Home > How to Tips

How to Remove/Hide Macintosh HD From Desktop? Here Are Ways

Updated on Monday, June 27, 2022

iBoysoft author Connie Yang

Written by

Connie Yang
Professional tech editor

Approved by

Jessica Shee

How to Remove Macintosh HD From Your Desktop?

Summary: This tutorial tells how to remove or hide Macintosh HD on the macOS Catalina /Big Sur desktop. Reasons why two Macintosh HD icons show on the desktop and what to do. - from iBoysoft

remove Macintosh HD from your Desktop

By accident, you find a Macintosh HD disk icon showing up on your desktop and is not removable or ejectable. What's the matter?

If you are curious about the reasons and looking for efficient methods to remove the Macintosh HD from your desktop, please read this post carefully.

This post will show you what Macintosh HD on your desktop is, why Macintosh HD shows up on your desktop, and most importantly, how to remove Macintosh HD from your desktop.

Quick Navigation:

What is Macintosh HD on your desktop?

Macintosh HD on your desktop refers to the startup disk on a Mac that runs macOS 10.15 Catalina, macOS 11 Big Sur, or macOS 12 Monterey.

By default, the Mac internal hard drive contains two volumes on computers running macOS 10.15 or later. The one is called Macintosh HD that used to store the operating system and software-related files. And the other is called Macintosh HD - Data for storing user data like documents and images.

But the two volumes show up as one integral called Macintosh HD in Finder and on the desktop.

Why does Macintosh HD show on the desktop?

Macintosh HD refers to the Mac internal hard drive as mentioned above. Therefore, it is naturally categorized under the type of hard disk on Mac computers.

If you have set hard drives to be visible on the desktop in Finder, the Macintosh HD icon appears on your desktop as a matter of course.

why Macintosh HD shows up on your Desktop

Can you delete Macintosh HD?

No, you can't. The Macintosh HD stands for your internal hard drive that contains the operating system files. Thus, you can't unmount, eject, or delete the Macintosh HD.

When you right-click on the Macintosh HD icon on your desktop, you'll find there's no Move to Trash option available. Also, you can't delete it via pressing the Command + Delete shortcut keys or dragging the Macintosh HD to Trash.

How to remove Macintosh HD from the desktop?

The Macintosh HD on your desktop is not deletable. But if you don't want it to show up there, you can reset Finder preference settings to hide Macintosh HD from your desktop.

Here's how to remove the Macintosh HD icon from the desktop on macOS Monterey, Big Sur, and Catalina:

  • Open Finder.
  • Move to the top Finder menu and click Finder > Preferences.  
    open Finder Preferences
  • Select General in Finder Preferences.
  • Uncheck the Hard disks option. If you also want to remove external hard drives from your desktop, you can uncheck the External disks option as well.  
    uncheck hard disks in Finder Preferences
  • Close Finder Preferences and Quit Finder.

From now on, the Macintosh HD icon won't show up on your desktop whenever you start up your MacBook Pro, MacBook Air, or other models.

Two Macintosh HD icons on the desktop, why & how to remove?

Perhaps, the two Macintosh HD icons pop up on your new Mac desktop after you've used a Mac disk clone tool to duplicate everything on your old Mac to the new. Or, the two icons appear after upgrading your Mac or using Migration Assistant to transfer files from Mac to Mac.

two Macintosh HD show up on the desktop

Why do two Macintosh HD icons show up on your desktop?

It's a common bug on macOS Catalina and later versions. When you try to transfer all files on a Mac to another, the Macintosh HD volume on the target Mac can't be replaced but keeps as two active Macintosh HD volumes.

That's because the system regards that the Macintosh HD on the target Mac has data. If it replaced the Macintosh HD volume with the one on another Mac, data loss might happen. Therefore, the system keeps the two Macintosh HD volumes.

Usually, if your Mac has two Macintosh HD, the error "The disk 'Macintosh HD' can't be unlocked." may pop up on your desktop as well.

How to get rid of the two Macintosh HD icons on your desktop?

Before deleting the duplicate Macintosh HD, you need to back up your Mac first.

After that, follow these steps to delete the redundant Macintosh HD:

  • Open the two Macintosh HD icons on your Mac to check which one has your files and which one is blank.
  • Right-click on the blank Macintosh HD and select Eject "Macintosh HD" to unmount it.
  • Press Command + Space keys to launch the Spotlight Search box and type Disk Utility to open it.
  • Right-click the unmounted Macintosh HD volume and select Delete APFS Volume.

two Macintosh HD show up in Disk Utility

Now, you can return to your desktop to check that only a Macintosh HD icon shows up on the desktop. If you also don't want it to show up there, you can reset your Finder Preferences to hide it on your desktop.

Conclusion

It is easy to hide the Macintosh HD icon on your desktop. If you don't know how to delete it from your desktop, you can refer to this post to get the step-by-step guide. Remember that Macintosh HD stands for your Mac internal hard drive. You can't delete or eject it.

FAQs about how to remove Macintosh HD from your desktop

A

Macintosh HD on your Mac stands for the internal hard drive that loads your operating system. If you want to get rid of it, you need to back up your Mac first. Then, boot your Mac in macOS Recovery Mode and erase and rename the Macintosh HD in Disk Utility. If you just want to delete the Macintosh HD icon from your desktop, you can open Finder Preferences and uncheck Hard disks.

A

No, you don't. If you want to access the files or folders in Macintosh HD, you can open Finder, the Macintosh HD is listed under the Locations tab.

A

If you just don't want the external hard drive to show up on your desktop, you can open Finder Preferences and uncheck External disks. If you don't use the external hard drive, you can right-click on it and select Eject to unmount it. Then, it won't show up on your desktop.