Formatting External Hard Drives

THL Toolbox > Developers' Zone > External Hard Drives and How to Format Them

Purchasing and Formatting External Hard Drives for Access by Both Mac and Windows

Contributor(s): Bob Campbell, Steven Weinberger

Type of External Hard Drive to Use

As of December 2009, THL is using G-Technology, Inc. external hard drives. Purchase these from GovConnection (or CDW-Gov) with an LPO through Mick Watson.

Information to order from GovConnection:
2TB G-Raid Gen 4 Storage hard drive
G-Technology, Inc.
Item #: 10356351
Mfr #: GR42000

Formatting External Hard Drives

Always format external hard drives in NTFS format. Windows reads and writes to this natively. Mac OS X reads and writes to it by installing the following free software: external link:

If you have questions about this software for Mac, see the following page: external link:

You can also consult external link:

Arin Bennett, manager of the Digital Media Lab, also suggested this method Jan 2010, but we would have to check to see 1) if a Mac could read the NTFS section of the hard drive and 2) if a Windows machine could read the FAT32 section:

You could partition the free space on your NTFS harddrive as FAT32 which would allow you to save your processed images and read/write on both PC and Mac. That is, you read the images off the NTFS partition and write the new images to the FAT32 volume.

Provided for unrestricted use by the external link: Tibetan and Himalayan Library