A local store is basically selling the 1TB WD MyPassport drive for $60. What I was wondering is, can the drive's automatic backup features be disabled, and the drive used as a regular external drive? Is that even recommended/reliable?
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If cameras add ten pounds, why would people want to eat them?
Yes, I backup my computers to the external drives.
I have The Seagate equivalent, purchased for a similar price about a year ago.
The software was on the drive, I did install it to see what it was and promptly got rid of it.
Works well as a regular drive
You can use it without installing the backup software, but I think you'll be prompted to install everytime you plug in the drive. Personally, the first thing I do with a new external drive (since I have other backup methods) is delete all partitions (one which usually contains the software) and reformat. This ensures the entire drive is working properly and gains a little space.
That said, as has been discussed numerous times on this forum, pre-built external drives tend to fail far more often (usually because of the USB connection) than an internal drive in a separate external case. It will cost you a bit more for an internal drive + an external case (~$60 for the drive + $15-$20 for the case), but you'll usually get a longer warranty on the drive and a much better case. If the case fails, just buy another.
If you buy a pre-built external portable drive, be sure to buy a dual USB 3.0 connector (this uses two USB ports on the PC end, but provides the extra power often necessary for portable drives). If you buy a separate case, be sure it includes this type connector or buy it separately.
I have the WD Passport drive.
Reformatted it and have been using it since Feb for backups of two internal data drives.
Once a week I have Task Scheduler pop up a reminder to plug it in and later a scheduled backup runs.
I gave it the designation letter J (middle of the alphabet) so that it always shows up as J when plugged in.
The small 2.5" WD Passport drives or similar don't need any extra power. I run them directly off my laptop and small netbook's USB ports with no problems. USB ports for 1.X, 2.X put out .5A@5VDC. 3.X ports can put out more, depending on versions.
You can delete the 'extras' on the drive if you want to use all the space, then no formatting needed. They don't need any added software as the PC supplies that natively.
Those small 2.5" drives are also fairly tough, surviving drops of 3 feet onto the floor, usually without damage that would destroy a 3.5" HDD.
But the same with any mechanical drive, they do die. I don't put anything on a HDD that I can't afford to lose. Backup your data.
True (in regard to backups). I already try to back up my data-disc backups as it is.
Yes (on failure rates), but I'm not looking at it as a permanent backup solution. More as a big external flash drive. I'm probably going to end up using it as a storage drive for all the DVDs I've ripped (I've been storing them on the computer downstairs, and pointing Kodi/etc. at them, but it does waste a lot of HD space on the computer, so... )
Hmm... not sure all my devices are compatible with USB 3. I'd have to check.If cameras add ten pounds, why would people want to eat them?
You can also get the same drive without the software (and the price) branded as WD Elements Portable.
USB 3.0 devices are backward compatible with 1.X and 2.X. But 3.x is really fast, rivaling SATA at times for speed. I have a WD Passport Ultra that is 3.X.It uses a different connector on the drive, but the other is regular USB style, only blue.
You can reformat the drive in Windows. Just R click on it and use 'Format' from the menu.
You should be able to see the Partitions in 'Control Panel>Administrative Tools>Computer Management>Storage>Disk Management'. I reformatted mine, so there is only one partition. Not sure what it originally had.
Probably obvious, but always 'Safely Remove Hardware and Eject Media' with any external drive, or disconnect when the PC is off.
I store my videos on a server with about 10TB of HDDs, in addition, I backup to a 2TB WD external 3.5" HDD that does have a power supply.
I used to backup to BD data discs, usually 50GB, but since I still have the original DVD/BDs, really not that necessary.
Since I store to two locations, good enough for me. But the 50GB BD discs are a good value per GB for long term storage.
Some portable USB 3.0 drives require the dual plug USB cable I mentioned above when used with USB 2.0 or lower ports, especially with through a hub. I have a 1TB Transcend portable and a couple of external cases that require the dual plugs, which I why I recommended it. They're cheap insurance (<$10) when you're moving between PCs.
They're fine, if your goal is something that is less reliable, slower, more expensive, and more prone to total data loss then an internal drive.
They that give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty or safety.