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How to access Mac-formatted drive on Windows 10

By default, your Windows PC does not have access to the drives formatted in the Mac file system. It is easier for the PC to read NTFS (Windows file system) and FAT32 / exFAT, but Windows 10 cannot actually read drives formatted in other file systems that are likely to come from Mac (HFS +) or Linux (ext4).

UFS + is the file system of Apple’s Macintosh, and if you use a Mac-formatted drive on your PC, chances are it cannot be read by Microsoft Windows 10. MacOS Extended (HFS +) is a file system used by Mac, and it can only be read by default in Mac systems, unlike Windows. If you try to use a drive formatted in Mac on Windows 10, it is possible. This is how.


How to read your Mac’s UFS drive on Windows 10

To read Mac-formatted drives on your Windows 10 PC, here’s what you need to do, just follow these simple steps.

  1. Get this free tool called HFSExplorer for Windows.
  2. Install and launch the program, you need Java to use this software. It will ask you if your system does not have Java installed, if you already have it, it will run normally.
  3. Connect the Mac-formatted drive to your Windows PC and select ‘Download file system from device ‘ from File in the menu bar. Click Load.
  4. You will see the contents of the HFS + drive in the app window. Select the files or folders you want to copy, click Extract to copy and save to a specified folder, the files or folders are copied to the location you select on your PC.

Do not expect any fancy user interface or system integration that allows you to access the drive from Windows Explorer, just as you normally do for other drives. This tool is good if you need to get some files out of the drive, not recommended if you are looking for some files you can extract from it, the process can be a bit difficult and time consuming.

HFSExplorer also does not support write access to the drive. If you want to copy something to the drive, this tool is not possible. Use it to copy the data from the drive. Check the option if you want read and write access with better integration.

Better alternative?

An alternative to this is the Paragon HFS + software that integrates seamlessly into Windows so that you use the drive as you normally do with other drives supported by Windows. If you connect the drive, you will see a device connected and displayed in the explorer together with the internal drive.

  • Get the Paragon HFS + software for Windows and install it as you would for other Windows programs.
  • That’s it, restart your PC and connect the drive.
  • You will be able to see the drive in the explorer that is accessible via the hotkey Windows logo key + E or double-click This PC on the desktop.

The only downside is that this software is not free, you will spend around $ 19.95 for it, but the good part is that it offers a 10-day free trial to try. You can either save money if you just copy the data or get write access with integration across the system for a clean price.

Finally, it is now possible to use the Mac drive on Windows, but not in a decent way, you may end up using the apps for file transfer or unlikely to buy out software. It is recommended to format the drive in the exFAT system to make things easier, this helps if you use the drive often on both systems.

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