Why and How To format Mac Hard Drive

Mac OS X is one of the popular operating systems from Apple, and as long as you own or intend to own a Mac, you may find it ideal to learn why and how to format Mac hard drive. Formatting a hard drive whether internal or external is part and parcel of owning a computer. Formatting a hard drive is basically wiping out, or erasing the existing data. This therefore means that you will lose any information that was previously contained in the hard drive.


Now, about why you may have to format a Mac Hard Drive. There are several reasons that may lead you to formatting the hard drive. This comprise of the following:

Unsatisfactory or erratic operation

Overtime, a computer may offer unreliable service. This may include the computer constantly “hanging”, the computer switching off abruptly, downloading documents taking too long, and also the processor getting overworked. Solutions such as disk defragmentation or disk cleanup may fail to offer effective results hence the need to format the hard drive.


The OS may be infected by a computer virus or worm. This will affect the efficiency of the computer. The best way to completely remove the virus especially if the computer had no anti-virus installed is by formatting.

New installation

When installing a new OS in a new computer, or upgrading from another system, it is necessary to format the hard drive.

Here is how to format Mac Hard Drive. There is always a common notion that formatting a hard drive from Apple is a difficult task. However, this is far from the truth. Any person with basic computing skills can carry out the activity in a short time. The Process basically entails the following:


Prior to formatting, it is important to plan on how to format the hard drive. This will be determined by factors such as the amount of space available in the hard drive, how many OS you plan to install, and also if the Hard drive will be used mainly as a storage point or for operating systems.

Backing up Data

Formatting will erase all data stored in the hard drive. It is therefore necessary to backup the data using another external hard drive, cloud storage, or USB sticks.

Formatting a Mac Hard Drive may take place in the following two ways:

a) Mac OS X Disk Utility

  • Go to application folder and select utilities.
  • Select the target hard drive on the left menu then click erase tab
  • Partition the Hard drive either using the Boot camp assistant or Disk Utility Partition.
  • Select drive to format and click erase. This may take a few minutes.

b) Mac OS X Installation DVD

  • The procedure is similar to the one above. The only difference being that the system will boot from the Install DVD rather than from the OS.

In order for the formatting to work effectively, it is necessary to format the hard drive using the same computer. Formatting using a different Apple computer may cause conflicts in the operating system. By learning why and how to format Mac hard drive, you will not only become more adept, but you also make sure the system is working at its full potential.

Roman Sahakov writes for Acuity Training Company covering topics like sql training, HTML, CSS, Java, Java Script etc. Besides being an excellent writer Roman is also very creative and enthusiastic person, who is always eager to explore something new!


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