Disk Drill Review

Disk Drill is a well-known data recovery tool developed by Cleverfiles, a company established in the United States in 2009. It’s compatible with both Mac and Windows, making it one of the most effective data recovery apps available. Like other similar software, it’s the good solution for users facing the scary scenario of data loss from their computers.


In fact, Disk Drill’s main goal is to help you recover lost data, including data that has disappeared without the user’s knowledge and data that has been deleted by mistake. This program utilizes Recovery Vault technology to protect files on your Mac and facilitates quick and easy scanning and recovery of lost data.


Disk Drill, like everything else, has both advantages and disadvantages. Overall, it offers a good and effective selection of features and supports many file systems. However, it doesn’t work quite right on SSD. Additionally, the interface is very user-friendly, although it can be buggy at times.


Here’s our summary of the pros and cons:


✅ Excellent data recovery


✅ Unique features not seen in rivals


✅ Supports many different file systems


✅ Easy to use


✅ Free plan


✅ Good customer service

❌ Some features are not that useful


❌ Ineffective on SSD


❌ Buggy interface at times


❌ PRO subscription is expensive

Before we start:


If you want to clean your Mac disk instead of recovering deleted, lost, or damaged data, use MacKeeper’s Safe Cleanup tool. This cleaning utility has an excellent track record for removing junk files, duplicates, and unused apps. It’s also suitable for optimizing and speeding up your Mac’s performance.


Here’s how to use MacKeeper’s Safe Cleanup:

  1. Download and open MacKeeper on your Mac.
  2. Choose the Safe Cleanup option at the top of the left sidebar.
  3. Click Start Scan.
  4. Wait until the scan is complete.
  5. Select the items you want to remove, then click Clean Junk Files.

What is Disk Drill

Disk Drill is a data recovery utility, with the macOS version on the market since 2010 and the version for Microsoft computers arriving in 2016. Over the years, Cleverfiles has developed five versions for Mac, from Disk Drill 1 to 5, while only versions 2, 4, and 5 have been released for Windows.


As the name suggests, data recovery utilities are tools designed for restoring deleted files and folders. Disk Drill can recover data on various devices, including computers, smartphones, external memory sticks, USB sticks, and memory cards. This app is known for its user-friendly interface and comprehensive support for all types of files.


An advantage of Disk Drill is its ability to recover deleted files once they’ve been moved to the Trash, as well as to recover emptied Trash on Mac. Furthermore, it also works after the user has formatted the disk on which they were originally located. Additionally, this data recovery program is effective in recovering data from corrupted or damaged drives.

Compatibility of Disk Drill

Disk Drill, available for both Mac and Windows devices, can recover deleted, lost, or damaged data from various file systems, including:

  • Documents: DOCX, PDF, PPTX, XLSX.
  • Archives: CAB, DMG, RAR, ZIP, 7Z.
  • Audio: AIF, AIFF, AIFC, MP3, WMA.
  • Video: AVI, FLV, MPG, MP4, M4V, WMV.
  • Others: AACDB, DB, MYO, OTF, SQL.

Note from our experts: The Cleverfiles software has a standalone app for macOS and Windows. The latest version can be installed on Macs with macOS 10.15 Catalina, macOS 11 Big Sur, macOS 12 Monterey, macOS 13 Ventura, and macOS 14 Sonoma. For its part, Disk Drill for Windows can be used on both Windows 10 and Windows 11.

Disk Drill features

Aside from the cost, the main difference between Disk Drill Basic and Disk Drill PRO is the set of features offered by each option. The Basic plan provides access to all data protection and scanning features, allowing you to locate and preview recoverable files. However, to actually recover them, you’ll need to purchase the PRO version, which includes all Disk Drill data recovery methods.


The current version is Disk Drill 5, available for both macOS and Windows. While they share most features, there are some differences:

Recovery Drive
Specific File Format Recovery
Partition Recovery
Unformatted and Raw Recovery
Disk Health
System Cleanup
Duplicate Finder
Data Protection
Data Backup
Mount Scanning

Some hints from us: 


From our close examination, we can add that Disk Drill’s features also include the ability to recover damaged information. The program isn’t only meant to retrieve files that have disappeared, but also to assist users on how to fix corrupted files on Mac. Plus, it’s designed to repair various types of documents, such as music, photos, and videos, that encounter corruption errors.


Cleverfiles’ software can help if you’ve lost important personal or business documents, as it can be used not only for internal Mac disks, but also for external and virtual hard drives or SSDs, USB flash drives, memory cards, smartphones, and even digital cameras.

Disk Drill for macOS features

These are the main Disk Drill features for macOS:

  • Scanning for lost data
  • Simple Mac file recovery
  • Data recovery from Time Machine backups and snapshots
  • Deep scan of T2, M1, M2, and M3 Macs
  • Native Apple Silicon compatibility
  • Disk Health monitoring
  • Mac Cleanup and Duplicate Finder
  • Data Protection and Data Backup
Disk Drill for macOS offers a wide range of data recovery tools, but it has limited functionalities compared to the PRO plan.

