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WD My Passport Essential 500GB Portable Hard Drive (Silver)

B&H # WEMPE500S Mfr # WDBACY5000ASL-NESN
No Longer Available
Product Highlights
  • SuperSpeed USB 3.0
  • 500GB Capacity
  • WD SmartWare Backup Software
  • Bus-Powered
  • Password-Protected Encryption

The My Passport Essential Portable Hard Drive from Western Digital is your answer to sleek, 'future-proof' portability. With this bus-powered drive, you can have up to 5Gb/s USB 3.0 speeds with complete backward compatibility with USB 2.0, allowing you to take full advantage of your drive immediately while still ensuring future usability.

Dual USB 3.0 / 2.0 Compatibility
This drive delivers universal compatibility today and next-generation speed for tomorrow. Use it with USB 2.0 now and step up to USB 3.0 speed when you're ready.
Fast Transfer Rates
While connected to a USB 3.0 port this drive lets you access and save files up to 3x faster than USB 2.0.
Maximum Capacity
Store all your favorite photos, music, movies and important files on this high capacity, portable drive.
WD SmartWare Software
This intuitive software puts you in control of your backup. With the ability to install all the features, a select few, or none at all, this versatile bundled software provides an excellent option for continuous, automatic protection of your data. For additional security, there is the option for password-protected encryption of your personal files.
Interface USB 3.0 (backward compatible with USB 2.0)
Data Transfer Rate USB 2.0: Up to 480Mb/s
USB 3.0: Up to 5Gb/s
System Compatibility Formatted NTFS for Windows XP / Vista / 7, requires reformatting for Mac OS X 10.5 / 10.6
Operating Temperature 41-95°F (5-35°C)
Storage Temperature -4-149°F (-20-65°C)
Dimensions 0.6 x 4.3 x 3.2" (1.5 x 11.0 x 8.3 cm)
Weight 0.31 lb (0.14 kg)
WD My Passport Essential 500GB Portable Hard Drive (Silver)
  • USB Cable
  • WD SmartWare Software
  • Quick Install Guide
  • 2-Year Limited Warranty
  • REVIEW SNAPSHOT®

    by PowerReviews
    Western DigitalMy Passport Essential 500GB Portable Hard Drive (Red)
     
    4.7

    (based on 124 reviews)

    Ratings Distribution

    • 5 Stars

       

      (93)

    • 4 Stars

       

      (25)

    • 3 Stars

       

      (3)

    • 2 Stars

       

      (3)

    • 1 Stars

       

      (0)

    97%

    of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

    Pros

    • Quiet (87)
    • Easy to use (62)
    • Compact (60)
    • Portable (56)
    • Easy to set up (51)

    Cons

    • No power switch (5)

    Best Uses

    • Additional storage (49)
    • Back-up (49)
    • Photo storage (42)
    • File transfer (34)
    • Video (26)
      • Reviewer Profile:
      • Power user (37), Casual user (35), Frequent user (28), Heavy duty user (8), Infrequent user (4)
      • Primary use:
      • Personal (85), Business (36)
      • Computer Platform:
      • PC (52), Mac (19)

    Most Liked Positive Review

     

    Solid, Reliable Hard Drive

    My only complaint about this product is that the process for reconfiguring it for a Mac was a little cumbersome. It is totally Mac compatible and will work with Time Machine and everything, but...Read complete review

    My only complaint about this product is that the process for reconfiguring it for a Mac was a little cumbersome. It is totally Mac compatible and will work with Time Machine and everything, but the process to get there is not completely clear. I would probably recommend that a Mac user who wants to "plug and play" get an external hard drive that is pre-configured for Mac use. Once I figured it out it was really easy. Like most other people who reviewed this product, I gave up on the software that came with it and it made my life easier.

    VS

    Most Liked Negative Review

     

    Pain in the ne

    To read the installation instructions, first you have to go to a website that is shown on the enclosed tech support sheets in a font that requires a magnifying glass. You try to print...Read complete review

    To read the installation instructions, first you have to go to a website that is shown on the enclosed tech support sheets in a font that requires a magnifying glass. You try to print the handbook, most of it is sent to the printer in Korean (although you select "ENGLISH." Finally, you figure out how to do it - halfway in the backup process it reports a fatal error. You want to erase the drive, it tells you that for that you must disconnect it from your computer. Once it is disconnected, of course the drive becomes inaccessible. At which point you remove and reinstall the program - finally, it works. You want to check how the retrieval process works: essentially, you have to stand on your head while juggling six porcelain plates and several lit torches. In short, this is a pain in the neck. I backed up all my data on a Lexar Flash Drive: you see what you have and you can retrieve anything by one click. The only disadvantage of a flash drive is that it does not do automatick backups - like WD promises (although I will have to see if it really does it.)

