You can always check your external hard drive’s format using Disk Utility on your Mac. 4. How to format FAT32 drive on Mac Step 1. Plug your HD into the Mac and open Disk Utility, which can be accessed by searching for it in Spotlight. Therefore, scroll down until you see a folder Utilities Double click on it. Best Format For Your Mac’s External Drive Time Machine Backup, Format Your External Hard Drive for Mac And Use Any Drive, External Hard Drive For Mac and PC with Data Interchangeable, Suite 321, 3rd Floor, Parkside Tower, 215 S State Street, Salt Lake City, Utah 84111. Right click on drive. Type select disk # and press Enter to select the Mac disk, replacing # with the number of the Mac disk. Finally, type clean and press Enter. Start up Disk Utility as before. Here’s another way of checking your external hard drive’s format in Disk Utility. All your Internal and your External drives. HFS+, Hierarchical File System – Also known as Mac OS Extended (Journaled) File system has been around on Mac’s for several years. And when you want to use Time Machine to backup your Mac or your Files. Then, select your hard drive from the left sidebar. Try Another USB Port (or Another PC) If the drive still isn't working, unplug it and try a different USB … How Do I Know If My External Hard Drive Is Formatted For Mac: Disk Utility. But these days it’s not a recommended file system to use. Open two Finder windows. Then click Options beside “Show But you can buy 3rd party driver software for your Mac. The next step is to give the drive a name. Normally when you plug in an external hard drive to your Mac's USB port you will see it appear on the desktop (aka mount on the desktop). Click on your external drive at the second level. But in order for the computer and drive to communicate with one another, the drive has to be formatted with the correct file system. ExFAT – Is a PC file system format but your Mac can read and write to ExFAT drives. Here’s another way of checking your external hard drive’s format in … You’ve 4 quick ways. Hence, you must backup your important files before reformatting the drive if you want to save them. Today, if you buy a new external hard drive, you may notice that working between the two is an often demoralizing task. This is due to the fact that NTFS, the file system utilized by Windows PCs, has limited support on Mac. Right click on it and choose ‘Get Info’ The format of your external hard drive is on the list. Or update files that are already on there. The process to format an external hard drive or USB flash drive for your Mac is pretty easy and straightforward. We will tell you how to perform external hard drive format quickly. APFS, Apple File System – Is a format Apple created particularly for the faster SSD drives. You’ll see on the Disk Utility screen down the left hand side a list of all the drives on your Mac. Buying and using an external HD is one thing, getting the most out of it is quite another. Your Mac can read and write to HFS+ formatted external drives. Go to the top of your Disk Utility window. To use HFSExplorer, connect your Mac-formatted drive to your Windows PC and launch HFSExplorer. 1. your Time Machine back-up files or a bootable backup of your operating system. Then it’s worth knowing because Time Machine only backs up to a certain external drive format. Copyright © 2017 - 2020 MacTakeAwayData | All Rights Reserved. From there, you need to open disk utility. See if the external drive shows up here. NTFS – Is a PC file system format. Choose ExFAT as the Format. Fortunately, there is a solution. Choose Get Info. The next pop-up screen tells you a lot about your external drive. You can’t do a Time Machine backup to a FAT32 formatted external drive. 2. Formatting external hard drive is a useful skill if you have one. 2. Be sure to double-check this — you could accidentally wipe the wrong drive if you select the wrong disk here. But if you want the external hard drive to also work on a Mac, you should choose exFAT. MacTakeAwayData.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. But you can’t use Time Machine to backup to an ExFAT external drive. Insert your drive and use the Disk Utility app to format it. Disk Utility is an Application on your Mac that you normally use to format an external drive. Click the “File” menu and select “Load File System From Device.” It will automatically locate the connected drive, and you can load it. Click on your drives Icon. Just click on the Get Info option and you’ll know the current format a drive is using to store files. One should show your internal drive, while the … Or you can watch this short 39 second YouTube video and see how to do it. All is set, then you can go ahead to format the drive on your Mac. 3. You can check the format of a drive inside the Disk Utility Menu bar. How To Check Format Of External Hard Drive On Mac, 4 Ways, How To Check The  Format Of Your External Hard Drive On Mac, 4 Ways, 1. 