A hard drive is a device for permanent or long-term storage in computers.

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41
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5answers
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Do Macs need to be defragmented?

I don't see any application to defragment my Mac (running OS X). Is defragmenting not necessary for Mac OS X? If so, why not?
28
votes
3answers
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What are the differences between journaling HFS+ and non-journaling HFS+?

I'm about to format an external hard disk drive (HDD). What are the key differences between journaling HFS+ and non-journaling HFS+? Apart from the fact that one has journaling and the other does ...
17
votes
5answers
2k views

Does the use of SSD give one a dramatic performance boost?

I use Mac book pro 15", and it's time to buy a new one. For HDD, now I see a new option of SSD, which is pretty expensive. I can expect shorter boot-up time and faster access of files, but I'm not ...
16
votes
4answers
8k views

MBP SSD upgrade - which settings to change?

After replacing the harddisk drive in MacBook Pro with a Solid State Disk I am wondering which settings I should change and how. Thinking of things that are supposed to protect the SSD like ...
15
votes
1answer
1k views

Is defragmenting an SSD drive a bad idea?

I have heard that defragmenting SSD drives will shorten the life span of a drive. Just wondering if there is any truth to this and if so could someone elaborate as to why this happens.
14
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2answers
3k views

How can I disable the 2nd hard drive in my 27" iMac?

I have an 2010 27" iMac with an SSD and a regular hard drive. Now that I've been using the machine for some time and have not come close to filling the SSD, I'd like to disable the spinning hard drive ...
13
votes
4answers
4k views

FAT or exFAT or NTFS

I recently brought Western Digital's Passport Essential, and will be using with my MacBook (running Snow Leopard), MacBook Air (running Lion) and Windows 7 Desktop. I should be able to read-write data ...
13
votes
2answers
1k views

What is the difference between a “sparse disk image” and a “sparse bundle disk image”?

What are the differences between sparse and sparse bundle disk images?
12
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1answer
3k views

Replacing SuperDrive with secondary storage?

I'm familiar with the OWC Data Doubler, a kit which allows you to remove your Macbook's SuperDrive and replace it with secondary storage. What alternatives exist for this product? A complete answer ...
10
votes
7answers
11k views

What format for my external drive allows use with Mac and Windows?

How can I use my external hard drive on Mac OS so I can modify/edit files on both OS's: Mac and Windows? How should I format it?
10
votes
2answers
8k views

Is File Vault 2 whole disk encryption or whole partition encryption?

Can I use File Vault to encrypt only some of the partitions on my disk (so that I can still have unencrypted and Windows partitions on the same disk), or does File Vault encrypt the whole disk so that ...
10
votes
3answers
2k views

Is it necessary to eject external drives before logging out, restarting, or shutting down?

Is it necessary or recommended practice to eject external drives before logging out, restarting, or shutting down? (The drives are not being unplugged.) BTW, I am aware that I need to eject my ...
10
votes
4answers
2k views

What are some tips for replacing my MacBook Pro hard disk with SSD?

I would like to replace my MacBook pro hard disk with an SSD, without reinstalling everything. I am looking for your experience on good SSD drive models that have good performance at a fair price ...
9
votes
9answers
6k views

What is the benefit of using flash memory in the Macbook Air?

I don't understand why Apple does not use SSD drives in the Macbook Air like some other manufacturers to (e.g. Asus, Samsung). The technical specifications of the Macbook Air on Apple's website never ...
9
votes
7answers
11k views

How to check if my HD is case sensitive or not?

How can I get information if my HD format is case sensitive or case insensitive? I want to make sure my Mac running Mountain Lion has a case sensitive file system.
9
votes
3answers
2k views

What happens when you remove (or lose) the SSD from a Fusion Drive?

After storing data on a Fusion Drive, is it possible to downgrade your Mac to use the hard drive (HDD) by just removing the solid state drive (SSD)? In particular, I was wondering what happens when ...
8
votes
7answers
2k views

What are the best disk cloning tools?

Money is no object. I want a bit for bit perfect copy of a hard drive/partition which is bootable (is either possible) to be used in a backup regimen. I have heard of some tools but your ...
8
votes
6answers
16k views

What is the best way to clone a disk between two Macs?

