Toshiba External Hard Drive Not Allowing File Transfer Mac Title Image

Here’s a question from a MacTakeAwayData.com user:

Toshiba external hard drive won’t let me add files from Mac … I have a lot of files on my MacBook Pro that I’d like to transfer to my Toshiba external hard drive. But every time I try to drag-and-drop them the external hard drive says no. It just won’t let me. Why?

Reasons Why Toshiba External Hard Drive Not Allowing File Transfer Mac

1. Most Toshiba External Hard Drives Are NTFS Formatted.

2. Mac OS Can Read A Toshiba NTFS Drive. But Can’t Write To It.

3. You’ll Either Need Driver Software To Allow File Transfer From Mac.

4. Or Format Your Toshiba Hard Drive On Your Mac Using Disk Utility.

Format To Mac OS Extended Or APFS. Format To ExFAT If You Plan To Share Your Toshiba Hard Drive Between A Mac And PC.

Toshiba External Hard Drive Can’t Add Files Mac

1. Most Toshiba External Hard Drives Are NTFS Formatted.

When you order a Toshiba external drive. Most of the external drives Toshiba ships are in a format called NTFS.

NTFS stands for New Technology File System. A file system is how a computer sees and understands what files on the drive.

NTFS is a file system format designed and built for a Windows computer. And this means you can use your Toshiba drive on a Windows PC can right away. Putting files on there.

2. Mac OS Can Read A Toshiba NTFS Drive. But Can’t Write To It.

On a MacBook Pro, MacBook Air, iMac or any Mac, when you connect an NTFS drive.

Your Mac can read a NTFS Toshiba external hard drive. You can see all the files on there just fine. You can copy those files off onto your Mac and work on them on your Mac.

But Mac OS – your Mac operating system can’t write to the drive.

It will looks to you like the drive is blocked. And you can’t add files to the drive from your Mac.

You won’t be able to move any of your files from your Mac to the external drive.

3. You’ll Either Need Driver Software To Allow File Transfer From Mac.

Driver software is a separate software program you install and run on your Mac. This software translates the calls Mac OS makes to the Toshiba NTFS drive. And allows you to write to your drive.

The advantage of using driver software is it keeps the format of your Toshiba external hard drive the same.

It doesn’t change anything on your drive. Driver software is a form of disk management software. The software simply translates your Mac’s instructions to NTFS. And allows you to file transfer from your Mac to your external drive.

It is of course extra software to install and run on your Mac. And software to keep up to date on your Mac.

But when you mainly use your external Toshiba storage space on a PC. And only occasionally on your Mac it’s a good solution.

4. Or Format Your Toshiba Hard Drive On Your Mac Using Disk Utility.

An alternative solution. Is to use inbuilt disk management software that’s part of your Mac OS called Disk Utility.

You use Disk Utility to change the format of your Toshiba to a format your Mac will file transfer to.

Beware.

Changing the format of your Toshiba external drive will wipe any files that are already on your drive.

So, if there are any files you want on your Toshiba drive you’ll need to copy those files off first. Put them somewhere safe. Then copy the files back onto your Toshiba external disk drive when you’ve done your formatting.

Because if you don’t.

You’ll be needing the services of data recovery software. Or data recovery services to recover data fast.

And with no assurances that you’ll get your files back.  So, if you’ve files already on your Toshiba external hard drive you need. Copy them off first. Before you format.

After you’ve formatted your Toshiba storage. You can then connect your drive, read files and add files from your Mac.

Formats Allowing File Transfer From Mac To Toshiba External Hard Drive

You have a few choices in file formats for your Toshiba external storage device your Mac can write to.

  • Mac OS Extended Journaled or APFS (Apple File System). Both are native Mac file formats.

APFS was originally made to take advantage of the speed of a solid state drive (SSD drive). But since Mac OS Big Sur you can use an APFS format for hard disk drives.

Both file formats allow you to add files from Mac. Create a new folder and file transfer from Mac.

You can also use both these file formats for Time Machine. Your Mac’s backup software.

But a Windows PC won’t see either of these file system formats.

So they are no good if you want to share your Toshiba hard drive between a Mac and a PC.

  • ExFAT is a file system format both a Mac and a PC can read, write, add files to or use for file transfer.
  • You might also see some on-line references to FAT32. Both a Mac and a PC can read and write to FAT32. But it’s a very old file system format. With security issues, file name and file size issues. No one would use this file system these days as ExFAT is a much better alternative.

You can use look at this article on the site about using Disk Utility to format your Toshiba external hard drive for Mac.

Or if you need to use your Toshiba drive both for a Mac and a PC then take a look at this document here. You’ll learn how to format Toshiba hard drive for Mac and PC.

In Closing

By now you know exactly why your Toshiba external hard drive. Whether it’s a Toshiba Canvio Basics, or Canvio Advance. Isn’t allowing file transfer from your Mac.

And what to do to add files when you can’t.

Thank you for reading.

And while you’re here. Why not take a look at our other Toshiba external hard drive related articles on the site.

Related Articles

Toshiba External Hard Drive Not Working On Mac (13 Fixes 4U)

How To Use Toshiba External Hard Drive On Mac [Solved]

How To Delete Files From Toshiba External Hard Drive On Mac

How Do You Open A Toshiba External Hard Drive On A Mac?