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Anybody have experience with those "Portable" external drives?

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Hi guys, I'm looking to buy an external drive, and the Western Digital My Passport 2TB drive has caught my attention. First of all, the storage capacity is quite appealing, especially since the price of the drive is around $100 CAD. Next, it's running a USB 3.0 connection, so I'm expecting real-world speeds that are super fast. However, although my laptop supports usb3, I've never used one of these drives. Could anyone who has experience with these things tell me what speeds I can expect to transfer video files with, and if these portable drives are good for anything? Thanks.

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Plenty of experience.

But, save some money and 'build' your own with an OEM drive and a Patriot Gauntlet with USB 3 support. The case supports any 2.5in HDD with some headroom to spare for an extended height drive with more capacity.

The WD 2TB 2.5in HDD is currently under $180 and is a GREAT way to give you 2TB of external portable storage. Personally, I have the WD 1TB VelociRaptor (10K RPM) HDD in one of those enclosures and it's perfect. Over USB3 it's VERY fast and can easily be hot-plugged to other systems while not using windows disk caching.

Lot's of options out there.

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I have had horrible luck with external WD drives. I own a IT/Technology Consulting firm for 12 years now and I can tell you I have had much better luck with Seagate drives. I am replacing WD drives on a weekly basis it seems.

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That's curious.

I usually call them 'seacrate' because that's about all their consumer line is good for. Last time I built a small enclosure like the one I referenced, I put one of the 1TB 2.5in enterprise drives in it. Fast and reliable.

Also, it generally depends on what line of WD's you are talking about. If you are replacing WD blues or greens on a regular basis (define regular basis in relation to client base) then I might understand. Start talking enterprise or near-line drives, I'd have a harder time believing that. Then again, I don't know what you customer base is, so MTBF to replacement is different depending on your client pool. 100 clients (with 25+ computers) or more per month? I could see that. Maybe. 1000 clients with 500 computers+? Completely feasible.

*shrugs*

Just depends.

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I have this, the nice thing about it is its faster than my previous one , the hot swap function is really nice www.(aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa (just 1 a) goes here)

mazon.co.uk/gp/product/B00C9TEL46/ref=ox_sc_act_title_1?ie=UTF8&psc=1&smid=A3P5ROKL5A1OLE

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I've had numerous WD external portable drives now and they've all worked flawless. Bought from Costco, in case of any problems, you can always return it (but I never have). Had their 1TB USB 2.0 drive, gave that to my brother when I got a new 1TB USB 3.0. Just gave that to my gf since I got a new 2TB USB 3.0 drive. :D Only $115 at Costco and it has a soft neoprene case. Very fast transfers - large movies easily copied at 50-60 MB/s.

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I usually bank on WD or Seagate personally. Passmark has some pretty helpful information if you're wanting to make your decision based on what's popular with other users. Here's their Hard Drive Market Share in the Last 30 Days.

Something else to consider....I noticed that the WD drive you're interested in is powered by the USB hub it's plugged in to--I also have an external drive that works this way and I (and others on the internet) have had trouble getting the USB hub powered drives to spin down with Windows 8. Basically, I perform the "safe removal" steps but the drive continues to spin and results in a fairly audible click noise when I finally do unplug it and this, from what I can gather based on the testimony of others and my personal experience, is very hard on the drive and will likely result in decreased lifespan. It may be worth looking into a drive that draws its power from an AC adapter.

As far as transfer speeds go, the drive I mentioned above is nothing more than a Samsung 1TB, SATA 3, 5400 RPM, 2.5inch drive installed in a Sabrent USB 3.0 external enclosure and I get a max transfer speed of 70-110 MB/s on large files and around 25-40 MB/s when transferring large quantities of small (100KB-2MB) files.

If cost is an issue, (and you or one of your friends has a spare hard drive) it is very easy to build your own external drive. I've been doing a lot of laptop SSD swaps lately (mostly on new machines) and all I do is put the conventional drive in a $10-20 external enclosure, wipe the drive thoroughly, and bam--I now have a new external drive, basically, for the cost of the enclosure.

Hope this helps--good luck!

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I bought a WD 1TB external hard drive a few months back, haven't had any problems with it at all. The one I was using before was a Seagate 500gb and one day the usb just stopped reading it. Definitely glad I switched. If you have the time, it is quite simple to create your own hard drive, like stated above, but WD quality is good otherwise. For speed, I can transfer ~4 gigs in a minute or two, so no worries there. I use it to watch shows constantly, and have never had anything to complain about.

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WD portable drives also have their USB port built into the drives controller. On Seagate/Toshiba etc it is a regular 2.5in drive plugged into a SATA to USB adapter. If you break the port you can always pull the drive and put it in another enclosure. If you break the port on a WD drive it has to be repaired by WD.

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IMO either of Seagate and WD are absolutely fine, provided you have adequate, clean, power supplied to them. Therefore just buy whatever's on sale for good price.

That being said, the current WD 2.5" passport drives have a major issue. They provide only a straight usb cable.

ONLY USE IT IF YOU HAVE A USB 3.0 PORT AND YOUR USB 3.0 DRIVERS ARE INSTALLED.

If you use it on a usb 2.0 plug, usb 2.0 only carries ~700-800 mA of current. Hard drives are designed for 1200-1300 mA. While the drive may work, this low power chokes your drive and weakens its lifespan.