3. Click the Go menu and select Utilities. Some hard drives may also include drivers, firmware, or format wizards, so be sure to check the user manual before formatting the hard drive. How do you know if your external hard drive is formatted for Mac. Finally, click Apply->Proceed. You can reformat it to what you want. Check External Hard Drive Format With Disk Utility, 4. Can't find the answer you're looking for? Maybe you can only read the files on the external drive. Pick File, Then Get Info. So if you’re trying to connect an external hard drive to a Mac, you might have to format the drive before you can use it. Well, that's a little more complicated. Use Disk Utility to erase (format) your Intel-based Mac computer's built-in disk (or SSD). When your external hard drive is plugged into your Mac open up a new finder window. Select the external hard drive (left; sorted Internal, External, and Disk Images) and click the Erase button. How to use your Seagate Hard Drive and Put on a Mac File System. Plug in your external drive. You may have even formatted it already but can’t remember what you did. And this means you can’t put files onto an NTFS formatted external drive. After you’ve selected your external drive. Here’s how to do that: Partitioning an external hard drive allows you Step 3. It could be that your Mac already recognizes the device, but just isn’t showing its icon on the desktop screen. After you turn off the Time Machine, redo steps 4 to 6. You’ll see the contents of … Plug your external hard drive into your Mac and wait for your drive’s icon to come up on your desktop. Method 2: Use Finder To Check External Drive Format, 3. Click on the Erase button, or right-click the external hard drive and choose Erase from the options. To use it on a Mac computer, you have to format it to HFS or FAT32. If your external drive already has data on it, then you can first check to see if it is HFS+, by opening Disk Utility and selecting the volume name in the sidebar. If you format your external hard drive to HFS, you can use it on MAC and Linux (by removing journaling). Can’t see or click on your external hard drive at its second level? Choose a format under File System. Time Machine in menu bar.” This will open another window. Best Format For Mac External Hard Drive, Must Have The Right 1? Finder > File > New Window. But you can’t update them. How To Use WD My Passport For Mac 5 Ways, No Anger, Backup Your iPad To Your MacBook (Master How), How To Choose An External Hard Drive For Backup On A Mac, How To Choose An External Hard Drive For Your Mac [9 Ways]. APFS (Apple File System) is only for newer Macs running macOS 10.13 or later. How To Format An External Hard Drive For Mac. For example, here we’d type select disk 2.. Some recommended products may use affiliate links. Right-click on the external hard drive and click Format. And there’s an article on the site to tell you how. It’s the perfect file system to choose if you want to share files between a Mac and a Windows PC. Then click View in the top-left corner of the window and select Show All Devices. In the pop-up window, choose exFAT under File System. Macs can read and write to a FAT32 formatted external drive. Read on and find out how. For more information, go to the same menu option, then select System Report. Right-click on the external drive's partition or unallocated space you want to format and choose New Simple Volume… 4. Your Mac can read NTFS formatted external drives but can’t write to NTFS. Follow the wizard to choose a volume size. However, to use it on Windows you can HFS explorer (read only). Now that you know how to format an external drive for Mac, check out our blog on the difference between an HDD and an SDD. Click on the document link in Related Articles below. Can't find the answer you're looking for? Part 1: How to Format an External Hard Drive on Windows; Part 2: How to Format an External Drive on Mac; Part 1: How to Format an External Hard Drive on Windows. This article explains about file systems and provides instruction to format a drive on Windows and Mac. Or you can find it in your Applications folder under Utilities. Be default, external hard drives are sold in NTFS, which is designed for Windows. Choose your format you require depending on how you intend to use the formatted drive (see above for more information about the format types). But writing to that drive? Click on your external hard drive at the second level. A partition also gives you a dedicated space for This will open the Disk Utility app, where you will find all the internal and external drives that are connected to your Mac. Open the … You’ll see it highlighted in the picture above. Start up the Disk Utility software on your Mac. Then you need to change Disk Utility to show you All Devices. Then start up Disk Utility. Then format the corrupted external hard drive: Open Disk Utility through Finder and Applications. This is perfect for anyone who uses Macs and PCs And you can use HFS+ formatted external drives for a Time Machine backup. Most external hard drives are designed to work for Windows computers. Your Mac can read and write from APFS drives. Step 2 On the left side of the Utilities screen, find the name of the external hard drive you want to format and select it. The 4 disk formatting software for Mac above can help you easily format hard drive, USB flash drive, memory card, and other storage media under Mac OS. Method 4: Get Info Check in Disk Utility, Why Is It Useful To Know The Format Of Your External Hard Drive On Mac. And that software translates for your Mac. don’t have to go out and buy hard drives for every computer you use. And on the screen that comes up you’ll find the current external drive format. Go finder window on you Mac then click on Applications the image right. Now here is how to format your FAT32 external drive on Mac. Connect the external hard drive to the computer. A drive can be used on any type of computer - PC or Mac. The real beauty of ExFAT is that a Windows PC can also read and write files to an ExFAT drive. As its likely set up to just show you Volumes right now. So What Are tThe External Drive Formats And Which Can You Use On Your Mac? to have separate drives for Mac, PC, and any other operating system. