Best way to transfer my photos from PC-formatted External Hard Drives

Discussion in 'iMac' started by absolutic, May 25, 2011.

  1. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2008
    #1
    I wonder if anyone could give me the best solution for this problem. I am now a complete Apple convert: 27' Imac, macbook, Ipad, iphone. I only use PC at work because I have to. Now I am into photography and I have well over 100,000 photos stored. The problem is that I have some of the older photos scattered on 3 or 4 external portable hard drives from my PC days. When I plug these into my imac, they all appear to me makign noise, but iMac never recognizes any of them, and I am plugging them directly into the back of iMac (it is a mid 2010 model). I even try to use power adopter with some to give them more juice, but iMac just does not recognize them. My goal is to take photos from all of them, and to move them to a single external hard drive that my iMac will recognize so I can have them stored and ready for editing.

    How do I go about it, what is the easiest solution. I thought first about buying another large external hard drive, formating it for PC and using my wife's laptop (she has HP) to move all files to that one external. But then if I try to reformat the new drive for iMac everything will be lost, so I am not sure what else to do.
     
  2. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2008
    Location:
    MN
    #2
    How are the external drives formatted? I've never had a problem reading FAT or NTFS external drives on my Mac in the past.
     
  3. Moderator emeritus

    Hellhammer

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2008
    Location:
    Finland
    #3
    Does Disk Utility recognize the HDs when they are plugged in? Are you 100% that they are actually spinning? If the drives were used with a Windows PC before, they are most likely in NTFS format which should be readable by OS X. You could give NTFS-3G a try too.
     
  4. thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2008
    #4
    I am not 100% sure, I know that these disks don't show in finder, when I plug them in, and they are not appearing on desktop. So I don't know how to access them. I don't know how to use Disk Utility, can you explain please?

    David
     
  5. simsaladimbamba

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2010
    Location:
    located
    #5
    Open Disk Utility, located in Applications / Utilities / and see, if the external HDDs are recognised.
    Have you tried an SMC reset yet? It helped me before recognising external HDDs.
    Intel-based Macs: Resetting the System Management Controller (SMC)

    Btw, what interface do you use to connect the HDDs? USB or Firewire?

     
  6. thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2008
    #6
    Some of my external drives have USB, others have Firewire, but I only tried the ones that are USB so far, I have three of these external hard drives, 320GB, 400GB, and 120GB, and none came up in FINDER...

    Thanks I will try it. If I can see them in Disk Utility but they don't show up in "Finder" is it normal, and can you access them through Disk Utility? Sorry for newbie questions here
     
  7. simsaladimbamba

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2010
    Location:
    located
    #7
    It is not normal, but if they show up in Disk Utility, then try the MOUNT button in the toolbar.
    Also find out via Windows Explorer, what format those HDDs use. (how to do that)


     
  8. thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2008
    #8
    Thank you very much, I will try all of these when I come home from work.

    David
     
  9. macrumors regular

    legreve

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2010
    Location:
    Denmark
    #9
    After I got this MBP, I was still left with a stationary pc which I use for storage and my girlfriends which we use to watch movies on the tv with.

    I removed the stock drive from the MBP and put it in an IcyBox and formatted it with exFat. It's been working perfectly as a transport drive ever since.
    I'm not stuck with the lousy 4gb file sizes and I dont have to worry where I put my files (of course do anyways ;).

    So once you get your files out... do the exFat thing. For the love of what is forever, stay away from fat32... useless piece of file format that is.
     
  10. macrumors 6502a

    100Teraflops

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2011
    Location:
    Elyria, Ohio
    #10
    +1

    I used fat 64 which I think is exfat. I was able to transfer photos, videos, and my iTunes library without a hassle.
     

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