Partitioning the hard drive on the Mac - a question of patience with 4 TB HDD disks

If you want to partition a larger hard drive on the Mac, you should be patient (screenshot from the hard disk utility) ... after waiting a good 1,5 hours.

Yesterday my new MacBook Pro (the 2017 model with the Kaby Lake processor) arrived. And as always, on such rare occasions, I like to do a 1: 1 backup of the internal SDD hard drive using Carbon Copy Cloner. This time, however, I lacked a suitable hard drive, so I decided to partition my 4TB Seagate (Expansion Portale Drive). A 3TB partition should still be retained for the Time Machine backup, while the remaining almost 1TB should be used for the direct backup. Basically not a good idea as both backups are now on a single hard drive. If this fails due to a head crash or something similar, then both backups are over ... But I still have that Backblaze online backup and another hard drive with a fresh backup in hand, so it's a calculated risk.

If you want to partition a larger hard drive on the Mac, you should be patient (screenshot from the hard disk utility) ... after waiting a good 1,5 hours.

If you want to partition a larger hard drive on the Mac, you should be patient (screenshot from the hard disk utility) ... after waiting a good 1,5 hours.

A few hours later ...

In all honesty, I thought that the partitioning (which does not involve data loss) would be relatively quick. But after I started the disk utility and started the partitioning, I noticed relatively soon that it would take a little longer. The Mac has now been tinkering with the hard drive for over an hour and has so far done the following steps, which you can see when you click on "Details":

  • Operation 1 of 1 is being carried out ...
  • Check the hard drive
  • Check file system.
  • Check HFS + Volume (Journaled).
  • Additional file for file structure is checked.
  • Catalog is being checked.
  • Multi-link files are checked.
  • Catalog hierarchy is checked.
  • Checking extended attributes file.
  • Check multi-link directories.
  • Volume bitmap is checked.
  • Information of the volume is checked.
  • The Seagate 4TB volume appears to be fine.
  • File system check exit code is 0.
  • change size
  • Shrink file system

Lying progress bars!

I also find it remarkable that the progress bar was already full after a few minutes, but the information under Details contains more and more points. I really hope that the progress bars in macOS High Sierra will be a bit more realistic. And if we're lucky, partitioning will also be thanks APFS file system a no brainer. ;-)

Well, what I wanted to tell you: If you ever partition a large hard drive on your Mac and are amazed that it is simply not going forward - that is completely normal ... but nothing more happened to me while I was writing this article. ;-) But I'm sure it's only a matter of time. So be patient!

Update: I ran out of money after partitioning for 3 hours and still not finished. I then completely formatted the hard drive, dragged my backup onto it and with the migration assistant, then migrated my data from this backup to my new MacBook Pro. Today I formatted it again and now use the hard drive again for the Time Machine backup.

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1 comment

  1. dieter says:

    For Windows there are some very good help programs for this purpose ...

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