Questions tagged [hard-drive]

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

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191 votes
6 answers
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Is it safe to delete ~/Library/Caches?

Is it safe to delete the file Caches, in the Library of the Mac OS X Hard Drive? It's a pretty big file, 3.56 GB, Caches reminds me of logs i don't need or browser cookies. Is it safe to delete the ...
GummyArgyle's user avatar
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114 votes
8 answers
199k views

How do I get detailed SMART disk information on OS X (Mavericks or later)

I'm trying to get a detailed SMART status report on the drives in my Mac. I'm not talking about "Verified," I'm talking about the detailed report that's about 100 lines long listing all the vital ...
Mike Akers's user avatar
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70 votes
8 answers
97k 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.
GusDeCooL's user avatar
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70 votes
2 answers
107k views

What is com.apple.bird? Why does it grow so big?

When trying to clean up their hard disk, some users discover ~/Library/Caches/com.apple.bird is pretty big, sometimes in the order of many gigabytes. What is it?
hectorpal's user avatar
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57 votes
9 answers
62k views

Time Machine ridiculously slow after El Capitan upgrade

I recently updated to El Capitan, and told Time Machine to backup. It got stuck on Preparing Backup for hours, so I stopped it, deleted the InProgress file, rebooted and tried again. After ~30 mins, ...
CraftedCart's user avatar
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57 votes
10 answers
159k 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 ...
Nicolas Barbulesco's user avatar
56 votes
7 answers
11k views

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?
spong's user avatar
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55 votes
6 answers
77k views

How do I clear the purgeable area on my disk?

I cleared space on my disk by deleting files and emptying trash. But, I am unable to make use of the space that I freed up. That is, as you can see the disk reports 142 GB as Available with 83 GB of ...
Josh's user avatar
  • 997
54 votes
11 answers
182k views

External Hard Drive Won't Mount

I've searched and tried a lot of stuff but still can't get it to work. I was able to use my seagate HDD properly last week but now it doesn't mount. I tried plugging it to a PC & another mac, it ...
demiculus's user avatar
  • 713
54 votes
2 answers
35k 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?
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48 votes
4 answers
386k views

How do I make the hard drive visible in the Finder?

On OS X Lion I don't see the hard drive in the Finder and I seem to have no permission to create a folder under / from terminal. I know I can do this if I activate the root user, but I need to be ...
shebelaw's user avatar
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44 votes
3 answers
40k views

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 not,...
Jari Keinänen's user avatar
37 votes
9 answers
282k views

Unable to format / erase hard drive

I have an external HD that died on me a while ago and I'm trying to see if I can format / erase it to start using it again. The disk does not show up in Finder but I can see it in Disk Utility. When ...
stef's user avatar
  • 572
35 votes
7 answers
119k 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 ...
erotsppa's user avatar
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35 votes
3 answers
174k views

USB Drive Will Not Mount, Not Listed in Disk Utilities, but Found In System Profiler

I have a Seagate FreeAgent Go drive with the optional docking station. I use it to keep files that I don't access on a regular basis and as a place to do "quick backups" of things like my Paperless ...
Allan's user avatar
  • 100k
34 votes
13 answers
90k views

Error creating bootable USB

For two days my Mac has been "dead"; the hard drive crashed, so I reformatted (twice). I wanted to reinstall Mavericks via Recovery, but at the end of the process it shows nearly 1 million minutes ...
TTL's user avatar
  • 443
33 votes
8 answers
195k views

Disk Utility won't Unmount HD for formatting

I have two internal drives in my 27" iMac (10.8.5). An SSD system disk and a 1TB SATA drive. The HDD has been acting up recently, very slow performance, bad behavior etc. Tech Tool Pro and Disk ...
Kray's user avatar
  • 333
33 votes
3 answers
69k views

How to get the "securely erase" function of Disk Utility on El Capitan & Sierra

Up to Yosemite I regularly used Disk Utility with Erase > Security Options... > writes a single pass of zeros over the entire disk... as a simple method to fully check that a disk is fully safe before ...
dan's user avatar
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31 votes
4 answers
19k 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?
Adam A's user avatar
  • 443
31 votes
4 answers
74k views

Why is a secure erase 'not necessary' for SSD's?

I'm about to trade in a 2010 MacBook Pro with an SSD. However, I'm unable to do a Secure Erase from the recovery disk (as I used to do with mechanical hard drives before selling or giving away a ...
Bill's user avatar
  • 332
28 votes
5 answers
69k views

Mac OS Sierra - Disk Utility will not let me partition an external hard drive

Within disk utility, the partition icon is grayed out. If I mouse over it, it reads: "Disks with Master Boot Record Partition Maps cannot be partitioned". The history on this drive: It is a 2 TB ...
TMWP's user avatar
  • 465
26 votes
5 answers
39k 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 ...
kalaracey's user avatar
  • 361
26 votes
4 answers
26k 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 ...
greenforest's user avatar
25 votes
3 answers
71k views

Can there be two separate Time Machine Backups on the same external drive?

I'm interested in buying an external hard drive. I'd like to know whether if it's possible (and simple if so) to have two separate Time Machine Backups from two different MacBooks at the same time?
Ébe Isaac's user avatar
25 votes
3 answers
146k views

What are next steps when fsck reports "could not be repaired after 3 attempts"?

My Mac Book Pro 13.-" doesn´t get past the grey booting screen with the apple and the spinning wheel (The loading bar appears but when it´s done nothing happens) I have 220 GB in one single ...
BenCis's user avatar
  • 251
24 votes
4 answers
48k views

How can I merge primary APFS partition with other empty APFS partition?

