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TOP 50 REVIEWERon 1 January 2014
Size: 4TB|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
Wow! 4TB is (at present anyway) a rather large amount of memory space isn't it! I've therefore managed to condense all of my current back-up regimes and Hard drives (for pictures, movies, talking books, documents and music into this one HUGE device.

And to be absolutely honest it is really easy given the software that comes with it. It just scans your drive from which you want to make back-ups, the types of files you want to back up and backs up all those that have changed since last back-up - at the click of a button. It's that easy. You can also decide how much of processor/memory you use up whilst doing the back-up - obviously the greater percentage you decide to use then the quicker the back-up but the more your other applications will suffer in their workings.

Obviously you can also do your own manual back-ups whenever and however you like - or just use this hard drive in any other way - like any other drive.

It did take about 3 hours to do the very first back up of all of my stuff (over 1TB) but then it just takes a few minutes next time round to check what files have changed and back the new ones up.

It's a sleek black model and about the size of a large paperback novel (perhaps one volume of Lord of The Rings or Watership Down!).

It makes backing up your precious files easy and simple - and it seems to be coming down in price quickly. I would heartedly recommend you getting one too!

What more can I say? Please post a question if I have missed off anything you wanted to know.
1111 comments| 60 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 8 September 2014
I recently invested in the WD My Cloud, as I'm transferring all my movies into my xbmc media centre. As the transfer takes time, I'd be rather miffed if for any reason that device failed and I had to do it all again. So I also invested in the My Book hard drive to back up all my files. It's dead easy to set up, plug into mains and then the USB on your computer and away you go really. I did install the WD Smartware - this allows you to set up the frequency of your back ups, but not much use for me I don't think. I'm wanting to use the My Cloud as the source device and copy the data from that to the My Book. The software doesn't seek to recognise the My Cloud as a source device, but for some reason would allow me to back up to that...hmmmmm.

Perhaps it's just me that's doing something wrong and perhaps my circumstances of wanting to back up from a NAS device is uncommon, but I've had to resort to drag and drop. That's fine for me, as I can copy my file structure in the NAS to the My Book so no biggy. I would say that the software does seem very easy to use if you're wanting to back up from your computer to the device. For the cash, £120 is cheap for 4TB...I'd rather pay that than lose all my data.
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on 5 June 2014
Bought this to use with the xbox one since the update that allowed you to use external storage, superb very happy with this it's small (about the same size as a lord of the rings paperback) powerful and more than enough storage meaning I haven't got to uninstall a game every time I buy a new one. Easy to set up just went to settings on xbox one then system the storage and format after that it was ready to go. For anyone wondering the actual storage available is 3.6TB
0Comment| 50 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 11 November 2014
Drive appeared to work fine, backed up 4tb of data using the included backup software (taking over 12hours to do it), data seemed fine.

Then switched the computer and disk on again and disk inaccessible and quite possibly and all data lost!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Worst nightmare if this is your backup (which is what it is sold as).

The particular error shown is listed in the WD knowledgebase but for mac computers not win 8.1 which is the os i am using. Suspect they have released updated firmware or software without testing it properly.
Will improve my rating if their support team manage to rescue the data, otherwise it gets the worst marks possible as this is the worst thing a disk can go - give you peace of mind of a full backup then destroy the data without warning.

I have now edited the review 22/11/2014 as the disk has magically started working again, something to do with restarts and updates etc. However it still gets a very low rating because it is sold as a backup disk and the enclosed 'Smartware' which is supposed to do the backup automatically excludes a number of filetypes that are vital, you think you have everything backed up only to discover that all the shortcuts have not been backed up because they are one of the filetypes that it can't backup. Perhaps its just me but I rely heavily on shortcuts to avoid duplicating large files, it would take many months to recreate the shortcuts in all the working directories - so much for it being a backup system.

Will have to buy proper backup software not rely on the stuff WD provides.

Kept trying various fixes and updates to the smartware software but it kept failing even after reformatting the disk and numerous contacts with support. Many people have the same problem on the WD forum, do not use this software as it gives a false sense of security.
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on 8 April 2014
I purchased this for the purpose of Full PC backups and data backups. I've only had this ext. hard drive for a few weeks, so it's far too early to tell how reliable it is... The proof will be when/if I need to restore.
However the following issue has arisen that you may wish to consider before buying - This is not a reason not to buy!.

A problem backing up to this disk drive occurs when using Microsofts own backup utility packed with Win7 pro or NTnackup provided with Windows XP, as MS backup software canot cope with extenal Large Drives. Anything bigger than 2.2tb. It's something to do with the new Large drive formatting / Partition geometry - Advanced format disks (4kb/4kb Physical/Logical sectors vs /512b/512b or 4kb/512b) and MBR vs GPT.

If you need to use Microsofts own supplied backup utility provided within Win 7 or nt backup provided with Win XP you may need to reformat this drive.

This drive will work without reformating using 3rd Party software, but the Smartware backup utility provided on this drive, by Western Digital seems serverely limited and the "Acronis for WD" option also provided albeit for free is not the full Acronis true image or backup edition so you may decide as I did, to invest in a reliable 3rd part disk imaging software (I chose macrium reflect, but IFW would be just as good. I've had numerous problems with Acronis in the past)

Given Microsoft ditching support for Win XP the need to have your legacy XP PC properly backed to protect your data and any bespoke or Legacy applications is actually very important.

