External Hard Drive Problem

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by bern1812, Jun 26, 2008.

  1. bern1812 macrumors member

    Apr 1, 2008
    Ive got a WD Passport 320GB hard drive that I had formatted on my old dell, where i filled it with about 225 GB of ripped DVDs so i can have my movie library with me wherever i have my laptop. It works really well for that and im happy how well it worked out for that.

    The problem im having is now that i plug it into my mac and try to drag something into it it says the drive cant be modified. i can take things off of it just fine..and i can play all my Video_TS files just fine in DVD Player, i just cant add anything more to it, which is a bummer cus i still have 70 gigs left to fill.

    When i look in disk utility at the erase tab it says MS-DOS Fat..which from what ive read only allows you to have 2 gig files, so i dont think its in that format because i have like 7 gig movie files on it. All my other drives work great with my new mac. My Sandisk thumb drive works great and i can add files and take them off, so does my other 320 gig WD drive which i use as my time machine backup.

    Does anyone have any ideas of what i can do to fix it without having to erase the whole thing, cus i spent a lot of time ripping those DVDs to the drive?
  2. froggytreafrogg macrumors regular


    Jun 1, 2008

    Here's what you should do. You can take things off of it so, first, do that. Put your video files/ripped DVDs onto your mac's hard drive. Then go to your disk utility and erase and reformat that hard drive. Unfortunatly, you'll have to erase it but you'll be able to keep your video files cuz you moved them to your mac's hd. Reformatting that external hd will clean it out and gear it to work with you mac. This should work. good luck.
    Now you did mention the "MS-DOS" format, i know exactly what your talking about. If you plan to keep using the ex hd with a PC and a mac, then you'll have to format with MS DOS. (I know it stinks to use it) However if you only want to use it on mac computers, you can use Mac OS extended and it will be perfect.
  3. thedragonb macrumors newbie

    Nov 11, 2008
    I figured out the issue. It's Mac OS 10.5.5 Disk Utility that is the problem...

    Mac OS 10.5.5 Disk Utility not formatting Ext. HD properly.
    I had the same issue... read below and there's a solution if you have 10.4 Disk Utility... or an older version.

    I was originally able to use my external Hard drive Seagate 300GB right out the box without formatting on my Phillips DIVX-compatible DVD players as well as my Sony PS3 to watch .AVI and MPG files on TV. :cool:

    Well, last night I needed to swap some files via Time Machine and had to re-formatted my Ext HD. So once that is done I go to format back with Mac OS 10.5.5's Disk Utility, but this time using the MS-DOS (FAT32) option since that is how it will work with the DVD players and PS3. But the drive wasn't recognizable with either DVD players or Sony PS3. :mad:

    Now here's the kicker!:eek: I had my old iBook with Mac OS 10.4 and decided to format the drive using it's Disk Utility version and now the drive is recognizable on both DVD players and PS3. :D

    Obviously something is different with the latest version of Disk Utility on Mac OS 10.5.5!:confused: Does anyone know why Leopard Mac OS's Disk Utility is formatting differently than previous versions of Mac OS? What's the deal here?:confused:

    Hope this helps...Good thing I didn't give away my old iBook... Apple needs to fix this problem.

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