Format to macOS APFS

I’m about to purchase a SanDisk 2TB Extreme Portable SSD for cloning my MacBook Pro (2016) i7 SSD (macOS Mojave 10.14.6, soon to become Catalina), which is formatted in APFS. While I understand the out-of-box format of the SanDisk 2TB Extreme Portable SSD, I want to confirm the process I’ll use to reformat to APFS.

I’ve found this reference Converting external drive to APFS  …Is this still the correct process (or, has it been updated somewhere)?

Also, for any having experience with the 2TB or 1TB models, any comment or observations…

I’ve now purchased 2 x 2TB Extreme Portable SSD USB-C Gen-2 external drives. …And, I’ve also completed converting the formatting to macOS APFS. …I’m prepping these two SSDs for macOS Catalina, which will require APFS for cloning (and, possibly Time Machine - if not, I’ll convert that SSD back to Mac OS Extended - Journaled). My MacBook Pro has Thunderbolt 3 ports; so, I connected the SanDisk SSDs, using TB3 cables (.5m) with USB-C type connectors, for best transmission speed.

The converting process, which can be viewed at the link in my initial post, is fairly straight forward; but, I’ll clarify several steps. Note: the link’s convert (to APFS) instructions are a bit dated, as they’re for macOS 10.13 High Sierra; I’m using 10.14.x Mojave and my notes below reflect Disk Utility in Mojave.

When the SanDisk SSD is first mounted (drive viewed in the side pane of Disk Utility), Step 4 requires selection of top most (called “main” in the instructions) in the drive hierarchy (entitled: SanDisk Extrem…). This is the correct selection for the 1st erase {selection of Format of Mac OS Extended (Journaled) & Scheme of GUID Partition Map}.

Then for Step 7’s 2d erase, right-click (or, option-click) on “Untitled” that’s the secondary (lower) drive in the  hierarchy view. This pops-up a drop-down menu where “Convert to APFS…” can be selected at bottom of menu. Scroll to select, Convert to APFS to complete the formatting to APFS.

My initial observation of these SanDisk SSDs, was amazement how small they are. They look well made. I hope they will be as reliable as the USB-C mobile rotating disk drives I’ve been using for 3 years. 

My usage of these 2 x Extreme Portable SSDs (APFS formatted) is almost 2 years of continual use (1 used on a daily basis). {Connection has always with a TB3 cable. Currently on macOS 11.4 Big Sur.}

The SSD, being used daily, is for Time Machine backups. {The other SSD is used weekly for clones by Carbon Copy Cloner.}

While both SSDs, if left connected for extended periods, do go from warm to Hot, I diligently disconnect (after Finder dismount) the SSD, allowing it to quickly cool. …While I believe the small form factor contributes to the SSD getting hot (an intrinsic result; not a hardware failure), I believe intermittent cooling directly contributes to long term reliability (so far). …Proof has been their use since August 2019. :smiley: