External hard drive formatting problems/questions.

Discussion in 'MacBook' started by l.mac, Jul 19, 2011.

  1. l.mac macrumors newbie

    Jul 19, 2011
    I just bought a WD Hard Drive and am trying to get it to work on my MacBook. OSX: Leopard 10.5.8, and the hard drive model: My Passport Essential, 500 GB. I've been on the WD FAQ and Knowledge Base pages, but seem to be going around in circles.

    When I click on the WD SmartWare icon on my desktop I get the message "Unreadable WD SmartWare Drive"- Do I get this message because the hard drive is still formatted as NTFS and do I have to reformat to HFS or FAT32? Since I don't need it to work on windows, can I format the entire drive to HFS?
    If yes, how do I do that?

    I'm not that Mac savvy, and usually just muddle my way through any kind of problems that pop up. I don't understand what format I should use (HFS or FAT32- or if I can even format the hard drive to either). Any help, or explanation as to what either of those formats mean, would be helpful.
  2. miles01110 macrumors Core


    Jul 24, 2006
    The Ivory Tower (I'm not coming down)
    Plug in and turn on your external hard drive. Go to Utilities and find Disk Utility. There is an "Erase" tab (iirc) where you can erase your drive and reformat it as Mac OS Extended (Journaled).

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