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WD My Book Live Personal Cloud Storage Drive (3TB)

B&H # WEWDBACG0030 Mfr # WDBACG0030HCH-NESN
No Longer Available
Product Highlights
  • 3TB Capacity Network Drive
  • Centralize Your Data
  • iTunes Server Support
  • WD Photos iOS App
  • WD SmartWare Backup Software
  • Supports Apple Time Machine

WD makes it easy for you to simplify your digital life, with the My Book Live Personal Cloud Storage Drive. Consolidate your movies, music, photos and files in one location, all while letting everyone on your wired or wireless network share access. Back up all your PC and Mac computers to one safe place, access files securely over the Internet, stream media to your entertainment center and even show off all your photos with your iPhone, iPad or iPod touch.

Simplify Your Digital Life
Store and back up your entire library of movies, music, photos and important files to one safe place.
Share Your Media Over Your Network
Plug the drive into your router so that any PC or Mac on your wired or wireless network can access the data.
High Capacity Storage
Your media libraries will take up only a sliver of storage space on this immensely spacious 3TB drive, leaving you plenty of room to backup your files as well.
Easy To Set Up
In just a few minutes, you're up and running. Mac, Windows 7 and Windows Vista systems will automatically find your My Book Live drive in seconds. If you're running Windows XP, our simple discovery software makes it easy to set up the drive, too.
Cutting-Edge Performance
Designed around the most recent advances in Ethernet chip technology, this product delivers read speeds up to 100Mb/s.
Compatible with Apple Time Machine
Mac computer users can utilize all the features of Apple Time Machine backup software to protect their data. Back up all your Macs wirelessly to one location over your WiFi network.
Secure Remote Access
Access your files over the Internet from anywhere, using WD's remote access technology. It's easy to securely access and share photos and documents with friends and family while you're on the go.
Play Your Music on Any Computer in Your Home
The drive includes iTunes server support so you can centralize your music collection and stream to a Mac or PC.
Show Off Your Photos
Use your iPhone, iPad or iPod touch to get quick access to all the photos stored on your home network drive. Download the free WD Photos photo viewer app and show off your entire photo collection without taking up tons of space on your iPhone.
Stream Digital Media Anywhere in Your Home
The built-in media server streams music, photos and movies to any DLNA-certified multimedia device such as a WD TV Live HD media player, Blu-ray Disc player, Xbox 360, or PlayStation 3.
Interface Gigabit Ethernet
Capacity 3TB
Data Transfer Rate 10/100/1000Mb/s
Power 100-240VAC, 47-63Hz
Operating Temperature 41-95°F (5-35°C)
Storage Temperature -4-149°F (-20-65°C)
Supported Operating Systems Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7, Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard, or Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard
Dimensions 5.5 x 6.6 x 2.0" (13.9 x 16.7 x 5.0 cm)
WD My Book Live Personal Cloud Storage Drive (3TB)
  • Ethernet Cable
  • AC Power Adapter
  • 3-Year Limited Warranty
  • REVIEW SNAPSHOT®

    by PowerReviews
    WDMy Book Live Personal Cloud Storage Drive (3TB)
     
    4.2

    (based on 58 reviews)

    Ratings Distribution

    • 5 Stars

       

      (32)

    • 4 Stars

       

      (18)

    • 3 Stars

       

      (3)

    • 2 Stars

       

      (0)

    • 1 Stars

       

      (5)

    88%

    of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

    Pros

    • Easy to set up (34)
    • Easy to use (28)
    • Highly compatible (27)
    • Compact (23)
    • Fast (23)

    Cons

    • Slow (7)
    • Complicated to set up (6)

    Best Uses

    • Home (25)
    • Small networks (20)
    • High volume (10)
    • Sensitive materials (3)
      • Reviewer Profile:
      • Casual user (25), Power user (22), Heavy duty user (5), Frequent user (4)
      • Primary use:
      • Personal (50), Business (7)
      • Computer Platform:
      • PC (32), Mac (13), Other (3)

