External HDD format, NTFS-3g (OSXFUSE), is unreadable in Windows

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by holmesy999, Jan 15, 2015.

  1. holmesy999 macrumors newbie

    Jan 15, 2015

    I was following the instructions from this website:


    I was trying to allow writing to a NTFS external HDD from my MBP. All seemed to work fine, i was able to transfer files to it ok. However when i plugged it into a windows machine it says the drive needs to be formatted before it can be used. When i plug it back into my MBP, the get info option shows the format of the drive as NTFS-3g (OSXFUSE).

    Is there any way of undoing this, or putting the HDD back to the NTFS format?

    Please help! Many Thanks
  2. luvmymbpr macrumors regular


    Mar 6, 2014
    Format the drive on your mac in ex-fat. That's what I use.
  3. Mikael H macrumors 6502a

    Sep 3, 2014
    Sorry, but that's not a very good idea for a whole load of reasons, especially if the disk is used in a corporate environment.

    @OP: Was the disk already formatted with NTFS before you connected it to your Mac? Otherwise, try creating a file system on it first.
    If it is preformatted or formatted using a Windows box, I'd recommend ruling out a hardware- or connection problem. Try it in a different USB port on the PC, or connect it to a different PC and see if it has the same problem.
  4. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    For best results, you may want to format the drive as NTFS from your Windows PC. Then plug it into your Mac to transfer files.

    Alternatively, try Paragon instead of OSXFUSE.

    Format A Hard Drive Using Disk Utility (which is in your /Applications/Utilities folder)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 and later)
      • 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.
  5. luvmymbpr macrumors regular


    Mar 6, 2014
    He never said he was in a corporate environment. What load of reasons do you speak of?
  6. holmesy999 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 15, 2015
    Sorry i probably should have stated that I would like to try and keep the 500GB of files thats currently on the HDD if possible. I could transfer them all to another drive, then reformat it and transfer them back, however if there is a simpler solution I would love to hear it thanks.


    Thank you for your reply, just tried it in another pc, same issue. It was already a NTFS format HDD with files on it, I couldn't write to it so i did the whole OSXFUSE thing.

    Any more ideas? Many thanks to all for your suggestions


    Thank you also for your reply, as above any suggestions whilst still keeping the data on the drive? Ive seen this Paragon mentioned before, Im a bit of a cheap skate when it comes to buying programs, but it seems to get good reviews and good be worth the money for less hassle.

    Thanks again
  7. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    I'm the same way about buying software, especially when there are so many good free apps available for OS X. Paragon is one of those few exceptions I've made, and it's been well worth it.

    I think your best bet is to move the data off, reformat, and move it back.
  8. holmesy999 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 15, 2015
    Great thanks for all your help, think ill make the plunge!
  9. luvmymbpr macrumors regular


    Mar 6, 2014
    I have spent lots of money on photo software and other software, but I would never spend $20 on a program just to utilize NTFS. So many free alternatives to achieve what you need.

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