Working with NTFS

MBP*

macrumors member
Original poster
Jun 12, 2014
99
1
I have a number of hard drive that I'm trying to consolidate into one large one. This involves the transfer of files onto the NTFS drives (former windows user). How can I get permission to use my MBP to help me do this - to write to NTFS drives with large file sizes?

Thanks
 

Small White Car

macrumors G4
Aug 29, 2006
10,905
1,182
Washington DC
The other solution is, if you still have a Window machine that boots, is to throw the NTFS drive into the PC and hook it up to the Mac with ethernet. Then copy to your heart's content over the network, letting Windows do the actual drive-writing.

This is obviously a bad solution if you don't just have a PC laying around, but thought I'd mention it in case you do.
 

MisterMe

macrumors G4
Jul 17, 2002
10,648
29
USA
Wow! I can hear the beat of iron-shoed hooves on cobble stone.

This is 2014. Dropbox or a similar cloud/shared file/synchronization system is immeasurably more convenient than moving files around on removable disc drives.
 

westrock2000

macrumors 6502a
Oct 18, 2013
524
22
Wow! I can hear the beat of iron-shoed hooves on cobble stone.

This is 2014. Dropbox or a similar cloud/shared file/synchronization system is immeasurably more convenient than moving files around on removable disc drives.
1-2MB/s upload speeds for most of America? Theres a reason some of these backup companies offer "unlimited" space...you will need an unlimited amount of time.....
 

MBP*

macrumors member
Original poster
Jun 12, 2014
99
1
Wow! I can hear the beat of iron-shoed hooves on cobble stone.

This is 2014. Dropbox or a similar cloud/shared file/synchronization system is immeasurably more convenient than moving files around on removable disc drives.
Thanks for the suggestions.

MisterMe. I have 4TB to play with.
 

GGJstudios

macrumors Westmere
May 16, 2008
44,419
768
Here's a summary of options:

Format A Hard Drive Using Disk Utility (which is in your /Applications/Utilities folder)
Choose the appropriate format:
HFS+ (Hierarchical File System, a.k.a. Mac OS Extended (Journaled) Don't use case-sensitive) 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, here are some alternatives:
    • For Mac OS X 10.4 or later (32 or 64-bit), install Paragon (approx $20) (Best Choice for Lion and later)
    • For 32-bit Mac OS X, install NTFS-3G for Mac OS X (free) (does not work in 64-bit mode)
    • For 64-bit Snow Leopard, read this: MacFUSE for 64-bit Snow Leopard
    • Some have reported problems using Tuxera (approx $36).
    • Native NTFS support can be enabled in Snow Leopard and Lion, 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
  • You can use this format if you routinely share a drive with multiple Windows systems.
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
  • You can use this format if it is supported by all computers with which you intend to share the drive. See "disadvantages" for details.
FAT32 (File Allocation Table)
  • Read/Write FAT32 from both native Windows and native Mac OS X. [*]Maximum file size: 4GB.
  • Maximum volume size: 2TB
  • You can use this format if you share the drive between Mac OS X and Windows computers and have no files larger than 4GB.
 

MBP*

macrumors member
Original poster
Jun 12, 2014
99
1
I bought a new external HDD which is a NTFS drive.

Is it worth formatting to a OS X format, and then not being able to open on easily on a Windows machine. Or, using it as NTFS and getting an app to allow the Mac to write to NTFS?
 

Weaselboy

Moderator
Staff member
Jan 23, 2005
30,177
9,857
California
I bought a new external HDD which is a NTFS drive.

Is it worth formatting to a OS X format, and then not being able to open on easily on a Windows machine. Or, using it as NTFS and getting an app to allow the Mac to write to NTFS?
It depends on how you intend to use it. If you just want to share some files back and forth between Mac and Windows with the drive, you can use the ExFAT format that is compatible with both. The only issue is ExFAT is not a journaled file system so is not as safe as HFS+(Mac) or NTFS, but if this is not your only copy of the file and you are careful about ejecting disks properly, it won't be an issue.
 

MBP*

macrumors member
Original poster
Jun 12, 2014
99
1
It depends on how you intend to use it. If you just want to share some files back and forth between Mac and Windows with the drive, you can use the ExFAT format that is compatible with both. The only issue is ExFAT is not a journaled file system so is not as safe as HFS+(Mac) or NTFS, but if this is not your only copy of the file and you are careful about ejecting disks properly, it won't be an issue.
well I am leaning towards the OS X format because I want to use time machine. Is time machine recommended over other traditional third party backup software like Acronis? Does Mac when using time machine, create one file of the backup, or are the files browsable like on the actual laptop itself?
 

Weaselboy

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Staff member
Jan 23, 2005
30,177
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California
well I am leaning towards the OS X format because I want to use time machine. Is time machine recommended over other traditional third party backup software like Acronis? Does Mac when using time machine, create one file of the backup, or are the files browsable like on the actual laptop itself?
Ah yes... you will need to use the Mac format for Time Machine. Time Machine works quite well for backup and is nice because it can be used to fully restore your system if you lose a drive.

It creates a file on the backup drive called Backups.backupd and all the backed up files are inside that. Yu don't want to browse around in there in Finder as it may break the backup image. But you can look inside it through the Time Machine interface. Just click the Time Machine menu icon and select Enter Time Machine and you will be in the browse interface. From there you can select files to restore if you want.
 

nexus4life

macrumors regular
Jul 19, 2014
185
1
I've personally had many issues with Paragon, but I highly recommend Tuxera.