    Most Liked Positive Review

     

    Buy it for the Hardware not the Software

    Here's the Reader's Digest version: Great hard drive; terrible software. The software that comes with it is fine for monitoring problems, updating firmware, etc… The Software that you have to download...Read complete review

    Here's the Reader's Digest version: Great hard drive; terrible software. The software that comes with it is fine for monitoring problems, updating firmware, etc… The Software that you have to download separately for backup (that's clearly an indicator that's a problem if it's not the packaged software), WD SmartWare, is anything but smart. Using that software the drive was slow, far slower than it should have been, and the backups were erratic at best. The backup times scheduled seemed to have been completely random, with no rhyme or reason.

    I was one day away from shipping it back and trying something else, but I instead decided to download about 7 different backup programs to try out instead. I settled on the most productive one that I could find for free (Genie Timeline) and now I think this drive is awesome. It's not the fastest, but it works well, and I am much more comfortable that I can take a solid mirror of my system with me when I ship my computer on an upcoming reassignment. So all and all – no issues with this.

    The only two reasons I didn't give it 5 stars:

    1. Because of the WD SmartWare software. It is an embarrassment compared to other free downloads, but it's the default software that the company offers. This is what they offer. I found that unacceptable. They can do better than that.
    2. A USB port for taking it on the go and an initial seeding. How hard could that have been?

    I do have a much more detailed review below, but if all you want to know is if it works or not, and whether or not you should buy it – Then you can pretty much stop reading here. Good luck!

    This is where I'm coming from: In December my computer crashed, and through subsequent trial and error I found that my 2TB hard drive had crashed. I was able to recover 99% of the data, but it scared me – I didn't have a reliable back-up plan. So I went on a quest to figure out the best solution and I've come across several possible solutions.

    My setup: I've got two windows-based, home built computers, one Windows Laptop, one Mac Laptop and more portable iDevices than I can count on my network. On my storage drive I've got over 483GB in home videos and family pictures, over 35,000 songs (trying to cut that down), not to mention TV Shows, Movies, and just the general document accumulation that builds over years of computer usage.

    Since I'm reviewing the drive, I should mention that I also have looked at 6 on-line solutions as well because you never know when you might be a victim of theft or natural disasters.

    The WD My Book Live 3TB is the physical drive that I went with. I liked the idea of a network connection, and since I have gigabit connections throughout my home network, it made sense. I had strongly considered a ROBO drive based on the experiences and recommendations my professional photographer Sister-in-law, but in the end the portability of this drive made it a lot more attractive.

    First fault: I would have appreciated a USB 3.0 port on the back of this drive as well. That would have been easier.

    I installed the software from WD, but it was a little less than intuitive. The interface is decent, but I ended up having to search for how to operate the drive through google searches. First irritation using the software was in order to use the backup capabilities (which was why I got the drive in the first place) I had to download the WD SmartWare backup software separately.

    The WD SmartWare is not impressive. It's difficult for me to ascertain exactly what is backed up, I continue to get wrong info on the dashboard about what files are backed up and why. It seems to do its job, but this is definitely not ideal software. The thing is – this is just so slow. It's almost unusable. What I resorted to was letting the SmartWare set up all the folders that it wanted to – then I physically copied over 1.2 TB of info through Windows Explorer. This took better than 24 hours, but it had to have been months faster than the alternative. I simply couldn't believe that the backup process, left on its own, would go so incredibly slow.

    Not that the other process went fast, but that's where a USB 3.0 port would have come in handy. I could have seeded this drive in a matter of hours vice days…

    I never did get the backup function to work correctly. I played with it daily for a week. It just never got close to copying everything. At one point it went nuts and showed that I have 300GB on the drive, but the WD SmartWare said that zero files were backed up and zero files copied. It said that for 2 days. It just never fixed itself. I gave up.

