External hard drive for both Mac and Windows

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by bubulol, Jan 17, 2014.

  1. bubulol macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2013
    #1
    Hey i bought an external hard drive in 2''5 for my both computers (Macbook Air and PC)
    i heard about compatibility issue: on Mac, we are able to read NTFS but not writable
    wtf?
    it doesnt have another format like FAT32, only exFat but speed rate transfer is ridiculously slow (barely above few mb per sec)

    any help?

    thanks
     
  2. simsaladimbamba

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2010
    Location:
    located
    #2
    What exact HDD did you get? And when you use exFAT, you get slow write and read speeds?
    What about using FAT32, even though it has a 4 GB per file limit?


    ____________________________________________________________

    Overview of the four major file systems (called "Formats" in Mac OS X) used on Windows and Mac OS X, compiled by GGJstudios. You can use Disk Utility to format any HDD to your liking.

    Any external hard drive will work with PCs or Macs, as long as the connectors are there (Firewire, USB, etc.) It doesn't matter how the drive is formatted out of the box, since you can re-format any way you like. Formatting can be done with the Mac OS X Disk Utility, found in the /Applications/Utilities folder. Here are your formatting options:

    HFS+ (Hierarchical File System, a.k.a. Mac OS Extended (Journaled) Don't use case-sensitive)

    NTFS (Windows NT File System)
    • Read/Write NTFS from native Windows.
    • Read only NTFS from native Mac OS X
      [*]To Read/Write/Format NTFS from Mac OS X, here are some alternatives:
      • For Mac OS X 10.4 or later (32 or 64-bit), install Paragon (approx $20) (Best Choice for Lion)
      • For 32-bit Mac OS X, install NTFS-3G for Mac OS X (free) (does not work in 64-bit mode)
      • For 64-bit Snow Leopard, read this: MacFUSE for 64-bit Snow Leopard
      • Some have reported problems using Tuxera (approx $36).
      • Native NTFS support can be enabled in Snow Leopard and Lion, but is not advisable, due to instability.
    • AirPort Extreme (802.11n) and Time Capsule do not support NTFS
    • Maximum file size: 16 TB
    • Maximum volume size: 256TB
    • You can use this format if you routinely share a drive with multiple Windows systems.

    exFAT (FAT64)
    • Supported in Mac OS X only in 10.6.5 or later.
    • Not all Windows versions support exFAT. See disadvantages.
    • exFAT (Extended File Allocation Table)
    • AirPort Extreme (802.11n) and Time Capsule do not support exFAT
    • Maximum file size: 16 EiB
    • Maximum volume size: 64 ZiB
    • You can use this format if it is supported by all computers with which you intend to share the drive. See "disadvantages" for details.

    FAT32 (File Allocation Table)
    • Read/Write FAT32 from both native Windows and native Mac OS X.
      [*]Maximum file size: 4GB.
    • Maximum volume size: 2TB
    • You can use this format if you share the drive between Mac OS X and Windows computers and have no files larger than 4GB.
    ____________________________________________________________
     
  3. bubulol thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2013
    #3
    it doesnt seem have FAT32 :(
    i only attempted to copy some big files (movies).
    i got normal average speed from NTFS
    i got unbelievable slow speed from exFat
    its Toshiba Touro (not written as fully Mac compatibility though)
    so HFS+ seems to be the best format according your quote?
     
  4. g4cube macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2003
    #4
    Touro is Hitachi/HGST

    Toshiba is a different brand.

    If drive is slow, are you connecting with USB 2.0 or 3.0

    Perhaps you are only connected via the slower USB 2.0.

    Get benchmark program like AJA or Black Magic Disk Test to give you a better idea about your disk performance. exFAT should not be an issue.
     
  5. marc55 macrumors 6502a

    marc55

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2011
    #5
    So if I understand the above correctly, the best way to save files from the newest rMBP with Mavericks onto a external drive, and have the ability to share with a Windows PCis to use Paragon?
     
  6. g4cube macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2003
    #6
    No. I didn't say that.