    Reviewed by 124 customers

    Sort by

    Displaying reviews 1-20

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    5.0

    Excellent for photo trips

    By rhirekat

    from Madison, WI

    About Me Casual user

    Verified Buyer

    Pros

    • Attractive Design
    • Compact
    • Easy To Set Up
    • Easy to use
    • High Capacity
    • Portable
    • Quiet

    Cons

      Best Uses

      • Additional Storage
      • File Transfer

      Comments about My Passport Essential 500GB Portable Hard Drive (Black):

      I like this small portable hard drive. I carry a small laptop that doesn't have much memory nor the ability to do image processing. i susally download eac day's images from the cards to this portable drive, so I can reuse the cards. I have used it on 3 trips so far and I haven't found any problems with it.

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

      Share this review

       
      5.0

      Good stuff

      By Ed

      from Guam, U.S.A

      About Me Frequent User

      Verified Buyer

      Pros

      • Easy To Install
      • Fast
      • Highly Compatible
      • Quiet
      • Reliable

      Cons

        Best Uses

        • High-End Multimedia

        Comments about My Passport Essential 500GB Portable Hard Drive (Silver):

        I like this little WD passport hard drive, its fast when i connect it to my computer, media player and stereo reciever. also small and light so no problem to put it on my small bag that i carry to work. you can put everything on it like movies, music and all kinds of data's. price is reasonable too.

        • Primary use:
        • Personal

        Share this review

         
        5.0

        nice

        By KenB

        from Houston, TX

        About Me Frequent User

        Verified Buyer

        Pros

        • Easy To Install
        • Fast
        • Highly Compatible
        • Quiet

        Cons

          Best Uses

            Comments about My Passport Essential 500GB Portable Hard Drive (Silver):

            Gave to my wife who seems to always exceed the thumb drive capacity limits...now she is set.

            • Primary use:
            • Personal

            Share this review

             
            5.0

            So dependable

            By carold

            from Los Angeles, CA

            About Me Power user

            See all my reviews

            Verified Buyer

            Pros

            • Compact
            • Easy To Set Up
            • Easy to use
            • High Capacity
            • Portable
            • Quiet

            Cons

            • No Power Switch

            Best Uses

            • Additional Storage
            • Backup
            • File Transfer
            • Photo Storage
            • Video

            Comments about My Passport Essential 500GB Portable Hard Drive (Black):

            I use this for music, graphics and all important documents. Dependable, fast load and save. Now on my second one of these because the first one is full and still works great after more than 12 mos daily use.

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

            Share this review

             
            4.0

            Fantastic

            By Meekey

            from St. Albans, NY

            About Me Power user

            Verified Buyer

            Pros

            • Attractive Design
            • Compact
            • Easy to use
            • Portable
            • Quiet

            Cons

              Best Uses

              • Additional Storage

              Comments about My Passport Essential 500GB Portable Hard Drive (Black):

              Bought to serve as backup for my imac. Very portable, quiet and works just fine.Product has been great. Will recommend it to friends

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

              Share this review

               
              5.0

              Great Device at a Good Price..

              By Dave

              from Michigan

              About Me Power user

              Verified Buyer

              Pros

              • Compact
              • Easy to use
              • Portable
              • Quiet
              • USB Powered

              Cons

                Best Uses

                • Additional Storage
                • Backup
                • File Transfer
                • Photo Storage

                Comments about My Passport Essential 500GB Portable Hard Drive (Black):

                This is the second Passport unit that I've bought.
                They provide a lot of storage for their small size. They also do not require a separate power supply and provide that extra storage needed for saving and archiving photos and other large files..

