All Collections
Troubleshooting
General
Format External Drives to Work With Mylio Photos
Format External Drives to Work With Mylio Photos
Updated this week

External drives allow for many different configurations that may work in some situations but not others. This guide will walk you through the basics of reformatting a drive and how to best format it for your setup.

NOTE: Mylio Photos is not compatible with applications for macOS or Windows that allow for non-natively supported drives to be read/written to by unsupported operating systems.

Formatting a Drive for macOS or Windows

Drives can be formatted in two primary different formats: NTFS and APFS. When choosing the right format for your hard drive, it is possible that you are formatting the drive to work with one specific operating system.

  • NTFS drives can only be read and written to by Windows computers.

  • APFS drives can only be read and written to by Mac computers.

If you are formatting a drive to be used solely by a Windows or Mac machine, choosing a traditional NTFS or APFS format is ideal. These formats offer high stability and features that keep data secure.

Formatting a Drive for macOS and Windows

If you are interested in using a drive on both Windows and macOS, you may be interested in using a format known as ExFAT. ExFAT allows a drive to be read and written to in both environments but is generally seen as less stable and missing some features that both NTFS and APFS offer. Nevertheless, for basic file storage, ExFAT is a great option.

How to Format a Drive on Windows

WARNING: Formatting a drive will completely erase its contents.

  1. Connect your external drive to your Windows machine.

  2. Open File Explorer and navigate to This PC to see your external drive.

  3. Right-click the external drive and select Format.

    Support_WindowsFormat
  4. Choose your file system and drive name (Volume Label).

    1. For Windows-specific drives, choose NTFS

    2. For drives that work on both macOS and Windows, choose ExFAT

      Screen Shot 2015-10-20 at 8.44.36 AM
  5. Select Start to begin formatting the drive

How to format a drive on macOS

WARNING: Formatting a drive will completely erase its contents.

  1. Connect your external drive to your Mac.

  2. Open Finder and select the Go menu at the top of the screen.

  3. Select Utilities.

  4. Locate and open Disk Utility.

  5. On the left, select the partition of the drive you would like to erase.

    Support_DiskUtility
  6. Select Erase.

  7. Name your drive and choose a format.

    1. For Mac-specific drives, choose APFS.

    2. For drives that work on both macOS and Windows, choose ExFAT.

      Support_DiskUtility_Formatting
  8. Select Erase to erase and format your drive.

Did this answer your question?