SD Transfer failure

Okay so I bought the MPW 2T to use as a card back-up in the field. I used for the first time today and I am very disappointed with the results. It seems, according to this post ( that in order to successfully transfer photos from the SD card you must;

  1. Have the MPW plugged into 120VAC outlet.

  2. Have a device connected to the MPW via WiFi

  3. Expect up to 3 hours for the data to transfer

  4. Expect up to 48 hours for the internal database to update itself so you can view your photos on your tablet.

Or did I miss something?

Needless to say this is totally unacceptable. Can someone set me straight on how the SD transfer to MPW works?




  1. Have the MPW plugged into 120VAC outlet.
  1. Have a device connected to the MPW via WiFi
  1. Expect up to 3 hours for the data to transfer
  1. Expect up to 48 hours for the internal database to update itself so you can view your photos on your tablet.


Well, you are sort of right. My better half is using the MPW for exactly what you are trying to use it for. I am technical support for her, so I get to sort out any and all issues.

First, have you upgraded to the latest firmware? You MUST do this. It makes a HUGE difference to performance and reliability. Once that is done…

  1. Yes, we always put the MPW onto its charger to transfer files from the SD Card to the MPW. I check every transfer to see that ALL files had been sent across.
    If you must backup on battery power alone, then make sure the MPW hard drive does not go to sleep, by having a device connected to it running My Cloud and keep that App active during the transfer. The MPW may work better in this regard using the latest firmware, and not require an active App, since this was one of the things supposedly fixed, but I haven’t thoroughly tested it. I prefer to be sure when we have access to power for use with the charger.

  2. No. You don’t have to have a device connected to the MPW to do the transfer. However I generally do, so that I can check progress and once finished, that all the files transfered. I initiate the transfer using the Wi-Fi button press method, so I don’t need a device connected initially, and usually connect after some time to check progress.

  3. Expect a transfer speed of 10 to 12 MB/s. Work out the transfer time based on that. Basically, a couple of hours for a full 64GB card. Maybe more if it is made up of lots of small files. The MPW hardware is limited to a 25MB/s transfer rate, but apparently it does a verify process to ensure files are transfered accurately, which slows the process. Logically verification would halve the copy speed, so this makes sense. However, in my experience, the verification process isn’t always perfect, particularly on large video files. The copy seems to work better on lots of smaller (16 to 24MB) image files.

  4. I’ve never seen it take 48 hours to index transfered image files. Typically after a couple of hours I can see all the image files, but maybe not have all the thumbnails generated. However, my other half uses an SD card reader with her iPad Air to view the JPEG versions of the photos directly on her iPad if she wishes to review them immediately after a shoot, or at night. She shoots on a Nikon D7000 with one of the SD cards set to write NEF (RAW) files, and the other SD card set to write JPEG versions. So the NEF files get backed up first while she reviews the JPEG images, and usually copies a few across to play with, then the JPEG files get backed up. Any edits on the road are just for fun or testing, with the original NEF files used as the source for real work back at home.
    So basically the SD cards get backed up overnight, each night away. If neccessary images will be deleted from the SD cards to make space, but usually they are left on the cards, and the transfer just copies across the new files.

All that said, note that I did have trouble backing up the video files from my action camera. The camera generates a series of 2.4GB files, and I was producing 32 to 64GB on each card. The MPW wasn’t coping all of them across reliably. But that was just on one trip, and as I had an alternate backup method available at that time, I didn’t spend the time to work out what the issue was, or if it could be fixed.

Basically, we use the MPW as a backup device in the field, but use it with caution and awareness of its possible shortcomings.

Thanks for the quick reply Roderick. The first time I tried the transfer I got about 20 pix out of 230 to go. I deleted the folder and tried a second time, none of the photos transferred. When I plugged the MPW into my computer I got a “directory corrupted and unreadable” error message.

Basically I feel I was sold a pig in a poke. If the MPW doesn’t reliably transfer the SD cards on battery power then it’s not what I paid for. It sounds like you have a workable solution (for you) but for $200 Western Digital should have all these bugs killed by now.

BTW the first thing I did after taking the MPW out of the box was download and install the latest firmware but I noticed it was dated November 2014. No further fixes in six months and the machine is STILL having problems? Looks like WD has stopped supporting their product. Too bad, I really wanted this to work.

Thanks for your answer but I’m sending this back and looking elsewhere for a product that works.


I have to agree that the MPW is not what I was hoping, or maybe wishing for. But it is useful and does work.

You certainly shouldn’t be getting a “directly corrupted and unreadable” error message. A few, maybe more than a few, people have received bad units that needed to be replaced by WD. Perhaps you have such a unit.

But as you say, it doesn’t live up to your, or my expectations really. I expected fast and rock solid transfers from an SD card to the hard drive, and I really can’t rely on it to do that. It has to be checked and monitored.

I hope you find a better solution, although from what I hear all similar units at this time have similar issues. Maybe a version 2 of the MPW will meet a photographer’s needs. Certainly WD should be hearing all the feedback!

Just bought a MPW 2T and can’t believe how flakey the SD transfer is. My micro SD card transfers without any problems but my wife’s camera uses SD cards and it takes 2 to 3 attempts to get the images onto the MPW 2T. At least when you initiate the transfer from my computer I can see when a transfer has failed but if I use “Start transfer when you plug in an SD card” or press the WPS button it appears to copy (ie the white LED flashes) but when you check some of the file names are there but with 0 bytes associated!! Oh well, I will have to be very careful and check every transfer. WD, this is not good enough.

I feel your pain. I have learned a lot this week since starting this thread, First thing is don’t count WD tech support out. It took a while but I have been contacted by 3 support people. Open tech support ticket on the WD site.

WD does read these posts and someone will respond.

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Thanks for your response, I’ve opened a “ticket” and will let you know if there is any resolution. Pete

A quick update; I’ve been contacted by WD support and have sent them the info requested (a quick response). I keep you updated.