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  1. #1


    Member Since
    May 12, 2007
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    102
    Specs:
    17" MacBookPro 2.33 GHz, 2 GB Ram 160 GB HDD, 320 GB Time Machine HDD, 750 GB External HDD
    Use external HDD with mac and pc
    I saw a previous post about external HDD but it did not answer my questions, here is my situation.

    I have a U.S.B. external HDD that I have used to back up files from my PC, I now have this beautiful 17" MacbookPro and I am having trouble getting the two to work with each other. If I plug in the HDD I see all the files and such, I can drag them to my mac but I can not put stuff from my mac onto the HDD and I can not move files around inside the external HDD using my mac, just with the pc. When I try to drag a file to the HDD from the mac I get a warning that says something like I dont have permission or I need to claim ownership of the HDD, It says something like this. What do I need to do to get the HDD working with both my piece of junk pc and my new Mac. I just want to be able to switch which machine I have the drive plugged into and just have it work.

    One more question.

    When I am finished importing photos into iphoto from my digital camera I unplg the camera and get a warning that I need to properly disconnect the camera in the finder. Where and how do I do this.

    Other than these problems I really love this machine. Thanks for all the help guys.

  2. #2


    Member Since
    Apr 11, 2007
    Posts
    14
    hey i was having and am having the exact same problem with my ext hdd...and also with a usb stick, i noticed that it was just this particular one that didnt work and its file formatted via ntfs and so was my hdd i think that may have something to do with it...because all usb sticks formatted thru fat32 worked fine, but some more advice from some one who know's the score would be nice!!!!

  3. #3

    WhiteNoiseMaker's Avatar
    Member Since
    Mar 04, 2007
    Location
    Newcastle, UK
    Posts
    50
    Specs:
    White MacBook 2.0GHz CD | 2GB RAM | 80GB HDD | SuperDrive | iPod 3G 20GB
    The problem is Macs can only read NTFS, so you'll be unable to save anything to the HDD or USB Stick. You'll need to convert it to FAT32 file system which both Mac & PC can read & write.

  4. #4


    Member Since
    Apr 11, 2007
    Posts
    14
    is it possible to convert file system without losing dats no?

  5. #5


    Member Since
    May 12, 2007
    Posts
    102
    Specs:
    17" MacBookPro 2.33 GHz, 2 GB Ram 160 GB HDD, 320 GB Time Machine HDD, 750 GB External HDD
    Do you have any idea how I do this to the external HDD. I still have everything on my pc so I can just dump the drive and start over if someone could tell me how to do this. I would really appericate it allot if one of you that knows how to do this would take the time to help walk me through this. I really need to be able to use this HDD with both machines. I know it is asking allot but it would mean the world to me. Remember that I do have info on the drive that is in the wrong file format so I am going to need info on how to do a complete wipe and all.

    Thanks allot

  6. #6

    WhiteNoiseMaker's Avatar
    Member Since
    Mar 04, 2007
    Location
    Newcastle, UK
    Posts
    50
    Specs:
    White MacBook 2.0GHz CD | 2GB RAM | 80GB HDD | SuperDrive | iPod 3G 20GB
    hmmm not sure about converting i know you can convert FAT32 to NTFS but i've never tried it the other way around.

    In answer to the other question about the camera. You need to eject the camera before you unplug it. You can to that in finder just press the eject icon next to the camera listed in the sidebar on the left

  7. #7

    WhiteNoiseMaker's Avatar
    Member Since
    Mar 04, 2007
    Location
    Newcastle, UK
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    Specs:
    White MacBook 2.0GHz CD | 2GB RAM | 80GB HDD | SuperDrive | iPod 3G 20GB
    Quote Originally Posted by me399 View Post
    Do you have any idea how I do this to the external HDD. I still have everything on my pc so I can just dump the drive and start over if someone could tell me how to do this. I would really appericate it allot if one of you that knows how to do this would take the time to help walk me through this. I really need to be able to use this HDD with both machines. I know it is asking allot but it would mean the world to me. Remember that I do have info on the drive that is in the wrong file format so I am going to need info on how to do a complete wipe and all.

