Will my external hd work?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by pawo, Apr 14, 2010.

  1. pawo macrumors member

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    Apr 14, 2010
    #1
    So I have a pc desktop and just bought one of these external hard drives not too long ago. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produ...tb_external_hard_drive-_-22-136-505-_-Product

    I put allllll of my stuff on there. Theres no software needed its just drag/drop.

    Im getting a new 15" mbp.. I never had a mac before, can I connect to this hd and access the files? or do I have to format it? Id hate to do that, I have so much data on there already.
     
  2. GadgetGeek71 macrumors 6502

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    #2
    You'll have to format it. FAT32 does not work with OSX. There may be a 3rd party software...but I'm not sure.
     
  3. pawo thread starter macrumors member

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    #3
    you mean NTFS doesnt work right?

    ahh.. isnt there some limit on file size in fat32? 4gb or something? Is there any difference in read/write speed? or should I just dual boot in win7 and skip all that.

    sorry for the nub questions but again its my first mac, if I dual boot can I easily transfer files between win7/osx?

    I found some software, hmmm .. http://www.paragon-software.com/home/ntfs-mac/
     
  4. GadgetGeek71 macrumors 6502

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    #4
    I'm new to Mac myself and would like to know that question. I only knew about the format issue because someone else answered the question. I think you're correct about the 4GB limit on FAT32.
     
  5. mstrze macrumors 68000

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    #5
    This is just wrong, isn't it? I thought Macs could access just about any type of disc formatting. I am almost 100% positive that I can go into Disk Utility and format a drive to be a FAT32 drive, in OS X and have the Mac access it. :confused:

    The opposite though, is not true. A Mac-specific format cannot be read by a PC.

    This has been the same with even floppy discs for as long as I can remember (early 90s). mac-formatting...limited to Macs only, but IBM/PC formatting readable by both PCs and Macs.

    I'm pretty sure you can just plug that drive into the MBP and access away.
     
  6. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

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    #6
    All those FAT32 limits are Windows ONLY. There are no size limits if I recall correctly. FAT32 is the only format that works natively with both, Windows and OS X but it can't be used for e.g. Time Machine.

    OS X can read and write NTFS with 3rd party software and Windows can read and write HFS+ with 3rd party software.
     
  7. GadgetGeek71 macrumors 6502

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    #7
    I tried that and it didn't work. I tried with a new and used external HDD and neither worked. Formatted both of them...and they worked.
     
  8. enberg macrumors regular

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    Jan 13, 2010
    #8
    You remember incorrectly. The files size limit has nothing to to with what computer is accessing the drive, it is due to how the data is saved on the drive. 4Gib - 1 byte is the hard limit on FAT32.
     
  9. hamlinspahn macrumors regular

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    #9
    Fat 32

    I have 3 similar WD drives and they all worked straight out of the box with no need for a repartition or format. And there is no software needed to read or write to a FAT32 drive in OS X it is 100% supported.
     
  10. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

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    #10
    Hmm, could be. But there is no limit on how big the partition can be because if I recall correctly (again:D), 32GB is the maximum size of FAT32 in Windows.

    Unless you need the drive with both OSs, FAT32 is useless due its limitations.
     
  11. snaky69 macrumors 603

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    #11
    It will work if it is formatted as FAT32, OS X can read but not write to NTFS.
     
  12. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    May 16, 2008
    #12
    Mac Guide on External Hard Drives

    Any external hard drive will work with PCs or Macs, as long as the connectors are there (Firewire, USB, etc.)
    It doesn't matter how the drive is formatted out of the box, since you can re-format any way you like.
    Formatting in HFS (Mac OS Extended) or FAT32 or NTFS-3G can be done with Mac's Disk Utility.

    FAT32
    • Read/Write FAT32 from both native Windows and native Mac OS X.
    • No individual file larger than 4GB.
    NTFS
    HFS
    • Read/Write HFS from native Mac OS X
    • To Read/Write HFS from Windows, Install MacDrive
    • To Read HFS (but not Write) from Windows, Install HFSExplorer
     
  13. hamlinspahn macrumors regular

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    #13
    Blah Fat32 Blah Fat32 Blah Fat32 Blah

    Blah Blah Blah Stop the madness about what FAT32 is or isn't and what it can do and what it cannot. It is obvious that PAWO isn't requesting a technical breakdown of FAT32 he is asking will I have to format my drive for it to work on Mac. Answer if it is in FAT32 no.

    How hard is it to stay on point?
     
  14. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    #14
    The OP also asked about file size limits on FAT32, which spawned the other discussion. How hard is it to read ALL the posts in the thread before jumping to conclusions?
     
  15. hamlinspahn macrumors regular

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    #15
    Separate Issue

    Your right I should have read them all. So answer it and move on. A full discussion on All of FAT32s technical details was still not requested yet offered anyway.

    Answer: The maximum size for a file on a FAT32 is 4 GB minus 1 byte.
     
  16. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    #16
    Yeah, that's been said already. If you don't want to read "technical details", just skip those posts. The OP didn't complain. And what FAT32 "technical details" are you talking about, other than file size? The OP asked numerous questions; not just one.
     

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