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

                Share this review

                 
                5.0

                Great little disk

                By MetWestBosMan

                from Boston, MA

                About Me Casual user

                Verified Buyer

                Pros

                • Attractive Design
                • Compact
                • Easy to use
                • Portable
                • Quiet

                Cons

                  Best Uses

                  • Additional Storage
                  • Backup
                  • Photo Storage

                  Comments about My Passport Essential 500GB Portable Hard Drive (Black):

                  I'm very happy with the performance of this disk with my late 2011 MacBook Pro. My MBP only has USB 2.0, so there's only so much performance I can get, but unlike reviews I saw for another brand of USB3.0 disk when used on a Mac like mine, this one seems to stay within USB2.0 power limits and works flawlessly. I reformatted for use with Time Machine and feel confident in the storage.

                  • Primary use:
                  • Business
                  • Computer Platform:
                  • Mac

                  Share this review

                   
                  5.0

                  Good product

                  By Moulay

                  from Denver, co

                  About Me Casual user

                  Verified Buyer

                  Pros

                  • Attractive Design
                  • Compact
                  • Easy To Set Up
                  • Easy to use
                  • High Capacity
                  • Portable
                  • Quiet

                  Cons

                    Best Uses

                    • Additional Storage
                    • File Transfer
                    • Photo Storage

                    Comments about My Passport Essential 500GB Portable Hard Drive (Black):

                    Very happy with the purchase.

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

                    Share this review

                     
                    5.0

                    Fast shipping

                    By Snik

                    from Chicago, IL

                    Verified Buyer

                    Comments about My Passport Essential 500GB Portable Hard Drive (Silver):

                    Product shipped very fast. Product match description

                    Share this review

                     
                    5.0

                    Gets the Job Done

                    By SKC

                    from Virginia

                    About Me Frequent User

                    Verified Buyer

                    Pros

                    • Easy To Install
                    • Quiet
                    • Reliable

                    Cons

                      Best Uses

                      • High-End Multimedia

                      Comments about My Passport Essential 500GB Portable Hard Drive (Silver):

                      I've used these as a means of sharing data over several years. I've never had an issue. It's small, easy to use, and looks great.

                      • Primary use:
                      • Business

                      Share this review

                       
                      5.0

                      good value, good product

                      By tnc

                      from ny

                      About Me Frequent User

                      Verified Buyer

                      Pros

                      • Easy To Install
                      • Fast
                      • Highly Compatible
                      • Quiet
                      • Reliable

                      Cons

                        Best Uses

                          Comments about My Passport Essential 500GB Portable Hard Drive (Silver):

                          I like that it's so small and compact. Saves large quantities of data pretty quickly. I'll see how long it will hold up (my previous portable hard drives of different brands had to be replaced every few years), but seems to do its job well. I like the color; matches my macbook exactly. Yes, you do have to spend a little time reformatting for mac but it was no problem doing so.

                          However, I do not like the Smartware interface that wd installs onto your computer to manage files. I guess if you want to back up your entire computer it's useful but I only want to back up specific files so it's useless for me.

                          • Primary use:
                          • Business

                          Share this review

                           
                          5.0

                          Quick shipping

                          By rhobbs

                          from durham, nc

                          About Me Casual user

                          Verified Buyer

                          Pros

                          • Attractive Design
                          • Compact
                          • Easy To Set Up
                          • Easy to use
                          • High Capacity
                          • Portable
                          • Quiet

                          Cons

                            Best Uses

                              Comments about My Passport Essential 500GB Portable Hard Drive (Black):

                              Good portable option, well built and reliable

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

                              Share this review

                               
                              5.0

                              This product has always performed

                              By Arkell

                              from Mullica Hill, NJ

                              About Me Power user

                              Verified Buyer

                              Pros

                              • Compact
                              • Easy To Set Up
                              • Easy to use
                              • High Capacity
                              • Portable
                              • Quiet

                              Cons

                                Best Uses

                                • Additional Storage
                                • Backup
                                • File Transfer
                                • Photo Storage
                                • Video

                                Comments about My Passport Essential 500GB Portable Hard Drive (Black):

                                I have used this for backups not only at home, but also at work. It has never failed me.

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

                                Share this review

                                 
                                5.0

                                WD Is The Way To Go!

                                By Username1

                                from Los Angeles

                                About Me Power user

                                Verified Buyer

                                Pros

                                • Attractive Design
                                • Compact
                                • Easy To Set Up
                                • Easy to use
                                • Portable
                                • Quiet

                                Cons

                                  Best Uses

                                  • Additional Storage
                                  • File Transfer
                                  • Photo Storage

                                  Comments about My Passport Essential 500GB Portable Hard Drive (Black):

                                  I haven't had this drive for very long, but it's essentially the same as my 1 TB external. I've used several brands of external drives, and Western Digital always makes me happy. This drive, like my previous WD drives, is fast, quiet, and will probably last a very long time!

