MAC error codes list that can ruin your experience

There are few things as annoying and irritating as when you’re trying to get things done on your MacBook, but all you see are error codes flashing across the screen. These can be caused by something as harmless and straightforward as an invalid active developer path and permission issues. Or, it can be something more complex, like a problem while partitioning a disk because it is failing.

list of mac error codes

If you don’t know what error codes are on your Mac, they are a way of logging problems faced by your system. The codes specify particular problems and make it easier for you to convey to the support engineer or technician the kind of problem you are facing. This makes it easier for the engineer to identify and resolve the issue.

The common error codes that can potentially ruin your Mac experience are given below.

List of MAC error codes and meaning


  • Error code 36

You’ll see the error code -36 when Finder cannot read or write a file. The error is caused due to invisible .DS_Store files.

You can resolve this error code by removing .DS_Store files. To do this, open the Terminal app and type in the command dot_clean followed by a single space. Then, drag and drop the memory card or folder containing the file generating the error code into the Terminal window. Press Return on your keyboard.

Now, the .DS_Store files will merge with the original file, and you must be able to copy or move the file without this error code.


  • Error code 43

The error code -43 signifies that your Mac has encountered an error where it is unable to find the file that is needed to carry out the requested task.

Error code 43 can occur due to various reasons. One possibility is that the disk containing your files doesn’t have any shared points, making it impossible to access the files. Another possibility is that the files you are trying to access may have been removed or become unavailable. The disk or partition where the data is stored may also be corrupted or inaccessible.

Illegal characters in a file name, such as special symbols not allowed in Mac, can trigger also this error. Incomplete downloads or copies of a file can also result in corruption or unavailability of the file.

If the content you are trying to access is locked or currently in use by another application, it may occur. Lastly, you may not have sufficient permissions to access the content, which could be restricted by the administrator.


  • Error code 1309

Error code -1309 is commonly seen on Mac computers when encountering issues while copying or moving files. This error usually suggests that the file being copied or moved is too big for the destination drive or that there isn’t enough free space available on the destination drive to complete the operation.

To resolve the issue you can try these steps:

  • Create more space on the destination drive by deleting unnecessary files or transferring them to an external hard drive or a cloud storage service.
  • Check the file size and ensure that it’s not too big for the destination drive. If the file size exceeds the limit, you may need to divide it into smaller parts or utilize an external hard drive.
  • Verify the file permissions to make sure that you have the required authorization to access the file, and it’s not locked or being utilized by another application.
  • Fix disk permissions with the help of Disk Utility. Simply select the desired disk in Disk Utility, navigate to the First Aid tab, and then select “Repair Disk Permissions.”
  • Utilize a third-party file transfer utility for copying or moving the file.


  • Error code 50

This error code appears when your device cannot copy or move files from a portable storage device, such as an external drive. This occurs due to corrupted or bad file data, communication issues between your storage device and Mac, or firmware issues.

You can fix this error code by giving the file a new name and then opening it. Or, you can give it a new name before moving the file. It can also help to change the extension of the file and then change it back after moving the file.

Alternatively, you can run Disk Utility on your system by selecting First Aid > Run on your Mac hard drive and storage device. However, this may resolve communication errors between the devices and may resolve error code -50 for you.


  • Error code 2003f

The error code 2003f is different from the others because this error code does not appear in a dialog box. Instead, it will pop up as a white writing on a black screen when you are trying to boot your device in Internet recovery mode.

The error means there’s an issue with HTTP when trying to connect to the server. You can try a few things to resolve the issue.

If you are connected to Wi-Fi, you can switch to an Ethernet cable. You can restart your router or boot from a bootable clone if you have one. You can try and boot from the recovery partition on your device instead of Internet Recovery.


  • Error code 9923

The error code 9923 occurs when you are trying to scan a photo or document into your device using an all-in-one scanner and printer. This signals a communication issue between your Mac and the scanner.

If your system is connected by USB to the scanner or printer, the problem might be because of an issue on your Wi-Fi network or a bad cable. On the other hand, the issue might be with the drivers for the all-in-one system.


  • Error code 924

The error code 924 is a general one, and it covers a range of possible problems, including issues with individual files, hardware, or macOS. Rebooting your system may fix the problem. However, if the issue persists, use Disk Utility and run First Aid.

If the issue persists, reinstall macOS.


How to fix the most common Mac error codes


Update system

Most error codes can be fixed by updating your system. Typically, updates fix bugs in the software and resolve compatibility and security features.

Besides updating the operating system, you must also update the applications and programs. Head to the Updates section in the App Store, or you can directly go to the developer’s website of the app and click update.

As for updating macOS, you can go to System Preferences and update the OS.



Restarting your computer is one of the best ways to resolve the error codes. You can also close and open the apps to see if the issue is solved.

If there’s an issue with an external hard drive, you can eject it and then plug it back in.


The Bottom Line

Now you know the error codes that can potentially ruin your Mac experience and how you can resolve the errors. Hopefully, you will be more prepared when using your device, so there are no unnecessary interruptions.