Need to erase old external hard drive

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I've read some posts about deleting information off an old overloaded hard drive. It mentions "partitions" and to plug in the old hard drive and delete the partition. I'm not comfortable with that because I don't understand partitions to begin with. I'm backing up now with a 2T Seagate and trying to erase the information on my old smaller version to give to a friend. Can someone enlighten me? ~ luv
 
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I've read some posts about deleting information off an old overloaded hard drive. It mentions "partitions" and to plug in the old hard drive and delete the partition. I'm not comfortable with that because I don't understand partitions to begin with. I'm backing up now with a 2T Seagate and trying to erase the information on my old smaller version to give to a friend. Can someone enlighten me? ~ luv

Hi Luv - you'll need to provide some more information, i.e. does the old HD have more than one partition? A physical HD can be setup into 'logical' partitions, each behaving as a virtual drive, so just wondering if you know if the drive under consideration has one or more partitions?

But, this really may be irrelevant to your desire to simply give the old HD to a friend - you can simply reformat the HD w/ the OS (assume Apple compatible) needed - so provide us more details on the old HD (brand/model/size), current formatting, and what computer your friend is using which would impact on how to re-format the old HD. Dave :)
 
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My laptop's HD is partitioned into 2 ( info provided below )

The old external drive is a Seagate FreeAgent Go FW - 320 GB

The new user has an iPad he'll be backing up.

His desktop computer, I don't know about.
Does it have anything to do with my deleting or reformatting this old HD or does he have to deal with the reformat?

Thank you in advance ~ Luv

Name : Macintosh HD
Type : Volume

Disk Identifier : disk0s2
Mount Point : /
System Name : Mac OS X
System Version : 10.6.8
System Build : 10K549
File System : Mac OS Extended (Journaled)
Connection Bus : SATA
Device Tree : IODeviceTree:/PCI0@0/SATA@B/PRT0@0/PMP@0
Writable : Yes
Universal Unique Identifier : ECFDDA31-B971-3E18-97CD-DDAF82E292EB
Capacity : 499.76 GB (499,763,888,128 Bytes)
Free Space : 224.92 GB (224,920,207,360 Bytes)
Used : 274.84 GB (274,843,680,768 Bytes)
Number of Files : 926,088
Number of Folders : 228,587
Owners Enabled : Yes
Can Turn Owners Off : Yes
Can Repair Permissions : Yes
Can Be Verified : Yes
Can Be Repaired : Yes
Can Be Formatted : Yes
Bootable : Yes
Supports Journaling : Yes
Journaled : Yes
Disk Number : 0
Partition Number : 2
 
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Info from old HD

Name : linda's back up drive
Type : Volume

Disk Identifier : disk1s2
Mount Point : /Volumes/linda's back up drive
File System : Mac OS Extended (Journaled)
Connection Bus : FireWire
Device Tree : IODeviceTree:/PCI0@0/RP05@16/FRWR@0/node@203702001048bb/sbp-2@c000
Writable : Yes
Universal Unique Identifier : C7C975C1-4CFB-3105-96AA-E5E7B4AF9E38
Capacity : 319.73 GB (319,728,959,488 Bytes)
Free Space : 78.89 GB (78,889,136,128 Bytes)
Used : 240.84 GB (240,839,823,360 Bytes)
Number of Files : 1,205,586
Number of Folders : 240,573
Owners Enabled : No
Can Turn Owners Off : Yes
Can Be Formatted : Yes
Bootable : Yes
Supports Journaling : Yes
Journaled : Yes
Disk Number : 1
Partition Number : 2
 

