Adding a partition... How long does it take?

Discussion in 'macOS' started by arsenalgear, Apr 8, 2008.

  1. arsenalgear macrumors member

    Dec 17, 2007

    I tam trying to add a 75 GB partition to my aluminum iMac's internal HD using Leopard's Disk Utility, but after 7 hours the striped bar appears not to have made any progress and still says "Modifying Partition Map". How long does this usually take? Is this normal?

  2. FJ218700 macrumors 68000


    Mar 8, 2007
    Blue Dot, Red State
  3. techlover828 macrumors 68020


    Jun 28, 2007
    no, it should take 10 minutes tops, realistically more like two. Try again.
  4. arsenalgear thread starter macrumors member

    Dec 17, 2007

    So it is okay to quit Disk Utility? Nothing will get screwed up?

    Thanks for the speedy reply
  5. FJ218700 macrumors 68000


    Mar 8, 2007
    Blue Dot, Red State
    just curious, are you partitioning from the install disc or on the fly from your boot volume?
  6. arsenalgear thread starter macrumors member

    Dec 17, 2007
    On the fly from my boot volume. Should I be able to install os x on a partition created this way?
  7. scotpole macrumors member

    Apr 4, 2006

    If you did a low level format on your hard drive it could take a long time.

    I just tried to use disk utility from a notebook to correct disk problems I was having with a desktop. I connected the two with fire wire, started the desktop up holding down the T key so it would appear in target mode and the notebook would recognize it as an external drive. Disk Utility took forever, I got frustrated and quit disk utility. And it has been a long time since I have said this, I screwed up my hard drive. I could not repair the hard drive even with the installation DVD from Apple.

    But there is a silver lining to this story. I set up time machine with an external drive, and instead of having a dead partition, I was able to recover all programs and files.

    One thing that I might have done to screw up the hard drive was I did not shut down the computer properly. If you do not shut down your computer properly, it may cause bad hard drive problems in Leopard.

    Thank you Apple for Time Machine.
  8. FJ218700 macrumors 68000


    Mar 8, 2007
    Blue Dot, Red State
    yes, provided it's properly formatted.
  9. arsenalgear thread starter macrumors member

    Dec 17, 2007
    What do you mean by low level format? I didn't erase anything but instead tried adding a partition to my boot volume on the fly. Should I let it go?
  10. ajiarong macrumors newbie

    Jul 12, 2008
    i bought a iMac a week ago but already added 75G photos in iPhoto.

    Then today i followed the instruction in Disk utility to split my 700GB into two volumes: one with 100G and another one with 600GB. (I did not do anything else in this disk utility tool at all...)

    My Disk Utility stays in "Modifying partition map" for 8 hours now and still going; i am not sure what i should do next.

    Please help!
  11. gover24 macrumors newbie

    Apr 14, 2009
    I'm in the same kind of boat. I have an intel MBP, partitioned it with Boot Camp to get a Windows partition to be able to play a few games.
    I was new to partitioning and formating HDs, so I formatted it as Fat32 so both OS X and XP could read and write to it. But new games created these days do not allow install on Fat32 formats, only NTFS since they are including files over 4gb.
    I had a 200gb drive to start, gave XP 21gb, and want to partition a NTFS drive off of my OS X boot drive. (I downloaded NTFS 3G to get around that nasty OS X not writing to NTFS problem). Using Disk Utility, I live partitioned the OS X boot volume smaller so I could make the new partition NTFS.
    This was 2 days ago... I understand partitioning and reformatting drives/volumes takes time (I partitioned a 1tb external HD to have 50gb free for games and it took a day), but 2 days and counting doesn't seem right.
    Disk Utility hasn't froze, everything is running fine. I don't dare quit the program in case I lose my OS X files and programs.

    Here's a copy of the Disk Utility log to show the time so far:
    2009-04-12 16:29:10 -0400: Preparing to partition disk: “Hitachi HTS542520K9SA00 Media”
    2009-04-12 16:29:10 -0400: Partition Scheme: GUID Partition Table
    2009-04-12 16:29:10 -0400: 3 volumes will be created
    2009-04-12 16:29:10 -0400:
    2009-04-12 16:29:11 -0400: Partition 1
    2009-04-12 16:29:11 -0400: Name : “Macintosh HD”
    2009-04-12 16:29:11 -0400: Size : 139.8 GB
    2009-04-12 16:29:11 -0400: Filesystem : Mac OS Extended (Journaled)
    2009-04-12 16:29:11 -0400: Do not erase contents
    2009-04-12 16:29:11 -0400:
    2009-04-12 16:29:11 -0400: Partition 2
    2009-04-12 16:29:11 -0400: Name : “Mac NTFS HD”
    2009-04-12 16:29:11 -0400: Size : 25.2 GB
    2009-04-12 16:29:11 -0400: Filesystem : (null)
    2009-04-12 16:29:11 -0400:
    2009-04-12 16:29:11 -0400: Partition 3
    2009-04-12 16:29:11 -0400: Name : “WINDOWS XP”
    2009-04-12 16:29:11 -0400: Size : 21.1 GB
    2009-04-12 16:29:11 -0400: Filesystem : MS-DOS (FAT32)
    2009-04-12 16:29:11 -0400: Do not erase contents
    2009-04-12 16:29:11 -0400:
    2009-04-12 16:29:11 -0400: Modifying partition map.​
  12. enirehtac03 macrumors newbie

    Sep 1, 2009
    what is the update on this thread?

