Questions tagged [external-disk]

A storage device attached to a computer, but not enclosed within the computer's casing

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110
votes
10answers
158k views

The volume can't be ejected because it's currently in use

After working with an external USB backup disk I want to cleanly unmount the drive. When pressing the 'eject' button Finder warns me with the message: "The volume can't be ejected because it's ...
68
votes
9answers
75k views

How to view progress when encrypting a disk?

Mountain Lion allows one to encrypt any disk by right-clicking on the disk in the Finder and selecting Encrypt from the contextual menu. Is there anyway to check on the progress of this encryption ...
68
votes
9answers
50k views

How can I skip the Trash when deleting a file?

I frequently connect different external USB hard drives and flash drives to my computer and I would like to facilitate deleting files and regaining disk space from them. If I simply delete the file, ...
48
votes
7answers
82k views

External drive does not mount after plug off without eject

I accidentally unplugged my hard drive without properly ejecting it, and now the drive does not mount when plugged in. What can I do to make it work again? I can see the disk in lsusb and diskutil ...
44
votes
5answers
96k views

Formatting USB Disk As EXT3 On Mac

How can I format a USB disk as ext3 using OS X Yosemite? I want to use it on another system that is linux based but I wish to format it first before connecting to the linux system.
44
votes
10answers
144k views

How to eject my external drive when my Mac refuses because of Spotlight?

I have plugged an external disk to my Mac. Now, I want to eject it. But my Mac stubbornly refuses and says that an application may be using the disk. I have not launched any app neither opened any ...
42
votes
5answers
43k views

How do I disable this message: “the disk was not ejected properly”?

Is there any way to disable the "the disk was not ejected properly" message? I use a KVM and need to switch between two systems and have a memory stick that is in the KVM. The problem is that it's ...
28
votes
15answers
298k views

How can I repair a disk that Disk Utility says it can't repair?

I have an external hard-disk with a single Mac OS Extended partition. This disk stopped working couple of days ago. I tried to repair the partition with disk utility but no luck. The error message is ...
27
votes
7answers
99k 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 ...
27
votes
3answers
74k views

What are the advantages of formatting an external disk as journaled HFS+?

The application Disk Utility /Library/Utilites/Disk Utility.app which is part of the applications that ship with the Mac OS allows to reformat an external disk. Options include: Mac OS Extended (...
24
votes
4answers
13k views

Does Time Machine support APFS?

I just updated to macOS High Sierra. What's the best way to use Time Machine under Apple's new APFS file system. Should I use Disk Utility to convert my external Time Machine volume to APFS?
21
votes
7answers
59k 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?
21
votes
2answers
15k views

How do I dismiss many multiples of the “Disk Not Ejected Properly” notification in macOS?

Today I'm dealing with the following problem: Is there some way I can get rid of these without spending my entire day clicking, short of Homer's Drinking Bird? Note: This is not a duplicate of ...
18
votes
4answers
43k views

Is it possible to install and boot Windows on a Thunderbolt drive?

I know the BIOS emulation of the EFI firmware in Macs does not support booting from FireWire or USB drives, and the EFI version of Windows doesn't seem to be compatible with Apple's EFI implementation,...
17
votes
2answers
8k views

Can you make OSX mount just certain partitions when you connect an external HDD?

I have an external HDD with 4 partitions. My question is the following: is there a way of telling the OS to mount just two of them (One FAT and one HFS+) when I connect the HDD? It is rather annoying ...
17
votes
6answers
8k views

How do I make Spotlight stop indexing my Backup drive?

I have a 2TB external drive I use for Time Machine. At random intervals, it will decide to spin up and my entire UI freezes until it's finished. This is incredibly annoying. It appears that this is ...
16
votes
11answers
15k views

How to Eject All External Partitions Quickly?

I have an external disk with two partitions on it that I keep plugged into my MacBook Pro when I'm at my desk. (One is for Time Machine, the other just for extra storage.) Sometimes I need to grab my ...
16
votes
5answers
42k views

How can I write-protect (make read-only) a USB drive in OS X?

