My iMac (standalone desktop running Mojave) which is formatted as APFS is able to read and write to my Seagate external drive (which is formatted as NTFS). Yet my MacBook Pro (which was formatted as APFS encrypted, running High Sierra) cannot. I thought it was the fact that the MBP was in APFS encrypted so I took a lot of time getting it to be reformatted as Mac OS Extended. But when successful, it was still not able to write to the Seagate external drive.

I was searching all over the internet and it seems the only way was to use an 3rd party software or initiate Apple's experimental write support. I did not do any of this to my iMac yet it is able to write to my Seagate drive no problem.

I'm trying to duplicate this with my MBP but cannot. Can any tell me how is my iMac able to do that?

  • Apple has not implemented R/W access to NTFS volumes in any shipping version of macOS. There are ways via terminal to enable that support but I don't know how reliable it is but perhaps that is what happened on your iMac. Have a look here: apple.stackexchange.com/questions/106589/… Commented Aug 6, 2019 at 17:47
  • No, I'm pretty sure there was nothing done to it because I'm the only one using the iMovie. I had it since El capitain. It's very confusing.
    – Eric Lee
    Commented Aug 7, 2019 at 7:31
  • indeed as macOS can't write to NTFS without either 3rd party software or some terminal-fu... Commented Aug 7, 2019 at 11:43
  • This is now resolved. I found out that my Seagate drive came with a driver that allows my Mac to read NTFS. This apparently will only work for Seagate external drives.
    – Eric Lee
    Commented Aug 11, 2019 at 20:33


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