Delete APFS volume - you have to pay attention to this!

An APFS volume can be a viable alternative to the partition be. Because where a partition occupies a fixed storage space, an APFS volume is flexible and only gets the space that it really needs. Only operating systems compatible with the file system such as macOS Catalina, Mojave and High Sierra can be installed on it. That can be useful for example 32-bit apps on macOS Catalina to execute. But there are a few things you have to consider if you want to delete the APFS volume. Here you will find everything you have to look out for!

After deleting the APFS volume you will get this message. But even before that, you shouldn't forget an important step.

After deleting the APFS volume you will get this message. But even before that, you shouldn't forget an important step.

What you have to consider when removing an APFS volume

If you are about to delete a virtual hard drive with the Apple File System in the hard drive utility on your Apple Mac, you should keep one thing in mind: All files, apps and settings stored on the volume will be lost. With the removal of the alternative partitions, all data is lost that was not previously moved to the main OS, to a USB stick, to the cloud, to an external hard drive or elsewhere. So backs up all documents, projects, folders, files, emails, libraries and so on beforehand. Only then should you carry out the steps shown in the instructions below;)

Delete APFS volume - Here's how!

To delete an APFS volume, you simply open the disk utility from the directory Macintosh HD -> Program -> Utilities or using the Spotlight search. In the overview on the left, select the virtual hard disk that you previously used to install a second operating system or a beta version to be tested. Then click on the "-" (minus symbol) above "Volume". A dialog box appears with the question Delete APFS volume "NAME"? There you click on Delete, and the space on the hard drive is freed up again.

Here are the brief instructions for deleting an APFS volume again:

  1. In the operating system that is mainly used, the Disk Utility start
  2. From the overview (list on the left edge of the window) the volume to be deleted the aussuch
  3. About it above the word Volume the minusClick the symbol (-)
  4. In the dialog window with a click on Delete confirm the process
  5. Enjoy the free space
You will be informed: "By deleting VOLUME all data stored on it will be deleted ..." - so back up your data beforehand!

You will be informed: "By deleting VOLUME all data stored on it will be deleted ..." - so back up your data beforehand!

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4 comments

  1. Heiner Kruse says:

    I have several voilumes: from the old days a data and a system volume (Catalina), all AFPS. Now I've added a volume and installed Big Sur there. that worked, but now I always see another volume called Update. That irritates me. The controller, firmware and hardware folder can be seen in there. Can I delete that without hesitation?

    • Jens Kleinholz says:

      I wouldn't delete it. As far as I could read, it is intended for macOS updates and is needed. But you can simply unmount it and then mount it when there is an update for macOS. Then it doesn't bother you in the finder.

  2. Andreas Wurzer says:

    How do I delete the apfs hard drive it just doesn't work I can't click on delete What is the problem?

    • Jens Kleinholz says:

      Hi Andreas! Unfortunately, I can't tell you anything else besides these tips in the post. From a distance I cannot tell what it is. :(

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