Business | Technology

Western Digital My Book Live Duo

Access to your files from anywhere, at anytime

  • By Bhavishya Kanjhan Special to Gulf News
  • Published: 13:33 February 25, 2013
  • Gulf News

The last couple of years have seen tremendous improvements in the quality of internet services — in terms of both availability and speed.

In developed countries, high speed broadband is omnipresent and internet on mobile phones is now the norm. The ubiquitous internet along with the Ultrabooks has meant we have less disk space offline and are increasingly reliant on disk space online. This gave rise to ‘cloud storage’ services that allow you to store your files online for access from anywhere, without having to store them on your computer.

Enter the Western Digital My Book Live Duo. Despite its complicated name, it has a simple proposition: a hard drive available on both your local network and the internet. It aims to become your ‘personal cloud’.

The drive has two 2 TB hard drives, a power port, a USB port for direct connectivity and a Gigabit Ethernet port to be plugged into your router. After that, the entire setup is browser based.

The drive is really easy to setup and you can configure it in two ways: ‘spanning’ where you use the entire capacity (in this case 4 TB) for storage; or RAID 1 that ‘mirrors’ data from one drive to another. With the latter you get only 2 TB of storage as all data created has a duplicate copy created on the second drive, making it the safer option.

Instead of having to rely on public cloud storage, your My Book Live Duo is connected to the internet and you can access the data from anywhere with an internet connection.

The drive comes with mobile apps for phones and tablet which let you connect to it. In addition, there’s also a web interface for accessing all the files.

However it is important to note that the speed with which you can retrieve files is based on your home internet speed. This will in most cases be slower than a professional cloud storage provider and can be a bottleneck when downloading large files.

Since the drive is shared on the network, everyone in your home or office can have access to the files. As a matter of fact, you can setup all the computers to back up to the shared drive, making it an excellent central backup solution.

Finally the drive also has a built in iTunes server, so any kind of media stores on the drive can be accessed by iTunes on any of the computers in the network. Think of it as a central shared iTunes library.

Similarly the DLNA capabilities of the device mean your network enabled TV, media players and game consoles can now all play back pictures, movies and music from the drive.

The My Book Live Duo is a hard drive built for today. With users always connected, it’s important to be able to access files from anywhere and the hard drive by Western Digital ensures that happens.

The Western Digital My Book Live Duo is available for Dh1,419 at electronic stores.

Quick score

Pros

Mobile apps make for easy access

DLNA and iTunes server

Cons

No On/Off button

Performance dependent on your internet connection speed

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