How to copy files to a Windows external hard disk?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Evren Carven, Apr 3, 2015.

  1. Evren Carven macrumors regular

    Evren Carven

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2014
    #1
    My Seagate external hard disk is used for my Windows for a long time. Today when I connet it to my Mac (with 10.10.2), it indeed recongnizes the disk and I can see all my photos in the disk. After I copy some images to my Mac, I find there is no way to copy my Mac's image to the Seagate external hard disk. I select the images and using 'command+C', then I open the external disk, there is not paste item in the right click menu. I try several times have not work at all. How to get my Mac images to the disk? Please.
     
  2. yjchua95 macrumors 604

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    Apr 23, 2011
    Location:
    GVA, KUL, MEL (current), ZQN
    #2
    You can't.

    You have to format the entire external drive as FAT32 or exFAT if you want the drive to be both useable in Mac and Windows.

    Or, you can just buy Paragon NTFS to do so without having to reformat.
     
  3. snaky69 macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2008
    #3
    Mac OS X can read NTFS, but not write to it. What you're trying to do is impossible without reformatting your external hard drive to a Mac friendly format or buying third party software that allow it.
     
  4. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

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    Boston
    #4
    As mentioned conflicting disk formats, OSX is can but not write to NTFS, and of course, by default Windows cannot read HFS+. Depending on the size of the files, why not use a thumb drive with FAT (or exFAT)?
     
  5. Agent-P macrumors 68030

    Agent-P

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    Dec 5, 2009
    Location:
    The Tri-State Area
    #5
    As others have said, your Seagate external drive is most likely in NTFS format. Because of that you have two options for making it fully compatible between both OS X and Windows:

    1. copy EVERYTHING off your external to some other drive (could be a different external drive or the internal hard drive of either your Mac or Windows computer if you have space to store it there temporarily). Then use your Mac (or Windows, but I don't remember the steps off the top of my head) to reformat the external drive to exFAT format via the built in Disk Utility app. Once that's done, then move all your files back to the external.

    2. As yjchua95 noted there is something called Paragon NTFS which you can download for your Mac so it can write to that NTFS drive without anything else needed. This is the easier step, but it costs money. Plus then this method will only work on Macs that have Paragon installed.
     
  6. DebianJunkie macrumors newbie

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    Feb 25, 2015
    #6
  7. BriOS macrumors member

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    Oct 23, 2014
    #7
    What I did was plug the external back into my windows machine, and repartitioned the drive. Basically shrunk the partition down to the size of the data that was on it. About 200gig total on the 1tb drive. And I left that unpartitioned space (800gig) raw. Then I plugged the drive back into the mac, and formatted that open space with the mac file system using the disk utility app that came with the mac. Then I just moved all the files from the 200gig NTFS partition to the newly formatted for mac side. Then I formatted the old side to the mac standard once all the data was moved to the new side. I haven't done anything else with the external drive yet, but atleast all my files are now on the mac standard and the whole drive is now usable to write files to. Im sure there are programs that will allow me to delete the smaller partition and expand the drive back out to its full size. I haven't looked into that yet. But thats a good work around as long as you have more than enough free space left on the external that you can moved the data from one side to the other and have it all occupy the drive at the same time. Hope that helps.
     
  8. DebianJunkie macrumors newbie

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    Feb 25, 2015
    #8
    Doesn't disk utility allow deleting the NTFS 200 gigs? Or maybe there's no point in doing that if Disk Utility can't expand the MAC volume to the left (towards start of the disk). Has anyone tried expanding MAC hfs+ journalled to the left?
     
  9. BriOS macrumors member

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    Oct 23, 2014
    #9
    Yeah it does. I just wanted to keep that volume intact incase I needed to copy it back to the windows PC. But yes it will allow you to delete and reformat that NTFS partition.
     
  10. Evren Carven thread starter macrumors regular

    Evren Carven

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2014
    #10
    Thanks for all your guys reply.

    I notice the ntfs for mac has a trial verison on their website. I will have a try. For the free ntfs-3g, I will try it too. I will consider whether it's worth to buy or not.

    To partition the disk into two partitions for windows and mac is a good idea, but it seems a little confused for me:)

    Is it work for my external hard disk with FAT32 or exFAT?
     
  11. scaredpoet macrumors 604

    scaredpoet

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2007
    #11
    FAT32 has some limitations: Files can't be larger than 2GB and the partition size can't be larger than 2TB. FAT32 also chokes pretty badly if you have directories with lots of files in them (like, thousands), which becomes more and more a possibility when you have a huge hard drive volume.

    I would recommend exFAT. Of course the drawback there is, most Windows XP and earlier systems are incompatible with exFAT (unless you install this update). Also, there used to be (and might still be) a bug where OS X had trouble working with exFAT volumes in some cases, unless it was OS X that did the formatting. OS X exFAT-formatted drives work fine in Windows though.

    Lastly and most importantly: you'll need to move all data off the NTFS volume before formatting, if you intend to keep that data.
     
  12. yjchua95 macrumors 604

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    #12
    Correction: Files can't be larger than 4GB.
     
  13. Evren Carven thread starter macrumors regular

    Evren Carven

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2014
    #13
    I find a tip to write to NTFS drives in OS X Mavericks from tutsplus. The tip is using Terminal to make OS X Mavericks can write to NTFS. The command is:

    sudo nano /etc/fstab

    and then type:

    label=drivename none ntfs rw,auto,nobrowse

    I have not tried it yet. I do not know whether it is work for OS X Yosemite. I'm using Yosemite.

    Is there anybody try this command?
     
  14. DebianJunkie macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2015
    #14
    One could write to ntfs in Linux in 2004 but it was buggy and one could **** up the file system. If you give it a try let us know!
     
  15. Evren Carven thread starter macrumors regular

    Evren Carven

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2014
    #15
    I have tried the command on my Yosemite. After I typed the first sudo … command, the terminal displayed a GNU nano 2.0.6 white window and then there was nothing.

    I’m not sure whether this command is work for my Yosemite.
     
  16. DebianJunkie macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2015
    #16
    It means that the file is empty or isn't even there. Are you sure you typed it correctly? Maybe you forgot /
    sudo anno /etc/fstab

    also check what files you 've got there

    ls -la /etc

    Upon question weather or not to display all files press Y
     
  17. Evren Carven thread starter macrumors regular

    Evren Carven

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2014
    #17
    Yeah, i typed it correctly. I’m not sure whether the file is empty or isn’t there. I have many photos for years in the external hard disk. I do not want to lose any one.

    If there is somebody used this command successfully on Yosemite, it will give me more confidence to to this.
     
  18. Flexotron macrumors newbie

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    Oct 9, 2014
    Location:
    Ottawa Canada
    #18
  19. marc55 macrumors 6502a

    marc55

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2011
    #19
    Paragon NTSF is $20, Tuxera is $31; is Tuxera any better than Paragon?
     
  20. Evren Carven thread starter macrumors regular

    Evren Carven

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2014
    #20
    I have the same question. Which one is better for a newbie user?
     

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