Transferring onto an External HD previously used with PC

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by pizeach, Feb 17, 2009.

  1. pizeach macrumors newbie

    Feb 17, 2009

    I just got my new iMac a few weeks ago, and I'm having some issues with my external hard drive.

    I previously had a Sony Vaio laptop and I used a Maxtor External Hard Drive to store all my photos, documents, etc. When I got my Mac I was able to transfer all my music onto it via my EXHD with no problems at all.

    But now that I want to put photos uploaded onto my Mac onto my EXHD, it's telling me that my external hard drive "cannot be modified".

    Is there a way to fix/change this?

    Thanks, Tianna =)
  2. JediMeister macrumors 68040

    Oct 9, 2008
    With standard settings and no additional software, Mac computers cannot write to NTFS formatted drives, they can only read from them. On the other hand, Windows computers cannot read or write HFS+ (Mac OS X Extended) formatted devices, again without additional software. In order to enable reading and writing for both of these formats, you need to have MacFUSE or MacDrive. MacFUSE is free to download, but MacDrive does cost money.
  3. pizeach thread starter macrumors newbie

    Feb 17, 2009
  4. frankblundt macrumors 65816


    Sep 19, 2005
    South of the border
    Personally.. if you don't intend using that drive with a PC (ie it's just for storing stuff you want to access from your Mac), I'd copy everything off it onto the Mac (presuming you have the free space to do this), use Disk Utility (in Applications/Utilities) to erase it into Mac OS Extended format, and move everything back again.

    If you want it readable by both PC and Mac, you can choose to erase it into MS-DOS (FAT) format in disk utility (most Flash drives are in this format when you buy them, for this reason). FAT does have a limit on individual file size of 4GB, so it's no good for storing DVD disk images etc, and is arguable not as 'good' a format but is otherwise pretty versatile

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