I have a 4TB external drive connected to my 2015 macbook pro. It has 2 2TB partitions. I use 1 for time machine backups and the other for other files. From time to time when I plug it into the USB slot, it is not recognized.

Not only are the volumes not mounted, but the device itself doesn't seem to be recognized.

>diskutil list
/dev/disk0 (internal, physical):
   #:                       TYPE NAME                    SIZE       IDENTIFIER
   0:      GUID_partition_scheme                        *1.0 TB     disk0
   1:                        EFI EFI                     209.7 MB   disk0s1
   2:                 Apple_APFS Container disk1         1.0 TB     disk0s2

/dev/disk1 (synthesized):
   #:                       TYPE NAME                    SIZE       IDENTIFIER
   0:      APFS Container Scheme -                      +1.0 TB     disk1
                                 Physical Store disk0s2
   1:                APFS Volume d                       815.8 GB   disk1s1
   2:                APFS Volume Preboot                 43.9 MB    disk1s2
   3:                APFS Volume Recovery                522.7 MB   disk1s3
   4:                APFS Volume VM                      3.2 GB     disk1s4

Rebooting the machine solves this problem but it is annoying to have to reboot the machine so frequently.

Is there a way to force macos to recognize the device without rebooting?

I'm currently running Mojave 10.14.4 Beta (18E220a)

P.S. I rarely reboot the laptop because I have many desktops loaded with programs and it would take a long time to recreate them. When moving between home and work, I will eject the volumes and put the machine into sleep mode so that I can continue where I left off.

1 Answer 1


There is a 3rd party app named Mountain that lets you manage your volumes. The app sells from the developers for $6 but you can download it and try it out. I've been using it for years and I love it. it creates a menu app that lists all volume mounted or not.

  • How does that list differ from disk utility's list? ans would it spot the missing disk in the question
    – mmmmmm
    Mar 28, 2019 at 18:59
  • i don't know. you can download it for free and try it.
    – Natsfan
    Mar 28, 2019 at 19:08

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