NTFS read only

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by Diskdoctor, Nov 27, 2006.

  1. Diskdoctor macrumors newbie

    Oct 11, 2006
    I have just bought my mac after using a PC for years....I have sevral external drives all formatted NTFS...the smallest drive is 350 gb and the biggest 750gb.

    I no MacDrive will let a PC read and write to a HFS Drive but can I get a mac to read and write to a NTFS drive?

    or is there a way to convert my NTFS drive to HFS without losing all the data on then...?

    I am really new to mac so please forgive my stupidity....
  2. CanadaRAM macrumors G5


    Oct 11, 2004
    On the Left Coast - Victoria BC Canada
    No, there is no way to get a Mac to write to NTFS. NTFS is a proprietary, closed standard (thanks a bunch Microsoft).

    Reformat your drives FAT32 if you need to share, or HFS+ (MacOS Extended) if Mac only. This WILL erase all of your data.
  3. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Jan 5, 2006
    Redondo Beach, California
    Microsoft uses a bit of patented technology to write data to NTFS but reading it back is un-patentable. Microsoft refuses to license this to anyone. So while it would be easy to do no one will sell you the ability to write to NTFS volumes. There is some free software on the 'net that you can find but your best plan would be to re-format the volumes to HFS+.

    There is no technical reason for this. Microsoft did it specifically so that switching away from NTSF is not be easy
  4. Diskdoctor thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 11, 2006
    The trouble I have is some of my drives are amost full. i could copy all the data to my mac then format my drives HFS and then copy it back again.. but then I a will have to put Mac Drive on all my pcs and there is a lot of pcs in the home and office.

    The easyest way would to just make the mac read and write NTFS for now..hopefuly next year i can replace all the pc with macs and then the problem is solved...

    so any idea where i come get this software and what its called..
  5. daveIT macrumors member

    Oct 25, 2006
    AK, USA

    If you have a spare drive or can transfer all stuff from one external drive onto another. Format one drive as FAT32 and then transfer stuff from NTFS -> FAT32 -> Mac -> HFS. I'm not sure how big all your different drives and data is but it could work with some juggling around.
  6. Westside guy macrumors 603

    Westside guy

    Oct 15, 2003
    The soggy side of the Pacific NW
    If you've still got PCs at home, another option is to plug your drives into a PC and have the PC share them. Macs can handle Windows shares quite well - and can both read from and write to a Windows share.
  7. Chef Medeski macrumors 6502a

    Chef Medeski

    Jun 14, 2005
    New York, NY
    NO..... copy the data. Re-format the drives in FAT32. Then copy back. Now everyone can play nice with them.

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