Using the latest Macbook Pro with currently High Sierra 10.13.1, I was using bootcamp for a year, and I decided to get rid of the Bootcamp partition this morning. The Bootcamp utility would not let me ...
Scaraux's user avatar
  • 433
24 votes
6 answers
84k views

OS X can't unmount disk

My 1TB LaCie Rugged THB decided it was a good idea to stop working all of a sudden. If I open it in disk util I sometimes see an actual name of a partition, but most likely it's not the real name. In ...
Peter's user avatar
  • 343
22 votes
7 answers
69k 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?
makaed's user avatar
  • 379
22 votes
10 answers
145k views

USB HDD can’t be opened because the original item can’t be found

When I try to access my 2Tb Transcend StoreJet External Hard Drive in Finder, I always get the following error: However, 16Gb USB Flash Drive can be accessed without any problems. I cannot also see ...
DimaSan's user avatar
  • 323
22 votes
4 answers
64k views

How can I mount an encrypted disk from the command line?

When I type diskutil mount disk3 in the terminal, it says Volume(s) mounted successfully. However, the disk is not mounted and I can confirm this by opening the GUI of Disk Utility.app and also the ...
josswinn's user avatar
  • 341
21 votes
1 answer
29k views

Disable the disk check when reconnecting an improperly disconnected disk to OS X

If you disconnect a removable drive without ejecting it first, the next time you connect it, Windows or Mac run an fsck check on the disk to ensure data integrity. Windows will ask if you want to ...
Chris's user avatar
  • 469
20 votes
9 answers
442k views

How do I get an operating system onto a new hard drive?

I will be installing a new 500GB hard drive in my macbook. It is a late 2008, aluminum, 13-inch screen. Once I install it, how do I get an operating system that's 10.7 or newer (downloaded from the ...
Howard Zack's user avatar
20 votes
1 answer
144k 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 ...
marcnyc's user avatar
  • 471
19 votes
5 answers
20k 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 ...
Oion Akif's user avatar
  • 8,832
19 votes
5 answers
70k views

Disk Utility won't erase my USB flash drive ("Couldn't open device")

I am willing to dual-boot my MacBook Pro (13-inch, Early 2011) macOS Sierra to install Ubuntu. I am having some trouble with my USB flash drive when I try to erase it using Disk Utility. It says: ...
NSD's user avatar
  • 191
18 votes
3 answers
161k views

Error: "The operation can’t be completed because one or more required items can’t be found. (Error code -43)"

I accidentally pulled an NTFS hard drive out of my Mac OS X Mavericks machine several times and realized that I accidentally created multiple entries of many different names in my /Volumes/ folder. ...
Blairg23's user avatar
  • 283
18 votes
5 answers
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 ...
prosseek's user avatar
  • 5,674
18 votes
1 answer
14k views

Change APFS Volume to case sensitive

I have a macbook pro with 1TB internal glued flash drive, of which around 600GB are full. I would like to change the volume format from APFS (case insensitive, encrypted) to APFS (case sensitive, ...
Urs's user avatar
  • 477
17 votes
7 answers
6k views

If I delete photos/files why aren't they actually deleted? How come they can be recovered?

I am trying to delete some photos from my daughter's Photos Library/Hard Drive. What I have done so far is that I have moved the photos to the trash and emptied it. Now the problem is, deleted files/...
Andrea's user avatar
  • 173
17 votes
4 answers
10k 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 ...
I-M-JM's user avatar
  • 1,536
17 votes
3 answers
51k 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 ...
Phoenix_uy's user avatar
17 votes
3 answers
14k views

Does the “Put hard disks to sleep when possible.” option in macOS have any affect on SSD drives?

I completely understand the value of putting a hard disk (specifically) to sleep in some cases especially in the pre-SSD days of the past. It can save power, lower noise and such. But in the case of ...
Giacomo1968's user avatar
  • 5,601
17 votes
2 answers
32k views

How to always keep a local copy of documents/folder in iCloud?

I'm now using iCloud on macOS 10.12. Many folders and files (for example on my Desktop, etc.) are no more physically present on my hard drive, they have been pushed to the cloud. I have two questions. ...
Colas's user avatar
  • 2,881
16 votes
3 answers
38k 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 ...
Phil M's user avatar
  • 691
16 votes
1 answer
2k 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.
Stephen's user avatar
  • 1,381
16 votes
2 answers
39k 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 ...
Richard Herron's user avatar
15 votes
10 answers
138k views

I can't write to my flash drive, and it is already in the MS-DOS (FAT) Format. Why?

This is my first question on this website. I am using a Mac Air, and I have a flash drive in which I can read from. I am able to copy files from this onto my Desktop, or anywhere on my computer for ...
Rane1011's user avatar
  • 275
15 votes
7 answers
46k 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 ...
Jonathan's user avatar
  • 153
15 votes
2 answers
25k views

How to copy all files with extension/filetype in terminal?

I want to copy all files in ~/Desktop with the extension .jpeg to my flash drive. How can I do this in the terminal?
Jack Stewart's user avatar
15 votes
4 answers
6k views

Reformat Mac SSD drive so fast - did it really work?

I followed the directions here for erasing my 500 GB SSD drive on a MacBook Pro: How to reinstall macOS I chose the strongest erasing option under the security options. I hit the erase button, and ...
Shawre's user avatar
  • 161

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