My Passport Wireless Pro 4TB doesn't work through a USB 3.0 Hub

Ok so I’ve been trawling through the forum posts and this topic is touched on a number of times, but I can’t seem to find anywhere where this problem is explained or addressed. I’m quite frustrated at the moment, so I’ll do my best to not let that frustration affect my post too much. :smiley:

I have a Microsoft Surface Pro 4 with only a single USB 3.0 so in that slot I have a Aukey 4-port USB3.0 hub which poweres solely from the bus. This has been great! I run 2 Buffalo (usb 3.0) hard drives, a Scarlet 2i2 Audio interface with a 48v phantom powered microphone and guitar plugged into it as well as a Novation Launchkey 25 keyboard/midi controller. The idea is to have a fully portable recording studio. With all of these devices all plugged in at the same time, everything gets enough power. I found the need to upgrade my hard drive situation so after a lot of research I finally selected the My Passport Wireless Pro 4TB. Now it’s pretty clear from my situation above that much of the time I need to fully utilise the high speed of USB 3.0 to be able to mix and combine high resolution samples in Ableton Live.

Now here comes the problem. When I plug the MPWP4 into my hub it powers up but doesn’t get enough power to sustain itself, it clicks and whirs and clicks and whirs, windows dings at me “ding, new device, ding device removed, ding new device, ding device removed”. Now this happens only through the hub and only when another device is plugged into it. If the MPWP4 is the only device then it runs fine. This suggests to me that it’s a very power thirsty device and needs a dedicated USB 3.0 port.

One of the reasons why the MPWP4 was an option for me is the internal power bank. Why on Earth can the MPWP4 not draw current from it’s own power bank if the power coming in through the USB is insufficient?

I’m currently in the process of transferring all of my music and samples wirelessly to the MPWP4 since I cannot plug both hard drives in at the same time, and I’m getting transfer speeds varying between 6 - 12 MB/s which is not very good.

Can anyone help me?? What’s going on here?

Not all drives can work through a hub. I have a Seagate drive like this; it needs the USB directly.

I think you will need a powered hub to make this work.

In the past, I have had problems with two USB HDD’s plugged into unpowered hubs. From the OP’s description, it sounds like the drive simply isn’t getting enough power.

With the WirelessPro plugged into USB, it is not clear to me that the drive will use the internal power supply - - - someone else will have to answer that.

At this point, I only use powered hubs. I have used the wireless pro with two or three of these hubs without a problem.

Have you tried

  1. Remove all USB and SD Cards from the MPWP
  2. Plug into the USB hub and wait until the 4 TB drive is seen by Windows or macOS
  3. Plug USB drive in USB Port of MPWP?

Doesn’t sound like the MPWP will work for what you wish to accomplish with it.

Yes I have tried this, but this is not quite what I’m wanting to achieve, the MPWP4 doesn’t run fast enough over wifi to handle the samples and recording in Ableton live, let alone handling the traffic for another HDD. I guess I’ll just have to use it differently to what I was hoping to use it for. It still surprises me that it has such a powerful battery and yet only uses it when wifi is on. It almost seems too obvious that if there is not enough power being supplied through USB to use some from the on board power bank, and yet it seems to have been overlooked by the developers. Unless there is a reason why they don’t do this that I am over looking.

Yeah it seems that this might be the only way to achieve it. This is unfortunate as I have gone to great lengths to make my recording studio portable without the need for any external power. I guess my options are to use a powered hub when I have the chance to use power at someone’s house, or to buy a 3rd hdd and use the MPWP simply as a back up for my work.

Yeah, the MPWP is a great device -for what it is- but you have to be mindful of the limitations.

For me, the MPWP is basically a budget portable NAS. Useful for applications where you need portability, need to transfer files between computers, and don’t want to use a sneaker-net (i.e. swap files using a flash drive).

YES, the main limitation when used in this mode is the WiFi connection. And no. . .I don’t get the same transfer speeds I get at home using a 1gb Ethernet to a NAS box. Is 90mb/s transfer speed a realistic expectation for a WiFi device?

And I also have disk intensive applications I don’t want to run off my laptop. No - - -something with a WiFI connection is really not the way to go. I bought the bullet and bought an SSD drive for this application. Small. . .convenient.

I don’t know the best answer to the power issue. For me, I like external monitors when I am serious. Dual monitors driven through a hub/dock; which also serves as an external powered hub. That means “power strip” for my use.