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Western Digital My Book 4TB Storage with Auto Backup Review - -

Design 9.0
Features 9.0
Performance 7.0
Value 9.0
Distributor: Western Digital
Review Date:
March 2013


Western Digital My Book
4TB Storage with Auto Backup

It was probably around this time last year that my hard drive caught on fire. It was the stuff of nightmares and after coming home from walking the dog, I smelt this putrid smell and saw smoke coming from my hard drive. Yes, these things can happen... you have been warned!

Fortunately I managed to save the PC but the drive was fried. To make matters worse, I was one of those people who rarely backed up and I lost family photos, music and documents. I tried to get the drive working again but its condition was palliative and to resurrect the data (if possible), would cost over $1,000. RIP

Since then, I've become an advocate for backups and I was recently given the chance to review Western Digital's latest external hard drive, the My Book. This 4 terabyte (TB) drive is not only huge in terms of space but it's quite fast and boasts this nifty feature called Automatic Backups. In essence it's basically an external hard drive for backups!

By connecting this drive to your PC and if any changes are made on your master disc (e.g. files or directories), it is instantly backed up by the software included with this product to the My Book. The great element about the Automatic Backup feature is that it is not noticeable. You can even set passwords to your backups and the My Book uses the latest encryption algorithms to ensure totally protection. It's definitely some additional peace of mind.

WD My Book Essential Specifications

    Capacity: 4TB (WDBACW0040HBK)
    Interface: 1x USB3.0 & USB2.0
    Dimensions (H x D x W): 6.5 x 5.3 x 1.9 in. / 165 x 135 x 48 mm
    Weight: 2.60lbs / 1.18kg
    Operating Temperature: 41F to 95F / 5C to 35C
    Non-Operating Temperature: -4F to 149F / -20C to 65C
    Input Voltage: 100-240VAC
    Input Frequency: 47 - 63 Hz

In terms of design, the My Book is quite a sleek looking product with its jet black colour and minimalistic appearance. The drive itself measures at 165x135x48mm and is relatively quite small, although a little on the heavy side. The drive comes with a USB 3.0 Cable, power supply, quick install guide and warranty information.

Software and Manual is included on the drive itself

The drive also boasts vents on the top and back for cooling which assists with the longevity of the drive. When the software is installed, the icon in the tray displays how much space is available, is the drive locked and if the temperature is okay.  Overall its a quiet and aesthetically looking external drive. On the back of the unit is the connection for power, USB (SS) and a power button.


Installing the My Book on our Windows 7 machine was a breeze. The drive simply connected to a spare USB 3.0 port and Windows 7 automatically detected the drive. As mentioned, the My Book supports USB 3.0 which is the fastest USB protocol at the moment and is backward compatible with USB 2.0. Compared to USB 2.0, USB 3.0 is up to 3 times faster.

WD SmartWare is the backup software of the My Book

Although the drive can be used as a standalone product, the backup abilities is where the My Book comes into its own. The software included is SmartWare which installs in a heartbeat and contains a very user friendly interface which easily allows you to setup your backup options. I also like how the software and manuals for the drive are stored on the drive itself and only take up around 450MB of space.

One touch back-up

Backing up our C: Drive took around 90 minutes

Backup accomplished

Security Settings


Although the drive cannot compare to an internal drive (e.g. SATA) or a SSD unit, the drive produced some decent read/write speeds via USB. With that said, this drive is strictly a USB product and comparing it to SATA or SSD is quite unfair but we still tested anyway!

Given that these are USB 3.0 speeds... we were not complaining!

Final Thoughts?

For just $269AUD (March 2013), the Western Digital My Book 4TB storage with auto backup is a very affordable external drive. Best of all, it's extremely easy to use and can be setup in minutes. It may not be the fastest drive around but when it comes to one-touch backups, it's definitely a drive that can be used in the home or office.

Highly Recommended!


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