PC to MAC NTFS to FAT32 transfer problems? One final hurdle before buying!

Discussion in 'iMac' started by Zelnaga, May 23, 2011.

  1. Zelnaga macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2010
    #1
    Hi guys, I hear that if I stuck a windows (NTFS) external HDD (2TB) to the iMac it will only read the data?

    I have a SEAGATE 2TB external HDD (USB2) full of videos and would at some point like to transfer to a larger HDD (3TB) but utilizing the latest thunderbolt tech (when it arrives) and im assuming that mac HDD would be FAT32?

    Would there be a problem if I transfered the NTFS 2TB USB2 HDD to the Thunderbolt FAT32 HDD I got, seeing as it only write from one to another? or am I missing something here?

    Help would be appreciated. How would I go about this?
     
  2. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    #2
    FAT32 (File Allocation Table)
    • Read/Write FAT32 from both native Windows and native Mac OS X.
    • Maximum file size: 4GB.
    • Maximum volume size: 2TB
    NTFS (Windows NT File System)
    • Read/Write NTFS from native Windows.
    • Read only NTFS from native Mac OS X
      [*]To Read/Write/Format NTFS from Mac OS X: Install NTFS-3G for Mac OS X (free)
    • Some have reported problems using Tuxera (approx 33USD).
    • Native NTFS support can be enabled in Snow Leopard, but is not advisable, due to instability.
    • AirPort Extreme (802.11n) and Time Capsule do not support NTFS
    • Maximum file size: 16 TB
    • Maximum volume size: 256TB
    HFS+ (Hierarchical File System, a.k.a. Mac OS Extended)
    • Read/Write HFS+ from native Mac OS X
    • Required for Time Machine or Carbon Copy Cloner backups of Mac internal hard drive.
    • To Read/Write HFS+ from Windows, Install MacDrive
    • To Read HFS+ (but not Write) from Windows, Install HFSExplorer
    • Maximum file size: 8EiB
    • Maximum volume size: 8EiB
    exFAT (FAT64)
    • Supported in Mac OS X only in 10.6.5 or later.
    • Not all Windows versions support exFAT. See disadvantages.
    • exFAT (Extended File Allocation Table)
    • AirPort Extreme (802.11n) and Time Capsule do not support exFAT
    • Maximum file size: 16 EiB
    • Maximum volume size: 64 ZiB
     
  3. dfine1966 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2011
    #3
    GGJstudios gave you all the options available. I personally use exFat to read and write back and forth between Windows 7 64 bit and Snow Leopard. It's been really easy to use and both support exFat. Snow Leopard started supporting exFat in version 10.6.5, but had problems with it until version 10.6.8. If you are just moving large files back and forth, exFat is great. One main drawback is that you can't use Time Machine on an exFat drive, only HFS+ drive. You would need another external drive to use for Time Machine only. There are other choices, but you do need to load programs and/or drivers to use them.

    exFat works from Windows XP SP 2 all the way up to Windows 7.
    Good luck.

    You can format your external drive either from Windows or Mac, both have the capabilities to format to exFat.
     
  4. curtisinoc macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2011
    Location:
    Southern California
    #4
    Thanks for this explanation. . . Is there a reason/advantage for me to use exFAT rather than FAT32 if I'm not transferring "large files" (over 4gb) between PC and Mac? Only files I'll be transferring is documents, photos and music files and wondering if I should format my HD to exFAT or FAT32.
     
  5. dfine1966, May 23, 2011
    Last edited: May 23, 2011

    dfine1966 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2011
    #5
    There are negative and positives to use either. Instead of me writing all of the advantages and disadvantages, I found a web site that describes it a lot better than I could write. Here is the link. You will see the advantages and disadvantages here.

    http://www.answers.com/topic/exfat

    It a preference. Basically exFat will replace fat32 sooner or later. It basically was made to work on external devices with low overhead.

    Quick negatives: Limited or no support outside PC/Mac environment at present — most current consumer electronics, such as televisions and A/V receivers, can only handle previous FAT versions. So if you are using the hard drive to send to PS3 or a TV, exFat won't work yet.

    I have been using exFat, and transfer speeds seem faster than Fat32. Try both and see which you like.
     
  6. curtisinoc macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2011
    Location:
    Southern California
    #6
    Thanks
     
  7. theSeb macrumors 604

    theSeb

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2010
    Location:
    Poole, England
    #7
    If you want to share data (read and write) of any file size on both windows and mac, then exFAT is the logical choice. I use it for my external drives.
     
  8. Zelnaga thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2010
    #8
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_3 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/533.17.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.0.2 Mobile/8F190 Safari/6533.18.5)

    When they say 4GB maximum for file, is that per file?
     
  9. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    #9
    Yes, FAT32 has a 4GB per file limitation, which means you can't store a file larger than 4GB on a FAT32 volume.
     
  10. Zelnaga thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2010
    #10
    So if the iMac I brought is FAT32 HDD anxi wanted to transfer HD video content over 4GB from external HD to iMac HD, it won't allow me to do that? Sorry for questions I'm new to this stuff.
     
  11. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    #11
    Wait. First, your internal drive on the iMac is formatted HFS+, not FAT32. If you have an external drive that is FAT32, you can't put a 4+GB file on it. If you're sharing an external drive with Windows, I'd recommend using NTFS, because it has no such file limitation. Read my first post on how to read/write/format NTFS with Mac OS X.
     
  12. chrono1081 macrumors 604

    chrono1081

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2008
    Location:
    Isla Nublar
    #12
    Paragon NTFS works excellently and is only $20. It will do what you want.
     
  13. archer75 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2005
    Location:
    Oregon
    #13
    I just transfer data around my network and I don't have to worry about file systems. If you did want to move to a thunderbolt drive it's quite simple.

    Plug in your current external as OSX can read NTFS then just copy over to your HFS+ formatted thunderbolt drive. I'm not aware of any PC tech that allows the use of thunderbolt yet so it's not like you could just plug that drive in another windows machine.

    Or you can use boot camp to copy data around. But I prefer over my network. I have one external I share on another PC and I copy files from my imac to it all the time.
     
  14. siddharthkant macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 27, 2011
    #14
    Hi GGjStudios - I encounter the following error while mounting my NTFS drive onto a mac. Could you please help me identify how to fix this? I'm 2 days old on the Mac and really need the help



    Thanks
     

    Attached Files:

  15. Zelnaga thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2010
    #15
    Hi, ive had the exact same problem. Is anyone willing to help? Cheers.
     
  16. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    #16
    Are you booted in 64-bit mode? If so, try booting in 32-bit mode.
     
  17. Zelnaga thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2010
    #17
    I just brought my iMac today so apologize for the silly question but how do you boot to 32bit?
     
  18. Codpeace macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 13, 2011
    #18
    That's just about the least silly question I can imagine...
     
  19. Zelnaga thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2010
    #19
    Hi. Just booted it to 32 bit mode and still getting the same message.
     

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