Formatting WD Passport Wireless Pro questions

Hi there,

I have two WD PW Pro 4TB drives (double backup in the field for photography and video). I went on an extended photo trip and one was super flaky (stressed me out somethin’ fierce). After running Windows CHKDSK on it, it restored folders/files from 2 years ago and none of the recent ones (even more stressful).

So I just want to wipe it (format NTFS in Windows), but I am wondering about functionality after formatting. I read in another thread that it will still have wireless (since that’s a hardware / firmware thing).

In addition to wireless, will it still have the same WD operations it had before, as follows?

  1. Dashboard still accessible (web interface on host desktop computer)
  2. Auto copy from SD-slot and USB-port as before
  3. USB 3 port connect to host computer to copy media off

Those are my main requirements – parity with what I had before.

But wait, I have another question! Will it get rid of all the server functionality? This would be highly desirable to me because I’m NOT interested in these devices being any kind of media server or streaming device – I ONLY use it as a backup for critical work photos. (If a format does not clear that off, I will search this forum for ways to optimize it for that and turn off all server functionality.)

Thanks much,

If you format the internal hard drive … which Page 52 in the User Manual says it’s ok to do

then that’s all it will do. ie. format the hard drive.

all other functions will function normally. ie. all contained in firmware, hardware, nand flash, logic board.

(you can disable the disable the DLNA/Media Server … and for streaming to public networks, make sure “Share content on this Network” is unchecked Page 21)

Read the user manual thoroughly for other settings and features you wish to disable.

EDIT: i guess you might be able to disable features using SSH Terminal/Linux… but that could be very dangerous and could brick your device rendering it useless.

If you need a 4TB drive with no Networking Capabilities and just want ‘Basic Storage’ then a 4TB WD Elements is the product you want. (and a lot cheaper)

JoeySmyth, thanks much for that. This gives me the confidence to format away.

In reply to this:

I still need much more than an basic, no-brains Element drive (have plenty of those at home). I need:

  1. Battery operation
  2. SD slot
  3. USB input (card readers for photo storage cards other than SD)
  4. And to be sure I don’t need a computer/laptop in the field, the Passport Pro operating system that does this for me
  • a) Copies the cards to dated folders, with photo card ID in sub folder name
  • b) Organized in “SD Download” and “USB Download” folders
  • c) Not copy duplicates
  1. As mentioned, wireless to connect to the dashboard for utils and status

So I need all of it except the media server stuff. Thanks for the pointer to the setting to toggle for that (pg 21).

Since the one drive was failing for me in the field, I had to resort to long/tedious double checking in the field. Good thing I did have a laptop with me on that trip to do so. But I had to do it at night, in the car, wearing down precious laptop battery (my only charging source was solar power, during the day).

A working professional out in the field needs their backup device to be more reliable. It’s frustrating when you wait for 90 minutes for a copy from an XQD card reader on the USB2 port (slow) just to turn around and see the dreaded “all blinking lights” failure on the Passport Pro, and you know then that you can’t go to sleep yet (and have to get up early in the morning).