Questions about setting up a network drive

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  1. Sidecar Bob's Avatar
    Posts : 218
    Windows 10 home
       #1

    Questions about setting up a network drive


    Until now I have been using a 2TB WD My Cloud as a network drive and a 3TB WD My Book as a backup drive with Karen's Replicator doing a file by file backup every night.

    Some while ago I noticed that my files weren't being backed up so I did a bunch of experimenting and found that it would work if I re-booted the My Book it would work OK for a few weeks and I'd have to re-boot it again. The last few times it wouldn't re-boot until I disconnected it, gave it a few gentle taps and re-connected it so I'm pretty sure the HDD in it is on the way out.
    And the My Cloud is older and gets more use so I'm thinking I need to replace both of them before I have a big problem.

    I was initially thinking of just replacing the HDDs in them but I happened to be talking to my neighbour when a parcel from Amazon arrived containing a couple of 4TB USB SSDs. When he told me what they cost I was surprised that they were less than half of what a new hard drive for the My Book would cost

    I didn't note the brand of his but they were something like these and about the same price
    https://www.amazon.ca/ikasus-Externa...978751&sr=8-35

    I know it would be straightforward to plug one into the computer as a backup drive and tell KR to back up to it but now I'm wondering if it would be possible to plug one into the router for a network drive?
    Would I need to install any special software on it or just plug it in and map it on each of the computers?
    Or would these be unsuitable for the applications fir some reason I'm not seeing?
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  2. hsehestedt's Avatar
    Posts : 2,460
    Windows 11 Pro, 21H2
       #2

    There are a couple of different issues here.

    First, let's address the glaring issue. I 100% guarantee that those 4TB SSDs for $42.79 are FAKE FAKE FAKE! There is no way you can get a real 4TB SSD for that price. There are a lot of fake flash drives and SSDs out there that will report as a far larger size than they are and will typically result in silent data loss. Please see this article for details:

    5 Tools to Test and Detect Fake or Counterfeit USB Flash Drives • Raymond.CC

    Next up, the issue of connecting a HD to your router. Yes, a lot of routers do indeed have USB ports specifically for the purpose of connecting a HDD to share on the network. The user guide for your router should have the specific details on how to set this up if your router supports this capability.
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  3. Sidecar Bob's Avatar
    Posts : 218
    Windows 10 home
    Thread Starter
       #3

    I'm well aware of the fake flash drives. In fact, I have used H2testw and FakeFlashTest to check every flash drive I've bought for years.
    I didn't know that they were faking SSDs too but if I decide to buy one of those drives or anything similar I will test them to make sure before using them.

    Now that I think about it, the My Cloud connects to the network via ethernet, not USB.
    The router is an Arris DG3270, supplied by the ISP with no documentation. All I can find about its USB port in the User Guide I was able to find online is "One USB host port (future support for external USB devices)" which tells me exactly nothing.

    The My Cloud seems to be working OK so maybe I should worry about it later and just shop for a USB drive to replace the My Book for now.
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  4. Berton's Avatar
    Posts : 11,754
    Win10 Pro Versions 2004 and 2009/20H2, Win10 Pro IP_Dev, Win10 Home 1909
       #4

    I have 2 x 2TB WD My Cloud NAS drives connected by Ethernet to my Router, oldest late '14 [Z:] and second mid '15 [[Y:], not much issue with them. I can Map the Public folder on them from any computer either Wired or Wireless.

    I also have 2 x 4TB WD My Book attached by USB 3 cables too my main Desktop. I did lose a 2TB drive over a year ago, prior to the 4TB drives, but it was because of the interface in the case, the drive itself is still in use mounted directly in the computer. Checking the packaging/box shows the drives can be used on PC or Mac which involves the interface to interpret things, the formatting is different as PC/Windows uses NTFS and Mac uses something different, probably HPFS. Linux has no problem with the NAS drives, Mac can read NTFS but has problems writing. Linux works with several other formats, Windows has a 32GB format limit formatting of drives but read larger, have one formatted as FA32 at 500GB. Both WIndows and Mac can work with large drives at exFAT, both of my 4TB came that way.
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  5. Samuria's Avatar
    Posts : 6,461
    windows 10
       #5

