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Cisdem DataRecovery Review

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PROS / It recovered 98 percent of the photos from a reformatted drive in our tests.

CONS / The recovered files aren’t organized into folders.

 VERDICT / Cisdem DataRecovery is one of the most affordable data recovery options, but the performance in our tests suggest that its value is only in recovering photos.

Cisdem DataRecovery is the most affordable Mac data recovery software in our review. The scanning and recovery speeds are above average, and it tested well in recovering photos. However, it struggled to recover documents, video and music in our tests, and the interface only received average grades in ease of use. It’s also the only Mac data recovery software that doesn’t organize files into folders according to file type, which complicates the entire post-recovery experience.

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We performed multiple tests that simulated two common data loss scenarios – lost files and reformatted drives. In our lost file tests, which simulate accidental deletion or a corrupted file directory, Cisdem DataRecovery retrieved an average of 96 percent of the photos. In our testing on reformatted drives, it recovered an average of 98 percent of the photos. These were its best results. While recovering photos with a percentage in the high 90s is respectable, it doesn’t compare to the best Mac data recovery software in our review, which recovered between 99 and 100 percent. Considering that 1 percent of 1TB is 10GB, the different of 4 percent could mean up to thousands of lost photos.

  1. This is the average percentage of photo files recovered in our tests.
    Higher is Better.
  2. 10 Cisdem DataRecovery
  3. 100%
  4. 99%
  5. 100%
  6. Category Average

In the same tests on deleted or lost files, this recovery software didn’t fare well with documents, music or videos. It only recovered a meager 30 percent of lost documents files. In our reformatted drive test, it only recovered an average of 34 percent of documents. With regards to videos and music, it only recovered 54 percent of the files in the lost files tests and 58 in the reformatted drive tests. This software is definitely better suited to recovering photos than documents or media.

Beyond the low recovery rates, 0ne of our biggest concerns with Cisdem DataRecovery is the comparatively low ease of use. While installation isn’t terribly difficult, and it produced impressively fast scan and recovery speeds, the post-recovery experience was disappointing. Every Mac recovery app in our review automatically organizes any recovered files into separate folders according to their files type or extension. Cisdem simply puts all the files into one folder, leaving you to wade through hundreds or thousands of varying file types to find the files you need. If you need a specific JPG, you’ll have to sort through MP3s and MOVs and other files types in your search. This adds an unnecessary step to the recovery process that others don’t.


Cisdem DataRecovery costs about half as much as most Mac data recovery programs in our review, but it also has about half the recovery rate across most file types. While it successfully recovered photos most of the photos we tested it with, it tested near the bottom in recovering documents, video and music files. In addition, while the ease of use is average, the post-recovery process lacks the folder organization that you get with better Mac recovery software.

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