NTFS-3G Will Not Mount FAT32 DMG Images

I have an external hard drive which is formatted NTFS. Just one of the many hazards of using a Mac is that they do not support NTFS, which is a far superior filesystem to FAT32. Fortunately, there is a program called MacFuse which allows you to use many different things as filesystems, including SSH. Someone at Google wrote a read/write NTFS driver, known as NTFS-3G, which works with MacFuse to allow read/write mounting of NTFS volumes. Exactly what I wanted, so I downloaded and installed MacFuse and NTFS-3G, taking care to get the latest stable versions.

Error Screenshot

Unfortunately, I also needed to copy files from a DMG image. After installing NTFS-3G (which forced a restart – it’s a myth that installing things does not require rebooting on a Mac) the DMG image would no longer mount, giving me a Permission Error and sending me on a wild goose chase, with commands to elevate permissions for ntfs-3g, none of which helped one bit.

It was the dreaded “ntfs-3g could not mount because the following problem occurred: permission denied” error, because apparently ntfs-3g doesn’t work with FAT32 volumes. Dumb. You get NTFS but lose backwards compatibility. I also encountered a “no mountable file systems” error.

I searched in vain for some way to get this to work, or some way to uninstall ntfs-3g. There are ways to do that, but they don’t appear to be easy. Until I read one comment on Google Groups:

After manually removing the folder /System/Library/Filesystems/
NTFS-3G.fs it worked.

That’s the way to do it. Manually remove the directory and MacOS will take over and mount the DMG file properly.

5 Responses to “NTFS-3G Will Not Mount FAT32 DMG Images”

  1. Christopher Leung says:

    I’d like to pick your brain sometime about this… I’ve just purchased a 1TB external hard drive for use with my MBP (on which I’m running OSX and XP via Boot Camp), and I’m wondering whether I just just make it a completely NTFS drive, or whether I should partition it to be safe…

  2. Cuauhtemoc says:

    Awesome… I’ve been struggling with this issue and this solution worked! Thank you for the info!

  3. You are King says:

    I had this problem as well and you saved me a lot of time. I was using iatkos and had accidentally installed ntfs-3g and this solved all my problems!!


  4. Kevin says:

    You are a life saver! The same this happens when you try to mount an NTFS dmg file (which was a backup of my bootcamp partition). For some reason ntfs-3g just wont mount it. Moving the filesystem worked as you suggested.

  5. dsquared says:

    thanks a lot, really works !

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