Transfer files from Mac to PC

al4629740 used Ask the Experts™
We have a few macs in our office that we need to get the files off of and transfer to a PC.  What is the fastest way to do this?  Can I use a Western Digital hard drive and plug it in via USB and then just drag and drop the files or is there more to it?
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Omar SoudaniSenior System Engineer

Yes you can. Please refer to this article for more solutions:
The drive would have to be formatted correctly so that both systems can read and write to it.  You can format it as EXFAT only if your files are going to be smaller than 4GB.  If you need to transfer any files larger than 4GB, you will need to use NTFS and install tools or activate the write ability on the Mac.  You can also format it as HFS+ and install HFS Explorer on Windows to reade HFS+ files.
or use  one of those free to send companies that allow you to send large files zipped up and email the link from one machine to another.
such as

or cloud drives such as dropbox or google drive
Your question doesn't clarify if the PC and Macs are on the same network (wired or wifi) or are in different locations but connected to the Internet with good speed .. or whether they are completely unconnected.

@serialband's advice is perfect if you want to use a USB Hard Drive or memory stick - just check that the format on the drive is writeable by OSX and Windows .. Fat32/ExFAT are the only 100% universal format which both systems will read/write.  If you've giant video files you'll need to use Windows NTFS or OSX HFS+ and install software on one system or another to allow the other side to read/write.

If you've fast Internet .. you could use a trusted/secure file sharing service .. compress and send to Dropbox/iCloud/Google Drive etc. etc.

If both are on a LAN you could simply transfer over the network as long as there is a shared folder on the PC the Macs can connect and write to it
George WaltonRemote Administrator LM

I use remote access software connect from Mac to Win, there is FTP mode for file transfer, remote execute, watching desktop, it is very convenient


Same network.  So we could use a network share?
Of course .. if the Windows PC enables sharing it should be discoverable by the OSX macs which support SMB protocol and can mount a windows share.

Turn on sharing and ensure the firewall in Windows is set to allow such traffic .. on OSX choose the 'Connect to Server' in the GO menu in the finder and enter the IP address or network share name e.g. smb://

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