HELP: WD My Passport FAT32 used on PC, now MacBook Pro, mounts on desktop but can't access files

Hi everybody, 

I have the following problem. I want to migrate the files from my old PC, which are backed up on my WD My passport to my new MacBook pro. After having installed the WD+Turbo installer , the WD mounts on the desktop of my mac, but I can’t access my files. I don’t seem to be able to run any of the files that appear on the WD, but that’s probably to be expected, considering they are .exe files (and also .bat, .run and .info). With the PC I used WDSync and subsequently Dmailer I believe. The format of the WD is MS-DOS (FAT32). I’ve read that FAT 32 is compatible with both Windows and Mac (I have 10.6.4) but even though the WD mounts and is recognized, I can’t get to the files. Does this have to do with the encryption under WDSync/Dmailer and is there any way I can access (and copy) the files from my MAC? 

You are correct that EXE, BAT, etc. files will not work on a Mac based computer. If you used the WD Sync software then the files are encrypted and have to be removed from the WD Sync software before you can access them on another system. WD Sync is useable on a Windows based computer so you will need to either manually copy/paste the files that you want to the drive and then take them to you Mac or if you don’t have the original items, you will need to run WD Sync and restore them, then transfer them to the drive.

FAT32 is going to be the best file system to use since both Mac and PC can typically read a drive that is formatted in FAT32.


I purchased the WD My  Passport Essential so I could easily transfer documents from my Mac to other Macs and PCs. When I plug it into a computer, the only drive that comes up is the WD Smartware Software and it is only accessible on one operating system. Do I need to format it to “FAT32” in order to use different operating systems?

I have had trouble for months now trying to format the external hard drive and would return it if I hadn’t thrown the box away. Can someone please help me with step by step instructions on how to go about setting up the drive in order to share files between different operatiing systems?

FAT32 seems to be the best option indeed, if you want to share between macs and pcs. Formatting it on a MAC is easier, go to the disk utility, select the WD passport on the left hand side and from there it’s pretty self-explanatory. You will of course lose any data on the WD, so make sure you have it all backed-up before you start formatting. I think that the max file size in FAT32 is 4 GB, so I hope you don’t need to share any files bigger than that. Hope this helps!