How to Recover Deleted/Disappeared Notes on Mac

Roxanne updated on Sep 23, 2020 to Mac File Recovery | How-to Articles

How to recover notes on Mac when Mac notes disappeared after macOS update? How to recover deleted notes on Mac, Macbook Pro, or Macbook Air? Read the post and you will get all the four effective ways to recover notes disappeared from Mac with ease, including using the recently deleted folder, iCloud backup, Time Machine backup and third-party EaseUS data recovery software.

Mac Notes Disappeared or Deleted? Use 4 Easy Ways to Recover Notes on Mac

Apple Notes, or Sticky Notes (though we use the term more often on a Windows computer), is a notetaking app that is available in iOS and macOS operating system. In the information age, we are getting more and more accustomed to taking a note, which can be a moment of inspiration or an import working schedule. In fact, we write everything down in the Notes to keep ourselves updated! It's so convenient and above all, free to use. Don't let your recorded notes disappeared from Mac!

>> If you're looking for solutions to how to recover deleted sticky notes in Windows 10, visit the linked page.

Workable Solutions Step-by-step Troubleshooting
1. Recover Recently Deleted Folder Go to "sidebar" > "View" > "Show Folders"...Full steps
2. Recover from iCloud backup Disable Internet access as quickly as you can...Full steps
3. Recover from Time Machine Open Finder and hit the following keys...Full steps
4. Recover notes with software Select the drive where you lost Notes database and scan...Full steps

But the mishap of Mac notes disappeared always happens. Many people would get stuck in the situation that notes disappeared from Mac after a major macOS update, or they've accidentally deleted a note. Don't worry. You can recover deleted notes on Mac Catalina, Mojave, High Sierra, El Capitan and other versions from the Recently Deleted folder if you have not emptied it. Or you probably get the notes back from iCloud or Time Machine if you have made a file syncing/backup. Even you can not recover the disappeared notes through the first three ways, you are still able to restore the lost notes with the premier EaseUS Mac Data Recovery tool.

For those who don't use Time Machine or iCloud to back up Notes information, directly jump to the #4 solution of using EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard for Mac to automatically scan and recover deleted notes as well as disappeared notes after a recent macOS update.

#1. How to Recover Notes on Mac from Recently Deleted Folder

How long have you removed the content from the Notes application? By default, the Notes program keeps stuff for 30 days after deletion. So if you’re looking for an item that you may have accidentally deleted, check it in the "Recently Deleted" folder.

Step 1. Follow the path to "sidebar" > "View" > "Show Folders". 

Step 2. Find the "Recently Deleted" folder, check the deleted notes and restore them to a certain folder.

recover deleted notes from the recently deleted folder

Can't find the Recently Deleted folder in this way? Follow the online guide to fix the issue in time. 

#2. How to Recover Disappeared Notes on Mac from iCloud

iCloud makes you sync notes among your Apple devices possibly. That is to say, if you delete notes on your Mac, you may retrieve them on iCloud backups.

Step 1. Disable the Internet access as quickly as you can once you discover the notes disappearing on your Mac. (Or go to "Preferences" > "iCloud"> uncheck the box next to Notes.)

Step 2. Go to, sign in with your Apple ID. Choose Notes. And find out the deleted notes and save them into a local file.

recover notes on Mac from icloud

#3. How to Recover Notes on Mac from Time Machine

You can use Time Machine, the built-in backup feature of your Mac, to automatically back up all of your files, including apps, music, photos, email, documents, and system files. When you have a backup, you can restore the notes from your backup. Requiring no additional apps, using Time Machine is a quick and easy solution to recovering disappeared, deleted, and lost notes, which was nowhere to be found. To perform Mac note recovery, follow the guidance provided below. 

Step 1. Open Finder and hit the following keys on your keyboard – Cmd, Shift, G. (Or go to the "Go" > "Go To Folder Menu" in the top status bar).

Step 2. Copy and paste ~/Library/Containers/ and hit enter. You will be presented with the following folder which usually contains about three files. (Our lost data was stored in the "NotesV1.storedata-wal" file.)

recover notes onMac from time machine backup

Step 3. Make a backup of these files to a folder on your desktop, renaming each file to ".html". When asked if you would like to add the extension, click "Use .html". Once this is done, the files should look something like this (with your browser icon as the file icon – my browser in this instance is Firefox hence the orange icon).

