Is there an external HD that is compatible with both Mac and PC?

blackwalla

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Nov 27, 2009
2
0
I'm planning on buying an external hard drive soon. I browsed through the forums and I saw a couple threads discussion about external HDs. My question is, is there an external HD that you can read/write on a Mac AND a PC? I know formatting to FAT32 is one way of doing it, but I was just wondering if there are any HDs out there that doesn't need formatting for you to be able to read/write on a Mac and a PC.

Thanks!
 

GGJstudios

macrumors Westmere
May 16, 2008
44,425
762
Yes, ALL external drives can be used with both Mac and PC, provided they're formatted properly. FAT32 or NTFS (with 3rd party apps) will do the trick. All hard drives must be formatted before you can use them. Some may come pre-formatted, but they're still formatted.
 

blackwalla

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Nov 27, 2009
2
0
Yes, ALL external drives can be used with both Mac and PC, provided they're formatted properly. FAT32 or NTFS (with 3rd party apps) will do the trick. All hard drives must be formatted before you can use them. Some may come pre-formatted, but they're still formatted.
A friend of mine has the Seagate FreeAgent Go external drive (Mac version) and I'm planning on getting the same thing since it's one of the "best" external HDs out there for Mac. But... since it's on HFS, I can convert it to FAT32 right? How do I do that?
 

scottness

macrumors 65816
Mar 18, 2009
1,369
3
Room 101
Sometimes you'll see external drives that are pre-formatted for the Mac--don't get one of those. Everything else will work for both platfoms out of the box, no problems.
 

scottness

macrumors 65816
Mar 18, 2009
1,369
3
Room 101
A friend of mine has the Seagate FreeAgent Go external drive (Mac version) and I'm planning on getting the same thing since it's one of the "best" external HDs out there for Mac. But... since it's on HFS, I can convert it to FAT32 right? How do I do that?
You can get one pre-formatted for the mac, but you'll just have to reformat it. Use Disk Utility to format (and partition if desired).

Why do you say this?
Easier that way if unfamiliar with Disk Utility and needs to use with both platforms. No other reason.
 

Dan73

macrumors 6502a
Jul 30, 2009
506
0
Formatting isnt a big deal.

On a Mac use disk utility. On windows go to my computer, right click the drive and hit format. Simple as that.
 

Laurencia7

macrumors 6502
Jun 3, 2009
252
0
Most if not all drives are compatible with both.
Try Western Digital, IO, SeaGate, searches to find the best one that fits your GB size, and prize range.
 
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