Recovery Partition Creator v2.0.5

August 21, 2012 by Christopher Silvertooth

UPDATE to 3.0  – Check this out first.


Alright folks, here is the latest version.  Please be sure to read this entire post before running the script.  I have added an addition that will now check your hard disk for errors.  If it fails the script will stop and prompt you to fix the problem.

If you don’t know what this script is for then make sure you read the whole article carefully.  Here is a quick summary so you don’t have to waste much time. If you need or are missing the recovery partition or need/can’t enable file vault 2 or back to my mac then you probably have a problem with your recovery partition.  One way to get it back or rebuild the recovery partition is to re-install OS X.  This is time consuming and would seem a bit like overkill.  This script will re-deploy a recovery partition without the need of re-installing the OS.  I have also seen people use this script to build a recovery partition on a Hackintosh.  Though that wasn’t the intent of my script I am glad that others have found another use for it 😉

1.  I haven’t been able to test it as thoroughly as I would like but it has worked in my test environment.  That said, please, please, please backup your Mac before running this.  Either use Time Machine or I also recommend Carbon Copy Cloner from Mike Bombich to make an exact duplicate of your computer as it stands today.

2.  For Lion computers, all you need is this script and it will download all the components that are needed in order to recreate the recovery partition. The exception is the new 2012 Macbook Pro’s (Retina included) as well as the new 2012 Macbook Airs.  For those computers I recommend upgrading to Mountain Lion.

3.  For Mountain Lion users, you will need the Mountain Lion Installer, a.k.a. “Install OS X Mountain”, in order to recreate the recovery partition.  I wish there was another way around it but the components that are needed are inside of that installer and can’t be found anywhere else as of yet.  I hope that they become available like they did for Lion at which point I will modify this script to take advantage of that.

4.  Lastly, it would be wise to run disk utility and validate that your hard drive is in good shape.  If any errors come up you will need to get those fixed before you can use this script.

5.  The way this script creates the recovery partition may or may not create the icon for the recovery partition when you hold the option key at boot.  In other words, you may have successfully created the recovery partition but it may not appear in the boot picker menu after holding the option key.  Use the Command-R option on boot to access the recovery partition.

Alright, now for the script.  You can download the script here.

Mountain Lion users!!!  You need to have the “Install OS X Mountain” in your Applications folder.  If you don’t have this you will need to re-download it from the app store.

To run it just double click the file and it should open a terminal window.  The terminal window will prompt you so make sure you read the questions it asks.

Please provide feedback so that I can make this script better.




# 2.0.1 added verify disk check
# 2.0.2 added Retina Macbook Pro and 2012 Air check
# 2.0.3 Fixed bug in OS detection. Reported by Steve Silvertooth.
# 2.0.4 Fixed diskutil check so that it doesn’t break with multiple drives.

# 2.0.5 Cleaned up Mountain Lion issues.

# Lost Missing Gone Recovery Restore Volume Partition – Poof!

apple / Mac Fixes / tools


  1. mario says:

    Hi Chris, im having permission denied when i try to run !

    • Christopher Silvertooth says:

      you need to run chmod 755 on the file at the command line. I have posted a version in a zip file that doesn’t have this problem anymore.

  2. Steve says:

    I ran the script and it worked. Thank you!

  3. mario says:

    worked here too. Thank you !!

    • Jui says:

      Does this work if you have a fusion drive configured on Mountain Lion 1.8.2 (fusion drive on older mac in my case).
      Anyone tried it already?

      • Christopher Silvertooth says:

        I have not tried this with a fusion drive setup yet. I will add that to my list of things to experiment with in the new year and will post the results. For now, I would advise against using it with the fusion drive as I am not sure what it will do.


      • tamieu says:

        I get the following error: Unable to verify this whole disk: A GUID Partition Table (GPT) partitioning scheme is required (-69773)
        Macintosh HD needs to be repaired. The easiest way to do this is to boot off another drive or boot disk running Lion or Mountain Lion.

        when i run disk repair my drive is fine…

        any ideas?

        • Christopher Silvertooth says:

          I have seen this GUID error before. All bootable mac OS X drives must have the GUID Partition Table Scheme in order for OS X to boot. Generally this error pops up when it is detecting a drive that was not originally used for OS X. i.e. A USB Drive or 3rd party drive used to upgrade your computer.

          In order to fix these sorts of errors you will have to boot off of a secondary device. For that you need a USB Hard Drive with OS X installed so that you can run Disk utility.

          Good luck,


      • Leo says:

        I ran it on a 2012 Mac Mini (not fusion) hoping it would update the 10.8.1 recovery partition to 10.8.2, but unfortunately it botched it up. When I tried to boot to the recovery partition, it showed ‘do not enter’ icon instead.

        Luckily I have a cloned the drive and went on to bind my SSD + HDD to become fusion drive. After this process, I think the recovery partition become bootable again.

        Btw, for fusion drive system, I think it’s common to have the recovery drive on disk1 (HDD) while disk0 is the SSD.

