How to move files from windows to MAC?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by tinochelli, Jan 25, 2014.

  1. tinochelli macrumors newbie

    Jan 25, 2014
    Hi all,

    I have just bought a MBP and am moving away from windows. :-D

    The solution I am looking to do is to have my data (photos, videos etc) connected to my Raspberry Pi via an external HDD which is wirelessly shared on the network.

    So i need my data to be transferred from my PC to the external HDD and then be visible to the MAC.

    I understand the File systems each uses is different but does this matter if I put my files onto and external HDD. If i just copy my files from my PC to the external HDD, then connect it to my MAC will the MBP read and play the files with no issues?

    Any advice would be very appreciated.

    Many Thanks

  2. Bruno09 macrumors 68020

    Aug 24, 2013
    Far from here

    yes no problem it will work.
  3. tinochelli thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 25, 2014
    Hi Bruno,

    I read on the instructions for the external HDD (WD Passport 2TB) that "The MyPassport Drive is formatted as a single NTFS partition for compatibility with Windows. To use the drive on the MAC OS and use Time Machine you must reformat to a single HFS+J partition"??

    So assuming i do need to do that...i cannot reformat then put the files on the external HDD as windows may not recognise it?

  4. Bruno09 macrumors 68020

    Aug 24, 2013
    Far from here
    1.You do not need to format the HDD to HFS+ to use it with a Mac, BUT you DO need to format it to HFS+ if you want to use Time Machine or copy some Mac files as an iPhoto or Aperture Library, for instance, or make a bootable partition (requires Mac OS extended journaled + GUID partition scheme).

    2.The NTFS HDD can be read by the Mac, but the Mac can not write on it without using some third party softwares.

    3.If your HDD is formatted in HFS+ (with Guid partition scheme) you MUST NOT connect it to a Windows PC, as Windows will destroy the partition table.

    So :

    You can use your NTFS HDD to transfer your files from the PC to the Mac.

    If you want the HDD to work (read/write) with both Mac AND Windows, format it in exFAT.

    If you want to use Time Machine on it, see 1.

    Hope this helps.
  5. Weaselboy Moderator


    Staff Member

    Jan 23, 2005
    Correct. The drive will need to be in the Mac HFS+ (Mac OS Extended) format to use the disk with Time Machine for backups. That format is not natively readable by Windows (although you can buy software that will allow this).

    If you want to use the drive for a Time Machine backup and also to share files back and forth between Mac and Windows, I would make two partitions on the drive. Make the first in the Mac OS Extended format for your TM backups, then make the second in ExFAT. Both Windows and Mac can both read and write with ExFAT.

    OS X Disk Utility can do all this for you.
  6. tinochelli thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 25, 2014
    Weaselboy, Bruno,

    Thanks very much for the advice. I will need to decide on how i want to set this up before committing one way or the other. I will be using the MAC to download music, files etc directly onto the external HDD so perhaps the ExFAT filesystem would be more feasible?

    I will need the MAC to be able to read/write to the drive. Do you have any insight as to the stability of ExFat over HFS+ or are they both reliable?

    I believe the Raspberry Pi can read Exfat and I will be connecting the HDD to it so perhaps a full partition of ExFat covers all bases.

    Do you see any issues with that type of setup?

  7. Weaselboy Moderator


    Staff Member

    Jan 23, 2005
    HFS+ is more reliable because it is journaled, while ExFAT is not. But if it just for music on an external, that may not be a big deal for you.

    I am a bit confused though. Are you wanting to attach this drive to the Pi and access it over the network for Time Machine (TM) backups? TM requires an HFS+ drive and AFP (Apple Filing Protocol) support. It looks like that is doable if that is what you want.

    If you plan to have the drive attached to the Pi, it won't need to be in ExFAT for the other storage. You can format the second partition to whatever format works best with the Pi, and the network translation on the Mac and Windows will handle the rest.
  8. tinochelli thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 25, 2014
    Hi Weaselboy,

    The external is just for media - videos, photos, music and documents. It was not intended to be used for Time Machine. I have never used Time Machine but not sure I have a need for it. Other than to back up the some docs etc on the SSD in the MBP. I won't be using Time machine to back up my Data files. Perhaps photos which I can possibly create a separate HFS+ partition for...

    I will be using the external as a shared drive which will be accessed via the Pi. I intent to download media straight onto it from the MBP so it can then be viewed/watched directly on the TV via XBMC. From what i have seen initially the RPi may have some issues with HFS+ so ExFat may be the only choice...

    Being a new MAC user and relatively new to RaspPi I am unsure if there is a better way to accomplish what I am trying to do. As long as I can get that setup to work I will be happy :)

  9. tuanbrands macrumors newbie


    Dec 15, 2016
    Use Paragon NTFS for Mac, Problem will be solved.
  10. Fishrrman macrumors G5


    Feb 20, 2009
    There may be more elegant ways to do it, but sometimes the simplest method works best.

    I'd recommend either a USB flashdrive of sufficient capacity or an external USB3 hard drive.

    Initialize it on the PC side.

    Copy the files you want to transfer to the flashdrive or hard drive.

    Take it to the Mac and "copy over" what you need to move.

    Before you copy, do this after you have the drive mounted on the Mac desktop:
    a. Click ONE TIME on the drive to select it.
    b. Type "command-i" (eye) to bring up the get info box
    c. At the bottom of the box, there is a lock icon. Click on it and enter your administrative password
    d. Now, you need to click the checkbox "ignore ownership on this volume" (in the permissions area), if the option to do that is visible.
    This will take care of any "file ownership problems" with the moved files.
  11. TheBacklash Suspended


    Oct 23, 2013
    Stupid question.
    Will the Mac be on the same network? you could save yourself the hassle and just copy it directly over WiFi.
    Then do whatever you want with the HDD, format etc.

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