Formatting External Drive (Mac & PC)

Before using any new external drive it’s important to prepare it for use by “formatting” the drive using Apple Disk Utility. This will completely erase the external drive and then set it up to be used efficiently and reliably.

The steps below assume you are using an Apple Mac running MacOS Sierra or later.

Connect the drive to your Mac

  • Use either USB3 or Thunderbolt Ports

Launch Disk Utility

  • Launch Disk Utility. Either head to Applications > Utilities, or tap Command + Spacebar and start typing Disk Utility.

Choose Drive and Erase

  1. In the left column under External select the drive you want to format.
  2. Select Erase in the Disk Utility Menu
  3. NOTE: formatting your drive will erase the contents, so make sure you back it up first!

Format For Mac & PC

  1. Give the new drive a name
  2. Select ExFat from the Format drop-down.

Format For Mac Only

  1. Give the new drive a name
  2. Select APFS OR Mac OS Extended Journaled 


  1. Select Erase.
  2. After a minute or two your drive will be ready to use.