By default you can’t write to Windows NTFS hard disk and USB drives as they appear as read only on OS X 10.11 users desktops.
You can write to these disks with a few installs and tweaks in the Terminal, which will make all NTFS drives writeable – there are also some commercial point and click apps that can get the job done if you don’t fancy wading into the Terminal.
Get Xcode and Brewed Up
To start with you are going to need Xcode and some Unix style application packages – and what makes this easy on OSX is Homebrew, a package manager for OSX, follow this guide if you haven’t already got it, it will get you up to speed on both Xcode and Homebrew first, after that come back here and tackle the rest below which involves installing a couple of apps and tweaking a couple of files.
Once you have Xcode and Homebrew the following will allow you to write to NTFS disks. Launch Terminal:
You need to disable the new System Integrity Protection to install into some system protected directories – this involves booting your OSX into Recovery Mode with ‘command’ + ‘r’ on restart and disabling with….
Install osxfuse – either via Homebrew or download latest pre-release from Github
brew install Caskroom/cask/osxfuse
Or via Github using the dmg of the latest pre-release, this won’t be currently distributed via Homebrew as it is pre-release, but it fixes the numbered suffix issue that was appearing in drive names, makes it easier to mount and unmount NTFS drives. When installing make sure to select the “MacFUSE Compatibility Layer”.
brew install homebrew/fuse/ntfs-3g
Link to new mount_ntfs file
At this point you need to change the mount_ntfs file, the new file will allow the writes to NTFS disks, these commands will back up the original and then link to the modified mount_ntfs file as supplied by Brew/ntfs-3g
Back up the original
sudo mv /sbin/mount_ntfs /sbin/mount_ntfs.orig
Link to the new
sudo ln -s /usr/local/Cellar/ntfs-3g/2015.3.14/sbin/mount_ntfs /sbin/mount_ntfs
Re-Attach/Mount Your NTFS Drive
Thats it, check your Desktop, now all mounted NTFS drives can be written to, if it doesn’t work just disconnect/connect the NTFS drive. Some users end up with a numbered suffix like UNTITLED 2, it still works fine, however I am not aware of a fix for that.
If you can’t see the drive, launch Disk Utility from Applications/Utilities and right click the drive and select Show in Finder