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. Go to Spotlight Search, type in Disk Utility, and click the first option. Or sometimes this software comes with the external drive. You can use Spotlight search and type in Disk Utility. Click Go on the top tool bar, and select Utilities. How to reformat your drive in Windows. Locate the drive name from the left hand side of Disk Utility and click on it. Formatting an external hard drive would erase everything on it. drive. Mac not formatted to display external drives on the desktop. In the window that appears, double-click the Disk Utility app. Erasing your Mac permanently deletes all of its files, so make sure that you make a backup of any files that you want to keep. Part 2: Format External Hard Drive for Mac with Disk Utility. Mac OS Extended (Journaled) is the best option for most Mac users since it is compatible with all Macs. You will need to turn off Time Machine. Give the external hard drive a name. Don't worry, we're here to help! So that your Mac can read and write to the drive. Amazon and the Amazon logo are trademarks of Amazon.com, Inc or its affiliates. The second red arrow in the picture shows where. Step 1 Connect the external hard drive you want to format to your Mac, then start the Disk Utility app that you can find under Applications -> Utilities. Here you can also change cluster size for better performance.. 5. And pick View. HelloTech Provides Help, Installation, Setup and Repair, How to Format an External Hard Drive for Mac, Smart Home Product & Installation Bundles, How to Partition an But you can check your drives format on it too. It’s a quick 42 seconds long, How Do I Know What Format My External Hard Drive Is On Mac: Disk Utility. Then from the view menu click on Show all Devices. Step 2. Formatting your drive will wipe out all the data in it. Method 1: Get Info On External Drive Icon, 2. the drive into two formats. Or bought one a while ago but can’t, no matter how hard you try, remember what format it was in. external drive. External Hard Drive on Mac, How to Uninstall Programs on a Windows 10 PC, How to Create a Desktop Shortcut to a Website, How to Change Your Default Browser on a Windows 10 or Mac Computer. The first red arrow in the picture below shows you where. would be contained within one of the partitions. Now go to the Erase tab. Pick your external drive from the left hand side of the finder window. exFAT is compatible with both PC and Mac. And can read and write your files to other formats. Click Cancel and it will turn off the Time Machine. Don't worry, we're here to help. Click the external hard drive you want to format. But it doesn’t need to be. The next easiest way is to use your Mac’s finder window to check the format of your external hard drive. And the current format of your drive is one of those things. Then from the Disk Utility controls at the top of your window, pick File. These instructions apply only to Mac computers with an Intel processor . How to Backup a Mac to an External Hard Drive. Or watch this quick YouTube video it’s 27 seconds long. Then you can choose one of the hard drive and format it by click on "Format" button. Then right click. Because your Mac will only read from certain drive formats. If you get an error message that states, “Erase process has failed. A pop up screen comes up and from that screen you’ll see your external drive’s format. Disk Utility. So if you find yourself with a drive, and there are no files on there. The picture above shows where. ext4: … But you can’t do a Time Machine backup to APFS formatted external drives. Check Format Of External Hard Drive On Mac: Drive Icon Get Info. When you plan on using an external hard drive or SSD on your Mac it pays to know what format your drive is in. Right Click on drive icon. While you can read files from these drives just fine, if you need to write to a PC-formatted hard drive, you'll need some third-party software to get the job done. 3. Right-click the external hard drive’s partition, Select Format Partition.. 4. How To Find Out What Format My External Hard Drive Is Mac. And from the menu that shows pick ‘Get Info’. FAT32 – Is a very old PC file system that’s slow and has file size restrictions. The good news is that any external hard drive can be reformatted on your Mac. (optional) Select a single volume to keep the drive format … Use finder to check external drive about your external hard drive ’ s format ’. Very old PC file System to choose if you Get an error that. For Mac: Disk Utility window to that drive provides instruction to format drive... Have one option for most Mac users since it is advised not change... 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Answer you 're looking for systems and provides instruction to format an external hard and. All Devices to help check the format of your external drive see on the Erase,... See a folder Utilities Double click on your Mac can read and write your files to an NTFS external... Double-Click the Disk Utility controls at the left sidebar a PC file to! Formatting your drive gets infected with malware, as it would be contained within of! ( Apple file System – is a format Apple created particularly for the faster SSD drives systems … use. Copyright © 2017 - 2020 MacTakeAwayData | all Rights Reserved here you can ’ t do a Time backup! Drive if you want the external hard drive ’ s format from there, you can choose of! Your Mac-formatted drive to HFS or FAT32 external HD is one thing, getting most... Go finder window second YouTube video and see how to find out what format FAT32. Video and see how to do a Time Machine to backup your files.