Erase Failed

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Erase Failed

Charles Hawkins
Hello, all,

I bought a 4 TB Seagate drive to hold my Backups.  I hooked it up to my iMac, copied some docs re warranty to another drive, then per instructions opened Disk Utility to erase and name the drive.  It is formatted for WIN machines as it comes out of the box.

When I tried the erase procedure, I got the following:

Unmounting disk
Couldn’t open device.
Operation failed…

Any ideas as to what might be happening here?  I am running OSX 10.12.3, and chose the “Mac OS Extended (Journaled).  The disk is in a protable external enclosure, connected to the iMac via USB 3.

I’ve tried several times with no luck, and now when I remove the disk and plug it in again, I get the “…not readable by this computer” message.

I have an older Seagate 4 TB that I use for other purposes, and I was able to format it for Mac with no problems.

Ideas?  Does it mean this disk is faulty?

Thanks,

Chuck

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Re: Erase Failed

James R Cutler
Chuck,

In my experience, Disk Utility does not alway like Windows-formatted disks. My workaround using terminal is:

Launch Terminal (/Applications/Utilities/Terminal.app) and use the following:

diskutil list

If there is the right number of drives shown, figure out which one is the problem drive. For example, if there is only one internal drive, it would be disk0 and the external drive would be disk1. Assuming the external drive is disk1, enter the following command:

diskutil eraseDisk GPT disk1

or, if it insists that you don’t have permission, from an administrator-enabled account:

sudo diskutil eraseDisk GPT disk1
<administratorPassword>

When this command completes, the drive should be visible to Disk Utility.

Good Luck

James R. Cutler
PGP keys at http://pgp.mit.edu

On Jun 28, 2017, at 1:14 PM, Charles Hawkins <[hidden email]> wrote:

Hello, all,

I bought a 4 TB Seagate drive to hold my Backups.  I hooked it up to my iMac, copied some docs re warranty to another drive, then per instructions opened Disk Utility to erase and name the drive.  It is formatted for WIN machines as it comes out of the box.

When I tried the erase procedure, I got the following:

Unmounting disk
Couldn’t open device.
Operation failed…

Any ideas as to what might be happening here?  I am running OSX 10.12.3, and chose the “Mac OS Extended (Journaled).  The disk is in a protable external enclosure, connected to the iMac via USB 3.

I’ve tried several times with no luck, and now when I remove the disk and plug it in again, I get the “…not readable by this computer” message.

I have an older Seagate 4 TB that I use for other purposes, and I was able to format it for Mac with no problems.

Ideas?  Does it mean this disk is faulty?

Thanks,

Chuck

Charles E. Hawkins                                  Ask Questions
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Phone:    859-572-0925
FAX:        859-572-6092



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Re: Erase Failed

Howard E. Rosenman
Pardon my stating the obvious, but did you partition the drive before you tried to format/erase it?


--
Howard E. Rosenman
Everett, WA, USA

On Jun 28, 2017, at 10:54 AM, James R Cutler <[hidden email]> wrote:

Chuck,

In my experience, Disk Utility does not alway like Windows-formatted disks. My workaround using terminal is:

Launch Terminal (/Applications/Utilities/Terminal.app) and use the following:

diskutil list

If there is the right number of drives shown, figure out which one is the problem drive. For example, if there is only one internal drive, it would be disk0 and the external drive would be disk1. Assuming the external drive is disk1, enter the following command:

diskutil eraseDisk GPT disk1

or, if it insists that you don’t have permission, from an administrator-enabled account:

sudo diskutil eraseDisk GPT disk1
<administratorPassword>

When this command completes, the drive should be visible to Disk Utility.

Good Luck

James R. Cutler
PGP keys at http://pgp.mit.edu

On Jun 28, 2017, at 1:14 PM, Charles Hawkins <[hidden email]> wrote:

Hello, all,

I bought a 4 TB Seagate drive to hold my Backups.  I hooked it up to my iMac, copied some docs re warranty to another drive, then per instructions opened Disk Utility to erase and name the drive.  It is formatted for WIN machines as it comes out of the box.

When I tried the erase procedure, I got the following:

Unmounting disk
Couldn’t open device.
Operation failed…

Any ideas as to what might be happening here?  I am running OSX 10.12.3, and chose the “Mac OS Extended (Journaled).  The disk is in a protable external enclosure, connected to the iMac via USB 3.

I’ve tried several times with no luck, and now when I remove the disk and plug it in again, I get the “…not readable by this computer” message.

I have an older Seagate 4 TB that I use for other purposes, and I was able to format it for Mac with no problems.

Ideas?  Does it mean this disk is faulty?

Thanks,

Chuck

Charles E. Hawkins                                  Ask Questions
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Phone:    859-572-0925
FAX:        859-572-6092



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Re: Erase Failed

Jeffrey Jones-2
In reply to this post by James R Cutler
Be very careful with James R Cutler's instructions.

"For example, if there is only one internal drive, it would be disk0 and the external drive would be disk1."