    The drive itself seems to be running all the time. I did get one error message that the drive was too hot during normal use, but admittedly I did have the drive on its side because I was trying to fit it in a specific location. After I got that first error message. I turned it off, put it on a shelf standing straight up, and turned it back on. Have not had an error message since. I am getting regular emails from the device telling me that the device is in normal operating temperatures… which is nice, but completely unnecessary. It can be turned off. I also got an email saying that the device was unplugged from the network - That might come in handy one day...

    Across a network, this is not anywhere near as fast as a USB drive. So this is a backup drive, not an external storage drive for frequently used files - at least not in my experience. It took me a good 60 seconds plus to right-click-properties the main folder to see how much data had been backed up. That's a little bit on the unacceptable side if it's like that every time.

    My advice is to dump the SmartWare. It's anything but. Do a simple google search for free backup programs that work across a network. That's all you need.

    One of the most important things I was looking for before I bought this: You are able to connect this drive directly to your computer's network card. It will work. I tried this using an older laptop using just the 10/100 Ethernet LAN connection and I was disappointed at how slow it was – but it worked. The data can be retrieved. Also – You can use any standard network cable, you DO NOT need a crossover cable to make it connect. Important details I seem to have missed when I was looking for it.

    And lastly – I really liked the idea of being able to view my pictures on this drive via my iPhone. I have used the app that goes along with this drive (WD2go) and I would rate it about 3.5 stars. It's okay, but it times out on me a lot. I have found that I end up using the app that went with my 3rd party backup program, and it functions much better. Its smoother and the pictures take a lot less time to load. So know that the program works – but it's also not impressive at all. There are other solutions that you might like better.

    VS

    Most Liked Negative Review

     

    Seems solid but has a few quirks

    So far it seems like a good product but the documentation is a little weak. I had all sorts of problems connecting with WIndows 7 to this device only half my Win7 machines could...Read complete review

    So far it seems like a good product but the documentation is a little weak. I had all sorts of problems connecting with WIndows 7 to this device only half my Win7 machines could map a network drive to it. This could be a win7 problem as there are so many layers of network and security in this OS or it could be due to my firewall (Zonealarm free version). I think the documentation could have helped by going through Firewall settings and Win7 settings etc. Finally got it working reliably and easily by using a fixed IP address (assigned by my router - so did not need to change any settings on MyBookLive). Simply right click my computer icon and select map network drive then plug in the following address for the MBLIve (obviously use your correct IP address for the device):

    \\192.168.1.20\public

    All my computers mapped the drive successfully and I did not need to enable NetBIOS or any of those other setting and I had no firewall issues either.

    The next problem was setting up secure users. I set up a user using the MyBookLive web panel but Win7 would then not allow me to access the share even when I put in the correct credentials. I even tried setting up username/password combo the same as my Win7 login but that didn't work either. Another issue is all the files I have saved onto the drive are read only - so I can't delete them!

    On the good side the Western Digital tech support is fairly responsive and I am confident I will get these issues solved.

    The Twonky media server works great and streamed video, music, and pics to my other PCs and PS3 without issue.

    This box is basically a unix server and I guess as such has the same issues as connecting any unix server to windows 7. I will update this review when the problems are solved and upgrade the rating appropriately.

    Bottom line good hardware, poor documentation and difficult for a novice to set up and use if it dosn't just work straight out of the box.

    Reviewed by 58 customers

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    5.0

    i would buy 5 of this

    By Grace the Lawyer

    from San Diego, CA

    Verified Buyer

    Pros

    • Compact
    • Easy To Manage
    • Easy To Set Up
    • Fast
    • Highly Compatible

    Cons

      Best Uses

      • High Volume
      • Home
      • Sensitive Materials
      • Small Networks

      Comments about WD My Book Live Personal Cloud Storage Drive (3TB):

      I work from home and I use this as personal home network. It makes life easier for me, since I don't have to stay in my office all the time and sit in front of my desktop to work. I can sit in front of the TV and work on my laptop and everything is saved on the same network. I also use the cloud storage, and I love how I can access all my shared files even if I'm away from home. Everything is just so great about this product.

