External Hard Drive Software For Mac On Pc

  • Options For Having An External Hard Drive for Mac and PC Without Formatting. Use a Software Solution – You get a piece of software that sits on your Mac. Or one for your Windows PC. This software acts like a translator. It interprets what is on the external hard drive so that your Mac or PC can read and write to the drive.
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Sep 17, 2019  How to use Your Toshiba External Hard Dive on Mac and PC. You’ve found out earlier in this article about using driver software. So that you can read your Toshiba NTFS external hard drive on your Mac. But what if you’d prefer not to buy and maintain separate software on your Mac. Or vice versa for your Windows PC.

For a Windows computer to be able to read a hard drive, it needs to have a file system format that is compatible with Windows. File systems compatible with Windows include FAT32 and NTFS.

Why not?

A hard drive formatted for use in a Mac has either an HFS or HFS+ file system. For this reason, a Mac-formatted hard drive is not directly compatible, nor readable by a Windows computer. The HFS and HFS+ file systems are not readable by Windows.

What are my options?

Using a third-party application, it may be possible for a Windows computer to read a Mac-formatted hard drive. A few of the more popular applications used by Windows to read a Mac hard drive are listed below.

  • HFSExplorer - Free-to-use program and requires Java to be installed on the Windows computer. It allows for read-only access to files on the Mac hard drive. Updating or deleting files on the Mac hard drive from the Windows PC is not possible.
  • MacDrive - Available as a 5-day free trial and can be purchased for $49.99, MacDrive allows users to view, update, and delete files on the Mac hard drive. MacDrive can integrate with Windows Explorer for easier browsing of the hard drive's files.
  • Paragon HFS+ for Windows - This program is available as a 10-day free trial and can be purchased for $19.95. Like MacDrive, users can view, update, and delete files on the Mac hard drive. It also integrates with Windows Explorer.

Additional information

Reading PC-formatted hard drives using your Mac is easy enough. Just plug in the drive, then access the files you need to use. But writing to that drive? Well, that's a little more complicated. This is due to the fact that NTFS, the file system utilized by Windows PCs, has limited support on Mac. While you can read files from these drives just fine, if you need to write to a PC-formatted hard drive, you'll need some third-party software to get the job done.

Click it again to reduce the note to its original size.See note information: Hold the pointer over a collapsed note—you see when the note was created and last edited.If you don’t see your note, verify that the Stickies app is still open. To maximize the note, click the triangle in the top-right corner. Select text, then use the Fonts window to format it.Make the note semi-transparent: Choose Window Translucent.Keep the note in front of other windows: Choose Window Float on Top. When Stickies is closed, notes don’t appear on your desktop. Mac app for notes on desktop. In the Stickies app on your Mac, do any of the following:.Arrange a note manually: Click the top of a note and drag the note where you want it.Group multiple notes: Choose Window Arrange By, then choose an option.Keep a note in front of other windows: Choose Window  Float on Top.Make a note semi-transparent: Choose Window  Translucent.Collapse or expand a note: Double-click the title bar.Change the size of a note: Drag the note’s edge (top, bottom, or sides).

Here are the tools you can use to work with NTFS-formatted drives on your Mac.

Microsoft NTFS for Mac

What many consider to be the go-to for writing to NTFS drives on a Mac, Microsoft NTFS comes from developer Paragon Software. It gives you complete control over how your Mac interacts with NTFS-formatted drives, letting you edit, copy, and delete files from them as though your machine had native support. The app also lets you choose how NTFS drives mount when attached to your Mac. You can choose to mount in read-only mode if you don't want to accidentally modify files but you still need access to them, or you can even choose not to mount automatically.

Microsoft NTFS for Mac is available directly from Paragon Software for $19.95 after a 10-day free trial.

Tuxera NTFS for Mac

Like Microsoft NTFS, Tuxera's app lets you edit, copy, and delete files on NTFS drive on your Mac. Tuxera NTFS uses smart caching technology to speed up transfers, maintaining a sustained speed as files are moved between your external drive and your Mac. It also features failsafe technology designed to protect against unexpected power loss or an unexpected unplugging of your drive, both of which could cause data loss or even damage the drive. Tuxera also includes support for NTFS extended attributes and works with virtualization software like Parallels and VMware Fusion.

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Tuxera NTFS is available from Tuxera for $31 after a 15-day free trial.

Other tools

While Paragon and Tuxera provide paid tools that integrate themselves with your Mac and do all of the necessary setup during the installation process, there are free tools that you can install, but they take some work. Fuse for macOS, for instance, requires that you use the Terminal. You'll also need to install NTFS-3G, which allows you to manually mount and write to NTFS drives. The problem is that installing NTFS-3G is a major security risk by the project's own admission, as the mount tool runs with root permissions, leaving your system exposed to possible attack. This method can't really be recommended, but it is possible.


If you've got any questions about working with NTFS drives on your Mac, let us know in the comments.

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