    Thanks allot
    Plug the HDD into your PC, open My Computer then right click on the drive and select format. you'll get a list of different format options, select FAT32 and then format it.

  8. #8


    Member Since
    May 12, 2007
    Posts
    102
    Specs:
    17" MacBookPro 2.33 GHz, 2 GB Ram 160 GB HDD, 320 GB Time Machine HDD, 750 GB External HDD
    Quote Originally Posted by WhiteNoiseMaker View Post
    Plug the HDD into your PC, open My Computer then right click on the drive and select format. you'll get a list of different format options, select FAT32 and then format it.

    First off, Thank you.

    Second: Will this erase everything.

    Thanks again

  9. #9

    WhiteNoiseMaker's Avatar
    Member Since
    Mar 04, 2007
    Location
    Newcastle, UK
    Posts
    50
    Specs:
    White MacBook 2.0GHz CD | 2GB RAM | 80GB HDD | SuperDrive | iPod 3G 20GB
    Yes it will erase all data on the HDD

  10. #10


    Member Since
    May 12, 2007
    Posts
    102
    Specs:
    17" MacBookPro 2.33 GHz, 2 GB Ram 160 GB HDD, 320 GB Time Machine HDD, 750 GB External HDD
    Quote Originally Posted by WhiteNoiseMaker View Post
    Plug the HDD into your PC, open My Computer then right click on the drive and select format. you'll get a list of different format options, select FAT32 and then format it.
    This does not work. There is no list of format options only ntfs, Fat32 is not there. Any ideas?
    Is it because the External HDD that I am using is over 300 gigs. Is there a limit on have large it can be for fat32

  11. #11

    WhiteNoiseMaker's Avatar
    Member Since
    Mar 04, 2007
    Location
    Newcastle, UK
    Posts
    50
    Specs:
    White MacBook 2.0GHz CD | 2GB RAM | 80GB HDD | SuperDrive | iPod 3G 20GB
    Quote Originally Posted by me399 View Post
    Is there a limit on have large it can be for fat32
    Oh yes sorry I forgot about that! The limit for FAT32 is 32GB, so you'll have to partition the drive into 32GB segments. I think if you use a 3rd party program like partition magic, you might be able to format the whole 300GB as FAT32 as I'm sure i've seen it done somewhere. Maybe you can even format the full 300GB using Disk Utility in OSX, but I'm still new to Mac so I can't give you info on how thats done.

  12. #12

    rogerinlondon's Avatar
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    Sep 02, 2006
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    London, England
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    Specs:
    iMac Retina 5K 4GHz i7 24GB RAM MacBook Air 11-inch 1.6GHz 4GB RAM
    Use Disk Utility to reformat the HDD. FAT32 is the option called MS-DOS and I think you can actually have a larger partition than 32gb if you do it with Disk Utility.

  13. #13


    Member Since
    May 12, 2007
    Posts
    102
    Specs:
    17" MacBookPro 2.33 GHz, 2 GB Ram 160 GB HDD, 320 GB Time Machine HDD, 750 GB External HDD
    Quote Originally Posted by rogerinlondon View Post
    Use Disk Utility to reformat the HDD. FAT32 is the option called MS-DOS and I think you can actually have a larger partition than 32gb if you do it with Disk Utility.

    Can you walk me through the how to with disk utility. I found it on my mac I just dont see any format options. Thanks again guys.

  14. #14


    Member Since
    May 12, 2007
    Posts
    102
    Specs:
    17" MacBookPro 2.33 GHz, 2 GB Ram 160 GB HDD, 320 GB Time Machine HDD, 750 GB External HDD
    I did it. Thanks guys.

    I did notice that it takes allot longer to transfer files from my pc to the external drive with it in this file format. Is that normal. It is taking about 4x longer to transfer from the pc to the drive.

  15. #15


    Member Since
    May 22, 2007
    Posts
    1
    Hi, i am new to this forums, I am using a mac mini in the office and having the same problem. Well it seems most of the portable HDD are formated in ntfs... and to have it in fat32, file transfer will be slower if the files are large. Thumb drives are usually in fat32 so it won't be a problem.

    Is there a posiblity for some other alternatives other than to format the external HDD? Simply resolving to formating to fat32 isn't an easy task for most people.

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