Also - if you get a new external hard drive, you might do what I did - make 2 partitions, one formatted NTFS and the other HFS+. That way you can do time machine and all that on the HFS+ partition and still access files you put on the NTFS partition. Really easy to do and one of the best things I've done since unfortunately I've been unable to completely eliminate Windows and NTFS from my life.
 

MBP*

macrumors member
Original poster
Jun 12, 2014
99
1
I've personally had many issues with Paragon, but I highly recommend Tuxera.

Also - if you get a new external hard drive, you might do what I did - make 2 partitions, one formatted NTFS and the other HFS+. That way you can do time machine and all that on the HFS+ partition and still access files you put on the NTFS partition. Really easy to do and one of the best things I've done since unfortunately I've been unable to completely eliminate Windows and NTFS from my life.
Thank you, excellent idea. But I guess the NTFS side needs to be made with a Windows machine? If I create ExFAT on the Windows partition I can then go to a Win machine and make it into NTFS?
 

Weaselboy

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Staff member
Jan 23, 2005
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California
Thank you, excellent idea. But I guess the NTFS side needs to be made with a Windows machine? If I create ExFAT on the Windows partition I can then go to a Win machine and make it into NTFS?
Yes... or with one of the utilities mentioned in OS X.
 

MBP*

macrumors member
Original poster
Jun 12, 2014
99
1
I've personally had many issues with Paragon, but I highly recommend Tuxera.

Also - if you get a new external hard drive, you might do what I did - make 2 partitions, one formatted NTFS and the other HFS+. That way you can do time machine and all that on the HFS+ partition and still access files you put on the NTFS partition. Really easy to do and one of the best things I've done since unfortunately I've been unable to completely eliminate Windows and NTFS from my life.
Yes... or with one of the utilities mentioned in OS X.
I'm in the Disk Utility now. There look like one partition already made (factory) which is the full capacity. I tried to make a new partition but it looks like I need to delete the existing one first. When I format the entire media, and remove the existing partition do I format with FAT? And then from there made one for FAT and OSX?
 

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Weaselboy

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Staff member
Jan 23, 2005
30,177
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California
I'm in the Disk Utility now. There look like one partition already made (factory) which is the full capacity. I tried to make a new partition but it looks like I need to delete the existing one first. When I format the entire media, and remove the existing partition do I format with FAT? And then from there made one for FAT and OSX?
Click over on the Partition tab there and select 2 Partitions in the drop down like in my screenshot. Then click on the first partition and name it what you want then select Mac OS Extended in the drop down for format. Then select the second partition and name it then select MS-DOS FAT in the drop down. Then click the apply button and it will create two partitions formatted like you want.

You can grab the middle of the partition with your mouse and slide it up and down to resize before you apply.

 

MBP*

macrumors member
Original poster
Jun 12, 2014
99
1
Partition Failed with Error - Invalid request.

In your example, don't you need to delete the create partition called UNTITLEd first?

----------

I just formatted it from the main disk with Mac OS (which is the only one that seems to work with erase), but failed, with the same error when creating partitions.
 

Weaselboy

Moderator
Staff member
Jan 23, 2005
30,177
9,857
California
Partition Failed with Error - Invalid request.

In your example, don't you need to delete the create partition called UNTITLEd first?
Nope... I had one FAT untitled partition on there and applied the changes you see in my screen shot and it worked. No need to remove the existing partition.

You have something else going on there.


I just formatted it from the main disk with Mac OS (which is the only one that seems to work with erase), but failed, with the same error when creating partitions.
Hmmm... try going to the erase tab and select the drive brand name (above the partition name) and see if you can erase to Mac OS Extended. That should erase the entire drive and overwrite any errors that are there. Then switch over to the partition tab to make your two partitions.
 

MBP*

macrumors member
Original poster
Jun 12, 2014
99
1
You can do it if its Mac OS but as soon as FAT comes into it, it doesn't work.

I formatted the 'brand name', and it worked with Mac OS. Though, it didn't make the partition with both Fat and Mac together.
 

Weaselboy

Moderator
Staff member
Jan 23, 2005
30,177
9,857
California
You can do it if its Mac OS but as soon as FAT comes into it, it doesn't work.

I formatted the 'brand name', and it worked with Mac OS. Though, it didn't make the partition with both Fat and Mac together.
Hmm... I did it in that screenshot you see there. That UNTITLED you see there is one FAT partition, then I setup the two partitions you see there with one FAT and the other Mac and hit apply and it worked.
 

MBP*

macrumors member
Original poster
Jun 12, 2014
99
1
How strange. Is FAT limited in its capacity. I'm trying to create a 250GB partition
 

Weaselboy

Moderator
Staff member
Jan 23, 2005
30,177
9,857
California
How strange. Is FAT limited in its capacity. I'm trying to create a 250GB partition
I know there was a fairly small size limit in Windows XP with FAT32 (I think it was 32GB?), but don't know what the limit is using OS X Disk Utility or if there even is one. I don't have a large drive to test it on.

I know you can use the ExFAT option on there on larger drive sizes. That will read/write in Windows and Mac, so might work for you.
 

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