1st time poster - External HDD Question

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by Hockeyislife91, Dec 16, 2010.

  1. Hockeyislife91 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2010
    Location:
    Arizona
    #1
    I currently use an external HD to store itunes music and pictures. In the next few weeks I will be switching from a Win7 desktop to a MBP and wish to continue to use the external HD as my music and picture storage. My question is, will it work plug n play with the MBP or will I have to backup and reformat it or something?
     
  2. simsaladimbamba

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2010
    Location:
    located
    #2
    If you currently use Windows (?), then the HDD will probably be formatted with NTFS, which Mac OS X can only read.

    http://forums.macrumors.com/showpost.php?p=11549133&postcount=8

    If you want to exclusively use that HDD with Mac OS X, better copy the contents to your MBP and format the HDD with Mac OS Extended (HFS+) and copy the data back.
    If you want to share it between Windows and Mac OS X, read the above link.
     
  3. Hockeyislife91 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2010
    Location:
    Arizona
    #3
    So just to be clear, when I receive the MBP, copy the music and pictures to it's hard drive, then format the external HDD to be used with the MBP? I would be sharing it as the desktop pc will be going to my little cousin.
     
  4. simsaladimbamba

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2010
    Location:
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    #4
    I think I don't understand completely.

    If you want to use that external HDD exclusively with Macs and don't need Windows to access the data on it, you can safely copy the data from the HDD to your MBP, format the HDD via Disk Utility (many, many guides out there, found via search engines) to Mac OS Extended and copy the data back. To be able to read the contents of the HDD in Windows, you would either need MacDrive or HFSExplorer (the link I gave is pretty extensive in its sharing of valuable information).

    If you want to use the external HDD with Windows quite often, then leave it as it is and look at the solutions for NTFS formatted HDDs posted in that link I gave earlier.
    If the HDD is using FAT32, then know, that the file size limit is 4GB. The link I posted explains that too.
     
  5. Hockeyislife91 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2010
    Location:
    Arizona
    #5
    Yes my external HDD is FAT32 but i just use it to house music and pics so will it need to be reformatted in order for itunes and iphoto to read the music and pics?
     
  6. simsaladimbamba

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2010
    Location:
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    #6
    No, as Mac OS X can read and write to FAT32 formatted volumes and can read NTFS formatted volumes, iPhoto and iTunes can read and write to it too.
     
  7. Hockeyislife91 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2010
    Location:
    Arizona
    #7
    ok thanks for the clarification! Going to be getting it after the new year just needed to sort some things out first, Thanks again
     

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