For the past several years I have been using a Western Digital hard drive for computer backup. I don’t really want to pay a monthly fee for some company I don’t know to hold my financial records and other files God knows where.
I was having trouble with the old drive and I may have made matters worse by telling the system to erase the drive instead of restoring to factory, if the option was there, because I couldn’t even get the computer to see the drive. I know it’s not a passport I believe the old drive is a My Book Essential. Thinking this might be a good time to look for a replacement, I headed out to Best Buy. The old drive was only 500 MB and prices have come down since the purchase of the old drive.
I found that Best Buy had the Western Digital My Book Live home network drive and for $120 I got a 1TB network drive. I could have gotten a 2GB non-network drive for the same price but I really did not want a drive that was connected to my PC all the time. Also for my needs at this time 1TB is more than enough for what I backup. So I got rid of something hogging up a USB port and I got some extra features. All you do is plug it into the power grid, then plug into your router and install the software onto your PC’s. Will also work with Apple’s Time Machine software as well as allowing you to share files between a PC and Mac. The drives have a dedicated CPU to help with the demands of streaming content to your home devices.
1. It works with DLNA which is Digital Living Network Alliance. You see this more with Android devices, etc. than you do iPhones and I don’t believe they are running software to handle it yet. I could be wrong since I haven’t used an iOS device in about a year. This protocol allows you to share digital media with various devices in your home. I can share music and videos from my PC to my Playstation 3, phones and tablets as well as my downstairs TV.
2. Built in cloud. In addition to the backup feature you also have the ability to have your own cloud. One thing I like with the Western Digital software is on the fly backups. When I save or change a file, the software immediately changes the files in the backup. It also allows you to set up your own cloud server. The same files you set up to share around your house via DLNA, you can also share over your cellular or public wi-fi connection. In case you are worried, you can turn the feature off if it’s not something you plan on using, or only want it on if you are traveling and want access to files, etc.
3. Your computers do not have to be on for all the sharing and cloud features to work. As long as your router is connected to the Internet, you’re set.
Not only can you log into your drive from any computer on the Internet but you can also use two software apps for Android as well as the iPhone and iPad.
WD2GO is a free app that allows you to view all of your files on your shared drive. There is also the WD Photo App that will allow you to view photos like the WD2GO app but also allows you to upload photos from your device to your cloud storage. There is also a WD2GO pro version of the app for $2.99 both for Android and Apple. The pro version does all of what the free version of the software will do for viewing all of your files plus:
• Download folders and files for offline access
• Automatically sync folders and files from My Book Live or My Book Live Duo to your mobile device
• Lock access with a 4 digit pass code
• Email files, share files as a link, print and open files with third party apps.
I am really starting to like this and plan on playing with it some more. If it works like I believe it will, I will just drop using Google Drive and Sky drive as primary cloud sources and use this for a more personal cloud experience. With so many choices available I can use the others for backup if I needed to. If you buy these drives which comes in 1 to 3TB models it may have an older firmware for Mino access. That was a service that allowed access to your drive as well as desktop access to your computer, web cam monitoring, etc. The drawback was this is not free. After a 30 day trial you have to pay them monthly. If you just want access to your drive and not all the other fluff, the WD2GO is great because it’s FREE. You will get notification of the firmware update shortly a few days after you start using the drive.
Check these sites out for more information:
Hope this information helps if you are looking into getting a backup drive for your system. This review is from my personal experience. I am not compensated in any way from Western Digital.