You can use any disk drive on a mac but in order for it to work the drive will need to be formatted. There are places that sell external disks for macs but any drive will do the job. I have also tried to recover data from a mac but could not do this due to the formatted drive being incompatible, so here I will run through a how to partition a drive using your mac for both a windows and mac partition.

I am using a 4GB USB stick for the purpose of this demo but the same will apply to an external disk.

NOTE ALL DATA WILL BE LOST DURING THIS PROCESS.

Step 1 – Open disk utility

Open your disk utility app found in Utilities Click on partition then click current to select 2 partitions then apply.

Mac Hard Drive Partition: How to Format an External Drive for Mac & Windows

Mac Hard Drive Partition: How to Format an External Drive for Mac & Windows

Step 2 – Change settings on first partition

Highlighting the top partition will allow us to change the settings such as size, Name and format type.

Mac Hard Drive Partition: How to Format an External Drive for Mac & Windows

Step 3 – Change settings on second partition

The same will apply to the second partition when selected.

Mac Hard Drive Partition: How to Format an External Drive for Mac & Windows

Step 4 – Confirm partition

After clicking on Apply you will be prompted that you are about to partition the disk.

mac disk utility - Mac Hard drive partition

Step 5 – Check partitioning has worked

Here we can see the final disk setup with 2 partitions as we set them up.

Mac Hard Drive Partition: How to Format an External Drive for Mac & Windows

Step 6 – 2 Drives on desktop

On the desktop you can see the two different drives that have been created, this is not required for all users but does come in handy when you are doing a lot of data recovery or transfer from macs to windows formatted externals that can not be written to.

Mac Hard Drive Partition: How to Format an External Drive for Mac & Windows

You will have to transfer all data on the disk to your desktop whilst you perform the partitioning,  then transfer back to the correct partition when you are finished

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This information has been brought to you by The Electronic Fix Located in Brisbane, Australia. For help with your Mac in Brisbane call 07 3613 0029 or email us today.

 

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