- July 23, 2013 at 12:20 am #29699
When your external hard drive does not show up in Windows when it was previously used on a Mac, there are good reasons for that. An External Hard Drive For Mac FilesystemsModern Macs use the Hierarchical FileSystem Plus (HFS+). This is also the same filesystem found on other Apple devices, such as the iPod. But most other computer manufacturers donâ€™t support this filesystem.For example, if instead of an external hard drive for Mac you buy a drive for Windows, youâ€™ll get a File Allocation Table (FAT) filesystem or, more rarely, a New Technology FileSystem (NTFS).External hard drives mostly use FAT because itâ€™s compatible with Windows, Mac, Linux, and many mobile devices. But FAT has a few problems which make it less than ideal for Mac users.Why You Want An External Hard Drive For Mac OnlyThe FAT filesystem is oldâ€”nearly 30 years old, which is ancient in the computer technology world. Itâ€™s extremely inefficient compared to Macâ€™s own HFS+ or Windowsâ€™s NTFS andâ€”worseâ€”it lacks several of the features later filesystems added to prevent file corruption.Amazon ImageIf you unplug an external hard drive for Mac using the FAT filesystem without unmounting it first, it could corrupt the entire filesystem, making the whole drive unusable without special tools.If you do the same thing with an HFS+ drive, the worst that would happen is that youâ€™d lose any files you saved on it recently.See more details How to find an external hard drive for Mac.Somebody I know wanted to use an external that had been formatted on a mac. The drive did not show in my computer in windows but did show in device manager. How to use a Mac External hard drive in a Windows computer? 1. Go to the start menu. Right click on computer. 2. From the menu choose manage.3. Then choose disk management in the left menu. 4. You can right click on the drive and delete the whole partition. 5. A warning will appear. The selected partition was not created by windows and might contain data recognized by other operation system. Do you want to delete this partition ? (This will wipe all files) 6. After deleting, right click on the unallocated portion and create a new partition. 7. Format and assign a drive letter. Warning: Formatting like this will lose your files so you should backup the files to a Mac first. We have bought an external hard drive that is compatible with both Windows and Macs and works a treat! WD Elements 3 TB USB 2.0 Desktop External Hard DriveMy daughter plugged this into her Mac and then into a Windows PC. Never had a problem reading files. Very happy.
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