How to fix the APFS drive fsroot tree invalid error on macOS Catalina/Mojave/High Sierra?

Posted by Juno to Mac Data Recovery on January 8th, 2018

In macOS Catalina, Mojave, or High Sierra, you may encounter the error message "fsroot tree is invalid" when checking APFS drives in Disk Utility. This article will tell you what is fsroot tree, how to fix APFS fsroot tree is invalid error, and most importantly, how to recover data with Mac data recovery software, like iBoysoft Mac Data Recovery, if you have no backups.

What is fsroot tree and "fsroot tree is invalid" error in macOS Catalina/Mojave?

Just imagine that the structure of an APFS drive is like an upside-down tree, and the fsroot tree is the root directory which associates with the other directories. If the fsroot tree is invalid in macOS Catalina/Mojave/High Sierra, or checking the fsroot tree stuck in First Aid, the operating system will be unable to access the data stored on that APFS drive. That's why there're lots of users searching for solutions to fix the APFS drive fsroot tree invalid error on macOS Mojave/High Sierra, etc.

What's worse, if the APFS drive is the startup drive and shows "fsroot tree is invalid" error, your Mac may stop working.

fsroot tree is invalid

Here is the question posted by a user:

I have a late 2016 MacBook Pro, and had an issue some time back with a file not being accessible. I mounted the APFS volume in Disk Utility, ran first aid on it. I get the following
Error: Invalid dstream size (some numbers) is greater than dsteam.allocated_size(different numbers).
Error: xf: INO_EXT_TYPE_DSTREAM : Invalid dstream
error: inode_val: object (tid 0x2003d78c4) invalid xfields
fsroot tree is invalid
the volume /dev/rdisk2s1 could not be verified completely
File system check exit code is 0

Don't worry. Read on to learn easy ways to fix APFS drive "fsroot tree is invalid" error on macOS.

How to fix APFS drive fsroot tree is invalid error?

As mentioned above, the error message "Checking the fsroot tree, fsroot tree is invalid" indicates that the APFS volume header can't be found or the information showing where the volume header is can't be found. It shows that there're some file system errors on the APFS drive. Thus, to fix the error, the most efficient way is to reformat the APFS drive in Disk Utility.

However, reformatting a drive will erase all data stored on it. You need to check whether you have a backup copy and do it with caution. Now follow the solutions below according to your situations.

Solution 1: Recover data and reformat the APFS drive (Recommended)

If you have no backups, you need to recover lost data from the APFS drive with the best APFS data recovery software, like iBoysoft Mac Data Recovery.

iBoysoft Mac Data Recovery is professional Mac data recovery software that can recover data from APFS drives showing "fsroot tree is invalid" in First Aid. It can recover deleted/lost files from APFS drives, recover data from formatted APFS hard drives, recover data from unreadable APFS hard drives, recover data from unmountable APFS drives, recover lost data from encrypted APFS volumes, and recover deleted/lost APFS partitions, etc.

Besides, this Mac data recovery software can also recover deleted photos, videos, documents and other files from external hard drives, SD cards, USB flash drives, and so on.

Step 1: Recover data from the APFS drive showing "fsroot tree is invalid" error

1. Download, install and launch iBoysoft Mac Data Recovery.

2. Select the APFS drive which shows "fsroot tree is invalid" error and click "Next" button to scan for lost files.

Recover data from APFS drives

3. Preview the searching results, choose files you want to get back, and click "Recover" button.

4. Check to ensure you have got all lost data back.

Aside from recovering data from APFS drives, iBoysoft Mac Data Recovery can also recover deleted photos, videos, documents and more from hard drives, external hard drives, USB flash drives, SD cards, and Pen drives that are formatted, unmountable, inaccessible or corrupted.

Step 2: Fix APFS "fsroot tree is invalid" error by reformatting

1. Go to Utilities > Disk Utility.

2. Select the APFS drive with "fsroot tree is invalid" error on the left part of the window.

3. Click Erase on the top of the Disk Utility window.

4. Complete related information (Name, Format, Scheme), then click Erase button.

Solution 2: Reformat and restore data from backup

If you have a good habit of making regular backups with Time Machine or on other external drives, you can go directly to reformat the APFS drive as above and then restore your data from the backup.


The error "fsroot tree is invalid" on APFS drive is actually a file system error of the drive in macOS Mojave or High Sierra, and reformatting is a feasible way to solve it. However, if there's important data on that APFS drive without any backup, you need to recover data with Mac data recovery software like iBoysoft Mac Data Recovery at first.

If you still have questions about fixing APFS drive fsroot tree is invalid error in macOS Catalina/Mojave/High Sierra, please feel free to drop us an email.

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