I bought a SSD drive for my early MacbookPro 2011, since my old HDD was very slow and with crazy IO activity when idle.

I started the Internet Recovery Mode and opened the Disk Utility to format the SSD as Mac OS Extended (Journaled) so that I could install MacOSX.

However the formatting process is stuck at around 50% and the estimated time just goes up. It is on a step where the drive name and information is gone: completely disappeared from Disk Utility. The step is now called Partitioning.

I don't know if I should interrupt the process by closing the utility. It warns me that the drive may be unusable if I do so.

What should I do? It has been already more than 1 hour.

  • Unusable solely states that your partition table might get screwed. It won't really damage your disk. You can cancel and retry after a reboot. If the second time fails too you might need to go deeper with root tools to rebuild the partition. Your last resort will be a Linux based bootdisk and formatting your main partition to FAT32 or something else thats easily handled. After that you can retry to reformat it with your Internet Recovery startup. Feb 16 '14 at 18:16
  • I did interrupt it and now it does not show up on disk utility. So I would have to format it using Linux? Can I do it directly on Windows?
    – gibertoni
    Feb 16 '14 at 18:19
  • 1
    Did you already install OSX/Bootcamp on it before? If so; incorrectly removing Bootcamp (not doing it at all with the application) will greatly mess up your partition table. The problem is that, since I guess Mountain Lion, the partition table gets locked on the bootcamp partition. This is as a protection for your installations, but is misconceived if you know the old method (just fully remove the disk). You can download PuppyLinux or Ubuntu and boot it (from disc). Once you're in the Live Disc mode you can open gParted or any other disk tool and reformat your disk. Feb 16 '14 at 18:27
  • 1
    Beware tho; if you fully wipe your disk, Internet Recovery will take quite some time as it will need to download your whole Recovery Disk data again (4-7GB). After you wiped the disk its highly likely you only have Internet Recovery left to startup with. On my 2010 MacBook I didn't even see my bootchoice screen anymore when the disk was empty. Feb 16 '14 at 18:29
  • This is a brand new SSD, nothing was ever installed on it. I will try to boot on Linux as live CD and use gParted.
    – gibertoni
    Feb 16 '14 at 18:30

Following up on the comments; you can boot from a Linux-based bootdisk and try to format the disk in FAT32, EXT3 (or 4) or HFS(+). HFS needs you to first load kernel extensions tho, which might be a hassle. FAT32 will suffice as the OSX installation tool will force HFS+ Journaled again anyway :)


Don't be afraid to restart the process with the keyboard shortcut Command+Q. The disk will eventually be formatted on the 2nd or 3rd try.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .