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How to Format External Hard Drive for Mac?

The article on this page guides you on how to format external hard drive for Mac. Follow the provided step-by-step instructions carefully.

Format external hard drive for Mac
  • First, connect your external hard drive to your Mac and launch Disk Utility. To open it, choose Applications -> Utilities. Otherwise, press Command + Space and type Disk Utility.
  • When the Disk Utility window opens, a list of available drives will be displayed on the left. Here, select the drive that needs to be formatted. Remember, formatting the device will delete all the contents on it. So, back up all the important files and folders before formatting your hard drive.
  • Tap on Erase from the 4 options available in the main window.
  • The required format will be automatically chosen by the Disk Utility. The format might be Mac OS Extended (Journaled) or APFS. To use some other format, click on the Formatting option. Choose your desired format.
  • In the next step, give a name for your hard drive.
  • Click on Security. Another window opens that lets you select the way you need the drive to be formatted. It displays a slider ranging from Fastest to Most Secure. This is important because you can ensure your files currently on the hard drive to be safely erased.
  • If you choose Fastest, the drive will be erased by eliminating the header information. But all the underlying intact files that are hidden will be left out. These files can be retrieved easily using data-recovery software. This is not a good choice to go with. Move the slider even more. Now, it goes to the second option This option writes a single pass of zeros over the entire disk. Choose this option to overwrite the entire disk.
  • For more security, move the slider towards the right. Here you have an option that says Overwrite the drive three times.
  • Keep moving the slider towards the extreme right and you will end up in an option that says, Overwrite the drive seven times.
  • Click on Erase. The contents will be erased in some time and the drive will be ready.
  • Finally, copy all your files onto the newly formatted hard drive.

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