Can I use 500 Gb USB Drive on Windows and Mac

Discussion in 'macOS' started by Ed4132, Sep 23, 2010.

  1. Ed4132 macrumors regular

    Mar 22, 2009

    I have Windows at work and I have Mac at Home always I need to move files from one computer to the other so I want to buy a Portable USB Hard Drive (500GB) to do that, How I must format this Hard Drive in order to move files between Mac and Windows without problems.

    Thank's for help on this matter
  2. bobr1952 macrumors 68020


    Jan 21, 2008
    Melbourne, FL
    Use your Mac disk utility to format the drive in FAT and you'll be fine. There are other ways but that is the easiest.
  3. MacDawg macrumors Core


    Mar 20, 2004
    "Between the Hedges"
    Check out the various file systems here: MR Guide: File Systems

    If it were me, I would probably format it in Windows as NTFS and use something like NTFS-3G or Paragon on the Mac to access the drive for read/write

    FAT32 is the easiest solution, but you won't be able to format a drive that large if I am not mistaken

    You can format it as HFS+ (Mac), but you will need something like MacDrive on your Windows PC to access it for read/write
  4. No1nfoProvided macrumors 6502

    Dec 1, 2009
  5. Grannyville7989 macrumors 6502a


    Aug 2, 2010
    You can format drives up to 2TB, it's just that Microsoft has put in a restriction in Windows so that you can't format a drive larger than 32GB in the FAT32 file system. Their reason behind this was that the believed that anything larger than 32GB would be ineffiencient and heavily fragment using FAT and so they force you to format it in NTFS.

    I've downloaded a free program that will allow you to format any drive that is < 2TB but I can't remember what it's called. I have it on standby, just in case. :)
  6. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    • Read/Write FAT32 from both native Windows and native Mac OS X.
    • No individual file larger than 4GB.
    • Read/Write HFS from native Mac OS X
    • To Read/Write HFS from Windows, Install MacDrive
    • To Read HFS (but not Write) from Windows, Install HFSExplorer

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