Wednesday, August 20, 2008

NTFS-3G 1.2812

Information on what's new in this version of NTFS-3G can be found at the NTFS-3G release page.

Changes for the Mac OS X specific components:
  • Important bugfix: In some cases NTFS-3G attempted to mount other partitions than those containing NTFS file systems, for instance hybrid CD-ROMs. This blocked certain types of media from being mounted. This was caused by incorrect interpretation of exit values from ntfs-3g.probe and has now been fixed.

  • Bugfix: The "Enable debug logging" and "Disable debug logging" scripts did not work as intended, and modified the wrong variable.

  • Bugfix: You can now create NTFS disk images using Disk Utility in Mac OS X 10.5. (This failed previously because of incorrect parsing of parameters.)

  • Improvement: The uninstall script now removes the complete file system bundle dir, instead of just removing the files inside it.

  • Improvement: A user guide to NTFS-3G has been written and is bundled with the install .dmg file as a PDF document.

  • Improvement: Internationalized description strings for the file system have been added for Dutch, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Spanish, Chinese (simplified and traditional), Swedish, Danish, Norwegian, Finnish, Portugese and Korean.

Download NTFS-3G 1.2812 [stable]
Download NTFS-3G 1.2812 [ublio] (patched for improved performance)

Packaging, patching, some OS X-related development and testing has been done by Catacombae Software (i.e. myself).

Requirements: Mac OS X 10.4/10.5, a PowerPC or Intel computer, MacFUSE 1.7 or later installed.
This package has been tested with OS X 10.4.11/Intel and OS X 10.5.4/Intel.

Information on how to install and use NTFS-3G for Mac OS X can be found in the User Guide.

Known issues:
  • Files with filenames created in Windows containing international characters with accents, umlauts and similar dots and lines, or filenames with korean characters might seem unreadable in the Finder. This is because Finder apparently expects all filenames to appear in unicode decomposed form, while NTFS allows both composed and decomposed form filenames. This issue is hard to solve in a pretty way, but you should still be able to access these files when using the Terminal. For me, copying the affected files to a HFS+ drive using the command "cp" worked fine.

  • After installing ntfs-3g, all NTFS drives will disappear from the "Startup Disk" preference pane. Disabling or uninstalling ntfs-3g brings them back. I don't have a solution for this, but you can still choose your startup drive by:
    • Holding down the Option key during boot (or Alt for non-Apple keyboards).

    • Intel users only: Install the rEFIt boot manager for better control of the boot process.

    • Using the command line utility bless (see man bless for more information)
    If you have any information on a pretty way of solving this issue, I'd love to hear about it.

ntfs-3g 1.2812 (patched)
ntfsprogs 1.13.1


Dylan said...

Regarding the inability to select the Windows partition as Startup disk, I use a free app called BootChamp
It provides an icon in the menubar to easily boot into Windows (similar to the icon used in Windows to boot back into OSX). I haven't tried it with NTFS3-G but it solved a similar issue with Paragon NTFS.

Behrang Saeedzadeh said...

In Windows the System Volume Information folder is hidden by default however it is not so under Mac.

Wouldn't it be better if the driver was designed in a way to hide it in default mode?

Erik said...

Behrang Saeedzadeh:

Windows and *nix systems use different techniques for "hiding" files. On windows systems, a flag can be set in a file or directory's metadata that tells the application that access the file that it should be treated as a "hidden" file. In *nix systems, hidden files are instead prefixed with a dot (i.e. .profile, .xinitrc).
They simply don't translate well. Displaying "System Volume Information" as ".System Volume Information" is not a working approach, since there might already be a file called ".System Volume Information" in the same directory.

Patrick said...

Erik, it seems that any external drive or volume for that matter, that I format with DiskUtilities, does not show up on other Win PCs. I tried with three different external drives, they all don't show up on a bog standard WinXP box (not talking BootCamp here).

An untouched 10.4.11 installation without MacFUSE formats FAT32 fine. I don't know if this is a NTFS3g or MacFUSE issue, but it's a serious bummer that needs a fix.

Regards, Patrick

Erik said...


I'm wondering, how do you manage to format these partitions with NTFS-3G through Disk Utility at all, using OS X 10.4? I certainly can't make that happen.

The command line diskutil should work though, and if that's what you're using, I wonder what partition scheme you've chosen?
Windows XP can't cope with any other partition scheme than MBR (MBRFormat in diskutil), so check that you're not using GUID Parititon Table (GPTFormat in diskutil).

Patrick said...

I used 10.4 to format with the standard MS-DOS option from Apple, like I wrote, no NTFS3g involved there.
'diskutil eraseVolume MS-DOS Backup /Volumes/Backup' didn't render a usable volume on XP when formatted with NTFS3g active, but did so on said 10.4 mac without NTFS3g. So far I don't see a way to format a volume that is accepted by XP while NTFS3g is installed, either with DU or Terminal. MBR can only applied on a complete drive, that may be partitioned later. I'd like to have a NTFS3g partition on one of my Mac backup drives, seems, this isn't possible.


Erik said...


Okay, that sounds strange.
Have you been able to do this exact operation, on the same drive, when ntfs-3g was not installed, and it succeeded?
I can't think of any way that ntfs-3g would interact with the FAT file system driver. I also can't reproduce the issue.

What output do you get when you run "diskutil list" on the created volume?