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Thread: NTFS Formatted External HD recognized in Mac OS X but not in Windows

  1. #1

    Member Since
    Feb 23, 2010
    NTFS Formatted External HD recognized in Mac OS X but not in Windows
    Hi - I was hoping someone with knowledge of drive formats and mac/windows file sharing might be able to help me out.

    I have a 1.5TB external hard drive that I have been using to store my data on from my macbook. In order to the drive to be accessible on windows as well, I originally formatted the drive to be ntfs and installed macFUSE and NTFS-3g on my macbook. This setup worked great for several months. I was able to stored my data, documents, music, on the external hard drive from my mac and later connect the drive to a windows pc and use it perfectly.

    However, the past few months I have been using the drive exclusively with my Mac and now (since yesterday) when I try to connect it to a windows pc I get an error saying:

    I:\ is not accessible.
    The file or directory is corrupted and unreadable.
    I've tried the drive on both a Windows XP machine and Windows 7 - both giving me the same error.

    While browsing the web I came across the possibility it might be a permissions issue(???). The file permissions in the 'get info' panel tell me the I have custom access to the drive. Here are a few diagnostic commands a threw into the terminal hoping to give you a better idea of my setup. Also it is probably important to know the drive that is causing me issues is External2.

    Zuperzz-MacBook:~ Owner$ ls -alO /Volumes
    total 24
    drwxrwxrwt@  4 root  admin  hidden  136 Dec 12 14:27 .
    drwxrwxr-t  34 root  admin  -      1224 Dec  2 09:54 ..
    drwxrwxrwx   1 root  admin  -      8192 Aug 16 18:54 External2
    lrwxr-xr-x   1 root  admin  -         1 Dec  2 10:03 Macintosh HD -> /
    Zuperzz-MacBook:~ Owner$ id
    uid=502(Owner) gid=20(staff) groups=20(staff),204(_developer),100(_lpoperator),98(_lpadmin),81(_appserveradm),80(admin),79(_appserverusr),61(localaccounts),12(everyone),401(,403(
    Zuperzz-MacBook:~ Owner$ diskutil list
       #:                       TYPE NAME                    SIZE       IDENTIFIER
       0:      GUID_partition_scheme                        *250.1 GB   disk0
       1:                        EFI                         209.7 MB   disk0s1
       2:                  Apple_HFS Macintosh HD            249.7 GB   disk0s2
       #:                       TYPE NAME                    SIZE       IDENTIFIER
       0:      GUID_partition_scheme                        *1.5 TB     disk2
       1:                        EFI                         209.7 MB   disk2s1
       2:       Microsoft Basic Data External2               1.5 TB     disk2s2
    Zuperzz-MacBook:~ Owner$ df
    Filesystem    512-blocks       Used Available Capacity  Mounted on
    /dev/disk0s2   487725344  459514760  27698584    95%    /
    devfs                237        237         0   100%    /dev
    map -hosts             0          0         0   100%    /net
    map auto_home          0          0         0   100%    /home
    /dev/disk2s2  2929864696 2670864008 259000688    92%    /Volumes/External2
    I would appreciate any help I could get in getting this drive to be accessible in windows. Thanks!

  2. #2

    chscag's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jan 23, 2008
    Keller, Texas
    If it were a matter of permissions, you should be able to fix that easy enough by using Root access on the Mac side.

    However, I don't believe it's a permissions problem since we're talking here about access from a Win machine not a Mac. Taking ownership of a drive from Windows is an easy matter.... But what's happening is that Disk Manager can't recognize the file system which means the drive has been corrupted.

    Unfortunately, MacFuse and NTFS-3g are buggy and have been known to cause corruption. I believe that's what happened to your drive.

    You can try to correct errors by using "chkdsk /f" in a command prompt from your Win machine. Not sure if it will work or not. I don't think Disk Utility will work either. If neither will work, you might have to resort to using recovery software to gain access to your data on the drive.

  3. #3

    Member Since
    Feb 23, 2010
    I appreciate the reply. I'll give the chkdsk command a try and see what happens. What exactly did you mean by using disk utility? I wouldn't mind giving it a try even if there is a small chance of it working before I go about recovering all my data from the drive.

    Also, correct me if I'm wrong, but when you say the drive is probably corrupted you simply mean the data is inaccessible, however, a clean reformat should once again make the drive operable.

  4. #4

    chscag's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jan 23, 2008
    Keller, Texas
    Disk Utility is an application on your Mac that is similar to Disk Manager from Windows. Run Disk Utility from Applications, Utilities.
    See if it can repair the drive. Use the verify and repair option.

    By drive corruption I mean that the data is corrupt or the MFT (master file table) is corrupt. If the MFT or data is corrupt, chkdsk /f may be able to fix it so give it a try first. If it doesn't work and the data is not critical, you can always reformat the drive to get it back up and working. (but with no data)

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