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Archived - Mac OS X: Disk Utility - All options dimmed for a disk that was formatted as NTFS in Microsoft Windows XP

This article has been archived and is no longer updated by Apple.

Symptoms

Disk Utility may be unable to modify (or erase) a disk after it is formatted as NTFS in Microsoft Windows XP. All of the options in Disk Utility may be dimmed ("grayed out"). The drive may also appear with a Write Status of "Read Only".

Note: Before erasing a disk, you should back up any important files on it to a different disk.

Resolution

Option 1

  1. Start from your Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard Install disc.
  2. Chose Disk Utility from the Utilities menu.
  3. Control-click the affected drive in left side of the Disk Utility window.
  4. Choose "Erase" from the contextual menu.
  5. Select "Mac OS Extended (Journaled)" for the "Volume Format"
  6. Click "Erase...".

Option 2

  1. Start from your Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard Install disc.
  2. Chose Disk Utility from the Utilities menu.
  3. Select the drive with the issue on the left side of the Disk Utility window.
  4. Choose Get Info from the File menu.
  5. Note the information listed under "Disk Identifier".
  6. Close the Information window and quit Disk Utility.
  7. Choose Terminal from the Utilities menu.
  8. Type:

    diskutil partitiondisk [DiskIdentifier] JHFS+ newdisk 100%

    Note: Replace "[DiskIdentifier]" with the information gathered in step 5.
  9. Press Return.
  10. Wait for the command to complete, then quit Terminal.
  11. Choose Disk Utility from the Utilities menu and make the desired changes.


Alternatively, if you can start from a Mac OS X volume:

  1. Open Disk Utility (located in Applications/Utilities)
  2. Choose the drive with the issue from the left side of the Disk Utility window.
  3. Choose Get Info from the File menu.
  4. Note the information listed under "Disk Identifier".
  5. Close the Information window and quit Disk Utility
  6. Open Terminal (located in Applications/Utilities).
  7. Type:

    diskutil partitiondisk [DiskIdentifier] JHFS+ newdisk 100%

    Note: Replace "[DiskIdentifier]" with the information gathered in step 4.
  8. Press Return.
  9. Wait for the command to complete, then quit Terminal.

You should now be able to use Disk Utility with the disk.

Important: Information about products not manufactured by Apple is provided for information purposes only and does not constitute Apple’s recommendation or endorsement. Please contact the vendor for additional information.
Last Modified: Jul 2, 2012
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  • Last Modified: Jul 2, 2012
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