Cant drag and drop files to my external drive, but works on PC at school

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by Yumid, Jun 18, 2014.

  1. Yumid macrumors member

    May 11, 2014
    so when I am on a PC I can easily back up my work simply by dragging and dropping it from the data drive to my external drive. This is while working on a PC.

    But when I am on a MAC I cant drag and drop the same way, it just shows a 'censored' symbol as if to say I cant drop the item there.

    Then when I tried saving something right to the external drive it said "cannot save while this drive is trying to open whatever the file name was" I had never heard of the file before it was trying to open, but i assume it has something to do with all the extra read me's and stuff that cant came with the external drive.

    I was told if I deleted all the extra stuff off the passport it would help, but It won't let me drag and drop those extra folders into the trash either. Not sure if I make sense or not, but this is important. It won't let me back up any of the work I do at home on my mac, so everything is saved to my drive only.

    My external is a Western Digital My Passport Ultra.

    How do I customize these passport ultras so they work with mac too? I heard I need to do something along those lines.
  2. dXTC macrumors 68020


    Oct 30, 2006
    Up, up in my studio, studio
    Check the drive (right click the drive > Get Info on the Mac or > Properties in Windows), to see how the drive is formatted. If the drive is formatted as NTFS, it will be read-only on the Mac (OS X cannot write directly to NTFS disk volumes without special drivers). In order to use the drive on both platforms, you will need to reformat it as FAT32 (or perhaps ExFAT). WARNING: Back up any important data on the disk before reformatting, as it will be erased.
  3. FreakinEurekan macrumors 68040


    Sep 8, 2011
    Eureka Springs, Arkansas
    I suspect as the others said your disk is NTFS format, which Mac can read but can't write natively. Tuxera software that Zwhaler mentioned is what I use myself but if you have only one Mac, Paragon is cheaper (Paragon is $19.95 for one Mac; Tuxera is $31 for one personal license to use on all your Macs).

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