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I have tried the following solutions without success:

All of them allow me to see my NTFS external hard drive but none of them let me write to it. Actually, Paragon NTFS works until I plug the drive into a Windows Machine. Then I can't use it on my Mac without reformatting and Tuxera NTFS worked for a day then went into read only mode. Any ideas?


After trying multiple things, I found something that worked for me. I have Paragon NTFS installed. After formatting my harddrive to NTFS and adding files from my mac I plugged it into a Windows Machine. When I plug that same drive back into my mac it doesn't recognize it anymore unless I go into Disk Utility and repair the hard drive. This takes about a minute and leaves all files intact. Kinda a pain but it works for me needs.

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migrated from Dec 24 '11 at 8:26

This question came from our site for professional and enthusiast programmers.

Related: How to Copy Mac files to external NTFS hard drive? – slhck Dec 25 '11 at 13:49
up vote 2 down vote accepted

Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day; Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime

Now, let us learn to do this for free.

Before we start. Make sure your external name label is ONE word. That means there is no space in between.

my disk = WRONG

my_disk or my-disk or mydisk = CORRECT


  1. Open Terminal [Command+Space+"terminal"]
  2. Type: sudo nano /etc/fstab
  3. In nano, type: LABEL=my_disk none ntfs rw,auto,nobrowse Note: my_disk is your disk name
  4. To save and exit Control+X and Enter and Enter
  5. [optional] For ease of access, we create a sym-link to desktop: In terminal -> sudo ln -s /Volumes ~/Desktop/Volumes


When you don't need it anymore. It is as simple as:

In terminal sudo rm /etc/fstab


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I want to warn anyone - while this solution works, the drive mounted this way will often have errors. It won't happen every time, but when it does, you'll need to fix the drive (for instance by plugging it in the Windows machine). I haven't experienced data loss this way, but I prefer other solutions. – kamituel Aug 21 '14 at 16:43

I am currently using Tuxera NTFS and can read and write to NTFS devices as small as 1GB to 3TB in Mac OS and then plug them into Windows with no issues.

I think the issue you are facing is that Mac is not picking up the correct driver.

  • After you have installed Tuxera, you can check in Settings => Tuxera NTFS and it should say Tuxera NTFS status: Enabled.
  • In your NTFS drive, is there a folder .Tuxera-NTFS and the file disable-driver?
  • When you plugin your device, does your Console (logging) application show any errors?
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I recommend OSX FUSE paired with NTFS-3G.

Installation is fairly simple - first install OSX FUSE, then NTFS-3G. Follow installation instructions on OSX FUSE site.

This is a free solution which has never caused me any trouble (i.e. data or filesystem corruption). On the other hand, some other solutions (like simple /etc/fstab edit) had break my filesystem in the past.

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exFat. Free and already an option Tuxera costs money. I was also using Tuxera til it broke down on me. exfat works on both Windows and Mac machines.

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The author already tried Tuxera it didn't work for him. – Ramhound Nov 19 '12 at 14:39
I believe he is suggesting to format the hard drive as exFAT. That is a valid idea... but there are a number of downsides to that format. The biggest one being no allocation table so if you unplug at the wrong time your data will get messed up. – zechdc Nov 19 '12 at 20:03

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