How to set up hard drive for mac and pc

FAT32 is the only filesystem I know of that can be both read and written under all three major operating systems Windows, OS-X, and Linux as well as by various special purpose devices like digital cameras. It's unfortunate that FAT32 is an archaic design and has some serious limitations, but if your files are smaller than 4 GB and the partition containing your filesystem is under 2 TB, FAT32 provides portability between OS's that no other filesystem can.

For the record, The Paragon app won't let you run the free trial any more. What gives?? All I can access is the help menu, which ain't helpful at all! MacDrive no longer allows access to Mac drives during the evaluation period How we are supposed to evaluate it without actually evaluating it is beyond my little brain. All I have to check to see if the drive is actually bad is a Windows 7 x64 machine as her Air sure won't help. After two supposed hard drive failures in 3 months I'm a bit suspicious of the SATA controller or cabling. After I pulled the drive, I decided to plug into my test PC and the firmware updated fine and the disk management utility sees 3 healthy partitions, but I can't read them without one of the products mentioned in this thread.

It sounds like MacDrive is the one I need, but seek confirmation as I do intend to purchase the product that best suits.

Mac Hard Drive Setup Guide

After trialling the free version and finding it appeared to do what I wanted it to do and did it reasonably well and simply, I thought I'd do the right thing purchased a license. So far, after 2 weeks, I'm still waiting for a response to my request for help from Paragon and it seems I could be waiting a while. Apparently, irrespective of the fact I have purchased a license, because I didn't also purchase a 'support package' I've gone on a 'no guarantee' waiting list while those who purchased a support package get preferential treatment. Doesn't Paragon understand any person who goes to the effort of purchasing a license expects sufficient technical support to at least get what was purchased working.

But apparently not. Further it seems some customers are more important that others. So, my strong recommendation is, 'think 2 or 3 times about when you want the application to work before you purchase. So if you dont want to buy a Windows machine just to maintain your portable drives, dont use Microsoft formats. I once had to prepare files for a non-profit client using windows XP. I instructed them to use the update for ExFat and prepared an ExFat drive to mail them original high quality HD video files on.

It all went well until I realized some characters are illegal in ExFat and that made for a lot of initial problems. Once I removed any character like:! Somebody should mention that when talking about ExFat. Does anyone have a good link to reference? Always and never are too terms not often used in IT. You can look it up if you care. Always and never are two terms not often used in IT. You can look it up if you care to.

Available Mac File Systems Explained

It randomly stops working, and I have to reinstall. Going to try MacDrive. Palu, installing the filesystem drivers that come with bootcamp on a non Apple computer is possible, I did it a few months ago to get files off an old hard drive.

How to format a hard drive for MAC and PC

Always had the idea you could install the bootcamp drivers on a non-apple branded pc, but doesnt look like its a possibility. Shake, would have been perfect :. Rob Nightingale. Top Deals. Email Facebook Whatsapp Pinterest Twitter. This will sign you up to our newsletter Enter your Email. Read our privacy policy. Enjoyed this article? Stay informed by joining our newsletter!


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Enter your Email. Thank you so much for this. Just what I need. Again, thank you very much. The Java application worked fine for me. Lucky I had the VM installed This didn't work. Gave me the blue screen of death. Not worth it. This method doesn't many ANY changes to your Windows software. Thanks Gary. These are the answers I've been looking for a long time.

External Hard Drive Not Showing Up in Windows or OS X?

And it's free. What could the problem be? I didn't want to spring for MacDrive, but at least it works. MacDrive despite costing the most was the one that worked.


  • External Hard Drive For Mac and PC with Data Interchangeable.
  • Optional Formatting and Partitioning.
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I recommend this. Paragon did everything i needed it to do, read, edit and save , job done! With the trial version, happy to buy after trial experience. I am a Mac user, video editor. The Fat32 limit of 4 GB makes it unsuable for my needs. Typos, sorry. Wiz, Exfat does NOT have any limitation in file size. Hard drives advertised as being compatible with Windows and Mac OS may have misled you into thinking you could actually use one hard drive for both computers.

Here's a look at how the different HD format types function:. According to the list above, formatting your hard drive to FAT32 so that you can read and write on either OS seems like the obvious solution. The video and directions below will guide you through the process, but before you format your HD to FAT32, beware of these drawbacks:.

The good news is, it's not FAT32 or nothing. The alternative solutions do require more tinkering, but if you do not want to risk FAT32's lack of security, choose from one of the following alternatives. If you keep your hard drive's out-of-the-box NTFS format for all the reasons FAT32 displeases, there's a workaround that will allow your Mac to read and write files to the drive. However, it is an open-source program, so use it at your own risk. Many have vouched for its success, but others complain about bugs.

The commercial solution, which will give you access to support and software updates, is Paragon NTFS. Here's how:. Then, select your hard drive from the left sidebar. Now go to the Erase tab. Then, click Erase at the bottom to format the drive. Please note that this will complete erase the drive.

Any data you want to keep on that drive must be backed up elsewhere first. This is an open-source program, so use it at your own risk. Alternatively, you can opt for paid software like MacDrive instead.

Partition Wizard

Option 3: Create two partitions on your hard drive to use with each OS, separately. This solution is a little different than the previous two because instead of having one hard drive that works with both machines, you're splitting your HD into two sections, each dedicated to a different OS. For example, if you have a 1TB hard drive, GB of storage can be used with your Windows computer, and will be dedicated to your Mac computer.

You won't be able to write to the Mac side from your Windows computer, and vice versa, but it's a good solution for people who want all the advantages each format has to offer for its respective system. Here's how to do it:.