External HD from PC to Mac?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by iNeed, Mar 22, 2010.

  1. iNeed macrumors newbie

    Mar 16, 2010
    Hey guys,
    I'm looking to make the switch from PC to Mac. I currently have an external HD I use with my laptop but with an iMac I should have enough internal memory to save all my stuff on there. So I want to set up my external HD for that Time Machine thing. Can I do this? I thought I've heard that once you set it up for one OS you can't use it for another. Here is a link to the product page for my 1.5TB HD: http://www.seagate.com/www/en-gb/products/external/expansion/expansion_desktop/
    Thanks in advance for the help :D
  2. MacDawg macrumors Core


    Mar 20, 2004
    "Between the Hedges"
    Check out the various file systems here: MR Guide: File Systems

    If you are just going to use it for your Mac (and Time Machine), erase it with Disk Utility and format using Mac OS Extended (Journaled) which HFS+
  3. iNeed thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 16, 2010
    So I am the tech guy in my family, but I'm not understanding everything you said. I'm guessing Disk Utility is a program to erase the HD. Mac OS Extended (Journaled) is a program too which will format the HD into HFS+ which is the format that you provided an explanation of in the link.
    So are these programs on an iMac when purchased? or freeware? etc...?
    Thanks again for the link
  4. Hellhammer Moderator


    Staff Member

    Dec 10, 2008
    Disk Utility is an application that comes with you Mac, it can be found from Applications -> Utilities.

    Mac OS Extended (Journaled) is the format (it's HFS+, don't know why  calls it that though) you should use because it works best with Macs. Those other Mac OS formats have some limitations e.g. only write or read etc, but just use Mac OS Ext (Journaled) and you'll be fine.

    If I recall correctly, Time Machine can do it as well, so just open it and plug in the HD and select it as your backup volume and a window will pop up asking you to reformat it
  5. iNeed thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 16, 2010

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