Need to remove my fusion drive on iMac 27"

Discussion in 'iMac' started by 212rikanmofo, May 22, 2018.

  1. 212rikanmofo macrumors 68000

    Jan 31, 2003
    I believe I have a late 2013-2014 iMac 27. I need to access my Fusion drive to recover the data off it. I recently had problems and had formatted the drive to try and reinstall Mac OS but it failed at the last minute, so I have no choice but to physically remove the drive so that I can salvage what data is left on there. The only problem is getting to it.

    Does anyone know how difficult it is to take apart and what tools I will need to get the job done? I don't want to take my computer to Apple to get this done, plus I'm sure the cost will be expensive.

    I will ordered a Flash Drive and USB 3.0 to SATA cable so that I can connect the failed drive to another machine to perform data recovery. Please help me take the darn drive out of my iMac someone. :(
  2. CoastalOR, May 22, 2018
    Last edited: May 22, 2018

    CoastalOR macrumors 68020


    Jan 19, 2015
    Oregon, USA
    The fusion drive is not 1 drive. It is 2 physical drives (flash & spinner hard drive) that is combined logically in the OS to appear as one drive. There is no external drive that will work to combine the 2 drives as 1. If 1 part of the 2 drives fail or not available then the data is lost because data can be spread across 2 drives. Backups are critical to recover from failure of a fusion system.

    Here is how you remove the SSD & HDD drives:
  3. Fishrrman macrumors P6


    Feb 20, 2009
    You probably aren't getting that data back, even if you take the drives out.

    Read reply 2 carefully.
    The fusion drive is TWO physical drives (HDD+SSD).
    They are "melded together" with the OS itself, and whatever data on the drives is "parceled out" between them, sector-by-sector -- it could be on BOTH drives at once.

    There is NO WAY to access the data on a "fused" drive other than from inside the Mac itself (with the OS up-and-running).

    I'm wondering if it could be possible to mount both drives in standalone enclosures, then "re-fuse" them using the terminal, and then access them that way. But I wonder if the very process of doing that would only make the data harder to get at.

    I'm going to -guess- that there are at least a few data recovery firms that -might- be able to access -some- of the data on the drives, but if there are, they are going to be VERY expensive. Can you afford $1-2 thousand to get the data back?

    There was NO NEED to "reformat" the fusion drive in order to re-install the OS.
    Why did you do this?
    Further, why did you do it WITHOUT A BACKUP?

    Again, it is probably next-to impossible to recover the data on "one-half" of a fusion drive (either the SSD portion or the HDD portion).
    I'm wondering if any of the data recovery apps will even touch it.

    Probably best to "kiss that data goodbye".
    And learn something about backing up.
  4. 212rikanmofo thread starter macrumors 68000

    Jan 31, 2003
    The only reason I formatted was because it kept giving me an error when trying to reinstall the OS. At 1st when I had this problem initially, I ran disk util and saw my drive was red, so I clicked on it to try to repair/verify the disk and it gave me a windows say Fix or Ignore. So I clicked fix, and little did I know that command actually formatted my drive.

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