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I have an old external HD that was originally formatted for Mac. The power adapter failed and I'm trying to get the files off now. I cannot get into some of my folders because of permissions. Is there a way for me to get through this? Unfortunately I don't have a Mac anymore.

Thank you!

  • Edit: It looks like I need to edit the "Read-Only" status – cuhrisay Sep 15 '16 at 20:25
  • I cannot access some of the folders. The error I get is: This location could not be displayed. You do not have permissions necessary to view the contents of "<folder name>" – cuhrisay Sep 15 '16 at 21:06
  • You may find a solution in the answers to this question – mook765 Sep 16 '16 at 18:05
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See if you can try changing the ownership of the drive:

sudo chown -R username:username /media/mount-point(drive name)

Edit: if you are having a Read Only issue reference this post: external hard disk READ ONLY

  • Thank you! I've been getting errors. I've done the steps but the error message I get is that it is not a block device. If it makes a difference, only some of the folders in the drive are protected. I cannot even access these folders. The error I get is: This location could not be displayed. You do not have permissions necessary to view the contents of "<folder name>" – cuhrisay Sep 15 '16 at 21:05
  • I've tried the commands again and I get an error message: special device "..." does not exist. – cuhrisay Sep 15 '16 at 21:12
  • try: sudo mount "/media/chrisie/The Office" – thesoundman20 Sep 16 '16 at 13:16
  • If the device is listed as /media/chrisie/theoffice then it is already mounted. That is not a block device, that is a mount point. You cant mount it twice. Remove the drive, type mount. Insert the drive, type mount. Is it listed as a mounted device ? So, assuming your HDD (aka block device) is already mounted, cd into it. Remember you cant have spaces in your directory tree, so you need to escape the spaces correctly. The easiest way is just to use tab to autocomplete your commands. Type ls -la at the level where you see the problem folders and post the result here. – hatterman Sep 16 '16 at 21:14
  • The block device will be something like /dev/sdb. Your file manager must be auto mounting your devices when they are plugged in, which is fine. Your HDD is already mounted, just type mount and you will see. – hatterman Sep 16 '16 at 21:18
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Are you using command line or a file manager ? The root user should be able to read everything, unless you did something rather special on the MAC with your folders.

Try and mount the disk and access it as root. Assuming the disk is /dev/sdb;

sudo mount /dev/sdb1 /mnt

cd /mnt

Now try and access the folders;

sudo ls -la <folder>

Also, post a listing here of the attributes of the problem folders;

ls -la

post the results.

  • This was the error I was getting. I am getting the same error when trying to manually mount at all. sudo umount /media/chrisie/'The Office' sudo mkdir extHDD sudo mount -o rw,uid=1000,gid=1000,user,exec,umask=003,blksize=4096 /media/chrisie/'The Office' extHDD/ The error I get is: mount: special device /media/chrisie/The Office does not exist – cuhrisay Sep 15 '16 at 21:23
  • Sorry I am new to this website! – cuhrisay Sep 15 '16 at 21:26
  • sudo mount /media/chrisie/'The Office' /mnt mount: special device /media/chrisie/The Office does not exist – cuhrisay Sep 15 '16 at 21:33
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Ubuntu can't read Mac file systems. You'll need to connect the external drive to a Mac, and then copy off the files to another external hard disk (formatted NTFS or FAT (if your files are <2G)) or USB flash drive (formatted FAT).

Cheers, Al

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