      • Primary use:
      • Business
      • Computer Platform:
      • PC

      Share this review

       
      4.0

      I would buy from B&H again,fast shipment

      By unknown buyer

      from san carlos, ca

      About Me Casual User

      Verified Buyer

      Pros

      • Easy To Manage
      • Easy To Set Up

      Cons

        Best Uses

          Comments about WD My Book Live Personal Cloud Storage Drive (3TB):

          Using this to start my own private video network within my house. Fast transfer over network of data. However only one downside now USB to increase the transfer process. This can only connect via a network.

          • Primary use:
          • Personal
          • Computer Platform:
          • Other

          Share this review

           
          5.0

          Makes file access from home easy...

          By Andrew

          from Missouri

          About Me Power user

          Verified Buyer

          Pros

          • Easy To Manage
          • Easy To Set Up

          Cons

            Best Uses

            • Home
            • Small Networks

            Comments about WD My Book Live Personal Cloud Storage Drive (3TB):

            I got two of these recently, after the My Cloud firmware has been available. So far I've set one up, and plan to set up the other one across a VPN for offsite backups with rsync.

            This works very well for home use, with performance exceeding most NASes that cost 2-3x as much. Large file reads are the best, at about 73MB/sec. Every other usage type is slower, tapering down to about 25MB/sec for small file writes. Pairing the Android app is easy, and I've had no problems using the WD2go Java browser applet in Firefox on Windows, though it's a bit slow to load.

            Remote performance is obviously very dependent on your home internet connection; on my DSL with 500kbps upload, access is fine to slow for files that are a few megabytes, but exponentially painful the larger they get. 5mbps or more upload speed would make it shine, I think.

            • Primary use:
            • Personal
            • Computer Platform:
            • PC

            Share this review

             
            5.0

            Does exactly what I wanted it to...

            By Photo guy

            from Altoona pa

            Comments about WD My Book Live Personal Cloud Storage Drive (3TB):

            Excellent drive. Keeps all of my pics in one central place that I can access from anywhere.

            Share this review

             
            5.0

            I would buy this product again and again

            By Alain & Julie

            from Montreal, Canada

            About Me Casual User

            Verified Buyer

            Pros

            • Compact
            • Easy To Manage
            • Easy To Set Up
            • Fast
            • Highly Compatible

            Cons

              Best Uses

              • Home
              • Small Networks

              Comments about WD My Book Live Personal Cloud Storage Drive (3TB):

              I would buy this product again and again...

              • Primary use:
              • Personal
              • Computer Platform:
              • PC

              Share this review

               
              4.0

              Works fine for a small home network

              By Zen

              from Seattle WA

              About Me Casual User

              Verified Buyer

              Pros

              • Easy To Manage
              • Easy To Set Up

              Cons

                Best Uses

                • Home

                Comments about WD My Book Live Personal Cloud Storage Drive (3TB):

                Works fine. I have 3 computers accessing media (music, video, photos) wirelessly and the MyBook connected to my router via the supplied RJ45 ethernet cable. So far I have not seen any delays in streaming 720p video and WAV files to two users at the same time. I was able to connect the MyBook directly (RJ45-RJ45) to my laptop running Windows 7 Home Professional in order to load the media faster, but either via the router or direct connected, loading media takes a long time.

