Need help answering a few storage questions regarding My Passport


I’m going to go ahead and apologize for how ridiculous these questions may seem and if my questions have been answered a million times before.  I have had My Passport for about a year, and I cannot remember how I set it up.  I know I have it set up to do automatic back ups whenever connected to my computer.  I also know that I selected which areas of my computer to back up (pictures, videos, music, etc).  My questions are:

  1. If I delete files or documents off of my computer, the next time I connect my drive, will it delete those files from the external drive as well?

  2. Can I manually save files to my external drive rather than doing the automatic download and if so, how would I go about doing that? Can I just copy the file, go into my computer and find my passport, and then just paste the file into a folder, for example?

My problem is that I have a lot of photographs, videos, and other files I would like to have saved.  I have currently been saving them to my computer and my external drive.  Unfortunately, I have nearly filled my 500 GB computer.  I want to erase files from my computer, but obviously want to be sure they will not be removed from my external drive.  We are considering a network storage as an additional way to store files that we would like to keep.  Would larger sized flash drives be a good choice? Obviously, I need to find some way to store my large volumes of files, so I am able to clear my computer, at least to a reasonable extent.  Any help answering my questions or even providing ideas to better back up my files would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you for your time.

I suspect that you have a plain old My Passport, rather than a My Passport Wireless, so there may be a better section of the forum to post these questions. Perhaps a moderator will move the thread to the best section for you.

In terms of not remembering how you set the drive and your backups up, I’m afraid you are going to have to learn again, otherwise you may lose precious photosand other files. You should be able to find your model number on the device, and hence find the manuals online, plus software, firmware etc. Also, WD have set up a Youtube channel with a bunch of training videos. Take a look:

There are lots of other videos and reviews on Youtube that may help you get back up to speed.


  1. If you are using synchronisation software, rather than backup software, your file may also be deleted from the My Passport. If you are using proper backup software the file may either be retained or deleted, depending on your setup. Sorry, you will need to learn the setup again, or provide lots more infomation about the software, version, and settings before people can answer. I don’t use WD software myself so someone else may be able to help you with more information provided.

  2. Yes, you can just copy the file across as you descibe. However, if you do, don’t put it in the same directory as your automatic backups, or it may get deleted at some time. Create your own new directory on the My Passport and save the files in there. Also check you have space to do so. If you copy lots of stuff across there may be too little space left for your backup, and the automatic backups may then fail. Have you checked that the automatic backups are still working okay anyway?

I would not recommend flash drives or memory cards for long term storage of important data. They are pretty good these days, with many having “Lifetime Warranties”, but if I had important files I want saved, I would still be putting them on a hard drive. Flash drives are easier to lose or end up safely stored away never to be found again. Hard drives still hold a lot more and are more difficult to misplace.

I still have a concern that if I put a flash drive away for five years, without the memory ever being “refreshed” when the flash drive is powered, the data may not be recoverable.

Network storage is a good idea, although you will still need a proper backup process. Perhaps if you backed up to a network storage device, and used your current My Passport as your day to day external drive, that would work better for you. Just remember to backup your My Passport as well. If the backup network storage device was used for your day to day file usage, you would still need (well, should have) a separate backup solution. Even RAID 1 (mirroring) NAS devices are not really a backup device, although they are better than the other RAID configurations. (Sorry if I am using terms you don’t understand. Research helps!)

You can never have too many backups of important data. :slight_smile: