How to Recover RTF Files on Mac?

RTF is Rich Text Format file, which is a document file type developed by Microsoft Corporation and supported on any standard Word processor tool. An RTF file provides a convenient way of universal document sharing between users having different Word processors and computer operating systems. RTF files are sophisticated equivalent of plain text that requires very small memory space for storage and provides safe transmission of text documents over network and these file types are saved with .rtf file extension.

Users find many advantages with the use of RTF files like it is virus free because it won’t get affected by macro virus that usually affects Word files on MS Word and corrupts entire Word application. Since, RTF files can get stored within small memory space with smaller file size, users can speedily carry out uploading, downloading and document transmission via email over network. Also, RTF files can be effortlessly created / converted to other file formats on Microsoft Office Word; for instance you can convert an RTF file to DOC file just by changing its file extension on your default Word processor of Mac OS X / Windows.

To create RTF files on Microsoft Word; Open Word processor -> Go to Save as -> Type file name -> In ‘Save as type’ click on drop down list and select Rich Text Format (.rtf) -> click on save.

To convert an existing other file format to .rtf file; Open MS Word -> Select and open the DOC file -> Go to Save as -> Type file name -> In Save as type click on drop down list and select Rich Text Format (.rtf) -> click on save.

Even though RTF files are virus free, there are certain circumstances which lead to loss of these files on Macintosh systems.

Few common scenarios for RTF file loss on Mac OS X:

  • Unexpected deletion of file from Trash folder
  • Accidental deletion of files from Mac terminal (using ‘rm’ command)
  • Unknowingly pressing command+option+shift+delete keys that will empty Trash folder with no confirmation
  • Erasing RTF files from external storage devices on Mac OS
  • Erasing hard drive using Disk utility function that will remove all files including RTF files on Mac

Don’t get frustrated when you encounter scenarios in which RTF files are lost on Mac OS X. Just go to Time Machine utility on your Mac OS X and restore the lost files. This is similar to updated backup of various files until certain time constraint. If you do not find the RTF file that you are looking for, then utilize reliable third party file recovery application and restore RTF files on Mac.

Which is the best recovery tool to retrieve RTF files?

Picking up the right recovery tool is always tricky as it might create any unknown disasters. Hence, it is always recommended to prefer safe and secure file recovery software such as Yodot Mac File Recovery. This tool is an advanced recovery utility for Mac users that can perform RTF file recovery on Mac system without any trouble. It follows safest recovery strategies as it is designed with read-only algorithms that do not alter the original file contents during recovery.

In addition to RTF file, this file recovery tool can also bring back deleted or missing ASD document, xlsx, exe, txt, html, xml, jpeg, mpeg, pdf, ppt and many more on Macintosh systems. Not only from Mac system drives, but you can also retrieve erased and missing files from iMac, Mac Mini, MacBook Pro, MacBook Air, external hard drives, pen drive, FireWire drives, iPods, etc. This tool works on Mac OS Leopard, Mac Snow Leopard and Mac OS X Lion computers and Notebooks.

Extract your lost / erased RTF files through these steps:

  • Download Yodot Mac file Recovery software on your Mac computer
  • Follow the instructions to install and launch the tool
  • In the main screen, you will see “Deleted File Recovery” and “Lost File Recovery” options
  • Select either of them based on the RTF file loss situation
  • Next screen gives you a list of logical drives / volumes present on your Mac machine
  • Click and select the volume from which RTF files should be restored back
  • By clicking “Next” the tool starts to scan the selected volume
  • Recovery status can be viewed through status bar
  • Software provides a list of all recoverable files after completion of scanning process
  • Preview the file contents in Data View or File type View
  • Select the files that have to be recovered, specify new location on the drive and click on “Save”


  • Follow proper methods while accessing RTF files on Mac
  • Before erasing any files from drive, cross check whether it is the right one to delete
  • Try to have multiple backup of essential files