What is the best way to clone a disk between two Macs? I ask this every couple years or so and every time I get the same answer. "Use Carbon Copy Cloner", they say. But the unfortunate fact is that ...
8
votes
3answers
3k views

How do I eject the Time Machine backup drive automatically after each backup?

How do I set Time Machine to eject my external Time Machine backup drive automatically after each backup?
8
votes
4answers
2k views

iMac inconsistenly hanging and showing beach ball

This past week, I've been having constant problems with my 2007 Aluminium iMac (2.4GHz, 3GB memory, 320GB HDD). I've been downloading using Transmission, and when (sometimes) stopping or starting a ...
8
votes
2answers
493 views

How can I move my data to the new harddrive?

So I am planning to upgrade my Macbook pro's harddrive to a SSD. I don't know much Mac OS X tools, so I was wondering if anyone could let me know how I can copy my entire harddrive (including OS) to ...
8
votes
2answers
6k views

How do I resize OS X main partition when I already have other BootCamp partitions?

Short story: partition resizing using Disk Utility fails because MediaKit reports no such partition when I try to shrink it. I also tried the same while booting from the DVD, same result. Details: ...
8
votes
2answers
2k views

Is there a way to limit external hard-drive random spin-up?

I have 2 external USB drives connected to my iMac running 10.7.3. One is designated completely for Time Machine use and the other I use for data. (Nothing but a bunch of JPGs on that one.) The first ...
8
votes
9answers
13k views

Macbook HD “Other” all the Sudden Almost Full

As you can see in the below image, my HD "Other" category is almost full. A couple of days ago, I randomly kept getting a popup saying that my disk was almost full. Then I went in and noticed the ...
8
votes
1answer
208 views

Don't wake up external hard disk when saving to internal one

My problem is that I have an external hard drive connected to my Mac. Since it is only used for backup purposes, it is sleeping most of the time. However if I now want to save something (e.g. a ...
8
votes
1answer
566 views

How can I tell whether a drive is asleep?

Is there an application or command-line utility for Mac OS X to query a hard-disk to see if it is 'asleep' or 'awake' right now? (i.e. as controlled by Energy Saver / pmset disk sleeping preferences). ...
7
votes
4answers
493 views

Will a cloned hard drive function exactly as the original?

If I buy a new hard drive and clone my original onto it (using Carbon Copy Cloner or something similar), will my computer function exactly the same as it did before? Will things like licensed programs ...
7
votes
2answers
4k views

How to fix Disk Utility, About This Mac, and Finder that disagree on hard drive space usage?

Has anyone seen this issue and know how to fix it? Look at the free space reported by running "Get Info" on my hard drive (Macintosh HD) in the Finder, "About This Mac" from the Apple Menu, and Disk ...
7
votes
4answers
1k views

Which process is periodically writing to the disk?

Even when I am not doing anything on my Mac, I see a lot of Disk IO: "Data Written per Sec" in Activity Monitor showns continuous writes: Is this normal? Why would some process continuously write? ...
7
votes
2answers
10k views

How can I get Automator to mount a network volume?

I am writing an Automator "script" that rsyncs media on my 10.6.3 MacBook Pro to my Ubuntu 10.10 HTPC. I can make Automator run my shell script for rsync commands, but I can't make Automator mount the ...
7
votes
4answers
4k views

How can I keep my fan from staying at full speed after replacing the hard drive?

I replaced a hard drive in a 2011 iMac (Core i7), though it was a standard hard drive and didn't have a location for the S.M.A.R.T. cord. (Or at least I think that's what it was.) Since then, the ...
7
votes
4answers
2k views

Why have 5 different iMacs developed corrupt OS X partitions when the physical drives are fine?

I'm a tech for my local school district and we are having some problems with our iMac Multimedia Lab. Over the past nine months, 5 of the 22 iMacs have suffered from filesystem corruption. The only ...
6
votes
4answers
3k views

What are the sector sizes on Mac OS X?

I read on the HFS Plus Wikipedia page that the default sector size on a Mac is 512 b. However, I also read that Macs support 4kb sectors. How can I determine which I have, 512 b or 4 kb sectors? I ...
6
votes
2answers
4k views

Will I damage my HDD if I transport my MacBook in sleep mode?

