Can I run disk drill on iPad?

Introducing Disk Drill and iPad

Disk Drill is a popular data recovery software tool developed by CleverFiles that enables users to recover lost or deleted files from a variety of storage devices. Originally released in 2010 for Mac OS X, Disk Drill is now available for both Mac and Windows operating systems.

The Apple iPad is a popular line of tablet computers designed and marketed by Apple. Since its initial release in 2010, the iPad has become one of the most successful and recognizable tablet devices on the market. However, the iPad was developed independently from Disk Drill and runs on Apple’s proprietary iOS operating system.

While Disk Drill and the iPad are both popular products in their own right, they were created separately by different companies. Disk Drill specializes in data recovery, while the iPad is a general computing device. This article will examine using Disk Drill for recovering data specifically on the iPad platform.

Disk Drill Compatibility

Disk Drill is a powerful data recovery software tool designed for Mac and Windows computers, not iOS mobile devices like the iPad (Source). The software runs locally on a desktop or laptop to recover lost or deleted files from internal and external hard drives. However, it cannot be directly installed or run on an iPad itself.

This is because Disk Drill is desktop software built for macOS and Windows operating systems. The iPad runs on Apple’s iOS, which has a different architecture and app ecosystem than Mac/Windows (Source). Trying to run Disk Drill on an iPad would be like trying to run macOS software on a Windows PC – there is simply no compatibility.

While Disk Drill cannot run natively on an iPad, there are some indirect ways to utilize Disk Drill to recover iPad data, which we’ll explore in the next section.

Using External Drives with iPad

The iPad supports connecting external drives like USB flash drives, SD cards, or external hard drives using special adapters or through cloud storage services. This allows you to expand the storage capacity of your iPad beyond the built-in options. Some key ways to connect external drives include:

USB Adapter – Using Apple’s Lightning to USB adapter or a compatible third-party adapter allows you to plug in a USB flash drive or hard drive. iPadOS has robust support for accessing and managing files on these connected USB drives.

SD Card Reader – A Lightning to SD card reader adapter can help transfer photos/videos from a camera SD card to your iPad. Apps like Photos can directly import from the SD card.

Cloud Storage – Services like iCloud Drive, Dropbox, and Google Drive allow you to access files in the cloud. The Files app on iPad provides a central place to manage files stored in the cloud or locally.

While the iPad can directly access files on these connected external drives, recovery apps like Disk Drill will need the external drive connected to a Mac or PC in order to scan and restore data. So external drives provide expanded iPad storage, while Disk Drill would rely on a separate desktop device and connection for recovering lost files.

Recovering iPad Data

iPadOS offers a few built-in ways to recover lost data on an iPad like restoring from an iCloud or iTunes backup, or accessing recently deleted files from the Recents view in the Photos app.

To restore an iPad from a backup in iCloud, go to Settings > [your name] > iCloud > Manage Storage > Backups and tap on the desired backup. Then erase your iPad and choose “Restore from iCloud Backup” during setup. Restoring from an iTunes backup on a computer involves connecting the iPad, selecting it in iTunes, clicking Summary > Restore Backup, and selecting the desired backup. [1]

The Recently Deleted album in the Photos app stores deleted photos and videos for up to 40 days, allowing you to recover them. Just open the Photos app, go to Albums > Recently Deleted, select the items to restore, and tap Recover.

If these options cannot recover your lost data, third-party iOS data recovery apps provide more advanced recovery capabilities. Some popular iPad data recovery apps include:

  • Wondershare Dr. Fone – Retrieves data like photos, messages, and contacts. [2]
  • EaseUS MobiSaver – Recovers data lost due to device damage, iOS upgrade, etc. [2]
  • iMyFone D-Back – Extracts data from iTunes and iCloud backups. [2]

Preventing Data Loss on iPad

There are several ways to help prevent data loss on your iPad, such as:

  • Back up your iPad regularly to iCloud or iTunes. This ensures you have a copy of your data in case something happens to your device. See Apple’s support guide for instructions.
  • Close apps when you’re done using them to prevent crashes and data corruption. Double click the Home button and swipe up on apps to close them.
  • Store important documents and photos in cloud services like iCloud, Dropbox or Google Drive. This provides an off-device backup.
  • Use Apple’s Find My app to locate a lost or stolen iPad and remotely wipe data. See Apple’s guide for details.
  • Enable passwords or biometric authentication like Face ID to secure access to your device and data if it’s lost or stolen.
  • Install security updates promptly to get fixes for vulnerabilities.
  • Avoid storing sensitive information unless absolutely necessary.

