Is to have the Apple machine support NTFS. As you know, FAT32 is troublesome in that the entire drive may vanish if an untimely unplug occurs.
So check your Apple for NTFS support and use that.
Good thing this is only a backup. Some folk "store" things on these without backup and the forum is full of folk that tried that.
I have read a lot of info on this and I'm confused and much of it sounds very complicated. I want to be able to back up pictures and documents to one external drive both from Mac and PC. I do not want to use with Time Machine. 1. I just want to manually drag photos, movies, and documents to the GoFlex from both the Mac and the PC, and 2. ideally I would like to be able to retrieve things from the GoFlex and be able to open them on either Mac or PC interchangeably. Do I have to partition in order to do this or is there a way this can be done without partitioning? The Seagate web site certainly makes it sound like you can use the GoFlex Desk interchangeably for PC and Mac. The question is how.