How to Install macOS Monterey on External Hard Drive

You can safely test everything macOS 12 Monterey has to offer while keeping your current installation intact if you know how to install macOS on an external hard this article you will learn how to Install macOS Monterey on External Hard Drive with Ease steps.

If you discover that Monterey is too unstable, incompatible, or otherwise unsatisfactory, simply format the external hard drive and use it for something else.such as storing backups.

Install macOS Monterey on an External Hard Drive

Seasoned Apple users are aware that when a new major version of macOS is released, everything goes smoothly. It’s not uncommon for users to notice their Macs becoming less stable than a hormonal adolescent on a caffeine high. Simultaneously, new versions of macOS always introduce appealing new features, and it’s understandable if you want to try them out as soon as possible.

When you install macOS on an external hard drive, you can access the most up-to-date features without risking rendering your computer inoperable. Here are a few examples of when this approach can be especially useful:

Note:always It’s a good idea to test whether a new version of macOS is compatible with all of your favourite apps, and you can do so by installing macOS on an external SSD or HDD.
👨‍💻 Separating your professional and personal lives: You can elegantly separate your work life from your personal life by having two operating systems, avoiding embarrassing issues with mixed’up email attachments and other similarly unpleasant problems.

System of backup: It is critical to back up all important files so that they can be recovered in the event of a data loss incident, but you may also want to consider installing a backup operating system on your external drive to minimise downtime as much as possible.

You don’t need a compelling reason to install macOS Monterey on an external drive. The best reason is simply to be curious and want to learn something new and potentially useful.

Step 1: Prepare Your External Hard Drive

To Install macOS Monterey on External Hard Drive’successfully, the drive must be suitable for the task at hand.

It must be at least 64 GB in size (the more storage space you have, the better) and formatted with the GUID partition scheme and APFS file system (Mac OS Extended is no longer supported)

Unless you are absolutely certain that your external hard drive has been freshly formatted in accordance with the above’mentioned requirements, we recommend that you go through the following preparation steps:

  • First Connect the external hard drive to your Mac.
  • Then Launch Disk Utility (located in Applications -> Utilities).
  • Then Click View and choose the Show all devices option.
  • Now Select your external hard drive (not just a single partition).
  • Click Erase.
  • Then Give the external hard drive a suitable name and select “Mac OS Extended (Journaled)” as the drive’s format and “GUID Partition Map” as the drive’s partition scheme.
  • Now Click Erase and wait for Disk Utility to prepare your external drive for you.
macOS Monterey on External Hard Drive

Depending on the size and speed of your drive, the process may take a while. Please be patient and refrain from interfering.

Step 2: Download the macOS Monterey Installer

In this Step you can download the macOS Monterey installer directly from the App Store:

  1. First Launch the App Store on your Mac.
  2. Then Click the search bar, type in “macOS Monterey,” and hit Return.
  3. Now Select the search result named macOS Monterey“.
  4. Click the Get button and wait for the macOS Monterey installer to download.
macOS Monterey on External Hard Drive

The downloaded installer, like all apps downloaded from the App Store, can be found in the Applications folder. It’s called “Install macOS Monterey.”

Step 3: Install macOS on Your External Hard Drive

Now, on your external hard drive, install macOS Monterey. Before you do so, we recommend that you confirm that your Mac is capable of running Monterey.

Here is the official list of supported devices:

  • iMac‌ – Late 2015 onwards
  • iMac‌ Pro – 2017 onwards
  • Mac Pro – Late 2013 onwards
  • Mac mini – Late 2014 onwards
  • MacBook – 2016 onwards
  • MacBook Air‌ – 2015 onwards
  • MacBook Pro – 2015 onwards

Now: here’s what you need to do to install macOS on your external hard drive:

  1. First Open Finder.
  2. Then Go to Applications.
  3. Now Launch the “Install macOS Monterey” app.
  4. then Click Continue and then Agree.
  5. When you arrive on the drive selection screen, click Show All Disks.
  6. Select your external hard drive and click Continue.
  7. Select a user to set as the owner of the new volume and optionally copy the user’s account settings.
  8. Click Install to proceed.
macOS Monterey on External Hard Drive
Install macOS Monterey on External Hard Drive

If you’re installing macOS Monterey to an external storage device from a MacBook, make sure you’re connected to a power source to avoid problems with your battery reaching 0% at the worst possible time.

Alternative: Create a Bootable Drive with macOS Monterey (Using Disk Drill)

The method outlined above is not the only way to install macOS Monterey on an external hard drive. The downloaded installer can be used to create a bootable USB drive that you can connect to any Mac to perform a clean install, access built’in recovery tools, and other functions.

Disk Drill, a powerful data recovery app with a tonne of extra functionality provided for free, is the simplest way to create a bootable drive with macOS Monterey. This is how it works:

  • 1: Download and install the free version of Disk Drill.
macOS Monterey on External Hard Drive
  • Launch Disk Drill and go through the initial configuration to give it all the necessary permissions.
  • Select the macOS Installer extra tool from the left pane.
  • Add the macOS Monterey installer and choose a suitable USB flash drive (it must be at least 16 GB large).
  • Let Disk Drill make your USB flash drive bootable.
macOS Monterey on External Hard Drive

Step 4: Boot from the External Hard Drive

Now that macOS Monterey has been installed on your external hard drive, you must instruct your Mac to boot from it. Fortunately, macOS makes this simple.

  1. Launch System Preferences.
  2. Go to Startup Disk.
  3. Unlock the preference pane by clicking the lock icon.
  4. Select your external hard drive.
  5. Click Restart.

This will change your startup disc for each startup, allowing you to use an external hard drive instead of the primary hard drive.

If you only intend to boot from the external hard drive on occasion, you can change your startup disc only once.

Turn off your Mac and then hold down the power button until you see the startup options screen.
Turn off your Mac and then press and hold the Option key while pressing the power button on Intel’based Macs. Hold the Option key down until you see the startup options screen.

Users of Mac models equipped with the Apple T2 Security Chip should be aware of the following:

To disable it, you need to:

Begin with macOS Recovery. (To turn on your Mac, press and hold Command-R immediately after pressing the power button.)
From the menu bar, select Utilities > Startup Security Utility.
Select “Allow booting from external media” from the External Boot menu.
You can also disable Secure Boot, but this is optional unless you want to install a third-party operating system.

Is It Possible to Install macOS Monterey on an External SSD?

Yes, macOS Monterey can be installed on any suitable external SSD, despite some early adopters having issues with this setup during the Monterey beta programme.

The following are the requirements that your external SSD must meet in order to be compatible with the installation of macOS Monterey:

  • It must have a storage capacity of at least 64 GB.
  • It must be formatted as APFS.
  • It must be connected to your Mac using the fastest interface and cable available.

Many users make the mistake of connecting their fast external SSD to a slow USB hub, only to encounter problems when attempting to install macOS on the external SSD or start their Mac from it.this was so easy to Install macOS Monterey on External Hard Drive.


Anyone can learn how to install macOS Monterey on an external hard drive by following the instructions in this article. This useful skill can then assist you in avoiding the problems that some Mac users encounter when upgrading their main system without a backup to fall back on.

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