How to read/write NTFS drive on macOS Monterey/Big Sur/Catalina/Mojave/High Sierra?

Updated by Tim to NTFS for Mac on June 8th, 2021

macOS provides a limited support for Microsoft Windows NTFS-formatted hard drive and USB flash drive. By default, macOS can only read NTFS-formatted hard drive and USB flash drive leaving the users unable to edit, modify or delete anything. How to write NTFS drive on macOS Monterey/Big Sur/Catalina/Mojave/High Sierra?

How to write NTFS drive on on macOS Monterey/Big Sur/Catalina/Mojave/High Sierra

Here are three way to write NTFS drive on your Mac:

Method 1: Use the third party NTFS for Mac software

There are 4 NTFS for Mac programs which can read/write NTFS drive on macOS and Mac OS X.

1. iBoysoft NTFS for Mac

iBoysoft NTFS for Mac is the most comprehensive NTFS for Mac app. This all-in-one application does do it promises on their website: as simple as 3 steps to mount and write to NTFS formatted drives on Mac, seamless, speedy, and safe. With this NTFS driver, you can add, delete, modify, view, and write files to NTFS drives on M1 Mac.

You can mount NTFS external hard drives, SSDs, USB flash drives, SD cards, memory cards, CF cards, pen drives, etc. on Mac in read-write mode. With one simple click, you can mount, unmount, or eject all volumes intuitively from the menu bar.

Pros:

  • 7-day free trial period
  • Support macOS from macOS 10.13 High Sierra to 12 Monterey Beta
  • Compatible with Apple Silicon M1 Mac
  • Fast and stable read-write speed
  • Simple UI with customizable disk management bar

Cons:

  • No live support chat

2. iBoysoft DiskGeeker

iBoysoft DiskGeeker is a another NTFS mounter developed by iBoysoft. More than an external hard drives and network drives manager, this program also allows you write to NTFS drive on macOS Monterey Beta/Big Sur 11/Catalina 10.15/Mojave 10.14/High Sierra 10.13/.

Besides the function that allows you to access NTFS drive on Mac, iBoysoft DiskGeeker also enables you manage external hard drive and network drive with ease, including external hard drive, USB flash drive, SD card, memory card, CF card, pen drive, etc. You can manage your Mac volumes fast and intuitively from the menu bar. With only one click, you can mount, unmount, or eject all volumes.

Pros:

  • 7-day free trial
  • Support macOS from El Capitan to Monterey Beta
  • Compatible with Apple Silicon M1 Mac
  • More than an NTFS driver for Mac.
  • Support NTFS, FAT32, and exFAT drives
  • Manage external drive and network drive

Cons:

  • A little more expensive than other NTFS for Mac app
  • No phone support

3. Paragon NTFS for Mac

Paragon NTFS for Mac is one of the most famous NTFS for Mac applications. With it, you can mount, unmount, verify, format and set any of your Windows NTFS volumes as a startup drive.

Pros:

  • 10-day free trial
  • Support macOS from High Sierra to Big Sur
  • Compatible with Apple Silicon M1 Mac
  • Fast read/write access
  • Friendly UI

Cons:

  • More expensive price for lifetime license
  • No free upgrade if a new version is released or if a macOS is updated
  • Extremely hard to uninstall

4. Tuxera NTFS for Mac

Tuxera NTFS for Mac is handy NTFS driver for Mac to give read and write capabilities on NTFS drives. But the stability needs to be improved and it occupies too much memory when you transfer files, which might slow your Mac.

Pros:

  • Free trial for 15 days
  • Support macOS 11 - Mac OS X 10.4
  • Compatible with Apple Silicon M1 Mac
  • Lower price

Cons:

  • Slow speed while transferring bulky files
  • Odd bugs needs to be fixed. Based on the feedback of its users, "Tuxera NTFS not mounting" error happens frequently

Solution 2: Enable writing NTFS drive with Terminal

By default, macOS Big Sur/Catalina/Mojave/High Sierra can read NTFS drive, while writing NTFS drive is disabled, but it can be enabled from Terminal. What's more, this solution is totally FREE and works under all macOS versions, including the latest macOS version.

Step 1: Open Finder -> Applications -> Utilities -> Terminal.

Step 2: After launching Terminal, please type the command: sudo nano /etc/fstab to open the /etc/fstab file for editing nano text editor.

Step 3: Type the command: LABEL=NAME none ntfs rw,auto,nobrowse (Replace NAME with the name of your NTFS drive).

Step 4: Press "CTRL+O" and press "Enter" to save the fstab file.

After that, you can close the Terminal and start writing your NTFS drive without any limitation.

Solution 3: Reformat NTFS drive to exFAT/FAT32

As a matter of fact, exFAT and FAT32 file systems are compatible with Big Sur/Catalina/Mojave/High Sierra and all older versions. Actually you can take advantage of this to operate your drive by converting NTFS drive to exFAT/FAT32 file system. To do so, follow the steps as below:

Step 1: Back up the important files in your NTFS drive.

Step 2: Open Finder -> Applications folder -> Utilities -> Disk Utility.

Step 3: Select the NTFS drive from the left panel in Disk Utility.

Step 4: Click "Erase" on the top menu of Disk Utility

Erase the drive in disk utility

Step 5: Select "exFAT" or "FAT32" file system from the drop-down box and then click Erase.

If you mistakely formatted the wrong drive, you can recover lost data from formatted drive with iBoysoft Data Recovery.

How to format the drive to NTFS on Mac?

macOS can format the drive to exFAT, FAT32, HFS+ or APFS file system, but it cannot format the drive to NTFS file system. Because of it, you have to use the 3rd-party tool, such as iBoysoft NTFS for Mac.

Steps to format the drive to NTFS on Mac with iBoysoft NTFS for Mac:

1. Downoad, install and launch iBoysoft NTFS for Mac on your Mac.

2. Choose "Disk Management" from the drop-menu of iBoysoft NTFS for Mac.

3. In Disk Management window, select the drive you want to format.

4. On the right panel, click "Erase to NTFS" to start the formatting process.

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