How to Format a Removable Disk on Mac


As a Mac user, whatever a removable disk you buy such as a USB flash drive, SD memory card or an external hard drive, if you need to use it you have to format it or sometimes we call “initialize”. Also there are times when your Mac machine can’t smell the disk so well if you have formatted it under Windows operation system, you’ll have to reformat it again in order to reuse it on your Mac machine.


To format the drive, the OS X Disk Utility should do the trick (applications/utilities/). If not, check the drive maker web site to see if they have OS X utilities specific for the drive. Here is a step by step tutorial to format a removable disk drive on Mac.


#1: Connect your external drive or USB flash disk to your Mac.

#2: Open the system drive, usually titled "Macintosh HD". Open Applications, then Utilities and double click the "Disk Utility" program to open it. A window will open giving a list of all the drives currently mounted on the computer.

#3: Select the disk that needs to be formatted on the left.

#4: Click on the "Erase" tab to the right of the list of drives. The window will now display the options for erasing the removable disk and formatting it to work on the Macintosh computer.

#5: Select the Volume Format from the pop-up list.

#6: Name the removable disk. Type a name for the disk in the field where it asks for the name. This name will always appear when the disk is mounted on a Macintosh computer.

#7: Click the erase button. A window will open asking to verify the erase procedure.


Note: the Disk Utility interface has change a bit from Tiger to Leopard. When you launch Disk Utility in Leopard, it opens in default, with no drives selected in the left hand column.


Remember – backup a copy of the files in your removable disk as formatting will wipe it out though ‘not permanently’ because you can rely on the unformat Mac program to get them back.


Kind Notice: if you want to completely get rid of all the content on the disk, try using the Mac wipe tool.



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