Last night, I decided to try creating a Windows 10 recovery disk and boot from it on my Mac. While I was successful in formatting an SD card with the Windows recovery disk and booting to it, I made an error when I was prompted for a partition to install Windows on. Yep, I incorrectly selected my OS X partition where Windows 10 was installed. When I turn on the computer, it boots straight to Windows unless I hold down the Alt key.
I wasn't initially concerned as I thought everything on there was backed up, in the cloud, or not needed, but this morning, my wife asked if our wedding photos were safe (close to 200GB worth). I checked an old external HDD I used for Time Machine backups and the backups stopped before the photos were on the PC... Probably the photos were too big for the drive. I really thought I had them backed up somewhere else, but it doesn't look like I do.
I have a mid-2015 Macbook Pro with Ventura and used hard drive encryption when I initially set up the computer with OS X. Is there any possible chance I can still retrieve these photos? I figure since I've had the computer since 2016, and these photos were put on there in 2019, they wouldn't have been overwritten by the Windows installation. But, the fact that the drive is encrypted makes me feel this might be a lost cause, not to mention that this is APFS and not a lot of data recovery programs support it.
I'm concerned if I re-install OS X, that a new encryption key will be used and make recovering anything from the disk impossible. But maybe there's something I can do with the old Time Machine backups? Or any way to ensure the same encryption key is used for the drive when re-installing OS X?