4 Effective Steps to Convert a Hard Drive from HFS to NTFS without Losing Data

To access a hard drive in Hierarchical File System (HFS) on Windows PC, you have to either resort to third-party software or convert the HFS to New Technology File System (NTFS). This article will teach you how to safely convert the file system on a hard drive in 4 steps.

File system plays a greatly important role in data storage, read and recovery on any data storage media, no matter a hard drive, solid state drive or memory card, etc. Macs format their internal hard drives with Apple’s proprietary file system – Hierarchical File System (HFS). It is unrecognizable and inaccessible on Windows without any third party tools in that Windows uses its own New Technology File System (NTFS).

Therefore, when you want to access a HFS hard drive on Windows, you will need to convert the file system to NTFS. Thus, in the followings, we will teach you how to realize it without losing data.

Convert a Hard Drive from HFS to NTFS without Losing Data

1. Back Up Drive Data

In the first place, you have to back up the hard drive data. Never disregard this step. It is pretty important in that data backup will make great effects when the file system converting fails unexpectedly. If you fail in converting file system, your data will tend to be corrupt. At that time, with backups, you’ll be able to restore data without difficult data recovery, say PST recovery.

2. Erase All Drive Partitions

After that, you will be required to erase all the hard drive partitions. Just take the following steps.

  1. First off, you need to insure the hard dive is connected to your Windows PC.
  2. Then, in Windows “Start Menu”, input “diskmgmt.msc” in the search box and hit “Enter” to access “Disk Management Tool”.
  3. Next, locate the HFS hard drive. And right click on each partition and choose “Delete Volume” to delete the partitions.
  4. Then, you should remember the number of the HFS hard drive.
  5. After that, back to “Start Menu” and type “cmd” in the box.
  6. Right click on “cmd” program and choose “Run as administrator”.
  7. In the popup Command Prompt, type “diskpart” and hit “Enter”.
  8. Then, input “list disk” in the new line and press “Enter”. It’ll list out all drives connected to your computer. Now you need to re-check the number of your HFS disk in the list, which should be same as what you remembered.
  9. Input “select disk #” and press “Enter”. “#” is the index of the HFS disk, such as “select disk 3”.
  10. Lastly, type “clean” and hit “Enter” key.
  11. Until you see the “DiskPart succeeded in cleaning the disk” prompt, you can exit the Command Prompt as usual.

3. Initialize Disk in NTFS File System

After the key Step 2, you can re-access Disk Management Tool as usual. In it, you can re-initialize the hard drive.

  1. Locate the HFS hard drive.
  2. Right-click on it and choose “Initialize Disk” option from the context menu.
  3. In the popup dialog box, to create a new drive partition, select the “MBR” or “GPT” and click “OK”.
  4. Then, right click the “Unallocated” space on the hard drive and opt for “New Simple Volume”.
  5. Ultimately, follow the onscreen instructions to create a partition with NTFS.

4. Restore Data to Drive

Eventually, you could restore all the hard drive data which you have backed up in Step 1 to the drive with the brand new NTFS file system. You should ensure that there is consistent power supply in this process. Otherwise, the data backups will be prone to corruption too.

Author Introduction:

Shirley Zhang is a data recovery expert in DataNumen, Inc., which is the world leader in data recovery technologies, including corrupt mdf and outlook repair software products. For more information visit www.datanumen.com

2 responses to “4 Effective Steps to Convert a Hard Drive from HFS to NTFS without Losing Data”

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