Now, let’s dive into the main macOS features.

Scanning for lost data

One of the primary functions of the free version of Disk Drill for Mac is to scan any type of internal and external drive to find and recover deleted data, including entire lost partitions. This data recovery software can read disks even if your Mac isn’t able to recognize them.

Simple Mac file recovery

With Disk Drill, you can not only find lost data but also recover it. The process is simple and user-friendly, as Cleverfiles designed the tool with a very intuitive interface. You don’t need extensive IT knowledge, but the company offers useful tutorials on its website in case you need some guidance.

Data recovery for Time Machine backups and snapshots

The free Mac app offers an exclusive feature for Apple devices—Time Machine recovery. This way, Disk Drill allows you to recover permanently deleted files from Time Machine backup disks and access snapshots that you thought were lost forever.

Mac Cleanup

Although not its main function, Disk Drill can also be used as a cleanup utility. The program includes a free function that analyzes the free space on your Mac disk and locates unused documents to free up storage efficiently.

Duplicate Finder

Another way to clean up a computer’s disk is to locate and delete duplicate files. Disk Drill can also do this for you without the need to pay for the PRO version. Its Duplicate Finder feature is designed to help you find and remove multiple versions of the same file located anywhere on your disk.

Features of Disk Drill for Windows

Here’s a list of the main Disk Drill features for Windows:

  • Scanning for lost data
  • Quick and Deep Scan
  • Specific File Format Recovery
  • Unformatted and Raw Recovery
  • Partition Recovery
  • Mount Scanning
  • Data Backup
  • Disk Health monitoring
Disk Drill for Windows includes features for searching, recovering and fixing lost and corrupted data.

It’s time to take a look at the most important Windows features.

Specific File Format Recovery

Disk Drill is a data recovery tool that can scan, find, and recover all types of file formats. The Windows version has a specific feature to find particular file formats, allowing you to preview and group files by type for easier review and recovery selection.

Unformatted and Raw Recovery

The Disk Drill software uses deep scanning technology to recover unformatted and RAW file systems. In this regard, this enables you to restore lost or damaged files before reformatting the device they’re stored in.

Partition Recovery

Disk Drill for Windows also enables you to recover lost or damaged partitions on your disks. Losing a disk partition can be a significant issue, but it’s no problem for the scanning algorithms used by this tool. This also includes partitions that you may have accidentally formatted and a function to prevent formatting the wrong partition.

Mount Scanning

A unique feature for Windows users is Mount Scanning. This allows you to mount recovered files on a disk for easy file management, enabling users to move them around in their chosen file manager.

S.M.A.R.T. Disk Monitoring

Both the Windows and Mac versions do include disk monitoring functionality, based on the S.M.A.R.T. framework. This feature tests the health of internal and external disks and receives alerts for potential disk errors.

Disk Drill price

Disk Drill is available in three different plans: Basic, PRO, and Enterprise.


The Basic plan is completely free to download, but it offers limited functionality and doesn’t include lifetime upgrades. For full functionality, home users can opt for Disk Drill PRO, which is currently priced at $89 with the option to pay an additional $19 for lifetime upgrades.


The Disk Drill Enterprise plan is priced at $499, with an additional $99 for lifetime upgrades. This plan differs from the PRO plan in that it can be used by up to 10 users and offers unlimited activations, as opposed to 1 user and 3 simultaneous activations. Business users also receive priority technical support.

Free (No lifetime upgrades)



(Lifetime upgrades for $19)



(Lifetime upgrades for $99)

Cleverfiles often provides discounts to make their offer more appealing. For instance, if you’ve purchased a previous version, you can get the new one at a 50% discount. Non-profit, governmental, and educational organizations are also eligible for a 25% discount.

How to use Disk Drill

The functionality of Disk Drill is quite similar whether you use the Mac or Windows version. However, the two apps aren’t exactly the same, so our team has made an own research to see how they vary when it comes to scanning, finding, and recovering lost files.


Here’s how to use Disk Drill on Mac:

  1. After installing Disk Drill, open the app and grant it the necessary permissions to access your Mac’s disk.
  2. You’ll see a list of disks that the program can scan. If you can’t find the device you want to scan, click Show hidden items.
  3. Disk Drill gives you the option to lock the scanned partition so that no other app can access it and interfere with the scan.
  4. At the bottom right of the app, you’ll find the Search for lost data button. If you want to recover HFS+ files, this button will be Rebuild HFS+ catalog.
  5. You can filter the results by keyword, file type, file size, and date.
  6. Once you’ve reviewed the recovered files, the program will automatically restore them for you.
To use Disk Drill on Mac, download and install the app on your Apple device.
Step 1. Downloading and installing Disk Drill on Mac
To scan your Mac using Disk Drill, grant the app permission to make changes.
Step 2. Allowing Disk Drill to make changes on your Mac
To start scanning your Mac, check the list of disks available.
Step 3. Checking the list of disks that Disk Drill can scan
To use Disk Drill to find lost data on your Mac, click Show hidden items in case you can't find your drive in the list.
Step 4. Showing hidden items
To find lost data on your Mac, click Search for lost data on Disk Drill.
Step 5. Clicking ‘Search for lost data’ to start scanning your drive
To find lost or deleted data on your Mac, filter the results by keyword, file type, file size, and date.
Step 6. Filtering the results

