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How to format your drive Mac OS ExFAT on Mac OS 10.6 (Snow Leopard) to Mac OS 10.10 (Yosemite)

 

IMPORTANT: This article applies to the following Mac OS X versions: 

  • Mac OS 10.10 (Yosemite)
  • Mac OS 10.9 (Mavericks)
  • Mac OS 10.8 (Mountain Lion)
  • Mac OS 10.7 (Lion)
  • Mac OS 10.6 (Snow Leopard)

Need Help?

It is important to keep the following in mind when formatting ExFAT: 

  • ExFAT is not compatible with Time Machine. Time Machine requires the drive to be formatted Mac OS Extended (Journaled) also known as HFS+
  • ExFAT drives must be safely ejected to prevent corruption because ExFAT is not a journaled file system
  • When using between macOS and Windows, drives should always be formatted on macOS because not all Windows allocation unit sizes (block sizes) are supported by macOS which will prevent the drive from mounting

Looking for a different formatting option?

IMPORTANT: Reformatting the drive will erase all data on the drive, so you should copy any data you want off the drive prior to formatting.

  1. Open Disk Utility
    To open Disk Utility - Open Finder > Applications > Utilities > Disk Utility
  2. Select the drive on the left showing the capacity
  3. Select the Partition tab on the right-hand side of the window
    NOTE: If you don't see the Partition tab then the volume is selected, not the drive
  4. Under Partition Layout, select 1 Partition
  5. Provide a Name for the volume
  6. Set Format to ExFAT
  7. Click the Options button and select GUID Partition Table

  8. Click OK
  9. Click Apply - the following will be displayed
    IMPORTANT: Reformatting the drive will erase all data on the drive, so you should copy any data you want off the drive prior to formatting.

  10. Click Partition to finish the process
  11. The drive should now be formatted ExFAT and can be confirmed by selecting the indented entry which will now show ExFAT at the bottom of Disk Utility