External drive not being recognized

bgsnmky

macrumors regular
Original poster
Sep 22, 2012
119
0
I was traveling and brought my mac air.

people I was traveling with brought a 1TB hard drive and my air would not allow anything to be written to it.

We want to share pictures back and forth.

NOW I am home, and my 1TB that I traveled with and copied pictures to from my air I am attaching to her PC and it won't recognize it.

This is a slight hassle!!!

what can I do to be able to use my seagate 1TB travel harddrive and be able:
1. Copy pictures from the seagate to the PC
2. USE my air and have a external hard drive be able to be recognized and be able to write to it.

Basically just trying to:
1. copy pics from my air/or mac or 1TB drive to her pc
2. copy her pics from her 1TB drive to my mac or air.

This should be simple.
 

RadDave

macrumors regular
Apr 6, 2013
186
0
North Carolina
Hello - I suspect that the HD formatting is the issue - the three common disc formats are FAT32, NTFS, & HFS+ (Mac OS Extended); the 1TB drive brought by your friend was likely formatted as NTFS which can be read by a Mac BUT not written too; your HD is likely in HFS+ format - for more details (and options/solutions) please take a look at THIS ARTICLE - Disk Utility can provide the information needed on the type of formatting - good luck! :)
 

bgsnmky

macrumors regular
Original poster
Sep 22, 2012
119
0
Hello - I suspect that the HD formatting is the issue - the three common disc formats are FAT32, NTFS, & HFS+ (Mac OS Extended); the 1TB drive brought by your friend was likely formatted as NTFS which can be read by a Mac BUT not written too; your HD is likely in HFS+ format - for more details (and options/solutions) please take a look at THIS ARTICLE - Disk Utility can provide the information needed on the type of formatting - good luck! :)
thanks and I just read the article. just still doesn't seem as simple as it should be!!

Seems easier to just copy onto a few SD cards (I have a few 32 gig)...
 

RadDave

macrumors regular
Apr 6, 2013
186
0
North Carolina
thanks and I just read the article. just still doesn't seem as simple as it should be!!

Seems easier to just copy onto a few SD cards (I have a few 32 gig)...
Well, keep in mind that SD cards can be formatted differently just like an external HD (CHECK HERE) - just stuck a SD card into my MacBook Pro and opened Disk Utility - the card is formatted MS-DOS (FAT); seems to be FAT16, so would be compatible w/ Windows, OS X, or Linux (read & write); however, the option is available to format as Mac OS Extended which would not work w/ a Windows computer - same w/ USB sticks. SO, as long as one stays w/ FAT(16 or 32) formatting, the drives, cards, or sticks should be universally readable & writable. Dave :)
 

FreakinEurekan

macrumors 68040
Sep 8, 2011
3,395
332
Eureka Springs, Arkansas
thanks and I just read the article. just still doesn't seem as simple as it should be!!

Seems easier to just copy onto a few SD cards (I have a few 32 gig)...
Another option is to install a utility on your Mac that allows it to write to NTFS. Tuxera and Paragon are two options. Benefit of this method is that if you want to plug in someone else's drive that's already NTFS (like your example) then you don't have to worry about reformatting the drive & keeping it compatible with your friend's computer.
 

bgsnmky

macrumors regular
Original poster
Sep 22, 2012
119
0
Another option is to install a utility on your Mac that allows it to write to NTFS. Tuxera and Paragon are two options. Benefit of this method is that if you want to plug in someone else's drive that's already NTFS (like your example) then you don't have to worry about reformatting the drive & keeping it compatible with your friend's computer.
I like this idea..once you install..do you have to open the drive or anything any certain way..or I just and play and I won't even know.
 

Fishrrman

macrumors P6
Feb 20, 2009
17,622
5,756
My advice (others will disagree):

If you have an external drive that is already Mac-formatted (HFS+), leave it that way. Don't re-initialize it to be compatible with Windows.

Instead, get another drive that is "cross-formatted" and use THAT one for cross-compatibility. If not a hard drive, a larger-capacity USB3 flash drive would hit the spot.

The reason I suggest this is because I've read of too many instances of Mac users with "cross-formatted" drives suddenly LOSING data on the drive, at least on the Mac side of things. Or… losing the entire drive completely.

So….
If you have important Mac data that you value, keep it on a Mac-only formatted drive (HFS+).
Use a separate, cross-format drive for day-to-day transfers between machines.

My opinion only -- I realize others' will be different.