Macintosh to Windows?

I recently bought my 1TB external MyBook for my IT class. Everyone in the class gets a free version of Windows 7, and I wanted to convert. But I couldn’t even get the MyBook to show up on a windows computer when I took it to class. I mean, it would have the VCD and everything, and I could open it, but I couldn’t get to my files. And I don’t want to convert if it means losing all of the ■■■■ I’ve accumulated over the years. Any suggestions?

Is the drive formatted in HFS+ format?

If so, Windows wont see it by default. You will need to reformat the drive in either FAT32 (so it can be used with both Windows and MAC) or NTFS for Windows.

If you dont want to reformat you can find some HFS viewers for Windows. They wont give you full functionality, but it will let you at least view the files on the drive.

Ultimately if you want to use the drive fully with Windows, your best bet is to reformat - or stick with MAC!

there’s a little windoZe app called MacDrive that will enable you to work with your Mac formatted drive on a windoZe machine.

If you decide to re-format your drive  to FAT32 keep in mind that there are some limitations. I never liked the way any of my drives performed on a Mac when formatted for both Mac & windoZe (FAT32)…and I don’t think you can use Mac disk repair apps with it either.

I thought the only limitation with FAT32 was the fact that the file sizes you can save are limited to 4GB.

How else is performace affected?

Im interested as I have an external drive that is FAT32 at the moment, but wondering whether I would be better off with HFS+ instead, and then using a USB memory key for any data I need on a Windows machine…

I have both Mac and PC.

Not to long ago you could use almost any external drive with either computer  and even just plug them in to either computer and both could be read or at least they would see the files. I have a 6 year old  freecom ext 40gb that does just that to this day. That little drive has been a diamond, Its been dropped, sent around the world to give associates both Mac and PC users large files and it alwasy comes back to me working. In its day it was quite expensive. But its clearly been built very good, rubber casing, solid as a rock and no dodgy chip inside it.  But something has changed in the way the companies are designing them today.

Take he MYBOOK studio edition for example. I tried to get that thing working with a PC the other day. I actually bought it around six months ago but only opened it a couple of days ago.  On the website it has drivers for PC , firmware update, software etc but its was so bad. It has ESATA, Forwire and USB2 connections. I purchassed it specifically because it has ESATA.  BUt getting it to actually work was a huge ordeal.  Transfer backup rates as low as 300kbps.  I formatted reformmated, reinstalled, reinitialised did everything I could. The ESATA connection wouldnt work and the firewire and USB 2 was just soooo slow

Then an IMAC I ordered just arrived a couple of days later and the moment I plugged it in even though it was still formatted for PC a little blue WD icon appeared up at the top right hand corner. So there must be some sort of hard wired chip or section of the drive that cant be erased allowing the Mac to see it. I still had a lot of problems getting the IMAC to format the drive probably because I had updated teh firware for it on the PC. 80 gb of the drive is unuseable but its working much much better on the IMAC. I have no doubt that all that messing around with it on the PC destroyed part of the drive and I suspect it was the firmware update. Thats not the PC’s fault btw.

I suppose I should have known better. It does say on the box for all you MAC needs etc. But Ive used many ext drives in the past and I thought once a drive is formatted thats it. But that was not the case with the MYBOOK on the PC.

Anyway, the MYBOOK studio edition is currently working away fine using Apples own time machine software through USB which is great. I would strongly advise not using any of the WD backup software.

Incidentally I bought a seagate extreme and the moment I plugged that in to the PC it worked like a charm using my ESATA ports…which are very fast.

I really believe WD should be letting people know that their MYBOOK  range should be for Mac only.

But the moral of the story is all these drives aare poorly manufactured. Just checjing the Seagate forum reads the same as it does here. People with lots of issues.

Im no wlooking at a better back up solution as I dont trust any of these cheap made drives. Im probably going to by an external enclosure that can hold four drives (for the pc) and make sure i get one which is hit swappable and use it through either ESATA or Ethernet

One thing is for sure I would never trust any of these drives to backup my lifes work. Its quite ironic that WD marketing says 'You can put your life on it" hahah, no way. None of these new drives will last very long, that Im certain of.

As for the MAC Im going to use another  ext drive to back up along with MYBOOK. Its an IMAC so I cant install an internal backup.

One last thing:  We cant really just blame the companies. Apple and Microsoft could easily work more closely together and include stuff that allows a PC formatted drive to be read on a MAc and vice versa.  Im not being PC fanboy here, but I do suspect Apple intentionally make this awkward becasue years ago this was not a problem. I have used Macs on and off for years.  Its ridiculous that a PC user shoul dhaveto buy software liked Mac drive to just see the contents. An MP3 is just an MP3, a JPG is a JPG on both computers.