        • Christopher Silvertooth says:

          That is correct. I just got my Mac Mini with Fusion drive and noticed that it is disk 1. I am going to try and re-write the script to include disk1 as a viable option. Thank you for the heads up.


      • Christopher Silvertooth says:

        I am hoping to get my Mac Mini with Fusion Drive this week. Once I have it I will test the recovery script and make the necessary changes so that it works correctly. I will post an update once I have it working.



  4. Diego says:

    Worked flawlessly. Thank you so so very much! I LOVE YOU!

  5. Rev. Eric says:

    Unfortunately I get:

    Creating recovery partition: finished
    Error (async): Couldn't attach disk image (-69736)
    hdiutil: eject failed - No such file or directory
    "disk2" unmounted.
    "disk2" ejected.
    "disk1" unmounted.
    "disk1" ejected.

    The RecoveryHDUpdate.dmg is in the same directory as the script and Install OS X Mountain Lion is in the Applications folder so I am unclear as to which disk image it’s looking for and cannot find.

  6. Steve says:

    MBP Retina running Mountain Lion. It worked just fine, thank you very much.

  7. TyC says:

    This worked! You’re a lifesaver! Find My Mac worked afterwards!

  8. andres says:

    worked like a charm. MBP late 2011 running 10.8.2

  9. Aaron says:

    Thank you very much! It worked without any issues and now I’m able to use FileVault again 🙂

    MacBook Pro late 2011 / Samsung SSD 830 512 GB / Western Digital Scorpio Blue 1 TB / OS X 10.8.2

  10. TC says:

    Help! Worked too well — I can now boot into recovery mode but every subsequent reboot returns me to recovery mode. How do I get back to “regular” mode?!

  11. Dexter says:

    This worked great for me. Thanks so much! For some reason, during one of the OS updates, or perhaps when I installed a new SSD in my MBP and then cloned back to it, the Recovery Partition never made it. Strange.

    Following your instructions, downloading the latest Mtn. Lion and placing it in the Applications Folder and running the script was flawless. It did connect to Apple to download some files, which I hadn’t recalled reading about in the notes, but I simply let it do it’s thing. Recovery Partition is up and running, seeming correctly.

    Thanks again for going to the effort to put this together!

    • Christopher Silvertooth says:

      Awesome. It does download a package from Apple that has tools needed to finish the creation of the recovery partition.



  12. Francisco Garcia says:

    Great stuff! it worked perfectly on my macbook pro mid 2012. I accidentally deleted the recovery partition when making a triple boot on my mac! thank you!

  13. Fan says:

    Thank you! This worked very well. I appreciate you taking the time to put this together and share with us.

  14. Dexter says:

    Back again with a question. My Recovery Partition is working, as I indicated a few posts above. Thanks again for the great information on creating it after it somehow got lost during… whatever.

    When I fired up the Recovery partition tonight, I noticed it wasn’t named “Recovery HD” as I see in some Apple screenshots. Although I am running 10.8.2 on my MBP, the Recovery partition says 10.7.2 under the icon.

    Sorry if this has been asked and answered before, but is this nomenclature correct, or do I have the wrong Recovery partition installed? Or does it matter?


    • Christopher Silvertooth says:

      That is correct if I recall. The reason is because the only available recovery partition that Apple made available for download is the 10.7.2 version of the recovery drive. I need to check and see if they have published a new version at a different URL.

  15. […] instructions above leave 1% of space to allow a recovery partition to be created. You can also try this script after the fact, which may or may not work. Last updated November 7, 2012 · Tags: fusion […]

  16. Martin G says:

    Macbook Pro 13 2011 – OSX 10.8.2
    I installed an SSD. Superduper was provided with the migration kit but didn;t clone the recovery partition. The script worked without a hitch but I get the Recovery partition labelled 10.7.2 (just like Dexter). Is this just a label error or will 10.7.2 be ‘recovered’ if I use it.

  17. Brian McCord says:

    This worked great! And didn’t bother my BootCamp at all. If there is a way to update the recovery partition to 10.8.2, that would be fantastic!


  18. Scott Beach says:

    Hello. I’m trying to create a recovery partition on an external HD. I’ve booted from it and then followed your instructions but despite the script saying it’s completed, no recovery partition is visible. Neither option booting nor cmd+R boots into it. It does boot from the Internet Recovery. Is this not possible on an external HD?
    Thanks for reading and for your work on this great script!
    – Scott

  19. Aaron Miller says:

    Wow, Chris. Just wanted to say “Thanks!” The other routes to do this (wanted to get “find my mac” working again after the upgrade to Mountain Lion, complicated by having a 3rd party SSD installed on my MacBook Air) looked too hairy to make it worth my time, but your work made it a breeze! Rock on Silvertooth.

  20. flthx says:

    Worked great! Thank you so much! 🙂
    Early 2011 MacBook Pro with 256gb SSD and 640gb HD.

    greets from germany!

  21. Rob Annable says:

    This worked for me on 10.8.2 on a mac mini 2012.

