Mojave 10.14/High Sierra 10.13/Sierra 10.12/10.11/10.10/10.9/10.8/10.7. It is designed to recover all file formats, including documents, pictures, audios, videos, etc. from hard drive, external hard drive, USB flash drive, SD card, memory card, pen drive, digital camera.

Tutorial to recover data from APFS encrypted volume with iBoysoft Mac Data Recovery

Step 1: Launch iBoysoft Mac Data Recovery.

Step 2: Select the APFS encrypted volume and click "Next".

Recover data from APFS encrypted volume

Step 3: Enter password to to scan lost files on the APFS encrypted drive.

Step 4: Preview the scanning results, choose files we need, and click "Recover" to get them back.

Step 5: Have a check to ensure we have got all lost files back.

How to fix if APFS encrypted volume doesn't work?

Solution 1: Run First Aid

First Aid is designed to check and verify your connected drives for errors. If APFS encrypted volume doesn't work, you have a chance repair a malfunctioning volume with First Aid.

Step 1: Launch Disk Utility.

Step 2: Choose the APFS encrypted volume from the left sidebar.

Step 3: Select the 'First Aid' tab on the top.

Repair APFS encrypted volume via First Aid

Solution 2: Erase the APFS encrypted volume

If you receive error message: Disk Utility can't repair this disk, the next solution is to erase the APFS encrypted volume. This operation will remove all data stored on the volume, please make sure you have backed up.

Step 1: Launch Disk Utility.

Step 2: Select the APFS encrypted volume on the left part of the window.

Step 3: Click "Erase" on the top of the Disk Utility window.

Step 4: Complete related information (name, format, scheme), then click Erase.


Katrina is a data recovery expert @iBoysoft who loves to help readers solve various data recovery problems.

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