I had a 2.5" drive for over 3 years functioning just fine, no noise no glitches. UNTIL I went and put it into a cheap external enclosure. The enclosure worked, but everytime I detached it, you could hear the drive head cut out with a distinctive whine. This did not happen in the notebook I took the drive out of, that very day.

3 weeks after, the drive failed.

I have 3 Seagate barracuda's still going strong after 4 years, 1 dead after a single year.

For WD, I've had numerous WD greens die on me. Still have 2 WD very old greens going strong. I've got a WD black still going also.

My theory is, it's not the drive. It's the motors supplied to the manufacturers. They die by batches, not as series. Specifically, I believe that when power is abruptly cut to the motors, and this is repeated often, it wears out the response of the motor such that it eventually dies. This happens a lot with the usb powered ones. There just isn't enough clean constant power.

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I prefer USB 3.0 external drives with no power. I've seen where having an external power source is supposed to be better but for me in practice, the drives I have had with external power sources always end up failing. It must be the mechanical parts. I have almost never had a non-powered external USB drive fail, I find them much more reliable.

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I have an old WD Passport that I beat the living daylights out of but it still soldiers on. I picked up one of the newer 1TB drives, solid product.

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Warning, just because the enclosure says USB 3.0, it does not mean you will get full USB 3.0 speeds. There are slow and fast USB 3.0 enclosures. Also, last I checked, even the fastest enclosures maxed at SATA II speeds. So check benchmarks if you can.

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Had some experience with them, I've got a couple. One of them died after about 3.5 years so not Great but not too bad either, as long as you don't throw them around too much they'll last for ages and being able to have 2TB in your back pocket is great! :P

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Warning, just because the enclosure says USB 3.0, it does not mean you will get full USB 3.0 speeds. There are slow and fast USB 3.0 enclosures. Also, last I checked, even the fastest enclosures maxed at SATA II speeds. So check benchmarks if you can.

If you're using a mechanical HDD too so you'll be limited not by the SATA 2 interface but the HDD itself :) SSD's will be limited by SATA 2 though but then when you use a SATA 3 to USB 3.0 enclosure you will then be limited by USB 3.0 :)

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I've had nothing but horrible performance both from my WD My Passport 2 TB External Drive and My Book 3TB external HDD. The problem is, when you buy them, they're great with the original firmware, I made a mistake TWICE by upgrading the firmware, then the performance went down from 400 MB/S to 100 MB/s and there is no way in heck for you to downgrade the firmware! their support sucks. If you read the posts on the WD forums you will be shocked by the horror stories. Get Seagate, much more reliable and super fast

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Here I use the 2.5'' Seagate Backup Plus with 1TB and USB 3.0. It is a little bit slower than the 3.5'' HDDs but you just don't need an external power supply for the Backup Plus HDD.

When reading it reaches a rate of 80-90 MB/s, writing is about 60-70 MB/s.

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I can't speak for the Seagate drives as the ones I have are the large capacity types with their own power adapters but the WD 2TB Passports are okay performance wise. What I like most about them is that they are pretty durable. I travel a lot for work and always throw one in my Go Bag, and being bounced around quite a bit I've never had a problem with the mechanical hardware.

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Lol how about a 6tb drive, well if you happen to have an external power supply and used a 3.5" and access time isnt priority the 6tb drive is cheap for all its space.

http://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B00LO3KMK0/ref=redir_mdp_mobile?ref_=psdc11_t3_B00KIVMRWU_B00LO3KMK0

Western Digital Green 6 TB Desktop Hard Drive 3.5-inch SATA 6, IntelliPower, 64 MB Cache Internal Bare or OEM Drives WD60EZRX

Just pop it into a larger external case. There might be some with usb cables for power.

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WD and SeaGate have similar reputations honestly. A lot also depends on the line that you buy. Externals generally have a higher failure rate than internals. Building your own internal gives you a little better quality control. SSDs are the future though, if you are willing to pony up the amount.

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A lot of it depends on the batch, that is why you find many people saying that they bought XY drives of one manufacturer and either only few or too many failed, forgetting that they bought them all from the same batch.

Age seems to be an important factor, you can expect the brand new models to have initial quirks. But you have to be careful when picking the models, e.g. 1.5 TB drives were initially made of three 500GB platters, later manufacturers switched to two of the newer 750GB platters. They can be distinguished by the detailed(/cryptic) name of the model, but usually not by the marketing name.

Your usage pattern can influence the wear of your drives. Eco/Green and Mobile models usually have a small spin down time, that means the will quickly spin down after your last access and spin up when needed again. This can save power and money, but it does also wear out the disks.

My advice: Stop worrying about drive reliability and make backups. If uptime/availability is your concern build a RAID (I know we are talking about external drives) with devices from different batches/manufacturers and avoid WD drives (except Red and Enterprise), as the do not feature TLER.

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Don't buy the cheap ones. I bought the cheapest available, a Toshiba ext hdd and another not so cheap WD My Passport.

After few months Toshiba has few bad sectors while WD is running flawless.

It's true you get what you pay for.:fat:

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I have a transcend storejet 25m3 which comes in 1tb and 2tb capacities. The case is what got me interested as is has a multi level shock protection system (or so they say)!

It has been dropped a couple of times and surprisingly it's still going strong - I'm actually more impressed than I thought I would be. I have the 1TB version and I believe it has a Samsung drive inside.

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I know that WD external hard drives have some problems of quality...there are 2 friends of mine that had them and they broken the external hard drives in few months... I prefer Silicon Power external hard drives

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