I have a USB drive with some archive data on it that I'd like to access from a Mac running Snow Leopard. However, I want to ensure that the data on the drive is preserved and no modifications are made ...
15
votes
4answers
45k views

macOS: Can't mount exFAT External Drive

I have a Western Digital MyBook (25EE) 8TB External Drive. It is formatted with exFAT. I can't recall exactly how it was formatted, but I believe it was done with Synology's DiskStation for my ...
15
votes
5answers
68k views

How can I reliably backup an external drive to another external drive?

I have got an external hard drive (A) that contains my iTunes & Aperture libraries. It's not always plugged to my MacBook. What's the best way to make a backup of it on another external hard ...
14
votes
2answers
79k views

Can I store and run applications on an external drive?

I am thinking of getting a this MacBook but the hard drive space is not sufficient. I was wondering if I bought an external hard drive for it would i be able to download apps and things onto it.
14
votes
1answer
77k views

Force mounting an external disk that is not recognized

I recently bought a 4 TB naked (no enclosure) external hard drive that I mount via a Newer Tech dock (the ones where you insert the naked drive like bread in a toaster) and is connected to my MacBook ...
13
votes
8answers
24k views

What is the benefit of purchasing a Mac formatted External Hard Drive?

I have seen in shops that you can buy external Hard drives in both Windows and Mac format. I was under the impression that an external Hard drive will work across both platforms, however having seen ...
12
votes
3answers
25k views

Time Machine error creating the backup folder on a spacious hard drive

I have upgraded recently to Mavericks, and am setting up Time Machine on this system for the first time (it wasn't set up with the earlier OS, Mountain Lion.) Time Machine successfully backs up once ...
11
votes
6answers
17k views

How to run Applescript on Disk mount

I want to run an Applescript when I mount a specific disk. It isn't if the script is located on the disk or not, it should just run when OS X mounts the disk. I tried to accomplish this with folder ...
11
votes
2answers
31k views

Mount FAT32 partition (external drive) on Mac

I have an external disk drive of 2TB with two partitions, one NTFS and another with FAT32 format. The NTFS partition is automatically mounted when i plug the device using Paragon NTFS but I don't ...
11
votes
1answer
113 views

Is it possible to have 2 different backup systems for different external hard drives?

1) I want to plug in an external hard drive and then download all of the photographs that I take in RAW format on my Canon 7D camera onto this external hard drive, and then backup these photos onto a ...
11
votes
1answer
2k views

Disable File System Cache for USB Devices?

Possible Duplicate: Disable “the disk was not ejected properly” message When I have a USB Device like a SD Card, USB Drive or external hard drive, I always need to unmount it, ...
10
votes
6answers
16k views

.mov file in external HD, greyed out and won't open: “this item is used by Mac OS X”

The file won't open, with QuickTime, with the following error message: Item "file.mov" is used by Mac OS X and cannot be opened. Tried selecting repair disk on disk utility, didn't work. I'm under ...
10
votes
3answers
5k views

Can I configure my Macbook to unmount all external drives when I close the lid?

I have a new 13" Macbook Pro running Mavericks. This computer is connected to an external USB drive which I use for my Time Machine backups and for external storage Time Machine backups occur a few ...
10
votes
4answers
25k views

Is it possible to enable TRIM for an external SSD?

I have an iMac from 2011, Mac OS X 10.6.8, and an SDD in a FW800/USB3 case. Which interface can let me enable TRIM: USB2, USB3, FW800 or Thunderbolt ?
10
votes
4answers
13k views

How can I create a new Recovery Partition on EXTERNAL disk?

I want to enable encryption on an external FireWire disk. The disk has been formatted a while ago (2+ years), and when choosing "encrypt volume" from the Finder context menu, Mountain Lion refuses ...
10
votes
2answers
4k views

Can Time Machine volumes be easily encrypted with FileVault 2?

