external hardrive Mac & PC issue

Oct 18, 2011
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I am sure this question has been answered before but I am new to the site and I searched but could not find the answer. I can't seem to find an answer on the internet other than everything telling me I need to reformat the external hard drive...if this has been answered in this forum, could someone kindly direct me to that thread?

My husband's external hard drive is used on a PC and was formatted with a PC. I have a macbook. I need to access his hard drive to get some old pictures off. When I plug it into my mac, I can see it in finder but when I click on it, my mac will do nothing. I can not access it.

Is there any way I can access this drive without having to reformat the drive and lose all of the data on the drive? Or do I need to set it up to access over the network? I would really like to be able to just plug it into my mac to access directly.

Kind Regards ~ Bridgett :)


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Jan 23, 2008
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Keller, Texas
Your Mac's Specs
2017 27" iMac, 10.5" iPad Pro, iPhone 8, iPhone 11, iPhone 12 Mini, Numerous iPods, Monterey
Your husband's hard drive is likely formatted to NTFS which is a Windows proprietary file system. You need a third party driver which can read and write to NTFS. Your Mac can read but not write to NTFS. Paragon software sells a driver for $19.95 and is highly recommended by most of us here.

Here is the purchase and download link: Paragon NTFS

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