Repair disk fails

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by Dhelsdon, Dec 9, 2011.

  1. Dhelsdon macrumors 65816

    Dhelsdon

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2010
    Location:
    Canadian Eh!
    #1
    Hey guys and gals,

    looking for some advice here. I've got a Western Digital My Passport SE 1TB drive. I use it daily to run my VM's for work, lately it's been having issues mounting.

    Today I came into work and lo and behold the disk won't mount. I verified the disk, it said to repair it. I repaired the disk and it failed.

    It tells me to backup the disk and format it, how am I supposed to backup a disk that won't mount?

    I should mention it's got two partitions, one is FAT32 the other is my Time Machine so it's Mac OS Extended Journaled. I did this because I wanted to have the option of running my VM's in Windows if I ever needed to. Was it a mistake to use two separate formats on one disk?

    If I successfully back it up, should I stick to the mac format?

    I thought VMware Fusion would play nicer with FAT32 but apparently that isn't the case!
     
  2. Fishrrman macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #2
    "I should mention it's got two partitions, one is FAT32 the other is my Time Machine so it's Mac OS Extended Journaled. I did this because I wanted to have the option of running my VM's in Windows if I ever needed to. Was it a mistake to use two separate formats on one disk?"

    I'm not a "cross-platform" user -- I don't use Windows. For a while, I thought that having a drive in "multiple formats" (i.e., FAT32 and HFS+ on the same physical drive) didn't matter.

    But after seeing a number of postings by users who have experienced the same problems as yourself, I've come to the conclusion that this is not the best idea.

    This is a guess (and ONLY "a guess"), but I sense that on the Mac side, Disk Utility and other Mac apps are "wise enough" to deal with multiple-format drives, BUT, on the Windows side of things, this is not the case. Thus, a Windows app, trying to "correct" a disk problem, may readily trash the part of the drive that is Mac-formatted. Try to use that drive with a Mac again, and..... you've seen the results.


    "If I successfully back it up, should I stick to the mac format?"

    Yup.

    I'd suggest keeping your important "Mac stuff" on a _Mac-only_ formatted drive (it might be partitioned into multiple volumes, but ALL those volume partitions should be Mac-format only). If the data on the drive is important to you, I would never let that drive be "touched" by a Windows PC.

    For cross-platform purposes, use a "dedicated" FAT32 drive without a Mac-formatted partition on it.

    Others may reply that this is not necessary.

    But why risk problems again, like the one you're having now?
     
  3. Dhelsdon thread starter macrumors 65816

    Dhelsdon

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2010
    Location:
    Canadian Eh!
    #3
    Thank you for the detailed reply. I've begun backing up my drive. I finally got it to mount after 2/3 repairs. I'll not be using FAT32 anymore!
     
  4. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    #4
    It's not a mistake to have two partitions with different formats, but FAT32 isn't a great choice. For Windows, NTFS or exFAT is better.

    FAT32 (File Allocation Table)
    • Read/Write FAT32 from both native Windows and native Mac OS X.
      [*]Maximum file size: 4GB.
    • Maximum volume size: 2TB
    • You can use this format if you share the drive between Mac OS X and Windows computers and have no files larger than 4GB.
    NTFS (Windows NT File System)
    • Read/Write NTFS from native Windows.
    • Read only NTFS from native Mac OS X
      [*]To Read/Write/Format NTFS from Mac OS X, here are some alternatives:
      • For Mac OS X 10.4 or later (32 or 64-bit), install Paragon (approx $20) (Best Choice for Lion)
      • For 32-bit Mac OS X, install NTFS-3G for Mac OS X (free) (does not work in 64-bit mode)
      • For 64-bit Snow Leopard, read this: MacFUSE for 64-bit Snow Leopard
      • Some have reported problems using Tuxera (approx $36).
      • Native NTFS support can be enabled in Snow Leopard and Lion, but is not advisable, due to instability.
    • AirPort Extreme (802.11n) and Time Capsule do not support NTFS
    • Maximum file size: 16 TB
    • Maximum volume size: 256TB
    • You can use this format if you routinely share a drive with multiple Windows systems.
    HFS+ (Hierarchical File System, a.k.a. Mac OS Extended (Journaled) Don't use case-sensitive)
    • Read/Write HFS+ from native Mac OS X
    • Required for Time Machine or Carbon Copy Cloner or SuperDuper! backups of Mac internal hard drive.
      [*]To Read/Write HFS+ from Windows, Install MacDrive
      [*]To Read HFS+ (but not Write) from Windows, Install HFSExplorer
    • Maximum file size: 8EiB
    • Maximum volume size: 8EiB
    • You can use this format if you only use the drive with Mac OS X, or use it for backups of your Mac OS X internal drive, or if you only share it with one Windows PC (with MacDrive installed on the PC)
    exFAT (FAT64)
    • Supported in Mac OS X only in 10.6.5 or later.
    • Not all Windows versions support exFAT. See disadvantages.
    • exFAT (Extended File Allocation Table)
    • AirPort Extreme (802.11n) and Time Capsule do not support exFAT
    • Maximum file size: 16 EiB
    • Maximum volume size: 64 ZiB
    • You can use this format if it is supported by all computers with which you intend to share the drive. See "disadvantages" for details.
     

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