Now that File Vault 2 can encrypt the entire disk and encrypt external drives, can I have a fully encrypted Time Machine volume?
10
votes
3answers
45k views

External drive mounts but doesn't appear in Finder anymore

I have an external hard drive (Drobo 2nd gen) connected to my Mac via Firewire. It used to appear on my desktop and in my Finder sidebar, but now it won't show up in either place (I do have "Hard ...
10
votes
4answers
20k views

How to synchronize contents of two external drives?

I have two external hard drives (ExFAT formatted) which I need to keep in sync. Specifically, drive B must mirror the contents of drive A and drive A must not be modified. How can I do this without ...
10
votes
2answers
18k views

Can I get S.M.A.R.T. support on external hard drives?

Disk Utility reports the S.M.A.R.T. Status as not verified for external disks, and by default Mac OS X only seems able to access S.M.A.R.T. information on internal hard drives. Is there a way to get ...
9
votes
4answers
2k views

Can I re-format OS X drive without removing it from my MacBook Pro?

I've got a mid 2012 MacBook Pro (non-retina) with a removable HD (Machine A). I want to perform a clean install of OS X El Capitan 10.11 on the HD, for which I have an install USB stick made. ...
9
votes
4answers
6k views

Prevent Spotlight from indexing external drive

Sometimes I use an external drive with macOS on it. This is in conjunction to my current internal drive which also is running macOS. I find it annoying that, whenever I search for something (such as ...
9
votes
1answer
24k views

Is it unusual for “Verify Disk” on Disk Utilities to take so long on a Time Machine drive?

I have an external 3TB FW800 drive set up to be my Time Machine drive. I noticed some unusually high drive activity, and opened up Time Machine to see if it was backing up. Nope, TM showed previous ...
9
votes
5answers
1k views

External hard drive seems to block applications randomly

Since updating to OSX Lion on my late 2009 iMac, I have noticed some strange behaviour while using my computer. Every hour or so (I'm not actually sure about this pattern), the application that I am ...
9
votes
5answers
35k views

“Couldn’t create temporary file.” error when erasing free space on external disk

I was trying to wipe the free space of an external USB 3.0 disk in OS X (Yosemite) disk utility. However, I receive the following error: EDIT: The disk is formatted as GUID / Mac OS Extended (...
9
votes
1answer
674 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 ...
9
votes
1answer
289 views

Force my MacBook Air that uses external USB as boot drive to hibernate/suspend to disk?

There are several questions about hibernating (suspending to disk) but most are concerned with battery life and so many answers basically say just use sleep (suspend to RAM) because the battery will ...
8
votes
2answers
1k 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 ...
8
votes
3answers
2k views

Are Time Machine backups to an external disk attached to a Time Capsule supported?

My 1 TB Time Capsule drive is full with Time Machine backups. I'd rather spend $130 on a 3 TB drive than $500 on a new 3 TB Time Capsule. Is an external drive attached to a Time Capsule supported ...
8
votes
3answers
12k views

How to write fstab rules for an NTFS volume if the volume has no LABEL or UUID?

Basically, I was following this tutorial to enable writing to an NTFS Volume (which works when the Volume has a LABEL or UUID). I have an external USB drive with an NTFS volume that doesn't seem to ...
7
votes
9answers
47k views

WD Passport Ultra can't mount on Mac, flashing lights, but can be read on Windows. What is broken?

Update: After about 3 weeks. I plugged in again into my MacBook and left it there. After more than an hour I came back and the drive showed up on my Mac again. (So somehow the problem got fixed.) I ...
7
votes
2answers
727 views

How does the mv command work with external drives?

On the same drive I assume it would change something like a FAT table to repoint to the location of files. Question When going to a different drive (maybe even partition) does the mv command first ...
7
votes
3answers
3k views

Can the contents of a partition be recovered after partition table is overwritten?

I ran a command to make my external hdd bootable knowing that it was risky considering the command itself did not allow me to specify a partition to which to write. (In hindsight, I would now call ...
7
votes
5answers
8k views

How do I temporarily relocate my Time Machine backup files

I have a 1TB WD My Passport external hard drive that I've been using for Time Machine backups. I recently had an issue with it where I can't save to it anymore because it was corrupted. The way to fix ...

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