Using an External USB HDD

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by Tarek, Nov 10, 2009.

  1. Tarek macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2009
    Location:
    Cairo, Egypt
    #1
    Hello there,

    I am buying a Western Digitial (probably) External Hard Disk Drive today. It will either be 250GB or 320GB, depends on how much money I'm going to have with me. I wanted to know what the best way to format it is so it can be 'read and write' on both Macintosh and Windows in the same time. But if that's not possible, then at least Windows only (Windows 7) since that's what I use for games and now games are in huge sizes, just got Call of Duty 6 and it's like 11GBs.

    Thanks a lot and have a nice day.

    Tarek.
     
  2. spinnerlys Guest

    spinnerlys

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2008
    Location:
    forlod bygningen
    #2
    FAT 32 (called MS-DOS in Disk Utility) will be the best as it can be read and written to by both Mac OS X and Windows. The downside is, that the maximum file size is 4GB for one file.

    If you format the drive with NTFS via the Windows computer, it can be read by Windows and Mac OS X and written to by Windows and there is no 4GB/file limit. You need MacFuse + NTFS-3G drivers to be able to write to NTFS formatted volumes via Mac OS X. MacFuse and NTFS-3G are free.
     
  3. powerhouse7 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2009
    Location:
    Canberra, Australia
    #3
    An alternative would be to partition the hard drive so you have one portion read-write between mac and windows (using fat 32) and the other for storage (NTFS)
     
  4. BlueRevolution macrumors 603

    BlueRevolution

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2004
    Location:
    Montreal, QC
    #4
    One other option is to install MacDrive on Windows, which provides read/write support for HFS+ (Mac OS Extended) drives on Windows computers. I've installed games to HFS+ drives with MacDrive and they run just fine.

    Spinnerlys' method is probably the way to go, since MacFUSE and NTFS-3G are free. :)
     

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