    Other 2tb drives are 349 on the page so its clear these are fake
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  6. Sidecar Bob's Avatar
    Posts : 218
    Windows 10 home
    Thread Starter
       #6

    I''m assuming that if I were to buy one of those drives through Amazon and it tested to be fake they would refund my money so it might be worthwhile ordering one just to see....
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  7. tomdsr's Avatar
    Posts : 296
    10 Pro
       #7

    Sidecar Bob said:
    I''m assuming that if I were to buy one of those drives through Amazon and it tested to be fake they would refund my money so it might be worthwhile ordering one just to see....

    you will get flash drive guts stuffed into something they say is an external ssd. yes amazon would refund you, but why go thru the hassle. as others pointed out, it screams fake. they exist because people always try the too good to be true buys. indirectly this causes prices to go up. why you ask? because most times amazon will refund it even tho they never get it back from that seller in china. sell a bunch, take the money, close shop, reopen, repeat.
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  8. hsehestedt's Avatar
    Posts : 2,460
    Windows 11 Pro, 21H2
       #8

    Sidecar Bob said:
    I'm well aware of the fake flash drives. In fact, I have used H2testw and FakeFlashTest to check every flash drive I've bought for years.
    I didn't know that they were faking SSDs too but if I decide to buy one of those drives or anything similar I will test them to make sure before using them.
    Let me be blunt and not mince words - anyone who buys a 4 TB SSD for $50 is a fool, especially if they have been warned. It is currently (2021) IMPOSSIBLE to make a 4 TB SSD for $50. The raw components cost FAR more than that. Even contemplating such a purchase is an act of lunacy.

    My apologies for the bluntness, but it's fools who purchase such fraudulent goods that keep these people in business.
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  9. Sidecar Bob's Avatar
    Posts : 218
    Windows 10 home
    Thread Starter
       #9

    I've been doing some research. It seems that the My Cloud comes with a WD Red HDD (designed to be on 24/7 for its entire life) while from what I've found the My Book comes with whatever HDD they have a lot of on hand (usually blue or green).
    Apparently the reds have much longer life expectancies.

    I had the My Book plugged into the My Cloud's USB port for several years until I noticed that it was acting up. Now I'm wondering if the My Cloud was running it 24/7 instead of just when it needed to write to it and wore it out prematurely.

    Anyway, along the line I found that I can get a 4TB red HDD from WD's Amazon store for about $100 CAD. If I'm reading things right one of those should last a long time in the My Book so I am contemplating getting one.

    I can also get a new 4TB My Book (different case design from the one I have) for $120 or a 4TB WD Elements desktop external drive (similar case to my My Book) for $115.
    That's not a lot more than the bare Red HDD for a complete new unit but on the other hand I'm not afraid of opening up the old My Book to change the drive if it will result in something that should last longer.

    They also have the 4TB My Passport portable external SSD for $118

    And there are also several 4TB external drives from Seagate, Toshiba &c in the same price range.

    What do you guys think?

    BTW: I'm leaning toward the Red because if it works I shouldn't have to change any settings (although I don't mind doing that if there will be benefits) but I want to open the My Book to see what is in it before I decide and I have a big household job I really should have started yesterday that I have to do before I can get to that so I won't make a decision for a couple of days.
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  10. Sidecar Bob's Avatar
    Posts : 218
    Windows 10 home
    Thread Starter
       #10

    It is raining (40mm in the last 21 hours) so my household project is on hold. The My Book has been behaving for the last few days but I opened it up anyway.

    I found the page linked below about taking a case like mine apart. Even though the description said "from some experimentation, it seems easiest to start in the corner of the curved section on the bottom first" It was obvious from the pics of the opened unit that the clips were at the back edge so I put the spudger in there and it was pretty easy to open.
    How To: Remove WD Hard Drive from MyBook Enclosure | Gough's Tech Zone

    As expected it contains a 3TB WD Green HDD. There isn't really much else I can do while it is apart so I'll close it up and plug it back in after I finish posting this.

    Given the options above (bare 4TBWD Red for $100, 4TB WD My Passport for $118 or an external drive from Seagate, Toshiba or other reputable company also around $120) what do you folks think would be my best choice?

    BTW: Current prices on drives like this blow me away. 12 years ago I paid $100 for a bare 100GB HDD.
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