Unable to write on the external hard drive with NTFS file system

53 users found this article helpful


Unable to write on the external hard drive with NTFS file system.

Unable to write on the Seagate Backup Plus Drive.


The cause of the issue is that Mac OS X does not support writing permissions for NTFS file system. So, you need to pass the device inside the virtual machine every time you would like to copy something on the drive.


In the Parallels Desktop menu bar go to Devices -> External Devices -> Check your device NOTE: If the device is not recognized, you need to unplug it from the Mac and plug back again.

To pass it back to the Mac you need to uncheck Devices -> External Devices -> your device. NOTE: you may need to unplug from the Mac and plug back again.

As the possible workaround you can:

  1. Install NTFS driver for MAC

  2. Pass the device to the Mac: Uncheck Devices -> External Devices -> your device.

If the issue still persists please change device file system:

  1. Make sure the device is on the Mac side.

  2. Insert the USB flash drive into your Mac's USB port.

  3. Click "Finder > Applications > Utilities > Disk Utility." Alternatively, enter "Disk Utility" in the search bar and click "Disk Utility" to launch the application.

  4. Click the USB flash drive from the left pane of Disk Utility. Make sure to select the root folder and not an indented entry under it.

  5. Click the "Erase" tab on the right pane.

  6. Click the "Format" drop-down menu and select hfs+ file system. Optionally, enter a name for the drive in the "Name" field.

  7. Click "Security Options" if you want to completely erase existing data by overwriting it once, seven times or 35 times. The more times the data is overwritten, the more secure the format, but the longer it takes. Make your selection and click "OK."

  8. Click "Erase" and then "Erase" again in the confirmation window. Depending on the size of the drive and the security selection, formatting might take a few seconds or several minutes.

NOTE: After formatting, the existing data will be gone. Make sure to back up any important data before formatting the drive.

Was this article helpful?

Tell us how we can improve it.