    Fantastic bit of scripting and this has saved me having to reinstall a server OS so a huge thank you from me!

  22. CB says:

    Thanks for the help, and great work!
    CCC’d to a new SSD. Perfect solution.

  23. M K says:

    Worked great on my mid 2010 MBP with SSD. Recovery partition 10.8.3 You are awesome!

  24. simon says:

    I used the previous script and it worked…. thanks v much!

  25. Kristin says:

    Just wanted to say a massive thank for this script! I just pushed our a DeployStudio deployment and, for whatever reason, it failed to create the Recovery Partition on a couple of the machines (everything else was fine). I figured I was in for a headache…and then I found your script, and within minutes, everything was fixed. THANK YOU!!!

  26. Nick says:

    Hey there, 2012 MBP on 10.8.3 and have the Mountain Lion Install in the Application folder
    , getting this error when I run the script:

    “-bash: /Users/Nick/Downloads/recoveryImageCreator-v2.0.5.command: cannot execute binary file

    [Process completed]”

    • Christopher Silvertooth says:

      I haven’t seen that error yet. I wonder if the download was corrupt or something. Try re-downloading the file and running again.

  27. m0kum says:

    works like charm… thanks a lot! (macbook air 11″ – 2012 with 10.8.3)

  28. sm says:

    thanks a lot, the same here, works like a charm! (MBP retina 15″, early 2013, 10.8.3)

  29. Tim Stringer says:

    Worked perfectly for me on my MacBook Air (2011, Mac OS X 10.8.3). Thanks so much Chris…this saved me a ton! Best wishes from Vancouver…

  30. Mork says:

    Hi Chris and thanks,

    I have mountain lion and followed the instructions but the script still downloads the recovery files even tho’ i re downloaded the install app. Is there another step or two? Like opening contents and dragging a particular file? Renaming maybe? Im in the middle of downloading now but its very slow, I have 100mbs but its at less than 100k hours to go……

    • Christopher Silvertooth says:

      Even though you have the Mountain Lion installer the script still needs to download another file from Apple that has the program that helps create the recovery partition. I forget how big the file size is but if you have a very slow connection it could take quite a while.

  31. Eric says:

    Any chance to get this to work with a raid volume?

  32. Steve says:

    What do you think are the odds of this technique working to create a recovery partition on a 2006-era MacPro1,1?

    I currently boot using Chameleon on its own HDD to get my EFI32 machine to run Mt Lion. 10.8.3 runs pretty nicely on this rig (including Bluetooth and FaceTime) but I have no Find My Mac since there is no recovery partition. The original InstallESD.dmg on my purchased copy of Mt Lion Installer was altered to bypass the machine compatibility check, enabling the installation.

    Am I just asking for trouble trying to achieve this last bit of Mt Lion compatibility on my “obsolete” hardware?

    • Christopher Silvertooth says:

      I really don’t know if it will work. My guess is that it will work because the files that are needed are unlikely to have been modified to cause the scripts to fail. Though, my program is looking for the OS X Mountain Lion Installer not the InstallESD.dmg so you would need to make sure you have that available or fake my program into thinking you have it.

      Good luck,


  33. straywasp says:

    Thanks so much for this. I forgot to migrate the Recovery HD when I upgraded from hard drive to SSD. Filevault wouldn’t work without the Recovery HD so you’ve saved me reinstalling / reimaging the whole thing!

  34. noone says:

    I wish someone would help me with the problem I attempted to post a couple of weeks ago. 🙁

  35. Dean says:

    Hi Christopher,

    Thanks for the script worked great. It did fine job on my Macbook pro retina after losing recovery due to a restore. It didn’t work first time round i got the following in terminal invalid & completed. I then did a restart and run it again and it completed just fine.
    The only issue i have is it has taken my bootcamp partition out of the start up list!

    Many thanks

  36. Roger Moffat says:

    I have an Early 2008 Mac Pro with 4 drives installed. Somewhere along the way I’ve lost the Recovery Partition on my main start up drive, but it remains on a previous drive – so it must have been omitted during a cloning operation when I installed the current startup drive.

    The script notes the multiple drives and offers to install the Recovery Partition on to disk0, but in fact the disk I want it installed on is disk1 which is my start up volume. disk0 is a volume that’s used as a Time Machine backup from another Mac on my LAN.

    How can I force installation on to disk1 – will I need to physically remove disk0 from the machine?



  37. Jim says:

    After loosing the recovery drive after a time machine restore I thought I’d not be able to use file vault again, however this script worked a charm.

    Cheers Chris for the development work in this. Time saver 🙂

  38. Henry says:

    Really appreciate for create this script, i need this~

  39. joverparas says:

    may i know if this version works with Mavericks?

  40. Phil85 says:

    Hi, i use Lion 10.7.5 and i Unfortunately get:
    Creating recovery partition: finished
    Error (async): Couldn’t attach disk image (-69736)
    hdiutil: eject failed – No such file or directory

    with version 2.05 … can i try 3.5 ?

    anyone have done that before and with success?


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