    I'm in the same boat, but unlike all the other info I have been able to find on this problem, I've been running it for 2 days!

    Any info I find on this always ends at "I've been running it for ___ hours"..."it gives me warnings if I try to quit"..."what should I do?"

    Mysteriously the response is always lacking....:confused:

    Anyone got this problem solved yet?

    Also - if it doesn't work, and I am forced to quit the process, is there another way to create a partition besides disk util? This is my first mac so I'm not so knowledgeable on troubleshooting yet. Have to learn the software still...
    I have leopard os. (technically - i should have snow leopard b/c I got this comp at the same time snow leopard came out, but I live in India so I got gypped.)

    which brings me to a third question.... I might be able to get leopard free through the authorized reseller who I got this laptop through, but maybe in a month or so. When I do finally get it - will have have to go through all this partition stuff again or not? I'm assuming it is best to install all my extraneous programs and personal data on a partition that the OS is not on, so when I put the new OS on it will not erase the extraneous programs or data. Please advise.

    Thanks so much
  13. enirehtac03 macrumors newbie

    Sep 1, 2009
    ok, just in the name of follow up I'll tell you what happened. After letting my computer try to partition the disk for the whole 3rd day, I finally ended the process, despite the warnings. Fortunately nothing happened.

    Then I went on to use boot camp to create a small partition for windows for my work programs.

    Then I tried to create a partition using disk utility again (once from os, and once while using os cd to boot the system). Failure!!!

    Now I think if I want to partition I have to literally start from scratch and erase all the work I have done so far. Any suggestions?

    Also I've been reading a lot of posts where people are saying that putting a partition on your internal drive to back up your data is stupid, but wouldn't that work out well when upgrading from leopard to snow leopard? Or is there some way where you don't have to start from scratch during the upgrade.

    Okay I'm rambling now.
  14. arsenalgear thread starter macrumors member

    Dec 17, 2007
    Hi there,

    If you want, I think you can partition without erasing with an app like DiskWarrior or Techtool Pro, though I am far from 100% sure. Just go to and search for "partition".

    You should be eligible for Snow Leopard at a significantly reduced price under Apple's Up-to-Date Program.

    When you install Snow Leopard whether through an Upgrade or Archive & Install, OS X preserves all of your settings and apps. Nothing gets erased through these install methods, so you don't need to put your apps on a separate partition.

  15. enirehtac03 macrumors newbie

    Sep 1, 2009
    update on the trials and tribulations of partitioning

    Thanks for the Snow Leopard info. I think I'll still wait to see if I can get it free through the dealer here in a month or so, otherwise I'll purchase it online. I don't think there is a deadline for this stuff.

    As far as the partition stuff goes, I opted for erasing the drive, again, and then partitioned from disk util in the start up page when you go to re-install the OS.
    That worked great and my partitions (5 in total) took under a minute to do. SUCCESS!

    Then I re-installed my apps and went to use boot camp to install windows on my pre-partitioned drive. FAILURE!

    "The startup disk cannot be partitioned or restored to a single partition."

    Tear (Is there no crying smiley to put here?):(

    So I decided to try to do this without using bootcamp. Although I am new to mac I'm fairly experienced with PCs and how to LEARN to use new things. That's part of the fun. Anywho, the partition/volume set aside for windows was formatted in the FAT32. I did some reading and found out that rEFIt might help, so I downloaded that and now have to figure out how to use it. I plan on using some free unix os in the future too, so that is why I opted for rEFIt rather than just going at it myself.

    I'll make sure to update my tale of discovery as it continues...
  16. enirehtac03 macrumors newbie

    Sep 1, 2009
    uh as I fell deeper into the rabbit hole, I ran into that crazy grinning cat. (Make sure you have some hot chocolate and have taken any required bathroom breaks...this is a long post)

    1) OS X System partition (50 GB) CHECK
    2) Data Partition (200 GB) CHECK
    3) Backup Partition (200 GB) ERASED
    4) Windows Partition (7 GB) CHECK
    5) Unix Partition (7 GB) ERASED

    DISCLAIMER ABOUT ANNOYANCE: Yes, I know most people will not find any logic or merit in the fact that I want a separate partition on my hard drive for backup. As it is I do NOT have an external big enough to take a back up of all my data, I do NOT have the money to go out and buy one (I live in India people, remember?) and basically I WANT it to be that way. So please don't argue the validity of my choice, just help me solve the problem instead. THANK YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    So anyway...
    I made all the partitions in a snap, when rebooting my entire computer. I loaded OS X smoothly on the first partition. I found out that you can't use boot camp (above post) and decided to install window another way. I found out the rEFIt is really only helpful when you are starting up your computer so you can see the different ways to start it.

