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on 31 July 2012
Yet another fantastic hard drive by Western Digital - this is the second that I have. Like the previous reviewer said, just plug and play and it's ready to go. One other point of note is that it is USB 3.0 (and backwards compatable with USB 2). Essentially, this just means that for computers with USB 3.0 slots, your data transfer speed will be a lot faster. I have two of these for different reasons - transferring files from home (mac) to work (windows) and vice versa. No issues with differences in operating system. The second reason is to use it to back up files using Time Machine on the Mac. For both of these functions, the drive is silent and works perfectly. I have no hesitations for recommending this for both Windows and Mac users, with speed, reliability and silence just three of the many reasons to pick this as one of the best portable hard drives you can buy.
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Although sold as suitable for backup, it has a backup facility on-board that installs on your system (Mac or PC) immediately upon first connection, it has to be borne in mind that 2.5-inch drives do not support transfer rates that approach those of their larger 3.5-inch relations. I would not therefore choose a drive of this format as a routine backup device. That is a personal choice and my backups tend to be large and time-demanding, especially with full verification enabled (within the backup software I tend to use).

Experience with several hard drives regardless of their form factor, connectability etc, has proven that the backup software provided on those drives is not a fully-featured, top-level choice software but tends to be limited in some area or another, usually in their range of functions and options. Choice of which source drives, directories or groups of directories is not normally offered and neither is a choice of full, incremental or differential backups or any other of the many variables that I would expect to see. Generally, but not always, the backup is directed towards data files which typically means your photos, downloaded music, movies, documents and other such personal files rather than the system and any installed software. You may not therefore lose that much-loved photo of granny or the new baby, but you may not be easily and quickly able to restore a faulty system installation to a usable state.

The software package is not simply a backup solution but includes a full manual in the usual language mix, plus an SES driver for those who need it and some management software. A brief printed Quick Start Guide is included but all other documentation is digital.

As a 2.5-inch enclosed hard drive, this unit is rather thicker and heavier than is normal and, in the event that you need a storage case, some may not have sufficient internal space. WD market a matching hard case but it fails to provide storage for the cable. As with most current drives of this format, this drive is bus-powered and uses a single-ended but rather short 45cm cable with micro-USB 3.0 connection drive side for both its power and data requirements.

Currently the largest capacity drive of this form factor, for those who need both portability, reasonable speed of transfer, portability, and by no means least, its capacity it is currently unequalled. Although you may be able to purchase a faster and more capacious 3.5-inch drive for a similar outlay, it will not have the same portability and will be of far greater weight and bulk, especially with its needed power adapter.

In using it with my own system, it has so far worked completely reliably in one of its own USB 3.0 ports and via a hub. With another system where there is sometimes an exchange of data with my own PC (two-way exchange, at times), the second system ofen fails to recognise the drive whether directly connected to the PC or via a hub although it has never had any issues with other hard drives. On a third PC and with direct connection, it worked correctly on the one occasion when it was needed. It is possible that some PCs provide more power to their USB ports than others, hence its lack of reliability on the second PC, but that is not supposed to happen. I also have other USB 3.0-equipped hard drives, but of lesser capacity and of different brands, and it is only this drive that has ever been a problem.
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on 16 May 2017
I bought two of these and both of them suddenly packed up.and I lost all the data stored on them. I tried them on different computers then tried changing the USB cables - but to no avail. They simply gave up the ghost without any warning. Not only were they financially a waste of money, but in terms of lost memories (photo's taken of the aurora in Arctic Norway), they robbed me of a priceless record of a never to be repeated holiday. real disgrace!
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I bought this to use as a backup drive for my Macbook Pro.

I plugged it in, I think it did a quick format so that it would work with the file systems on my Mac, it was so quick I think I missed it.

It works flawlessly with the Time Machine backup in OSX, which not only backs up the data but can also encrypt it if required.
Apple does sell the Time Capsule which can do a WiFi backup but I needed something more portable, and was not prepared to pay out three times as much for the Apple storage. USB3 might not be as fast as Thunderbolt, but it took only took a short while to back up a 1TB hard drive. To get these speeds you will need to have a USB3 socket on your computer.

All in all, it's dinky, feels well put together, good value and if I have any reliability concerns I will post them as an update.

Works well on Windows 7 as well.
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on 3 February 2013
WD My Passport has proved it's capability and reliability to me over the past 3 years and have just purchased this fourth one, each time I check out the opposition reviews and each time opt for another of these very capable, well put together and aesthetically pleasing units. Having USB 3 with USB 2 capability is another plus. There are cheaper drives available from other reputable manufacturers but amazon always have a reduced price available somewhere within the WD My passport range ie colour, GB etc...I have 3 x 500 GB and a 1 TB version and all are currently without adverse issue. I always recommend to friends who are considering purchasing a new drive. Quiet, doesn't get too warm and just a quality product from a well respected leader in these devices.
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on 22 March 2017
Very hard hard drive, really all my daughter's cartoons fit and there's still room for photos. This hard drive is pretty good and comfortable to pick, I used it every day and really recommend it. Good purchase
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It's compact and works well.
Seems fast and no issues so far.

But the usb connection on the unit feels extremely weak and flimsy.
And the flashing light on it is super bright, I had to cover it in tape because it was too bright at night. Both distracting during work and when I went to sleep.
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on 1 June 2017
2 star as its design is beautiful but ilI dropped it while it was not connected ajd insode the protective casing and corrupted all my data. Replaced it with a Silicon Power rugged and it's much much better.
It's not a seller issue it's a hard drive issue.
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on 22 February 2013
I have only been using this drive for a few weeks so am not in a position to comment on reliability but it took just a few seconds to format for use with an iMac and copied all of my photo files very quickly. If you are going to carry the drive around I recommend that you get one of the Case Logic cases so that you do not damage the plastic case. Overall, I am very happy so far.
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on 21 February 2013
Have had mines for about a month now and it has not given me any problems. I have a MacBook Pro and it was very easy to reformat it for a Mac. It serves as my backup in which I use Time Machine for and has not had any hiccups or errors thus far...
Great piece of machinery. Not very loud at all, but that flashing blue light does sometimes get on my nerves, but that is just a personal issue. lol
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