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Question about HD Formatting and Mac.


RABid

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I picked up a Big Disk Extreme. It is a 500GB external USB2/Firewire400/Firewire800 drive. I had planned to use it mostly on the MacMini. When connecting it to my WinPC to move some iTunes files it did not mount. According to the sparce paperwork, it has to be formatted for use with a PC. If I do that do I loose performance when connected to a Mac?

 

Robert

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AFAIK OS X can read but not write NTFS (the Windows NT/XP file system); see http://www.macosxhints.com/article.php?story=20050521110452194&lsrc=osxh

 

Further, NTFS doesn't support some of the features of the native HFS+ file system, so even if it could write to it, the result could be some odd behaviour, e.g., with applications that make use of the resource fork when saving files.

 

Windows NT most certainly cannot read HFS+ (the OS X file system.)

 

You may just find some third-party solutions to obviate these problems.

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The story is that OS X can mount both FAT32 and NTFS-formatted disks, but can only write to a FAT32 volume - NTFS volumes mount as read-only. The problem with that is that FAT32 can only support volumes up to 32 GBs; if a larger volume is formatted as FAT32, Windows will only see (in most cases) the first 32 GBs.

 

So, for larger volumes, NTFS is the only choice for WIndows-native formats. If you need to move larger volumes across platforms, one good solution is to format the volume as HFS+ and install MacDrive on the Windows systems.

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I should have noticed this before. It looks like the Maxtor One Touch USB2/Firewire drives come formatted in FAT32 with some provision for Window to read the entire drive. I have a bunch of these and Windows sees the entire 300 Gig. I used one to move my iTunes library from Windows to Mac.

 

This also tells me the for sample streaming I want to reformat the Maxtors.

 

Robert

This post edited for speling.

My Sweetwater Gear Exchange Page

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Rabid,

 

Actually, since it sounds like you have both a PC and Mac, you have several options. If you network both machines together, then you can transfer the files from PC to Mac via scp, Samba, FTP, or NFS.

 

If you'd prefer to not network both computers together, and if you're kind of computer savy, then you could download a bootable Linux CD distro (like knoppix--which you can get from http://www.knopper.net/knoppix/index-en.html). This way you can access your NTFS drive(s) via linux, attach and mount your Lacie drive (because Linux understands NTFS, hfsplus, and many other filesytems), and copy away. Done.

 

Actually, I've used all of the methods I mentioned, but I prefer to use the last one, because the files transfer faster over FireWire.

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