    I tried loading windows from the start up disk and when it got to the part of what drive to install it on, I found out it didn't recognize any of my partitions. Bummer.

    Researched on the net for a half an hour trying to find out why it wouldn't recognize my disk partitions.

    Decided to load it again for the hell of it. This time it did recognize the partitions, some of them. Partition 1), 2) and 3) showed + an addition 0.1GB partition. 4) and 5) did not show, but instead appeared as unpartioned space.

    So I went to create a partition out of the "unpartitioned space" and then heard the chilling sound of windows cackling in my face. Hahahehehahahe. Couldn't do it, apparently there were already too many partitions on the harddrive as it was.

    So I deleted the 0.1GB partition...still to I deleted the 3) it would let me partition a new place to install windows.

    So I made a 7 GB partition and went on my merry way installing windows. Success! I used the installation CD from OS X to install the drivers in windows. Success!

    I loaded back into Leopard and saw that instead of my original 5 drives showing on the desktop, there were now only 3 (one of them relabled as BootCamp ironically, seeing as how in the beginning it said that boot camp wouldn't work on my pre-existing partitions)

    So I went to disk util to see the extra space and it was registered as "free space" - all 456 GB of it. Curious...

    IMPORTANT NOTE AT THIS POINT: My entire harddrive = 500 GB (or more specifically 456 GB)

    So I was trying to figure out how to re-format this free space so it can become a usable partition. Again...researching on the net for a while.

    I opted for starting the comp up from the OS X install CD again, going into disk util from there and seeing if I could re-format. Alas, there was no option, only the erase disk option ... but I didn't know if that applied to my entire hard drive or only this "free space". Interestingly enough when I clicked on the main harddrive...went to partition and clicked on the separate partitions already recognized, it said that they would NOT be erased.

    However, after reading the stories from the internet on erasing free space, I instead chicken out and decided to boot in windows as it is easy to partition disk space from there.

    I booted windows and remade the 200 GB partition in the FAT/FAT32 (can't remember which one, don't really care) format and then rebooted in OS X so I could reformat into the Mac OS Extended (Journaled). Reformatting = Success!

    Here is the problem now: the reformated partitioned drive (set up to be 200 GB from windows) is showing as 456 GB (along with my other partitons of 50 GB and 200 GB and 7GB). What is going on?

    While writing this post I decided not to be a scaredy cat and go back and try the erasing thing from starting up with the OS install disk. That was a mistake.

    I went in to disk util and guess what? It only recognized the back up partition now. Ok, so I got scared again and decided to to reboot into Leopard and then I'm not sure of what my plan was after that.

    All I know is that I just tried to reboot and low and behold, operating system not found. Yippy kai yay, mf.

    Now it's off to reinstalling EVERYTHING AGAIN, for the 4th time since I got my computer.

    Are these install CDs meant to hold up for so long????????????

    Awaiting your advice on which potion to take or cake to eat to shrink/grow my harddrives to the correct size without causing this lafarda?

    How was the cocoa? Good Idea, no?
  17. enirehtac03 macrumors newbie

    Sep 1, 2009
    SOLVED in a bad sort of way

    Just incase anyone is following this horrendous post...

    Ok so, multiple installs and removals, blah blah

    Finally figured out IF YOU WANT/NEEED WINDOWS ON YOUR COMPUTER YOU CAN ONLY HAVE 3 PARTITIONS MAX. Yep, that's it 3. You have to install windows on the last (THIRD) partition otherwise it will not boot. Note: when you actually do go to install windows it will show 4 partitions instead of 3 (one of them is like 200 MB big, a hidden partition that the system makes I think.)

    So finally done.

    Oh, is it common for the optical drive to start making noises that you can hear when it is reading a disk on a 13" mbp that is new, or should I see if I can get it replaced. I've only used it like 30 times and every one of those times before today I never noticed the noise it is suddenly making.

    It works fine now but I hope it does not konk out in the future.
  18. Imperialist_Reign macrumors newbie

    Aug 3, 2016
    Its taking way longer then 10 minutes for me and i am only partitioning 52 GB...
  19. campyguy macrumors 68040

    Mar 21, 2014
    Portland / Seattle
    Drive capacities were a lot smaller 8 years ago, when that post you quoted was written... :rolleyes:

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