Partition external hard drive

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by fud122, Dec 14, 2006.

  1. fud122 macrumors member

    Aug 24, 2006
    I have an external 300GB USB HD that I use to store all my important data. The problem is that it is formatted in NTFS since I carry it with me to work (xp computers) so I can't write anything to the drive from my MBP (OS X). I have another external, mac formatted drive but sometimes I would just like to put everything in my larger one (300GB) for convenience to carry with me... Is it possible to split up the HD into a mac partition and another in NTFS? I don't know if I can make all the HD FAT32 because I have files larger than 4GB and I heard FAT is not good with bigger files. Ideally I would like to change nothing because it would take me forever to move back and forth my data. Is there not a program someone can purchase to be able to write to NTFS from OS X directly. It is annoying having to go to Windows everytime. Thanks for your help!
  2. mad jew Moderator emeritus

    mad jew

    Apr 3, 2004
    Adelaide, Australia
    Could you go the other way and install MacDrive at work and then keep the drives formatted as Mac OS Extended? :)
  3. theBB macrumors 68020


    Jan 3, 2006
    Yes. I did that about six months ago through Disk Utility. However, when the format is NTFS, it did not give me the option to erase disk, which means the same as formatting disk in OSX lingo apparently. I don't know if Disk Utility is more intelligent now, but at the time I had to use Windows for the partitioning. I left the format as NTFS for about half of it and formatted the rest as FAT32. When you connect the drive to Mac, the disk utility sees the FAT32 partition and gives you the option to erase disk with Mac OS Extended format.

    The only snag was XP's refusal to format FAT32 on any partition bigger than 32GB, so my Mac formatted section actually consists of 2 partitions. I also left another smaller partition in FAT32 just in case I need to transfer some files between Mac and XP. I am told that Windows versions earlier than XP does format partitions with FAT32 which are bigger than 32GB.

    Of course, I'd back up my files before going through these steps.
  4. fud122 thread starter macrumors member

    Aug 24, 2006
  5. jeremy.king macrumors 603


    Jul 23, 2002
    Fuquay Varina, NC

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