Proper Way To Eject External Hard Drive?

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by blairh, Apr 1, 2011.

  1. blairh macrumors 68030

    blairh

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2007
    #1
    Hey everybody,

    So a few weeks back I bought a Western Digital My Book Studio Edition II 4 TB external HD as my Lacie 2 TB was running out of free space. Seeing that it was formatted for a Mac I didn't bother to insert the included CD. I just plugged the HD into my MBP and when I was ready to eject I double clicked the HD and ejected it.

    This has been working fine for me for weeks, but now recently I've noticed that my external is not always recognized when I connect it to my MBP. Last night after a third try it was recognized on my desktop, and once I ejected it as I had before, the power light on the front of the HD would flash on every 4 seconds.

    I looked at the manual online and it states that the HD is in 'standby' mode when this happens. I shut down my MBP (with the HD still attached yet in standby mode) and the HD promptly powered down too.

    So I'm wondering what exactly is the proper method to eject my external from my MBP (without having to power down the laptop). Do I follow the same steps as previous but just hit the power button on my HD once it's in standby mode?

    Your responses are appreciated. I already moved all my previous Lacie media to the WD and don't want to lose it. Do I need to load the software that came with my HD in the first place? I'd rather not if I can avoid it. Thanks.
     
  2. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    #2
    Just right-click and eject, or drag the icon to the Trash. Give it a few seconds to complete the process before turning off the drive.
     
  3. blairh thread starter macrumors 68030

    blairh

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2007
    #3
    So after ejecting the drive I should hit the power button on the external?
     
  4. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    #4
    You can, but you don't have to. If you want to leave it on, do so.
     
  5. Jolly Giant macrumors 6502a

    Jolly Giant

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2010
    Location:
    Hamburg, Germany
    #5
    doesn't clicking here eject the drive(s) for you ?

    [​IMG]

    you can but usually you don't need to.
     
  6. blairh thread starter macrumors 68030

    blairh

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2007
    #6
    I've never gone to that screen to do so. I just double click the external HD icon on my desktop and eject accordingly.

    The problem/question I have is that I believe the HD is in standby mode after I eject, meaning I believe I need to hit the power button too post ejection. That's how it worked on my Lacie. Eject the drive, wait a few seconds for it to wind down, then switch off the power. With the WD it has a button versus the Lacie's switch.
     
  7. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    #7
    Once you've ejected the drive, it doesn't matter to your Mac whether you power the drive down or not. The Mac won't access the drive unless you mount it again.
     
  8. blairh, Apr 1, 2011
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2011

    blairh thread starter macrumors 68030

    blairh

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2007
    #8
    Right but I'm thinking more along the lines of not messing with the data on the external. My gut tells me that once the external is in standby mode I should push the power button to properly shut it down. Perhaps I'm wrong but I'm thinking that by not doing so I've been improperly shutting my external off (by unplugging the power from the back of the external once it detaches from my Mac, in standby mode). And hence why it's not always recognized on my MBP every time I've tried to connect it lately to my MBP to begin with (which has me concerned).
     
  9. NikFinn macrumors 6502a

    NikFinn

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2009
    Location:
    MA
    #9
    If you want to quickly eject more than one external drive, check out UnDock. Let's you eject all the drives connected in one click.
     
  10. blairh thread starter macrumors 68030

    blairh

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2007
    #10
    I just want to know if I need to power down the external once I mount it off the desktop. I believe the answer is yes because the light on the front of the HD is on standby (blinking every 4 seconds) post ejection.
     
  11. SandboxGeneral Moderator

    SandboxGeneral

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2010
    Location:
    Orbiting a G-type Main Sequence Star
    #11
    You're making this way more difficult than it is. Just eject the drive from OS X as the others have said and be on your way. If you want to shut down the external HDD, you can. If you want to leave it on, you most certainly can do that too. The light staying on, is letting you know that it is still powered and not connected to [OS X]. It will not harm your HDD to be left on or turned off.
     
  12. blairh thread starter macrumors 68030

    blairh

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2007
    #12
    No I'm not. I was just trying to get a straight answer as to whether or not I need to hit the power button post dismount of drive after ejection. That's all. Up until this point I was just yanking the power cord off the back of the drive after ejection thinking that was the way to go. Until the flakiness of the drive appearing on the desktop began combined with my research showing that the drive is actually in standby mode once it's properly ejected from desktop.

    I'm going to go ahead and hit the power button post ejection to see if it shuts off the external entirely like it did when I powered down the MBP with the external ejected but still attached via a firewire cable and in standby mode.
     

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