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How to get your Mac/PC to read iPhone as a external drive

Dorbin

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Hi there. First off, apologies if theres already a thread on this, i did a couple of searches but couldn't find anything. Bit of a jailbreak noob so go easy on me.

Im trying to get my Mac or PC (preferably Mac) to be able to read my iPhone as an external hard drive when plugged in through USB. The reason for this is that i wish to run a data recovery scan on the entire phone in an attempt to recover some deleted images.

I have already tried multiple softwares specific to iPhone data recovery such as Mobisaver and Wondershare, but none seem to run a thorough scan. They only pull up recent images actually taken through the camera. I think this is due to the software being restricted as it is still scanning the phone as an iPhone, and not a barebones hard drive, if that makes sense?

I am hoping some noble squire on these forums can help by telling me if there is any way to have your iPhone pop up in the mac finder under devices when plugged in, like it would when plugging in a standard hard drive. Then i can run some more traditional data recovery on it such as StellarPhoenix which will search every nook and cranny of the device.

I jailbroke my iPhone as i was under the impression that once jailbroken, a mac would read the plugged in iPhone as a hard drive but this doesn't seem to be the case =[

Any help much appreciated, i'm very happy to attempt to explain finer details if necessary.

Cheers for reading!
 
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willerz2

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Mounting the pre-existing rootfs as a drive on your computer is a bit tricky because of how iOS is designed. iExplorer (previously known as iPhoneExplorer) supposedly has the function to mount your device as a drive. I've never used the feature (didn't know it existed actually) so I can't say whether or not you can use a file recovery program on it as if it's an actual disk or a mounted device (i.e. SD Card, flash drive, etc).

Here's the Macroplant article on how it's done. I don't have access to iExplorer at the moment, but I can test it out tonight when I get home. Or, you can try contacting Macroplant to verify whether it's actually possible to do, and if it's a viable solution for your problem.
 
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Dorbin

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Mounting the pre-existing rootfs as a drive on your computer is a bit tricky because of how iOS is designed. iExplorer (previously known as iPhoneExplorer) supposedly has the function to mount your device as a drive. I've never used the feature (didn't know it existed actually) so I can't say whether or not you can use a file recovery program on it as if it's an actual disk or a mounted device (i.e. SD Card, flash drive, etc).

Here's the Macroplant article on how it's done. I don't have access to iExplorer at the moment, but I can test it out tonight when I get home. Or, you can try contacting Macroplant to verify whether it's actually possible to do, and if it's a viable solution for your problem.

Thanks for the speedy response! I've downloaded iExplorer and am checking it out now. Ive managed to get my iphone to pop up under devices in the finder. I can open it and go through the folders "apps" "backups" "books" "media" "media library" and "photos". However, my data recovery software (stellarphoenix) cant seem to find the iphone, it lists my other hard drives as well as my internal one, but the iphone isnt there.

Any ideas? Thanks again for the help!
 

willerz2

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I'll have to see how the mounting works. I know for a fact that if you created the partition beforehand using tweaks like RoqyUSB on Cydia, you'd be able to scan the mounted partition. I'll see if I can tinker around with it tonight and get it working. Again, it's really tricky to recover data from iOS because of how it's built. From experience, data recovery software for iOS devices are scams since they do extremely minimal work if any at all for the cost of the software.
 
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Dorbin

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Yeah, i can only agree with you on ios data recovery software being rubbish, so far they've all been terrible, luckily i haven't had to pay for any of them.
Thanks alot for checking this out for me, i'll bare with you and see if you can work something out. Like i said, im a bit of a jailbreak/cydia noob, so assume i know nothing! Bit of a "explain like im 5 situation". I'll wait patiently, no rush =) i realise this is a big ask from a complete stranger.
 

willerz2

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Just attempted to mount my iPhone and iPad. From the looks of it, the mounting that iExplorer does is not true mounting. It's simply creating a shortcut of your device's directory onto your computer for easier access to the directory. You can't create complete system dumps and attempt to salvage the data from it unless your device is a 3GS or older device. I'll ask around for any under-the-table or down-and-dirty sort of utility or method to get it done, but it's not looking to good in terms of a solution.
 
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Dorbin

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Ahhh okay, yeah this makes sense. So in a way, iexplorer will dig no deeper than the rest of the ios data recovery softwares.
As i said i'm new to all of this, but it strikes me as odd that this isn't a standard thing. I would have thought it would be fairly common, shows how much i know! I guess people have better ways of getting into the back end of their devices.
 

willerz2

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It's Apple's way of ensuring that their devices cannot be cloned as easily. On Android, you can easily mount the device or pop out the MicroSD if applicable, clone it in minutes, and be on your way. It is, however, unfortunate that Apple does not offer the service themselves since it's a rising concern for a lot of users since accidental deletion or boot looping is a common occurrence. I've been with iOS for years and I still can't grasp the logic behind some of the decisions that Apple makes.
 

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