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

                                  Share this review

                                   
                                  5.0

                                  Great price and fast shipping.

                                  By DJ Nizi

                                  from Atlanta GA

                                  About Me Power user

                                  Verified Buyer

                                  Pros

                                  • Compact
                                  • Easy to use
                                  • Portable
                                  • Quiet

                                  Cons

                                    Best Uses

                                    • Additional Storage
                                    • Backup

                                    Comments about My Passport Essential 500GB Portable Hard Drive (Black):

                                    I use it to back up my music, and so far it's everything I need it to be.

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

                                    Share this review

                                     
                                    5.0

                                    Excellent!

                                    By Motti

                                    from NY

                                    About Me Power user

                                    Verified Buyer

                                    Pros

                                    • Attractive Design
                                    • Compact
                                    • Easy To Set Up
                                    • Easy to use
                                    • High Capacity
                                    • Portable
                                    • Quiet

                                    Cons

                                      Best Uses

                                      • Additional Storage
                                      • Backup
                                      • File Transfer
                                      • Photo Storage

                                      Comments about My Passport Essential 500GB Portable Hard Drive (Black):

                                      Use it to backup my data every week.

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

                                      Share this review

                                       
                                      5.0

                                      If you travel You need one

                                      By Terry T

                                      from Beachwood, New Jersey

                                      About Me Casual user

                                      Verified Buyer

                                      Pros

                                      • Attractive Design
                                      • Compact
                                      • Easy To Set Up
                                      • Easy to use
                                      • High Capacity
                                      • Made For A Non Computer P
                                      • Portable
                                      • Quiet

                                      Cons

                                        Best Uses

                                        • Additional Storage
                                        • Backing Up Do
                                        • Backup
                                        • File Transfer
                                        • Photo Storage
                                        • Video

                                        Comments about My Passport Essential 500GB Portable Hard Drive (Black):

                                        Its worth the money if you hate to loose information

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

                                        Share this review

                                         
                                        5.0

                                        Great

                                        By kjness

                                        from Minneapolis, MN

                                        About Me Frequent User

                                        Verified Buyer

                                        Pros

                                        • Easy To Install
                                        • Fast
                                        • Highly Compatible
                                        • Quiet
                                        • Reliable

                                        Cons

                                          Best Uses

                                            Comments about My Passport Essential 500GB Portable Hard Drive (Silver):

                                            This external hard-drive was recommended by a coworker and it worked really well! It was really quick and simple to back up my computer.

                                            • Primary use:
                                            • Business

                                            Share this review

                                             
                                            4.0

                                            I like it

                                            By Jazzvibe

                                            from New York, NY

                                            About Me Frequent User

                                            Verified Buyer

                                            Pros

                                            • Light
                                            • Looks Good
                                            • Quiet
                                            • Reliable
                                            • Small
                                            • Works Well

                                            Cons

                                            • No Usb 3 To Usb 3 Cable

                                            Best Uses

                                            • Backup And Archive

                                            Comments about My Passport Essential 500GB Portable Hard Drive (Silver):

                                            I'm using it to backup using Time Machine. The included cable appears to be the new USB 3 on one end and regular USB 2 on the other so it connects to my older machine (running at the slower USB 2 speed). I formatted the drive for MAC with no problem. The silver case looks and feels great and the drive works fine. I can't wait to try it on a USB 3 machine to compare it with firewire but I guess I would have to buy a cable (USB 3 on both ends) for that though...

                                            • Primary use:
                                            • Personal

                                            Share this review

                                             
                                            5.0

                                            great product, great price

                                            By justshorts

                                            from Australia

                                            About Me Heavy Duty User

                                            Verified Buyer

                                            Pros

                                            • Fast
                                            • Highly Compatible
                                            • Reliable

                                            Cons

                                              Best Uses

                                              • High-End Multimedia

                                              Comments about My Passport Essential 500GB Portable Hard Drive (Silver):

                                              I uds these for storing video projcts and sending them to other editors - never had a problem

                                              • Primary use:
                                              • Business

                                              Share this review

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