                • Primary use:
                • Personal
                • Computer Platform:
                • PC

                Share this review

                 
                4.0

                A pleasant suprise

                By FB

                from Christchurch New Zealand

                About Me Power user

                Verified Buyer

                Pros

                • Its Quiet
                • It Works

                Cons

                • Set-up Not Intuitive

                Best Uses

                • Raspberry Pi
                • Small Networks

                Comments about WD My Book Live Personal Cloud Storage Drive (3TB):

                I am using my "My Book" on my home network, primarily to give my "Raspberry Pi" (RP) access via my home network to some serious storage. The set up was not as intuitive as I would have hoped but with a few WEB searches I overcame most of the the issues I encountered reasonably quickly. Connecting the drive to my RP was the easy part. Its been up and running for almost two weeks with no issues at all, I am very pleased with my purchase (not quiet 5* though). The help in selecting this product at the B&H super store in NYC was exceptional.

                • Primary use:
                • Personal
                • Computer Platform:
                • PC

                Share this review

                 
                4.0

                Great Storage

                By CareyR

                from Edison NJ

                About Me Casual User

                Verified Buyer

                Pros

                • Compact
                • Easy To Manage
                • Easy To Set Up

                Cons

                  Best Uses

                  • High Volume

                  Comments about WD My Book Live Personal Cloud Storage Drive (3TB):

                  Set up was very easy. I am using it to store my multi GB's of photos and maybe also music, so I can free up space on my desktop hard drive. The cloud makes it a great tool so that we can now look at all our pictures on my IPAD or any computer.

                  • Primary use:
                  • Personal
                  • Computer Platform:
                  • PC

                  Share this review

                   
                  5.0

                  Very useful device!

                  By huulee81

                  from Somerset, KY

                  About Me Casual User

                  Verified Buyer

                  Pros

                  • Compact
                  • Easy To Manage
                  • Easy To Set Up
                  • Fast
                  • Highly Compatible

                  Cons

                    Best Uses

                    • High Volume
                    • Home
                    • Small Networks

                    Comments about WD My Book Live Personal Cloud Storage Drive (3TB):

                    When CD's, DVD's, even Blue-ray DVD's are fast becoming obsolete, even those small cute thumb-drives also seem to be too much of a bother. Online storage cloud like Drive or SkyDrive can be slow or not available. Then the personal cloud such as this one can be very convenient.
                    It has some short-comings. Say if you pw-protect certain shares, somehow you cannot log-in to these shares even though you are on the same computer that help define these shares.

                    • Primary use:
                    • Personal
                    • Computer Platform:
                    • PC

                    Share this review

                     
                    5.0

                    Great Product

                    By Berms24

                    from NY, NY

                    About Me Casual User

                    Verified Buyer

                    Pros

                    • Compact

                    Cons

                    • Runs Hot

                    Best Uses

                    • Home

                    Comments about WD My Book Live Personal Cloud Storage Drive (3TB):

                    Very easy to setup and use.

                    • Primary use:
                    • Personal
                    • Computer Platform:
                    • Mac

                    Share this review

                     
                    4.0

                    easy set up

                    By Joe

                    from Chicago, IL

                    About Me Power user

                    Verified Buyer

                    Pros

                    • Compact
                    • Easy To Set Up
                    • Highly Compatible

                    Cons

                      Best Uses

                      • High Volume
                      • Small Networks

                      Comments about WD My Book Live Personal Cloud Storage Drive (3TB):

                      Great use for storing movies for media center. No more transferring hard drives between locations.

                      • Primary use:
                      • Personal
                      • Computer Platform:
                      • PC

                      Share this review

                       
                      1.0

                      Symbolism without substance.

                      By N6WRV

                      from Paso Robles, CA

                      About Me Power user

                      Verified Buyer

                      Pros

                        Cons

                        • Complicated To Set Up
                        • Useless Customer Service
                        • Wd Software Won't Run

                        Best Uses

                        • A Nice Doorstop

                        Comments about WD My Book Live Personal Cloud Storage Drive (3TB):

                        Can not use this product. This product is useless because the software bundled with it is a disaster. It is not compatible with MaxOSX 10.8 on a MacBook Pro.

