Why Western Digital My Passport is read only on Mac?

Did you try to use your Western Digital external drive on Mac just to find out that it’s read only and you can’t edit it / add files to it? Well, that’s a limitation from Apple, for Mac computers. This limitation is relevant to Western Digital My Passport drives, Western Digital Elements drives and many others.

Western Digital, as other strong vendors in the external drives market, provides you with the choice of purchasing external drives for Windows usage or for Mac usage. The difference between the two models is mainly the file system the drive is formatted with in the factory.

For Windows users, the drive will be formatted with the Microsoft NTFS file system format. For Mac users, the drive will be formated with the Mac OS extended (Journaled) file system, also known as HFS+.

In the past, external drives were formatted with FAT32 file systems. But as technology advanced, this is not supported on large drives (that contain more than 32GB) anymore.

So when these file system differences can be a problem? This can be an issue when you are using the same external drive on both Windows and Mac based computers. Another option is that you had a Windows computer and now moved to Mac, but you have all your data backed up on your external drive which is already formatted with the Windows NTFS file system. In these cases, you’ll need a solution to load NTFS formatted drives on Mac, with full write access.

To solve this issue, we can humbly recommend our software, NTFS Mac Mounter, to allow you to enable full write access to your NTFS based external drives on your Mac computer (Macbook, iMac, etc.).

Download NTFS Mac Mounter Now