Can I use an the same external to backup iMac and PC?

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by Amberlee, Jul 3, 2010.

  1. Amberlee macrumors newbie

    Jul 3, 2010
    I have two pc lap tops and an iMac and am having trouble getting things to back up on the mac. I REALLY REALLY need to get some of these files off of the mac and onto the other external but it's saying I need to do a reformat??? How the hec do I do that and I'd really like to know if I can use the external between pc and mac? Do I have to have one for both? If so, the files I backup from the mac, how can I get them on my PC? That's where I need them right now!!!! BIG TIME!!
  2. stefankr macrumors newbie

    Dec 24, 2009
    The problem is that PC drives are usually formated with the NTFS file system, and Macs normally cannot write to that file system. If you want to use a single drive for both PC and Mac, either use a drive formated with FAT32, or get a software that allows the Mac to write to an NTFS drive. I use tuxera ntfs and it works pretty well. But there are other software options, too, some even free of charge.

    But the easiest way would be to get another drive for the Mac backup :) You can format drives with the disk utility. If you just need to transfer some files or back up small amounts of data, use a USB stick :)

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