                        • Primary use:
                        • Personal
                        • Computer Platform:
                        • Mac

                        Share this review

                         
                        4.0

                        So Far So Good

                        By t

                        from ohio

                        About Me Casual User

                        Verified Buyer

                        Pros

                          Cons

                            Best Uses

                              Comments about WD My Book Live Personal Cloud Storage Drive (3TB):

                              I've been using mybooklive now for several weeks without any issues. I didn't use any of the supplied software, just logged in through the web interface once it was connected to my network and was able to manage it online. I like the dlna server since it streams video, music, and photos to my LG tv.

                              • Primary use:
                              • Personal
                              • Computer Platform:
                              • PC

                              Share this review

                              (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                               
                              5.0

                              Well Designed Product

                              By Networkin Doug

                              from Central New Jersey

                              About Me Casual User

                              Verified Buyer

                              Pros

                              • Great Design
                              • Well Written Documentatio

                              Cons

                              • None Wd Got It Right

                              Best Uses

                                Comments about WD My Book Live Personal Cloud Storage Drive (3TB):

                                I am a beginner in the building of a network. Western Digital must have designed this NAS drive with me in mind. The documentation for this drive is on-line at Western Digital's website. It is very well written and straight forward to follow. The NAS drive was working in beneficial service in about 10 minutes after power-up.With just a little more reading, I had six video security cameras recording to the drive, which was my primary goal when purchasing this drive.

                                • Primary use:
                                • Personal
                                • Computer Platform:
                                • Mac

                                Share this review

                                (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                                 
                                5.0

                                Best Cloud storage available!

                                By kpeterha

                                from San Diego, CA

                                About Me Power user

                                Verified Buyer

                                Pros

                                • Compact
                                • Easy To Manage
                                • Easy To Set Up
                                • Fast
                                • Highly Compatible

                                Cons

                                  Best Uses

                                  • Home

                                  Comments about WD My Book Live Personal Cloud Storage Drive (3TB):

                                  I am using this HD as a network drive connected to my Netgear router. I have a USB HD that I tried to use first, but WD has some HD's that don't work in that capacity. This HD connects directly to the router using RJ45 cable which is included. It is very easy to copy files over from any computer on the network. We have two desktops, three laptops and three tablet computers. It is important that all users are able to share files over the network.

                                  • Primary use:
                                  • Personal
                                  • Computer Platform:
                                  • PC

                                  Share this review

                                  (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                                   
                                  1.0

                                  Doesn't work quite the way I thought

                                  By Mark

                                  from Fairborn, Ohio

                                  About Me Power user

                                  Verified Buyer

                                  Pros

                                  • Compact
                                  • Fast

                                  Cons

                                  • Can't Bu To Time Machine
                                  • Complicated To Set Up

                                  Best Uses

                                  • Home

                                  Comments about WD My Book Live Personal Cloud Storage Drive (3TB):

                                  I returned this product. I had intended to use this as a data drive, wanting to back it up to a local 4TB usb drive via Time Machine. Alas, the claims that it is "Time Machine compatible" are not entirely accurate. It works fine as a Time Machine drive... but you can't back it up to another drive via Time Machine. Plus, to access all of your media remotely, you have to use the WD applications on your device.

                                  • Primary use:
                                  • Personal
                                  • Computer Platform:
                                  • Mac

                                  Share this review

                                   
                                  4.0

                                  My Book Live Personal

                                  By ayanww

                                  from Texas

                                  About Me Casual User

                                  Verified Buyer

                                  Pros

                                  • Easy To Manage
                                  • Easy To Set Up

                                  Cons

                                  • Bulky
                                  • Usb Port Needed

                                  Best Uses

                                  • Small Networks
                                  • Usb Port Will Help

                                  Comments about WD My Book Live Personal Cloud Storage Drive (3TB):

                                  A lot of space, I wish it have a USB port on it which can make the initial large transfer easier.
                                  All in all very easy to set-up.

