Portable hard drive for use on both Mac and PC?

Started 11 months ago | Discussions
Kyogle
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Portable hard drive for use on both Mac and PC?
11 months ago

My friend and I will be traveling Scotland taking lots of photos. She has an Apple laptop and I have only a PC at home. When I fill SD cards at the end of each day  the idea is for my friend to download the files from my SD cards  via her laptop onto a portable hard drive. That much is simple enough.

However to retrieve the files I will need to plug the portable drive into my PC when I get home. Is it possible to use the same portable hard drive on both systems without having to reformat and losing the images stored there?

My friend suggests I buy a Seagate as she thinks it will work on both Mac and PC but is not at all  certain about this.  Any help will be much appreciated.

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David, an Australian living in the Highlands of Scotland a few months each year.

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Klipsen
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Here's a thread that answers your question:
In reply to Kyogle, 11 months ago

It can be done, but requires software:

http://forums.cnet.com/7723-21564_102-547699/can-i-recover-data-from-a-mac-hard-drive-to-a-pc/

You could also download a Linux, e.g. Ubuntu, that can be run directly from a USB key or from a DVD without installing it on your PC - and without destroying files on your PC. Ubuntu will probably be able to read Mac drives, just like it can read both FAT and NTFS drives.

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newtoy
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Re: Portable hard drive for use on both Mac and PC?
In reply to Kyogle, 11 months ago

Just format the drive on the Mac using MSDOS (Fat) format. (Using the buildin "Disk Utility"). Then you can read and write to the drive with PC and Mac. Its that easy!

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newtoy
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Re: Portable hard drive for use on both Mac and PC?
In reply to newtoy, 11 months ago

newtoy wrote:

Just format the drive on the Mac using MSDOS (Fat) format. (Using the buildin "Disk Utility"). Then you can read and write to the drive with PC and Mac. Its that easy!

Forgot to mention, maximum 32GB only!!!

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Kyogle
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Re: Portable hard drive for use on both Mac and PC?
In reply to newtoy, 11 months ago

newtoy wrote:

newtoy wrote:

Just format the drive on the Mac using MSDOS (Fat) format. (Using the buildin "Disk Utility"). Then you can read and write to the drive with PC and Mac. Its that easy!

Forgot to mention, maximum 32GB only!!!

For a moment there I was feeling quite elated However only 32GB is as you know not enough. I was hoping to use a 500GB portable hard drive and add 8-16GB each day to it.

Thank you for your reply.

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Sailor Blue
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Re: Portable hard drive for use on both Mac and PC?
In reply to Kyogle, 11 months ago

I only use Win 7 so I don't know if this will work or not but I turned it up with a quick Google search.  Apparently Macs can read a Windows NTSF formated hard drive but not write to them.  To do that you need to add an application.

Enable writing to NTFS hard drives on Mac OS X

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Grump
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Re: Portable hard drive for use on both Mac and PC?
In reply to Kyogle, 11 months ago

Kyogle wrote:

newtoy wrote:

newtoy wrote:

Just format the drive on the Mac using MSDOS (Fat) format. (Using the buildin "Disk Utility"). Then you can read and write to the drive with PC and Mac. Its that easy!

Forgot to mention, maximum 32GB only!!!

For a moment there I was feeling quite elated However only 32GB is as you know not enough. I was hoping to use a 500GB portable hard drive and add 8-16GB each day to it.

Format the drive with exFAT instead and you won't have the 32GB limit.  I share a drive between Mac and Windows and use exFAT with no problems.  Both OS's can read/write it, assuming Mac Snow Leopard or later and Windows 7 or later.  I don't remember if Windows XP supported it.

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leecamera
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Re: Portable hard drive for use on both Mac and PC?
In reply to Sailor Blue, 11 months ago

Paragon do one of the best NTFS formatting methods for Macs.

I now format all my drives this way (use the erase and format option in the Mac Disc Utility) and select the NTFS option after you've installed Paragon.

Drives work speedily and without issues.

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Kyogle
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Seagate Backup Plus Portable Drive
In reply to leecamera, 11 months ago

Thanks to all who responded. After further research I discovered that Seagate Backup Plus  can, and I quote,  "Use the drive interchangeably on your PC or Mac computer without reformatting."

See http://www.seagate.com/au/en/external-hard-drives/portable-hard-drives/standard/backup-plus/

I will  buy one of these in Melbourne for $89

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