View Full Version : No HDD showing up in disk utility

11-30-2017, 02:18 PM
Let me back up a little bit here. I have a 500GB SSD in my late 2009 27" iMac. It worked fine for a year. Decided to sell it, so I wiped the machine by going into disk utility and deleting the drive + erasing all it's data. I clicked re-install OS, downloaded it, and at the end it gave me an error saying "Could not create a preboot volume for APFS install." So I went to this tutorial where you restart, boot back into utility, and delete basically everything before reinstalling it.

Here is my issue: after having done this, no hard drive (in this case SSD) shows up, just the base OSX thing which is 2gb big. Please help!

*edit* everyone here seems to be skipping over the actual issue. There are no hard drives that show up in disk utility

11-30-2017, 02:43 PM
Welcome to the forum.

Do you have a backup? I ask because I think if you do and you can boot from it, you can gain access to the SSD by booting from something else and then repartition/prepare the SSD for installation.

11-30-2017, 02:56 PM
Unfortunately I do not have one

11-30-2017, 03:04 PM
Well how did you wipe the hard drive? You cannot successfully erase a drive you are booted from.

11-30-2017, 03:05 PM
I... honestly don't know? I just went into utility and deleted it. How come the hard drive isn't showing up though? I don't care about data loss. I just need the hard drive, the internal hard drive, to show up.

11-30-2017, 05:19 PM
You probably wiped the hard drive from the recovery partition. Go back into the recovery partition (command plus r) and format the 500 GB SSD as HFS+ Journaled, GUID scheme. Then you can install High Sierra which at the same time will reformat your SSD as APFS (new Apple file system for flash storage).

By the way, you never want to cut the limb you're sitting on from the tree. ;D I hope you understand what it is you did.....

11-30-2017, 06:42 PM
I don't think you understand. The SSD is. not. showing. up. in. the. disk utility!

11-30-2017, 07:23 PM
We got it that it's not showing up. There's a reason for that. You need to be booted from some other device for it to show up. Right now, all that is on the drive is the recovery section, if that. The base OS you are seeing is ON the drive, but the rest of the drive cannot be seen. That's what I told you in post #2 and it hasn't changed in the meantime, no. matter. how. many. periods. you. use.

So, boot from something else and run Disk Utility from there.

As chscag said, you sawed off the limb you were sitting on. You need another limb to sit on.

11-30-2017, 07:37 PM
How do I boot from something else and what else do I use to boot

12-01-2017, 12:59 AM
You need to have an external hard drive with clone of the operating system which would be bootable.

Next choice is athe original system install DVD of OS X which came with the machine when new. For that model this is OS X.6.1.

The nthird option would be for you to purchase from Apple Online a copy of Snow Leopard OS X.6.6 preferably, boot from that. Format the hard drive Mac OS Extended, update via the App Store to OS X.6.8, and from there you can update free of charge to El Capitan OS X.11. You will need a current Apple ID to access the App Store for this download.

This is why thew first part of my signature concerning the original discs is so vital.

12-01-2017, 06:06 AM
Harry pretty well covered it. One other option, if you have access to a Mac that works, is to download the macOS installer for your machine from Apple, then use DiskmakerX to create a bootable USB thumb drive (8GB or more is required) and then boot from that on the iMac and install the OS from there. One of the features of the installer is that it also has Disk Utility, so you can partition and format the internal drive once booted from the USB thumb drive.

12-01-2017, 12:23 PM
If I take a Macbook, hook up a hard drive and make a time machine, can I use that? What do I do?

12-01-2017, 03:39 PM
Cloning is easier to work with and boot the external hard drive with. Most here recommend SuperDuper or CarbonCopyCloner. You can use SuperDuper as freeware to do this.


CarbonCopyCloner has a free 30 day trial:-