                                  • Primary use:
                                  • Personal
                                  • Computer Platform:
                                  • PC

                                  Share this review

                                  (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

                                   
                                  4.0

                                  Buy it for the Hardware not the Software

                                  By Chief

                                  from Military Abroad

                                  About Me Power user

                                  Verified Buyer

                                  Pros

                                  • Compact
                                  • Easy To Manage

                                  Cons

                                  • Complicated To Set Up
                                  • Slow

                                  Best Uses

                                  • Backup

                                  Comments about WD My Book Live Personal Cloud Storage Drive (3TB):

                                  Here's the Reader's Digest version: Great hard drive; terrible software. The software that comes with it is fine for monitoring problems, updating firmware, etc… The Software that you have to download separately for backup (that's clearly an indicator that's a problem if it's not the packaged software), WD SmartWare, is anything but smart. Using that software the drive was slow, far slower than it should have been, and the backups were erratic at best. The backup times scheduled seemed to have been completely random, with no rhyme or reason.

                                  I was one day away from shipping it back and trying something else, but I instead decided to download about 7 different backup programs to try out instead. I settled on the most productive one that I could find for free (Genie Timeline) and now I think this drive is awesome. It's not the fastest, but it works well, and I am much more comfortable that I can take a solid mirror of my system with me when I ship my computer on an upcoming reassignment. So all and all – no issues with this.

                                  The only two reasons I didn't give it 5 stars:

                                  1. Because of the WD SmartWare software. It is an embarrassment compared to other free downloads, but it's the default software that the company offers. This is what they offer. I found that unacceptable. They can do better than that.
                                  2. A USB port for taking it on the go and an initial seeding. How hard could that have been?

                                  I do have a much more detailed review below, but if all you want to know is if it works or not, and whether or not you should buy it – Then you can pretty much stop reading here. Good luck!

                                  This is where I'm coming from: In December my computer crashed, and through subsequent trial and error I found that my 2TB hard drive had crashed. I was able to recover 99% of the data, but it scared me – I didn't have a reliable back-up plan. So I went on a quest to figure out the best solution and I've come across several possible solutions.

                                  My setup: I've got two windows-based, home built computers, one Windows Laptop, one Mac Laptop and more portable iDevices than I can count on my network. On my storage drive I've got over 483GB in home videos and family pictures, over 35,000 songs (trying to cut that down), not to mention TV Shows, Movies, and just the general document accumulation that builds over years of computer usage.

                                  Since I'm reviewing the drive, I should mention that I also have looked at 6 on-line solutions as well because you never know when you might be a victim of theft or natural disasters.

                                  The WD My Book Live 3TB is the physical drive that I went with. I liked the idea of a network connection, and since I have gigabit connections throughout my home network, it made sense. I had strongly considered a ROBO drive based on the experiences and recommendations my professional photographer Sister-in-law, but in the end the portability of this drive made it a lot more attractive.

                                  First fault: I would have appreciated a USB 3.0 port on the back of this drive as well. That would have been easier.

                                  I installed the software from WD, but it was a little less than intuitive. The interface is decent, but I ended up having to search for how to operate the drive through google searches. First irritation using the software was in order to use the backup capabilities (which was why I got the drive in the first place) I had to download the WD SmartWare backup software separately.

                                  The WD SmartWare is not impressive. It's difficult for me to ascertain exactly what is backed up, I continue to get wrong info on the dashboard about what files are backed up and why. It seems to do its job, but this is definitely not ideal software. The thing is – this is just so slow. It's almost unusable. What I resorted to was letting the SmartWare set up all the folders that it wanted to – then I physically copied over 1.2 TB of info through Windows Explorer. This took better than 24 hours, but it had to have been months faster than the alternative. I simply couldn't believe that the backup process, left on its own, would go so incredibly slow.

                                  Not that the other process went fast, but that's where a USB 3.0 port would have come in handy. I could have seeded this drive in a matter of hours vice days…

                                  I never did get the backup function to work correctly. I played with it daily for a week. It just never got close to copying everything. At one point it went nuts and showed that I have 300GB on the drive, but the WD SmartWare said that zero files were backed up and zero files copied. It said that for 2 days. It just never fixed itself. I gave up.

