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I plug in an external HD into my Mac and noticed I can read files but not write to the drive why?

Posted on 2011-03-17
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Last Modified: 2012-05-11
I've been moving around data from a few 2tb drives and noticed that when I plug in this one external HD drive it show all my files in working order and everything but I can not write to it. I can copy but not write to it.

Orginally it was done off a PC. I only have this issue when plugging it into my mac.

What's the best way to make sure my externals are readable and writable on both systems types of computers mac and PC.

I perfer Mac

Can a pc read a mac formatted drive?

I think it has something to do because the drive is NTFS??? don't know

But could someone explain all this for me.

Now I have to copy 2TB of data which is going to take me an entire day over to another 2TB drive. I think i formated the drive the the data from the original drive is going to as FAT
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Question by:sobeservices2
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17 Comments
 
LVL 53

Accepted Solution

by:
strung earned 672 total points
ID: 35161778
The drive is probably formatted as NTFS. By default Macs can read but not write to NTFS volumes.

If you want to write to an NTFS drive from a Mac, you need free third party software:

http://www.macupdate.com/app/mac/24481/ntfs-3g

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LVL 47

Assisted Solution

by:noxcho
noxcho earned 1328 total points
ID: 35164626
Get here a copy of Paragon NTFS for Mac OS X driver: http://www.paragon-software.com/home/ntfs-mac/
Works without problems for me.
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Author Comment

by:sobeservices2
ID: 35166356
I like the program

If I keep in FAT file format will that be universal.

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LVL 47

Assisted Solution

by:noxcho
noxcho earned 1328 total points
ID: 35167603
Yes, FAT32 is both Mac and Windows compatible. But, FAT is not as stable as NTFS against FS corruption. I prefer not to store my data on FAT formatted drives.
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Author Comment

by:sobeservices2
ID: 35167633
True but hows the best way atleast for the moment to deal with 2tb of data.

I heard FAT32 can't handle over like 2GB.

I am copying over files now from an NTFS drive over to a FAT32 formatted by mac and so far at 500gb its doing ok
I don't think I will keep it as FAT32 right now just trying to get the drive out of NTFS and into a more universal format
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LVL 47

Assisted Solution

by:noxcho
noxcho earned 1328 total points
ID: 35167668
Not 2GB but 4GB.
If the drive is not mounted to drive letter then limit is 2GB. This means that one movie file size cannot be bigger of this limit. This is for FAT32
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Author Comment

by:sobeservices2
ID: 35167698
Oh shit I have movies in ISO that are like 7gig what happens
I don't seem to have an issue so far

Should I just stop the copying now and restart it using a mac file system
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LVL 47

Expert Comment

by:noxcho
ID: 35167741
Yes, I would do HFS+ here.
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Author Comment

by:sobeservices2
ID: 35167750
Shit
Can a pc read HFS+ ?????
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LVL 53

Assisted Solution

by:strung
strung earned 672 total points
ID: 35167769
A PC cannot read HFS+ without third party software. Your best bet is to use NTFS and one of the programs suggested above.
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LVL 47

Expert Comment

by:noxcho
ID: 35167808
I thought you got your answer already - NTFS for Mac OS X driver that enables full read/write support in Mac OS X. Windows can read and write HFS+ with Paragon HFS+ for Windows.
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LVL 47

Assisted Solution

by:noxcho
noxcho earned 1328 total points
ID: 35167834
http://www.paragon-software.com/home/hfs-windows/
Here is driver to read HFS under Windows
And here is a drive to write to NTFS under Mac: http://www.paragon-software.com/home/ntfs-mac/
Decide which one you prefer and that's will do what you need.
0
 

Author Comment

by:sobeservices2
ID: 35167841
Ok thanks for straighten things out. I just wanted to get some more detailed and fully understand things that's all. I am going to restart from scratch and use HFS+ sence my environment is mainly MAC based.


Don't get upset noxcho
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LVL 47

Expert Comment

by:noxcho
ID: 35167865
Is there a reason to get upset? =))
Thanks for points and have nice weekends
Nox
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Author Comment

by:sobeservices2
ID: 35167896
noxcho just sounded like that a bit from this commit

"I thought you got your answer already "

Just mis interpretation

All is good thanks for the help.

I've started from scratch

Too bad I can't figure out a quicker way of copying this drive. I have firewire capablities but only on one end and I don't have the right cord  for it so I can't use the firewire. Using USB till I get the cable in ordered it.

 


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LVL 47

Expert Comment

by:noxcho
ID: 35167911
Upgrade your Mac machine and get Thunderbolt =)) Though I don't think any external drive with this technology exists yet but specs are super.
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Expert Comment

by:noxcho
ID: 35167917
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