    ExFAT is compatible with OS X and Windows 7/8. Built in to the OS on both platforms.

    Paragon is a separate driver that must be installed onto OS X.

    Paragon may also reduce performance. More so than using exFAT.
     
  7. ColdCase macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2008
    Location:
    NH
    #7
    Doesn't help now, but many of the seagate external drives like the backup plus include the Mac NTFS driver, free for use on Seagate drives. I've been using it on Mavericks, Windose 7, and Windose 8 without issue or speed penalty.
     
  8. bubulol thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2013
    #8
    sorry, i made mistake: you r right, it s Toshbia Sore Basics
    i ve only connected through USB 2.0
    like i noticed previously, speed transfer seems to be normal in NTFS (130 mo/s) and suddenly goes down drastically in exFat
    i also use an USB HUB, does it have any trouble with that?
     
  9. g4cube macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2003
    #9
    Only way to know for sure is to know how the drive is connected when you perform your test. Some USB 3.0 hubs reconfigure all ports as USB 2.0 if a single USB 2.0 device is connected to one of the ports, slowing down all other USB 3.0 devices that are connected.

    On the Mac, use Apple System Profiler report in "About this Mac" menu item. IN the USB section there will be a summary of all connected USB devices and their connection speed.
     
  10. marc55 macrumors 6502a

    marc55

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2011
    #10
    So, exFat should work for reading/writing files to an external hard drive? Are there any issues with using exFat?
     
  11. g4cube macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2003
    #11
  12. marc55 macrumors 6502a

    marc55

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2011
    #12
  13. g4cube macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2003
    #13
    Then you'll be fine. You'll find exFAT will meet your needs.
     
  14. bubulol thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2013
    #14
    after some test, i transferred a big file (1 giga) to the external hard drive

    60 mb/s through usb 2.0 in NTFS format
    - speed increased gradually
    - big freeze about the end like 5 secondes which i couldnt do anything, clicking on hard drive but nothing happened then suddenly copy has succeed

    25-30 mbs through usb 2.0 in exFat format
    - speed kept constant
    - not any freeze issue

    is that normal to get only around 30 mb per sec in exFat (through usb 2.0 because my usb hub only has 2.0 instead of 3.0)?
     
  15. g4cube macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2003
    #15
    Amazed you are getting 60MB/sec connected via USB 2.0

    Simply not possible.

    Make sure you are copying at least a GB of files.
     
  16. bubulol thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2013
  17. g4cube macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2003
    #17
    You cannot get that fast - 60MB/sec - with USB 2.0, unless you tried a very small file and you are simply getting it out of the OS X cache.
     
  18. simsaladimbamba

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2010
    Location:
    located
    #18
  19. bubulol thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2013
    #19
    sorry, i should warn you before, i tried copying on Windows at first (need to copy some files from my pc's HDD)
     
  20. joema2 macrumors 65816

    joema2

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2013
    #20
    That is a normal (even fast) speed for USB 2.0. However you're right -- there may be a performance problem with exFAT under some conditions -- even using USB 3.0. It may be isolated to certain types of USB 3.0 devices. I just noticed this a few days ago and am still investigating it. The problem goes away when I reformat the device for HFS+, but I need exFAT for Windows/Mac data sharing. It's also slow when using the Paragon NTFS driver.

    There are two different Hitachi Touro bus-powered USB 3.0 drives -- the Mobile Pro, which is a 7200 rpm, and the Mobile MX, which is 5400 rpm.

    I have about 60 terabytes of external drives used for video production, so it's important to figure this out. I'll post my results when finished.

    This perf. anomaly notwithstanding, USB 3 is generally *much* faster so it's well worth having all USB 3 devices (inc'l hubs).

    Re perf. testing, the transfer rate may be artificially higher if transferring small amounts of data. If you do a timed folder copy of 7-10 gigabytes that will give a more realistic number. Likewise with various benchmark programs -- without knowing the exact file size and test method, numbers can be skewed by cache effects.
     

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