                                  The drive itself seems to be running all the time. I did get one error message that the drive was too hot during normal use, but admittedly I did have the drive on its side because I was trying to fit it in a specific location. After I got that first error message. I turned it off, put it on a shelf standing straight up, and turned it back on. Have not had an error message since. I am getting regular emails from the device telling me that the device is in normal operating temperatures… which is nice, but completely unnecessary. It can be turned off. I also got an email saying that the device was unplugged from the network - That might come in handy one day...

                                  Across a network, this is not anywhere near as fast as a USB drive. So this is a backup drive, not an external storage drive for frequently used files - at least not in my experience. It took me a good 60 seconds plus to right-click-properties the main folder to see how much data had been backed up. That's a little bit on the unacceptable side if it's like that every time.

                                  My advice is to dump the SmartWare. It's anything but. Do a simple google search for free backup programs that work across a network. That's all you need.

                                  One of the most important things I was looking for before I bought this: You are able to connect this drive directly to your computer's network card. It will work. I tried this using an older laptop using just the 10/100 Ethernet LAN connection and I was disappointed at how slow it was – but it worked. The data can be retrieved. Also – You can use any standard network cable, you DO NOT need a crossover cable to make it connect. Important details I seem to have missed when I was looking for it.

                                  And lastly – I really liked the idea of being able to view my pictures on this drive via my iPhone. I have used the app that goes along with this drive (WD2go) and I would rate it about 3.5 stars. It's okay, but it times out on me a lot. I have found that I end up using the app that went with my 3rd party backup program, and it functions much better. Its smoother and the pictures take a lot less time to load. So know that the program works – but it's also not impressive at all. There are other solutions that you might like better.

                                  • Primary use:
                                  • Personal
                                  • Computer Platform:
                                  • PC

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                                  4.0

                                  SO FAR SO GOOD

                                  By bibcoun

                                  from Saginaw Michigan

                                  About Me Casual User

                                  Verified Buyer

                                  Pros

                                  • Compact

                                  Cons

                                    Best Uses

                                      Comments about WD My Book Live Personal Cloud Storage Drive (3TB):

                                      I am using the drive primarily for easy backup of my important files especially pictures. Had some problems getting up and running due to update compatibility issues with XP os, but tech support was very helpful and had me up and backing quickly after being told not to update SmartwareI am having some difficulty finding the info I want/need for using the cloud to b/u the other computers on my network,but I am hopeful its there somewhere or I may be calling the conceriage service again. Have always had good experience with WD in the past and trust I will now. B&H was great with ordering and shipping fast. However the Bill Me Later option offer for 6 months payment was not processed properly so I am waiting to see it corrected in the next few days.

                                      • Primary use:
                                      • Personal
                                      • Computer Platform:
                                      • PC

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                                      5.0

                                      Solid Personal Cloud Device

                                      By Joe

                                      from Portland, OR

                                      About Me Casual User

                                      Verified Buyer

                                      Pros

                                      • Easy To Manage
                                      • Easy To Set Up
                                      • Highly Compatible

                                      Cons

                                      • Slow

                                      Best Uses

                                      • Home
                                      • Small Networks

                                      Comments about WD My Book Live Personal Cloud Storage Drive (3TB):

                                      Connected to my router (Apple TimeCapsule) as a personal cloud device to house my ever-growing collection of photographs and videos.

                                      The setup is fairly straight-forward, even if you aren't hip to the networking game. Western Digital's website and on-screen wizard get things going in just a few short minutes.

                                      Because it's only a network drive and does not have a USB port, if you want to transfer a large block of data to it initially, your network will be jammed up.

                                      • Primary use:
                                      • Personal
                                      • Computer Platform:
                                      • Mac

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