On my system, with one internal drive, disk1 is the startup volume -- the one that contains the system and all my data. It is a CoreStorage logical volume residing on disk0, which is an "internal, physical" volume. (Perhaps it is because I am using FileVault.) With CoreStorage, there might not be a one-to-one correspondence between "diskX" volumes and attached physical drives.

My point is, be sure you know which disk you are erasing -- disk1 is not necessarily an external disk.


On Jun 28, 2017, at 1:54 PM, James R Cutler <[hidden email]> wrote:

Chuck,

In my experience, Disk Utility does not alway like Windows-formatted disks. My workaround using terminal is:

Launch Terminal (/Applications/Utilities/Terminal.app) and use the following:

diskutil list

If there is the right number of drives shown, figure out which one is the problem drive. For example, if there is only one internal drive, it would be disk0 and the external drive would be disk1. Assuming the external drive is disk1, enter the following command:

diskutil eraseDisk GPT disk1

or, if it insists that you don’t have permission, from an administrator-enabled account:

sudo diskutil eraseDisk GPT disk1
<administratorPassword>

When this command completes, the drive should be visible to Disk Utility.

Good Luck

James R. Cutler
PGP keys at http://pgp.mit.edu

On Jun 28, 2017, at 1:14 PM, Charles Hawkins <[hidden email]> wrote:

Hello, all,

I bought a 4 TB Seagate drive to hold my Backups.  I hooked it up to my iMac, copied some docs re warranty to another drive, then per instructions opened Disk Utility to erase and name the drive.  It is formatted for WIN machines as it comes out of the box.

When I tried the erase procedure, I got the following:

Unmounting disk
Couldn’t open device.
Operation failed…

Any ideas as to what might be happening here?  I am running OSX 10.12.3, and chose the “Mac OS Extended (Journaled).  The disk is in a protable external enclosure, connected to the iMac via USB 3.

I’ve tried several times with no luck, and now when I remove the disk and plug it in again, I get the “…not readable by this computer” message.

I have an older Seagate 4 TB that I use for other purposes, and I was able to format it for Mac with no problems.

Ideas?  Does it mean this disk is faulty?

Thanks,

Chuck

Charles E. Hawkins                                  Ask Questions
Professor Emeritus of Physics                Seek Answers
Department of Physics and Geology       Question the Answers
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Phone:    859-572-0925
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Re: Erase Failed

@lbutlr
In reply to this post by Charles Hawkins

On Jun 28, 2017, at 11:14 AM, Charles Hawkins <[hidden email]> wrote:
> Unmounting disk
> Couldn’t open device.
> Operation failed…

I suspect this is a Seagate Desktop drive in an enclosure and not a bare drive? These are often mucked with to prevent you “accidentally” erasing them (because you might lose their precious worthless software).

You want to erase the entire partition table and reformat the drive as GUID (it is almost certainly formatted MBR which is useless).

Open Disk Utility, select the DRIVE (not the volume), and Select erase. Set the scheme to GUID. That should get rid of all the Windows kruft.

--
Apple broke AppleScripting signatures in Mail.app, so no random signatures.




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Re: Erase Failed

Johann Beda
In reply to this post by Charles Hawkins
On Jun-28-2017, at 10:14 AM, Charles Hawkins <[hidden email]> wrote:
> I bought a 4 TB Seagate drive to hold my Backups.  I hooked it up to my iMac, copied some docs re warranty to another drive, then per instructions opened Disk Utility to erase and name the drive.  It is formatted for WIN machines as it comes out of the box.

Hi Charles,

I have had experience with a few Seagate drives that seem to be formatted NTFS, and maybe even need some drivers installed to be usable on a macOS machine, that are "difficult" to erase and reformat.

I have taken to restarting from the Recovery partition (restart using Command-R) and invoking Disk Utility from that, and it seems to be able to reformat the volume as HFS+ without complaint. For portable drives, I usually create a small FAT or exFAT partition in case there is ever a need to get data to or from a windows machine - I think FAT is most widely supported but has a file size limit of 4GB so might not be good if you want to deal with video files that are larger than 4GB.

 - jb







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Re: Erase Failed

Charles Hawkins
Johann,

I just tried your recommendation and it worked!

Thanks,

Chuck

On Jul 9, 2017, at 2:46 PM, Johann Beda <[hidden email]> wrote:

On Jun-28-2017, at 10:14 AM, Charles Hawkins <[hidden email]> wrote:
I bought a 4 TB Seagate drive to hold my Backups.  I hooked it up to my iMac, copied some docs re warranty to another drive, then per instructions opened Disk Utility to erase and name the drive.  It is formatted for WIN machines as it comes out of the box.

Hi Charles,

I have had experience with a few Seagate drives that seem to be formatted NTFS, and maybe even need some drivers installed to be usable on a macOS machine, that are "difficult" to erase and reformat.

I have taken to restarting from the Recovery partition (restart using Command-R) and invoking Disk Utility from that, and it seems to be able to reformat the volume as HFS+ without complaint. For portable drives, I usually create a small FAT or exFAT partition in case there is ever a need to get data to or from a windows machine - I think FAT is most widely supported but has a file size limit of 4GB so might not be good if you want to deal with video files that are larger than 4GB.

- jb





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