Following best practices like regular backups, closing apps, and enabling security features can help minimize the risk of losing important data on your iPad.

When to Use Disk Drill

Disk Drill can be a useful tool for recovering lost data from external drives that have been connected to an iPad, even though it cannot run directly on the iOS operating system. For example, if you have an external hard drive or USB flash drive that you used to transfer files, photos, or videos to and from your iPad, and that drive dies or becomes corrupted, Disk Drill may be able to help recover data from it. Some scenarios where Disk Drill could prove useful include:

Recovering photos from a camera SD card that was used to import pictures into the Photos app on an iPad. Connecting the SD card to a Mac or Windows PC and using Disk Drill could potentially restore deleted or lost images.

Retrieving documents from an external USB drive that was used to store and access files from the Files app on an iPad. If that drive fails, Disk Drill could possibly recover Word, Excel, PDFs, and other document types.

Restoring video files from an external SSD drive that was used with an iPad Pro to edit and store video projects. The videos may be recoverable even if the SSD becomes corrupted or damaged.

While Disk Drill cannot directly scan an iPad’s internal storage, it provides hope for recovering lost data from external drives used to transfer and store files on iPadOS devices. Just connect the faulty drive to a Mac or PC and Disk Drill may be able to restore critical lost data.

Alternative Solutions

If Disk Drill is unable to recover your lost iPad data, there are some alternative professional data recovery services you can turn to:

DriveSavers offers iPad data recovery services for all generations of iPads. They use specialized tools and techniques to recover lost or deleted data from iOS devices.

Outsource Data Recovery also provides professional iPad data recovery services. They have experience recovering data quickly and efficiently from all kinds of iOS devices.

Ontrack offers data recovery services specifically for Apple products like iPads and iPhones. They can assist in recovering lost, deleted, corrupted or damaged files from iOS devices.

These professional data recovery services use advanced tools and techniques that go beyond what consumer software like Disk Drill can do. However, they can be more expensive than DIY options.


To briefly summarize the key points:

  • Disk Drill is a powerful data recovery software for Mac and PC. However, it cannot run natively on an iPad itself.
  • While Disk Drill cannot be installed directly onto an iPad, it can be useful for recovering lost files from external hard drives or USB flash drives that you may connect to an iPad.
  • If you have an external drive that you’ve used with your iPad and lost data on it, you can connect that drive to a Mac or PC and run Disk Drill to attempt recovering those files.
  • So in summary – Disk Drill does not run on an iPad directly, but can help recover lost data from external drives used with an iPad if you connect the drive to a compatible desktop device.


In conclusion, Disk Drill is not compatible with the iPad itself. The iOS operating system does not allow third party apps like Disk Drill to access the iPad’s internal file system and recover deleted data directly from the device.

However, Disk Drill can be a useful tool for recovering lost data from external hard drives and solid state drives that you may connect to an iPad using adapters. So if you have an external drive that you normally use with a Mac or Windows PC, but also connect to your iPad on occasion, Disk Drill could help recover lost or deleted files from that external drive when connected to a compatible desktop or laptop computer.

While Disk Drill cannot directly access internal iPad storage, there are some alternative data recovery apps and techniques that may work in certain data loss situations on the iPad itself. But for external drives, Disk Drill remains a powerful and effective data recovery solution.


Sources referenced or recommended for further reading:

Apple Support. “Recover files on your iPad.”

CleverFiles. “Disk Drill.”

iMobie. “AnyTrans.”

EaseUS. “EaseUS MobiSaver.”

Wondershare. “Recoverit.”