Ejecting Disks on macOS is Stupid

Posted by Matt Birchler
— 1 min read
Ejecting Disks on macOS is Stupid

The above photo is a situation I'm in all the time, and it drives me crazy. Not the wires, those are all pulled out to make it clear what's going on.

Basically, I use my MacBook Pro in clamshell mode most of the time, and it's hooked up to my monitor, my speakers, a few other accessories, and most importantly, an SSD. I love this setup, but let's say I just walked in the room, the computer is asleep, and I want to take my laptop somewhere else to work.

What makes sense to do is I would just unplug the Thunderbolt cable and carry to the laptop out of the room. However, if I do that, I'll see this when I open it up:

I get this because of course I wasn't supposed to just unplug a sleeping Mac, I should have:

  1. Opened the lid
  2. Logged in
  3. Navigate to Finder
  4. Right click the drive
  5. Eject it
  6. Unplug

Now I think ejecting external drives is stupid to begin with, and I appreciate iOS and iPadOS don't even have a way for you to eject them, you can just unplug them when you're done using them. I'm sure there's some good technical reason for this, but the fact that I can't just unplug an SSD from a sleeping Mac, that's insane.

I'm not advocating for unplugging drives while you're in the middle of a transfer, and I'm not even arguing that ejecting should be removed entirely (although that would be grand), just that macOS should really make it "safe" to unplug a drive when the computer is sleeping.