This is not a reason not to buy this drive, and the same problem occurs with other brands, Just be careful that you have your Operating System/ backup utility software and Ext backup drive synchronised!
33 comments| 22 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 30 August 2014
I have used WD drives now for several years and found them excellent with Mac commuters. My photo libraries were getting too large for my current WD drives so I invested in the 4 TB USB 3.0 drive. To date I have found jot very good and file transfers appear to be fast and efficient between computer and drive.
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on 18 September 2014
Happy with this, which I've owned for quite a few months now - it's my main onsite backup (Time Machine on a Mac) which took a LONG time to set up, since I reformatted and encryted the whole 4TB. Now it's all done, it just does the job and it's nice and quiet. Only four stars as the build quality is definitely not as good as the previous two MyBooks I have owned... I guess that's why it's so cheap! My sense is just to be a bit more careful with the casing and sockets.
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VINE VOICEon 13 February 2014
Size: 4TB|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
The WD My Book 4TB extHD is an upright drive, about the size and shape of a fat, squat dictionary ( BOOK - it was DESIGNED to look like this!), quite different to the WD Elements series, of which I have the 1TB and 3TB models.

I've been a little wary of 4TB HDs - I bought the 3TB after reading about stability problems associated with 4s, preferring to err on the side of caution.

On opening the box, though, I was a unpleasantly surprised that its power cable is a two-pin plug with no adaptor attachment, that the literature inside seems to suggest comes with it. For something marketed and sold in the UK, and, you know, SOLD, for MONEY, it's annoying to then have to dish out more for an adaptor when the 3-pin really ought to come as standard. There is also no indication in the item description that this is the case.

That setback aside, the My Book really is a step-up from the Elements series. USB 3.0 is FAST. This also comes preloaded with backup software that you can set up the first time you plug in, and then you can choose whether to auto-backup each time you connect, or schedule it. It's so big that a full backup doesn't even take up that much space (although it will take a bit of time the the first time) - very worth the peace of mind. It also allows a full system-backup which I haven't done yet, but will soon. If you'd rather do a selective backup, that's also possible.

It's quiet, and its upright shape means it doesn't take up a lot of space. I tend to only plug my drives in when I want to move files, so I don't anticipate giving this a lot of wear and tear. I'm happy with it as a secure fallback, and it's pretty, too.

A star off for the 2-pin plug-fail.
33 comments| 15 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
Size: 4TB|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
I never store data on my PC's hard drive but use external drives - one for photos, one for videos, one for documents etc and each drive had a mirror backup drive. Yes, I'm cautious!

My current external hard drives already include 8 Western Digital (1, 2 and 3TB) drives in daily use which have served me reliably for the last 3-5 years and continue to do so. I was just about to upgrade to a 4TB for 2014 use when I was offered this one for review - the timing couldn't have been better!

I was pleased to see a USB3 lead is included in the box enabling me to test it at full speed immediately but very disappointed to discover the power supply unit was fitted with a 2-pin plug. Luckily I had a spare UK adapter from a WD 3TB drive so was able to substitute this but buyers should be forewarned and I feel a UK 3-pin plug should be provided with products sold in the UK.

As for the drive itself, it is chunkier than the 1/2/3TB versions, rather like a thick paperback book, but still a compact unit thanks to its vertical design requiring only a small footprint on my desk.

On running it for the first time, the WD Apps Setup program installed a variety of 'apps' onto my PC including WD Utilities WD Security and WD Smartware then performed an update followed by a free upgrade to 'Smartware Pro'. The 'Security' app enables the drive to be password protected. I avoided this - if I forgot the password, I'd have no access to my data! The 'Utilities' app tests the drive for errors - mine passed with no error reports, just as I'd hope on a brand new drive. For my use, the most useful 'app' is the backup program which can back up an entire drive or selected files/folders onto a target disk (see uploaded photos for screenshots).

It has now been in almost constant use for a month, runs silently (not even a low hum) and is barely lukewarm despite only being turned off twice during its testing time and the backup program is working perfectly.

Overall, I am delighted with the drive, cannot fault it in any way in terms of design, build or performance and will soon be ordering another to backup the current drive onto. You can't be too careful with irreplaceable data and I trust Western Digital drives to keep mine safe.
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0Comment| 19 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
I've long been a fan of the WD My Book drives, for one main reason: they're very quiet. They're designed so heat dissipates from the top, and they don't need fans. I have two of their Thunderbolt drives, and I needed another drive to back up my media files from my Mac. Since this isn't a drive where I need speed, I chose this instead of another Thunderbolt drive. It's quiet, slim, and works fine.

I've never had any issues with drives in these units failing, but if they do, it's easy to open the case and slip the drive out, and slide another one in. As I understand, however, you can only replace the drives with the same type of HD drive.

Note that if you're a Mac user, you don't need to buy WD's drives that say they are Mac-specific. Just mount the drive, then use Disk Utility (in the /Applications/Utilities folder) to format the drive, preferably in GUID so it can be used as a boot drive.
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