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Partition Your Mac's Hard Drive With Disk Utility

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Partition Your Mac's Hard Drive With Disk Utility
Disk Utility

Disk Utility is the application of choice for dividing a hard drive into multiple partitions.

Screenshot courtesy of Coyote Moon, Inc.

Disk Utility is the application of choice for dividing a hard drive into multiple partitions. It’s straightforward and easy to use, it provides a nice graphical interface, and best of all, it’s free. Disk Utility is included with the Mac OS.

The version of Disk Utility bundled with OS X 10.5 and later has some notable new features, specifically, the ability to add, delete, and resize hard drive partitions without first erasing the hard drive. If you need a slightly larger partition, or you would like to split a partition into multiple partitions, you can do it with Disk Utility, without losing the data that’s currently stored on the drive.

In this guide, we’ll look at the basics of creating multiple partitions on a hard drive. If you need to resize, add, or delete partitions, check the Disk Utility: Add, Delete, and Resize Existing Volumes guide.

What You Will Learn

  • The difference between hard drives, partitions, and volumes.

  • How to divide a hard drive into multiple volumes (partitions).

What You Need

  • A Mac with OS X 10.5.x or later installed. This guide is specific to OS X 10.5, but it should be usable with earlier versions of the Mac OS. There may be minor nomenclature changes between the versions of Disk Utility included with the various versions of the Mac OS, but overall, the steps should be pretty similar.

  • One or more hard drives to partition.

  • A few minutes of your time. Partitioning is a quick process. It will probably take longer to read this article than to partition your hard drive.
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