External Hard Drive Disconnects Randomly From Mac? (Fix?)

iPhone Tricks > Bug Fixes

Posted in Bug Fixes by Tyrone on July 21, 2023

External drive disconnects Mac

External drive disconnects randomly from Mac? Does this happen when computer enters Sleep mode? Accessory fails to show up in Drive Utility and you can’t reconnect it? This has happened to others!

External Hard Drive Disconnects From Mac?

This issue has been reported by NGW (macOS 13.4.1 c):

“…my external Seagate One Touch seems to disconnect and cannot be found again when the Mac is put in sleep mode. Restarts don’t fix it. It is not seen in drive utility, but somehow after 1/2 hour or so it magically reappears and reconnects itself.”

We couldn’t replicate the issue but have found similar complaints on Reddit:

“I have a 1TB Western Digital My Passport External SSD, connected via USB-C. When connected via USB-C, I get random disconnects when the system goes to screen saver. I have disabled sleep mode on the system as well as set the disk to not sleep.”

How To Fix External Hard Drive Disconnects Randomly

This issue can be caused by various causes. Here are the most common troubleshooting options:

1. Remove macOS 13.4.1 c

The most recent Ventura Security Response update appears to be buggy and Apple has pulled it. If you managed to install it and are experiencing connectivity problems between your external hard drive and Mac, uninstall the Rapid Response update:

  • 1. Open System Settings and click for General -> About.
  • 2. Click on macOS Ventura version.
  • 3. Remove Security Response.

2. Disable Sleep Mode

External hard drives might disconnect when Mac enters Sleep mode and could fail to wake when the OS does. If you encounter this unexpected behavior you can do the following:
– Don’t allow the external disk to enter sleep mode.
– Turn off Sleep mode systemwide on your Mac:

  • 1. Press command + Space to open Spotlight Search.
  • 2. Type Terminal and open.
  • 3. Type and execute the following command: sudo pmset -b displaysleep 0

Have you managed to fix external hard rive disconnects from Mac? Do you have a better solution or an other problem to report? Share your feedback in the comments.

Related: For more macOS Ventura 13.4.1 issues and available workarounds check our detailed review.

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