Here’s how to use Disk Drill on Windows:

  1. Similarly to the Mac version, after installing the app, grant it permission to make changes.
  2. In Disk Drill on Windows, you’ll see a full list of different disks and devices that you can scan. In this case, the Search for lost data button is located on the right menu.
  3. The scanning process can take several hours or even days, but Mac users will also experience this.
  4. You can pause and resume the scan whenever you want.
  5. You can filter the results by file type: Pictures, Video, Audio, Documents, Archives, and other files.
  6. You can also search the found files by document name or other parameters.
  7. Once you’ve reviewed the found files, simply click the Recover button.

Is Disk Drill any good

Disk Drill is a top program for users who need to recover deleted files on Mac. It boasts one of the most advanced data recovery systems on the market and can recover files from various types of disks, including internal or external, hard disks, SSDs, smartphones, digital cameras, USB flash drives, and memory cards.


This data recovery utility supports all types of files and file systems, providing peace of mind when dealing with lost, deleted, or damaged files such as audio, music, and video. Additionally, Disk Drill offers document protection with Recovery Vault technology and disk monitoring to alert you of potential disk issues.



While Disk Drill includes a free option for cleaning Macs, the MacKeeper’s Safe Cleanup feature is more comprehensive. This tool allows for a thorough analysis of your computer and lets you select which junk files to delete, including temporary files, logs, caches, and Trash documents.


Follow these steps to use MacKeeper’s Safe Cleanup on your Mac:

  1. Download and launch MacKeeper on Mac.
  2. Choose the Safe Cleanup option from the sidebar, just under the Cleaning section.
  3. Select Start Scan at the bottom of the app.
  4. Check the progress on the screen and wait until the scan is done.
  5. You’ll see all the scanned categories, including Caches, Logs, and Trash.
  6. Choose the category you want to review the results of and pick the items you want to remove, or select Check All.
  7. Repeat the process with any category you want to review.
  8. Click Clean Junk Files to delete all selected items.
  9. Click the Empty Trash button to finalize this process.
To use MacKeeper's cleaning tool, open Safe Cleanup and click the Start Scan button.
Step 1. Opening Safe Cleanup and clicking Start Scan
To use MacKeeper’s Safe Cleanup tool, check the progress on the app.
Step 2. Waiting for the scanning progress to finish
To see the junk files found on your Mac, check the five categories on MacKeeper’s Safe Cleanup.
Step 3. Reviewing the Safe Cleanup results
To remove junk files on your Mac using MacKeeper's Safe Cleanup, select them first.
Step 4. Selecting the items you want to remove from your Mac
To delete junk on your Mac, select Clean Junk Files on the Safe Cleanup tool.
Step 5. Selecting Clean Junk Files on MacKeeper’s Safe Cleanup
To get rid of all selected junk files, click the Empty Trash button to confirm.
Step 6. Confirming you want to remove the selected junk file

FAQ about Disk Drill

1. Is Disk Drill safe?

Yes, Disk Drill is a safe app for Mac and Windows. It’s free of malware or harmful content, and independent security services such as VirusTotal and Microsoft Defender have certified it. Disk Drill works locally and offline, so it doesn’t send your information to third parties. Plus, it doesn’t negatively impact your computer’s performance.

2. Is Disk Drill free?

Disk Drill offers a free plan with limited features. To access the full range of features, you would need to subscribe to Disk Drill PRO, which is priced at $89. There’s also an Enterprise option available for businesses, priced at $499.

3. Does Disk Drill work?

Disk Drill is a highly efficient data recovery tool designed for both Mac and Windows users. However, the Basic option has some limitations, as it only allows for the recovery of 500 MB of data. Instead, the Disk Drill PRO plan operates seamlessly, boasting impressive scanning speed, although the total data recovery process may take longer.

4. What is the difference between Disk Drill and Disk Drill PRO?

The main difference between Disk Drill and Disk Drill PRO is that the former is free, while the latter requires a subscription. This means that Disk Drill has a limit of 500 MB and allows for a single activation only, while the paid plan offers unlimited data recovery and allows for up to three simultaneous activations. The PRO option is more comprehensive, including all the features of the Basic plan, as well as additional recovery methods.

5. What file types are supported by Disk Drill?

Disk Drill can recover any type of file and reconstruct over 400 file types. It supports various main file systems, including APFS, EXT3/EXT4, FAT/FAT32/exFAT, HFS, HFS+, and NTFS/NTFS5. In addition, it can recover all types of images, audio, video, archive, and document files.

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