3 Solutions To Fix “The Recovery Server Could Not Be Contacted” on MacOS

The installation of MacOS update may come with several complications and that can be a headache for the users. One of the most common yet problematic issues is “The Recovery Server Could Not Be Contacted”.

This obstacle mainly occurs when you try to install macOS High Sierra, Mojave, or Catalina. If this problem is causing disturbance or stopping your macOS update, then this can be a pain in butt.

To help you out with this nuisance, In this post, we are sharing 3 Solutions for you on how to fix the “The Recovery Server Could Not Be Contacted” pop-up.

Read till the end and you’ll be all sorted with the inconvenience!

1.  Solution 1: Check Your Internet Connection on Mac

The very first thing to consider for this issue is to Check your internet connection. Whether your Mac is connected to a stable network connection or not.

3 Solutions To Fix "The Recovery Server Could Not Be Contacted" on MacOS

If you’re using a wired Internet Connection, then consider re-plugging the Ethernet cable for it.

In case you’re using a WiFi network for your Mac, you can check the stability of the internet connection by accessing the WiFi networks that are there at the top right corner of your device.

Remember, the faster the internet connection, the quicker will be your solution.

2.  Solution 2: Sync the Date & Time of your Device to the Apple Recovery Server

If you’ve haven’t synced your Mac’s date and time to the Apple Recovery Server yet, then consider following these steps to do so.

  • Step1: Firstly, close the “Recovery Server Could Not Be Contacted” error. You’ll find the Utilities Window there.
  • Step2: From the above menu bar, tap on the “Utilities” option.
  • Step3: Here, locate the “Terminal” tab and double-click on it.
3 Solutions To Fix "The Recovery Server Could Not Be Contacted" on MacOS
  • Step4: Type “ntpdate -u time.apple.com” and press the enter button.
  • Step5: It may take some time for the process to complete till here. Once it’s done, go ahead and try to reinstall the macOS update.

Hopefully, this may help you fix the issue.

However, if the “ntpdate -u time.apple.com” command line didn’t fixed your issue yet, then follow the below mentioned instructions to fix it.

  1. Open “Terminal” by following the above procedure.
  1. Enter the correct “Date” here and hit the “Enter” key, this will set-up the date on your Mac.
  1. If you find that the Date and Time are wrong, then correct them following this command line ” date mmddhhssyy“.

For instance, (September 19, 10:00 am, 2021).

  1. As soon as you’re done with the previous step, quite Terminal and try again to install the macOS update.

3.  Install the Complete Version Of Mojave or Catalina Installer

If you’re installing a macOS update using the update installer from the App Store, you may face the error of “The Recovery Server Could Not Be Contacted”.

You can launch the complete version of macOS update to avoid facing this particular error.

To do so, here is a 4-step procedure that will help you Install the complete version of macOS Catalina update.

  • Run the “Terminal” option as described above.
  • Now, you have to enter a command similiar to ” softwareupdate –fetch-full-installer –full-installer-version 10.15.3″, this particular command line is for the version macOS Catalina 10.15.3.

You just have to follow it’s footprints.

  • You’ll discover that the Installer has been launched in the “Application” folder of your Mac.

Now, you’re almost done with fixing the “The Recovery Server Could Not Be Contacted” errore. Moving on to last step.

  • All you have to do is just run the Installer and Install the macOS update without any error.


You may find yourself in this trouble named “The Recovery Server Could Not Be Contacted” anytime if you’re trying to install macOS update. In order to successfully fix this error, you can follow any of the above mentioned Solution.

One thing to keep in mind is that when you’re using any of these Solutions, always back-up your data. In case you discover that you’ve lost your data during the previous step, you can use “Recoverit Data Recovery” to recover your data.