Disk Utility shows wrong hard drive capacity

Discussion in 'OS X Mountain Lion (10.8)' started by dapetrun, Aug 24, 2013.

  1. macrumors regular

    dapetrun

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2006
    Location:
    Western Pennsylvania
    #1
    I have a new 4.0 TB Black hard drive from Western Digital that I mounted in a Lacie external enclosure after removing a 2.0 TB drive. My new MacBook Pro's Disk Utility wants to initialize this disk but only recognizes the capacity as 1.8 TB. This is the second 4.0 TB disk with the same problem as the first was returned under warranty when the capacity didn't change after writing 0's and formatting (initializing) the disk.

    Western Digital's Data Lifeguard Diagnostics for Windows on my Windows XP machine sees the entire 4.0 TB and their Support Technicians suggested I write zero's across the entire disk then format it in my Mac. However, Windows XP installed software updates on it's own and rebooted after 27 hours of writing zero's (only half way completed)! To start writing zero's again would take another 48 hours.

    What is going on here? I thought the current BIOS in todays Mac's AND PC's would read the full capacity accurately since the earlier 2.0 TB read limit debacle of a few years ago.

    Can anyone offer a Mac resolution or suggestion to get a full 4.0 TB hard drive my MBP can read? Thanks to all that may reply.
     
  2. macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2007
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    Austin, TX
    #2
    What file system type? What partition table type?

    I would think you would use GUID partition table and HFS+ file system.

    I don't have a drive over 1TB, so I can't really offer any personal experience.
     
  3. thread starter macrumors regular

    dapetrun

    Joined:
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    #3
    Yes, the GUID partition table was used on the 1st hard drive initialization (format) with Mac OS Extended (Journaled) but my MBP still recognizes only 1.8 TB capacity of hard drive before AND after formatting. The 2nd hard drive I received from Western DIgital is following suit but I haven't formatted it yet. I am in the process of writing zero's across the entire 4.0 TB drive within the Data Lifeguard Diagnostics for Windows program on my Windows XP machine before attempting to format this 2nd drive using Disk Utility on my MBP. HAS ANYONE ELSE EXPERIENCED THIS CHARACTERISTIC ON A NEW LARGE CAPACITY HARD DRIVE?
     
  4. macrumors G3

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    #4
    Try a different enclosure, there may be something flaky in the LaCie enclosure that is causing OS X to see the drive as a 2TB drive and not a 4TB drive.
     
  5. thread starter macrumors regular

    dapetrun

    Joined:
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    #5
    Yea, I thought about that as well. So I also tried my desktop docking station and it said exactly the same thing, 1.8 TB. However, only when viewing this drive on my Windows XP machine using Western Digital's Data Lifeguard Diagnostics for Windows program does either drive OR enclosure read the true 4.0 TB capacity. I may try to format this drive using Windows XP (in another 24 hours when it's done writing zero's) and then re-format in my MBP using Disk Utility. Not sure what else I can try. And I haven't ruled out it impossible to receive two bummer hard drives in a row from Western Digital via Amazon.com.
     
  6. macrumors G3

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    #6
    Does Windows read the capacity as 4TB without using the Western Digital utilities? If it doesn't, it points to a possible enclosure issue.
     
  7. macrumors 68000

    rocknblogger

    Joined:
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    New Jersey
    #7
    I have a Seagate 4TB external drive (USB 3.0) and it worked fine out of the box. I know this doesn't help you much but at least proves that OSX 10.8.3 can utilize a 4TB drive.
     
  8. thread starter macrumors regular

    dapetrun

    Joined:
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    #8
    It may once I format it. But the same limited capacity is displayed on two different devices, a Lacie enclosure and a new desktop docking station that has no trouble reading 2 TB drives. Windows XP won't recognize any drive until it is partitioned and formatted. I had not tried this on the first hard drive (in Windows) only on the Mac. When the 2nd hard drive displayed the same 1.8 TB capacity (before and after initializing) I decided to download Western Digital's Data Lifeguard Diagnostic software for Windows and write zero's on the entire drive (Tech Support suggested) before formatting on the Mac. Now, I am thinking it may be a better idea to format it on the Windows PC before re-formatting it on the Mac. 41 hours and counting to zero-out the entire 4.0 TB drive. This is BS!!
     
  9. macrumors 68000

    rocknblogger

    Joined:
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    Location:
    New Jersey
    #9
    After reading this thread again this morning, I remembered having a similar issue but it was a 2TB if I remember correctly that was reading as a 1TB. I deleted the partition and created a new one. I don't remember if I had to do anything else but the same drive now is reading correctly at 2TB.

    Also is this USB 2 or 3 or Thunderbolt?
     
  10. thread starter macrumors regular

    dapetrun

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2006
    Location:
    Western Pennsylvania
    #10
    It is a USB 2 Lacie enclosure and USB 2.0 for the docking station as well.

    Writing zero's across an entire (empty) drive is the same as erasing the drive and you cannot delete a current partition (in Disk Utility) but only partition over the current partition which is still only recognized as a 1.8 TB partition.

    I'm thinking about ordering a new WD enclosure and another 4.0 TB hard drive to see if it is the hard drive or the enclosure that is giving me this headache!
     
  11. macrumors 6502a

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    #11
    I'm of the opinion that it's the enclosure that's the problem -- the hard drive itself is probably fine. When I was researching external HDD enclosures awhile ago, my reading suggested that maximum hard disk capacity could be affected by the chipset used in the enclosure. That is, some chipsets could handle 2 TB or 3 TB drives at most, while others could handle 4 TB. It wouldn't surprise me at all that two particular enclosures/docking stations would not support a 4 TB drive. That's much more likely (in my opinion) than two defective drives in a row.

