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Removing an unwanted partition

Avatar Michael Corgan
Having inadvertently added a small partition to the SSD in my iMac, I have tried to remove it (without reformatting the whole drive). Accordiing to Apple's instructions this should be possible by first deleting it with Disk Utility, and then clicking the minus sign. When I come to do this the sign is greyed out. Am I missing something or is there another way of removing the partition?

PS Keep this away from Euan!

Re: Removing an unwanted partition

Avatar Douglas Cheney
I managed to increase the partition for Time Machine doing as Apple suggested just had a look at partitioning again and I don't have the plus or minus sign greyed out

Re: Removing an unwanted partition

Avatar Mick Burrell
Just to check this is what you did Michael, (I've not had to do this but this is from my understanding):

1) Load Disk Utility and in the column on the left, select the partition you want to delete.
2) Click the Erase icon at the top of the DU window. You should be able to leave the format (APFS?) and name the same.
3) Click the Erase button to perform the actual erase.
4) Check (by using the View icon) that you are showing All Devices not just Volumes.
5) Select the hard drive containing the partition (on the left) then click the Partition icon.
6) Select the partition you want to delete - the minus sign should be visible (although it may not be if it was a Time Machine partition). If so, click it.

Hope that helps

Re: Removing an unwanted partition

Avatar Michael Corgan
I have been following the steps that you list, Mick. However there is no View icon (the iMac is running El Capitan, which explains that as well as the fact that the drive is formatted as OS X Extended (Journaled) and not APFS. Having erased the partition I then select the hard drive in the left hand columns and the + & - signs are there - but the - sign is greyed out. Am I missing something?

Re: Removing an unwanted partition

Avatar Michael Corgan
I have been following the steps that you list, Mick. However there is no View icon (the iMac is running El Capitan, which explains that as well as the fact that the drive is formatted as OS X Extended (Journaled) and not APFS. Having erased the partition I then select the hard drive in the left hand columns and the + & - signs are there - but the - sign is greyed out. Am I missing something?

Re: Removing an unwanted partition

Avatar Mick Burrell
Have you tried selecting the drive (not the volume), selecting the Partition option and then dragging the resize control (small circle) before clicking apply? That may light up your minus sign.

Re: Removing an unwanted partition

Avatar Michael Corgan
When the drive is selected the Partition option is greyed out . Selecting the volume instead does bring up the resize control but dragging to make the partition smaller results in a further partition while the original is merely diminished in size and the - sign is greyed out! Catch22.

Re: Removing an unwanted partition

Avatar Mick Burrell
And you can't delete the partition it creates? If not, my guess would be it's a feature introduced in a "modern" version of macOS  😉

Re: Removing an unwanted partition

Avatar Michael Corgan
Found this in an online discussion:

"To enlarge a volume, you must delete the volume that comes after it on the device, then move the end point of the volume you want to enlarge into the freed space. You can’t enlarge the last volume on a device."

In practise this mean that you can't delete the last volume on the device, which is apparently what I have been trying to do.

Yet moving the resize control to make a further partition from the one I am trying to delete then reactivates the minus sign - for that new partition!
 
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