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Luvinex, I will make some presumptions here; As you are unclear about partitions it's probable you don't have any on the external HD in question. They are in a nutshell different sections on a HD that act like separate HD's. If you only see one when you plug it in then it is not partitioned.
To erase it for use with a Mac device you need to plug it in, open Disk Utility (just do a spotlight search for it and double click it)
You will see it in the sidebar of the window that appears. There will be two names for it, one is the manufacturers name for the product eg Seagate 50Gb portable HD, under that will be the name you gave it or if you didn't name it it will be "Untitled".
Select that drive, go to the top menu and select Erase.
In the next window select Format. It will probably already say Mac OS Extended (Journaled). If it is to be used with a Mac just leave it that way. (If not i.e. it is to be used with a PC select FAT 32) then press Erase.
Under the Format options is a Name option, you can give the drive a name if you like but probably better to let the person you are giving it to do that.
Hope that's clear,
Rod
 
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My laptop's HD is partitioned into 2 ( info provided below )

The old external drive is a Seagate FreeAgent Go FW - 320 GB

The new user has an iPad he'll be backing up................

Hi again Luv - looks like Rod has already provided the information regarding reformatting your external HD, so I'll not address that issue.

BUT, I'll discuss the statement above in your post that I put in bold - backing up an iPad can be done via iTunes on a computer either cabled or using Wi-Fi, or can be performed using iCloud (or a combination) - your external HD is just not an option. If your (or your friend's) desires are different, then please explain. Dave :)
 
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partition

As you are unclear about partitions it's probable you don't have any on the external HD in question.

The old external hard drive said it has 2 partitions.

I only know my friend has an iPad and a desktop computer, not sure but I think it's a PC.

I'll have to find out more from him before I do this process -

Once I erase and reformat, can I go back in and reformat if he needs it for his desktop computer?

I just have those two issues. That there are 2 partitions on this old Seagate and I'm not sure how to format it once it's been erased.

Thank you both for all your help ~ luv
 
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As you are unclear about partitions it's probable you don't have any on the external HD in question.

The old external hard drive said it has 2 partitions.

I only know my friend has an iPad and a desktop computer, not sure but I think it's a PC.

I'll have to find out more from him before I do this process -

Once I erase and reformat, can I go back in and reformat if he needs it for his desktop computer?

I just have those two issues. That there are 2 partitions on this old Seagate and I'm not sure how to format it once it's been erased.

Thank you both for all your help ~ luv

Hi again Luv - neither of us is 'unclear' about the understanding of two partitions on an external HD - I have two drives partitioned in two that I do CCC (Carbon Copy Cloner) to my iMac & MBPro, so we are quite familiar of what you are discussing.

NOW, the point is DO you need the information on the external HD (or have you backed it up) and if NOT, then just reformat it as explained by Rod's post into simply one partition compatible w/ the computer your friend owns (which you have not provided, i.e. a PC or an Apple computer)?

AND, please re-read my previous post - your friend will not be able to use your old reformatted HD to backup an iPad. Dave :)
 

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Everything Dave has said is true. I have explained the difference between formatting for PC or Mac but as Dave has said you cannot directly backup an iPad to an external HD.
So am I right in assuming you DO have two partitions on your external HD I did write; If you only see one when you plug it in then it is not partitioned.
If it is partitioned then the process of erasing and removing those partitions is slightly different.
So when you look at the Disk Utility sidebar display does it show two drives under the manufacturers product name or only one?
 

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For example here is a Seagate ext HD that is partitioned into two equal halves. The manufacturers name is the device and the Mac OS HD and the TM Backup are partitions on that device.

Screen Shot 2014-12-07 at 2.13.25 pm.png
 

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If I wanted to erase all partitions on the device then I would erase the highlighted drive i.e. the 1Tb Seagate Backup +
It will then need to have one partition created, formatted and named as in my first post. It is a fairy self explanatory process and you can always do it over if you get it wrong.
 
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Apologies to you both, this was meant to be a quote from earlier reply "Luvinex, I will make some presumptions here; As you are unclear about partitions it's probable you don't have any on the external HD in question. " - Sorry.
I got it erased and format is for MS
All is well, I was daunted by "erasing" anything at all..

Again, thank you and apologies.
 
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Congrats! And no problems at all - Dave :)
 

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Likewise, glad you got it sorted.;)
 

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