Partitioning external drive for Mac and Windows backup

Discussion in 'Windows, Linux & Others on the Mac' started by eah2119, Aug 20, 2010.

  1. eah2119 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2010
    #1
    Awhile back I bought a 500 GB Seagate FreeAgent Go external hard drive to backup my 218 GB PC. I used the automatic backup software that came with it and it works fine. After all this I purchased a MacBook Pro and now, instead of buying another drive and also considering there's plenty of space on the one I already have, I was wondering if I could possibly partition half the drive to be used as a backup with Time Machine without touching the other half. I plugged in the drive to my Mac and opened Disk Utility. It says it is a NTFS file system (I suppose that's normal). Anyways, is this possible and if so can someone guide me through it? Thanks.

    Btw, I just found this Mac forums site. It's great. :)
     
  2. FourCandles macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2009
    Location:
    England
    #2
    The built-in Disk Utility in OS X can't resize an NTFS partition. It can erase the disk and create two partitions, and format one as HFS for your Time Machine back up; you could then format the other from your Windows machine.

    Or you could look at a third party app like iPartition, which I understand can resize an NTFS partition. I've not used it so I'll invite others, who have used it, to chip in here.

    But to answer your basic question, yes it is possible to have an HFS partition for OS X and an NTFS partition for Windows on the same drive.
     
  3. balamw Moderator

    balamw

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2005
    Location:
    New England
    #3
    If you have Windows 7, I'd give the built in tools there a shot. You can resize partitions there without any third party software. Shrink the size of your NTFS partition to leave some empty space and then create a new HFS+ partition in the empty space you created from OS X.

    NOTE: Do not assume that because these operations are "non-destructive" that your data is safe. Before changing partitions with any tool you should always make sure you have a backup or are ready to lose any data on the drive.

    B
     
  4. eah2119 thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2010
    #4
    Stupid disk utility won'y create an NTFS, so I figured I would erase the disk, partition half of it HFS for the Mac and left the rest as free space. I expected to be able to use a different application to partition the other half for NTFS, but that wasn't the case. I took your recommendation of downloading iPartition, but sadly it was acting real screwy. Disk utility says it has a capacity of 500.11 GB. iPartition says it has a full capacity of about 465 GB. It wouldn't even allow me to create an NTFS partition. I looked for other partitioning software and had no luck. So, can someone recommend a program for Windows Vista that could help me create an NTFS partition on a disk with a HFS partition or maybe an application for Mac?
     
  5. FourCandles macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2009
    Location:
    England
    #5
    One option would be to use Disk Utility to partition the disk and create one HFS+ partition for OS X and a FAT32 partition. Then use Vista to convert the FAT32 to NTFS. AFAIK you have to use the command line in Windows to do that part.

    EDIT: You may also want to have a look at this thread, which has some relevant info.
     

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