Transferring Files from PC to Mac via Ethernet

Sep 18, 2010 | Apple, Windows

I had 3 hard drives that I used on my PC – my main operating system drive or C: drive which was 750GB, a USB external 320GB drive with music and media files, and another internal 1TB drive which I used to backup my OS and external drives. My plan was to buy two external cases for my bare internal drives and hook these up to my Macbook via USB, but first I wanted to transfer the files over an ethernet cable since the transfer rate is faster than USB.

Here are the steps to sharing files between your PC and Mac.

  • Disable any wireless ports and connect an ethernet cable directly from your PC to your Mac – for PC to PC transfer you will need a crossover ethernet cable, but the Mac is smart enough to reconfigure itself and this will work with a plain old ethernet cable.
  • To setup file sharing on your Mac, go to System Preferences > Sharing and check ‘File Sharing’.
  • On this page, you will see your shared folders and users who can access them. Change the ‘Everyone’ user permissions to ‘Read & Write’. Then select ‘Options’ and enable “Share files and folders using SMB” along with your account. You will be prompted for you password, enter this and click ‘Done’.
  • Go back to System Preferences > Network > Ethernet and copy down your IP address. When you are directly connected to another computer the IP address should begin with 169.254.
  • Now, on your PC, click Start > Run and type in \\ – replace 0.0 with the last two segments of your specific IP address. An explorer window will pop up representing your Mac Public Folder. From here, you can drag and drop files and they will be available on your Mac.
  • Once the file transfer is complete, you must assign ownership to the files. By default, nobody has permission to write to the files, so if you attempt to edit these files you will be denied if you miss this step. To change ownership, open Applications > Utilities > Terminal and type the following into the command line (without quotes) and hit enter: “sudo chown -Rv homefoldername Public/” – this is case sensitive, so ensure you have typed this in correctly. You may double check that this operation has completed successfully by right-clicking a file, selecting ‘Get Info’, and looking for the ‘Sharing & Permissions’ section at the bottom. Your account name should have Read & Write privileges. Before you complete this operation, you will see ‘nobody’ as the name.