Is it safe to carry MacBook with HDD in a bag while it has been put sleep? I.e. I know there are some risks of hard disk drive damage if one tries to shake them or rotate them while they're working. ...
6
votes
4answers
346 views

Can I just swap the hard drives of two macbook pros (different years)?

I'd like to swap the hard drives of two Macbook Pros. One is a Core 2 duo model from 2010, the other a 2011 i5 model. Will this work? I just want to save time and not go through a lengthy data copying ...
6
votes
2answers
2k views

How to make an expanding compressed encrypted disk image?

I'd like the following setup: A DMG file sits on my HD, taking up only the space of the contents, or perhaps only the space of the contents compressed. If I double-click on it, I need to give a ...
6
votes
3answers
617 views

Is there anyway to expand my MacBook Air's hard disk?

I have a 2011 MacBook Air(11-inch), I am using OS X 10.9, but I only have 64GB Flash Storage, and I want to expand the storage of MacBook Air's hard disk. I asked geniuses at Apple and they told me ...
6
votes
4answers
2k views

Is it okay to install OS X on an external drive, and then install that drive as an internal drive?

My internal drive is suffering hardware failure, so I bought OS X Snow Leopard (to upgrade my iMac from Leopard), a new drive, and a cheap external USB 2.0 enclosure. My plan is to install a clean ...
6
votes
2answers
353 views

How can I copy data from an external HDD that is about to fail?

I have an external HDD that is about to fail. I want to copy as much as I can to a new external HDD before it completely dies. I've been able to start copying files for a few minutes before the drive ...
6
votes
3answers
3k views

Disable mounting Internal Macintosh HD at boot

My iMac (mid-2010 model, Snow Leopard) has a problem with S.M.A.R.T status: Failing and it has become read-only. Because I didn't want to waste money on the repair, I bought an external HD, so the ...
6
votes
3answers
563 views

How can I increase the time before my external drive powers down?

I have an external USB drive from LaCie that is connected to my MacBook Pro – almost all the time. So whenever I don't use it for a few minutes, it powers down. That means, it takes a few ...
6
votes
1answer
399 views

How do I change the name of the hard drive

Right now my hard drive is called "Macintosh HD." How do I change it to something cool like "Death Killer"
6
votes
1answer
1k views

Can't restore to backups after removing disk in Time Machine

I've been using a WD 2TB HD for the last two months to handle my Time Machine backups for my Macbook Air. Yesterday, I wanted to set it up to handle backups through the network. In the Time Machine ...
6
votes
2answers
1k views

What terminal command or program can list an SSD's Power On Hours?

I'm looking to script using the unix shell the retrieval of SSD (and HDD) data that disk utility shows in the information window. I'm immediately interested in the Power On Hours and Power Cycle, ...
5
votes
3answers
23k views

What is the best free hard drive diagnostics app for Mac OS X?

My MacBook Pro (described below) fell 5 feet while it was powered on. Would the sudden motion sensor be able to turn off the hard drives in time? Also, can anyone recommend the best (free) hard drive ...
5
votes
1answer
458 views

External Hard disk 500 GB free but can't copy 8 GB data

I have WD external hard disk, which was working fine. Its MS-DOS formatted. I have downloaded a file in .mkv, which works fine, and isn't corrupted. Upon copying the 8 gb file, it says "The file is ...
5
votes
1answer
1k views

How can I tell which volume the operating system is on?

I'll admit that I am kind of rolling multiple questions in to one here so please forgive me and try not to knock me for it. I am new to Mac but I'm trying to port one of my Java applications to OS X. ...
5
votes
4answers
191 views

How do I determine the speed of a disk drive?

I'm looking for a way to determine the read/write speed of a disk drive, either by looking up some system information or running a simple benchmark test utility.
5
votes
1answer
202 views

Is it safe to unplug a drive while MacBook is asleep? (i.e., does sleep unmount drives?)

Is it safe to unplug a drive while MacBook is asleep? (i.e., does sleep unmount drives?) I think probably not, at least if a file operation was running when you put the computer to sleep, I guess it ...
5
votes
1answer
3k views

What kind of encryption does Mac OS X Extended (Journaled, Encrptyed) use?

Since my primary hard disk is encrypted with FileVault2, I also wanted my backup drive to be encrypted. I plugged in my external drive, brought up Disk Utility, and went to erase/format the disk. I ...