Home > Apple File System, FileVault 2, Mac administration, macOS > Unlock an encrypted APFS boot drive using Disk Utility

Unlock an encrypted APFS boot drive using Disk Utility

In the event that you need to unlock an unbootable boot drive using Apple File System (APFS) encryption, it’s possible to do so using Disk Utility and one of the following authentication credentials:

  1. The password to a FileVault-enabled account on the drive
  2. A personal recovery key

For more details, see below the jump.

To unlock an encrypted APFS boot drive, please use the procedure shown below:

Note: For this example, I’m using Recovery HD‘s Disk Utility though you can also use Disk Utility from a regular boot drive.

1. Open Disk Utility.

Screen Shot 2017 11 04 at 12 31 32 AM

2. Select the locked encrypted drive.

Screen Shot 2017 11 04 at 12 12 13 AM

3. Click the Mount button.

Screen Shot 2017 11 04 at 12 12 14 AM

4. In the password blank which appears, enter one of the following authentication credentials:

  • The password to a FileVault-enabled account on the drive
  • A personal recovery key
Screen Shot 2017 11 04 at 12 12 42 AM

 

5. If the authentication is accepted, the drive should unlock and mount.

Screen Shot 2017 11 04 at 12 16 59 AM

Note: You will not be able to decrypt from Disk Utility. If decryption is necessary, you will need to use the command line method documented at the link below:

Unlock or decrypt an encrypted APFS boot drive from the command line

  1. Mark Bolwell
    November 5, 2017 at 12:05 pm

    Hi rich ?
    Unbeatable boot drive or unbootable ?

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