How to recover your files when your Mac won’t start up properly

When your Mac won't finish its startup process, how do you get access to the data? That's the problem facing reader Norma Moncrieff with her 2013 MacBook Pro.

It won’t boot up. It does turn on, starts to load then freezes. I took it into Apple and they suggested a recovery service.

She’d like to recover her photos. While Norma writes that she tried a lot of advice she’d found on the internet, I’m not sure precisely how Apple evaluated her computer. My suspicion is that they’ve found the drive is actually damaged and can’t be mounted properly, rather than needing repair.

Nonetheless, I advise people to run through this set of attempts first, since disk recovery can be expensive.

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