Will an external hard drive formatted for Mac work on PC?

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.

What hard drive format is compatible with Mac and PC?

For a hard drive to be able to be read and written to in both a PC and Mac computer, it must be formatted to ExFAT or FAT32 file format. FAT32 has several limitations, including a 4 GB per-file limit.

How do I format my external hard drive for Mac and Windows 10?

So if your external hard drive already has important files on it, make sure to back them up before proceeding.

  1. Connect your external hard drive to a Windows computer.
  2. Right-click on the external hard drive and click Format.
  3. Choose a format under File System.
  4. Check the Quick Format box, and click Start.

How do I format a Seagate hard drive for Mac and PC?


  1. Make sure the storage device is connected to and mounted on the computer.
  2. Select Go > Utilities in the Finder menu bar.
  3. In the Utilities folder, double-click Disk Utility.
  4. Select the Seagate drive in the left column.
  5. Click the Erase tab.
  6. Choose a format from the drop-down window.
  7. Enter a name for the volume.

How do you format a hard drive on a Mac?

Format Hard Drive (Mac) 1. Connect the external hard drive to the computer. 3. Open Disk Utility. 4. Select the external hard drive on the left-hand side. 1. Right-Click on the Windows icon in the lower left-hand corner. 3. Right-Click on the external hard drive in the Volume tab. 4. Click Format.

Can any external hard drive work with a Mac?

All external hard drives should work with the Mac. If you want this to be guaranteed, buy a hard drive that is certified for the Mac.

Which Mac file system is best for an external drive?

HFS+ (Mac OS Extended Journaled) is the best format for an external hard drive you’re only using on a Mac. Or sharing with a Mac. APFS is a format option for external drives on Macs running Mac OS 10.13 or later. But it’s made for Solid State Drives and does not support Time Machine backups.

How do I find a hard drive on a Mac?

Open up a new Finder window on your Mac by clicking on the Finder icon in the OS X Dock. 2. Press “Shift + Command + C” to go to the top level of your Mac. Here, you’ll see all mounted hard drives and network shares. Simply locate the hard drive that is missing from the sidebar, and drag it back.