    Can you find detailed specs on your LaCie enclosure? Sometimes they list the maximum size hard drive they'll support. (Unfortunately, sometimes they don't, which is really unfair to the consumer!)
     
  12. dapetrun, Aug 28, 2013
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2013

    thread starter macrumors regular

    dapetrun

    Joined:
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    #12
    Brian33: I am inclined to agree with you on this, although, it doesn't explain why the Wester Digital Diagnostic program can see the full capacity on a Windows platform while Mountain Lion cannot??

    I am looking at the Other World Computing's Guardian MAXimus 2 drive mirrored RAID enclosure to resolve this. However, it will take the purchase of another 4.0 TB hard drive to make the system work. Still, I will have a failsafe mirrored RAID of 4.0 full TB's with a USB 3.0 transfer rate and that is certainly better than what I have now. I will keep this thread open and announce the results next week or so. Thanks to all that offered their thoughts, much appreciated.

    PS: The original Lacie enclosure was purchased with a 500 GB hard drive (maximum at that time) which I later swapped out for a 2.0 TB hard drive. So, I am sure the age of this enclosure is subject to the limitation(s) we now suspect. Thanks again.
     
  13. macrumors G3

    Joined:
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    #13
    The WD utility may be reading the size information directly from the drive, instead of from the controller in the enclosure.
     
  14. thread starter macrumors regular

    dapetrun

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2006
    Location:
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    #14
    Possibly, but that utility program did much more than that because I used it to write zero's across the entire drive (nearly 48 hours worth) but when it was all finished, Windows XP still only recognized 1.8 TB's even after Windows formatted the drive. Frustrating.
     
  15. thread starter macrumors regular

    dapetrun

    Joined:
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    Location:
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    #15
    UPDATE: Still not recognizing correct capacity.

    I received Other World Computing's Guardian MAXimus RAID 1 enclosure and the 2nd Western Digital Black 4.0 TB hard drive from Amazon.com. The new enclosure had default dip switches set to the wrong setting. The OWC tech had me change to the correct settings and now the 4.0 TB drive problem that read 1.8 TB now has BOTH hard drives reading only 2.2 TB total capacity!!! I'm really getting pissed! I got over $700 tied up in a RAID system that isn't worth a fraction of that $ amount for that recognized capacity.

    The Guardian MAXimus is going back for a bug in the on/off switch (under warranty with pre-paid shipping) and they will test the unit for compatibility for 4.0 TB drives (Seagate Barracuda's) and send it back to me. If I still get anything other than the full 4.0 TB drive capacity then it MUST be a Western Digital compatibility issue and both the Guardian MAXimus and one of the hard drives will get returned, all be it with shipping and restocking out of pocket.

    I WILL NEVER BUY ANOTHER WESTERN DIGITAL PRODUCT EVER AGAIN!!!

    I will keep you posted on the results...
     
  16. macrumors 68020

    crjackson2134

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2013
    Location:
    Charlotte, NC
    #16
    I'm surprised no one has suggested this but, I was reading about a similiar issue (well, the exact issue actually) and it turned out IIRC that there is a bug in the OSX disk utility that causes this. The fix I THINK turned out that you need to format the drive using the command line, or using a 3rd party utility. The issue may only affect certain drives, I can't remember. It might be worth looking into.
     
  17. macrumors P6

    Weaselboy

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    #17
    I think what you are referring to is a bug in Disk Util with 10.8.4 that will not format larger than 2TB drives when mounted as an internal drive. The work around it to mount as an external and format then move back internally. OP's drive is mounted externally, so I'm not sure this is related to the DU bug. I suppose it is possible though.
     
  18. thread starter macrumors regular

    dapetrun

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2006
    Location:
    Western Pennsylvania
    #18
    Final resolution, owc hardware at fault!

    This is the conclusion to what I found was my problem in reading two 4.0 TB Western Digital hard drives with my new MacBook Pro. The new Guardian MAXimus RAID 1 enclosure I purchased from Other World Computing utilized outdated chip sets in their enclosures even thou they assured me they work with ALL 4.0 TB hard drives.

    The 1st Guardian MAXimus enclosure had a malfunctioning power switch besides not being able to read the hard drive beyond a 2.2 TB capacity. They prepaid the UPS return and sent a replacement unit assuring me it would be tested first for use with 4.0 TB drives. The 2nd unit power switch worked but read the same incorrect capacity of the Western Digital 4.0 TB drives at only 2.2 TB. I asked for an RMA to return the 2nd unit paying the shipping out of pocket because I had no proof the fault wasn't with my hard drives (or their enclosure). That is, until I purchased Other World Computing's Voyage Q desktop docking station that read both my hard drives with the correct 4.0 TB capacity proving that BOTH their Guardian MAXimus units were faulty in misreading the correct capacity of my hard drives! Finally, a valid reason for the problem!

    Now I am arguing with Other World Computing for the full refund of their Guardian MAXimus unit, they are trying to withhold 15% restocking fee even thou I proved to them (with their own equipment, no less) that they sent outdated junk (non-working hardware) and then withhold the customer's full refund when the product doesn't work as described. I am also returning their Voyager Q docking station just on principle (because I had to argue with them) which I fully expect to pay the 15% restocking fee on this. I don't want to own any of OWC's junk based on the problems I had to endure because of them. I have involved the Visa Dispute Resolution team and am confident they will rule in my favor.

    I STRONGLY ADVISE EVERYONE TO AVOID DOING BUSINESS WITH OTHER WORLD COMPUTING!! They have proven to me that their products are cheap and their customer service is worthless. STAY FAR FAR AWAY FROM OWC.com!!! :(
     

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