Step 4. Double-click the files to open them up in your default browser, and you will be presented with the notes text in HTML format. Simply Cmd + F to find and recover the note text you are looking for.

If you have cleaned the Recently Deleted folder, or haven't sync Mac notes with iCloud nor backed up your Mac with Time Machine, you can't get the data back unless asking for help from a third-party Mac Data Recovery tool. 

#4. How to Recover Deleted Notes on Mac with Software

When choosing which software to help you recover disappeared notes on Mac, EaseUS Mac data recovery software is your best choice. Being professional, safe, and easy-to-use, EaseUS Mac data recovery software is your best choice. It allows you to recover notes lost due to deletion, disk formatting, virus attack, system crash, and all the other possible reasons in macOS and Mac OS X. No matter you want to recover deleted files on Mac from emptied Trash Bin, restore files from a formatted USB drive, or perform data recovery in other situations, you can use it to get things done. With a wizard-like interface, it can guide you with a complete Mac note recovery job with no efforts. 

Step 1. Select the location where your important data & files were deleted and click the "Scan" button.

select the location where data was deleted and click scan

Step 2. The software will run both quick scan and deep scan and work hard to find as many deleted files as possible on the selected volume.

scan the selected disk to find deleted files on your Mac

Step 3. The scan results will be displayed in the left pane. Just select the file(s) and click the "Recover Now" button to get them back.

click recover now button to recover deleted files on your Mac

EaseUS Mac Data Recovery software also does well in recovering lost/deleted photos on Mac/MacBook, or from any Mac supported data storage media, including internal/external hard drives, USB drives, SD card, digital cameras, etc.. What's more, it helps restore many kinds of common file recovery except for notes, like DOC/DOCX, XLS/XLSX, videos, audios, as well as email recovery from Apple Mail

Bonus Tip: Where are Notes Stored on Mac? How to Check and View Recovered Notes on Mac

Usually, your Mac notes restored from the recently deleted folder, iCloud and Time Machine backup, and third-party software will be saved back to its original location. To check and view the recovered notes you've retrieved, you should know where Mac stores the notes. This is where Notes are stored on Mac, iMac, Macbook Pro, Macbook Air, etc.


To access the Notes location in Finder, you can easily make it by following these steps.

  • From the Finder, pull down the Go menu and choose Go To Folder.
  • Enter the path ~/Library/Group Containers/ and find the exact file called NoteStore.sqlite. This is where actual Notes data is stored.

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Frequently Asked Questions

1. Why choose EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard?

"EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard is the best we've seen. It's far from perfect, partly because today's advanced disk technology makes data-recovery more difficult than it was with the simpler technology of the past, but it's fast and efficient..."PCMag

"The first thing you'll notice about EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard Pro is that its interface is very clear and uncluttered, with only a small collection of self-explanatory controls. You won't find lots of extra options hidden in a system of hidden menus, either; what you see really is what you get."techradar

"Recover lost files, even after deleting a partition or formatting your drive."Macworld

2. Why cannot I recover 2GB data for free?

It is recommended to check the version installed is Free or Trial because they are different versions.

Trial has data preview function but cannot save any files, while the Free version enables to recover 2 GB files. The default free space is 500 MB and you may share the product on social media to get another 1.5 GB.

3. Why cannot the recovered files be opened?

A file is saved as 2 parts on the storage device: directory info (which is comprised by file name, time stamp and size info, etc.) and data content.

If the files with original file names and folder structures cannot be opened, one possible reason is the corrupted directory info. There is still a chance to recover the data content with the RAW Recovery method in our software.

4. Why isn't it suggested to recover the files back to the original drive?

The storage structure of the lost files would be altered or damaged by any changes on the drive. If you save the recovered files back to the same drive, the original data structures and data content would be corrupted or overwritten, which causes permanent data loss. So you should prepare another disk to save the files.

5. How can I check whether my data is recoverable or not before purchase?

The Free version helps you save 2GB files, so verify the recovery quality of our product before purchase.

6. How long does it take to scan the drive?

It strongly depends on the capacity of your hard drive and the performance of your computer. As reference,most drive recoveries can be completed in around 10 to 12 hours for a 1-TB healthy hard drive in general conditions.

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