WD Smartware Vs WD Sync which one to use

I tried to find but not able to see, which version to use for backup. WD Sync or Smartware?

Is WD replacing Smartware with Sync?

What is difference between Sync and Smartware?

The actual question would be: backup vs sync.
In a nutshell, backup will keep different document versions and can get any version at any given time
Sync, it will sync when changes are detected but it will not have version controls.


my .02… Do not use any proprietary software (WD, Sysnology, Seagate, etc). Use tools and/or apps that come with your system or can work with any NAS device. You will then be set for any NAS device you might ever own in the future. Changing NAS devices will be a breeze.

Shabuboy didn’t answer or didn’t understand the question. saurabhaggarwal is not asking whether to backup or sync, but rather which WD utility to use.

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Actually saurabhaggarwal did ask about backing up; “…which version to use for backup…”. In most respects Shabuboy’s answer is correct. One should understand the difference between what a backup does and what a sync does. While it may appear they are similar, each performs a slightly different function. Smartware is a “backup and restore” program, WD Sync is primarily “syncs” data between two locations so they are both identical if the content in either location changes. Generally a backup is one way/direction, where as a sync is typically bidirectional.

And Shabuboy is also correct that its better to use a third party solution not tied to the specific NAS vendor that way one can replace the NAS with a different product and still maintain their backup’s.

For pure backup there are a number of free programs available that will perform, mostly, the same function as Smartware. Here are several free programs for performing backups or mirroring.

EaseUS Todo Backup Free: http://www.easeus.com/
Macrium Reflect Free: http://www.macrium.com/reflectfree.aspx
Paragon Backup and Recovery 14 Free: http://www.paragon-software.com/home/br-free/download.html
Free File Sync (in Mirroring mode): http://www.freefilesync.org/

Free File Sync can also perform syncing as well, the other programs mentioned are primarily straight backup programs. The main downside to both Smartware and third party backup programs is the inability to backup from a remote location. Some programs, like Free File Sync, can perform a backup/mirror/sync remotely using SFTP. But this would require editing the firmware of the single drive/single bay My Cloud using SSH to allow for SFTP remote access.

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It’s probably best not to resurrect nine month old threads, only to post incorrect replies…

Sorry for resurrecting this old thread, but it is relevant to my current issue. The information Bennor provided was helpful.

I readed this blog with interests.
When I buy a WD Elements, then can I also synchronise my data from my laptop to the external HD ? With no any software to install on my laptop.
I don’t need encryption or real back ups.
Synchronise is enough for me.

In my previous WD My passport I used the function synchronise but this gave me lots of troubles, regularly could not back up my data because the remarks “path name too long …”.
So I didn’t use that device any more.
Thanks in advance for helping me.

In order to “sync” data from one location to another one needs to use some sort of software or script to initiate that sync. Depending on what operating system you are using there may be various options to sync data using scripting or built in operating system programs. Generally however most people use a third party program (like WD Sync - https://support.wdc.com/product.aspx?ID=904#WD_downloads or Free File Sync - http://www.freefilesync.org/) to sync their computer with a My Cloud network attached storage device (or other WD storage devices like external USB hard drives).

More than a few have had various problems with the WD Sync software and have resorted to using Free File Sync instead. Note: When installing Free File Sync one should take care to not accept or allow the installation of any bundled software with the installer program.

Hi Roland,

If you are not worried about encryption and hate installing 3rd party software to do a simple job, or keep it to minimum then the solution is really simple. Or if you are not always within an internet connection.

Here is the procedure I go through (despite the fact my wdmycloud working non-stop for 4 years now serving files for Windows and MAC):

But I am still paranoid, and only home at weekends, and not always connected.

connect your portable USB drive to laptop.
(use a reinforced drive such as Silicon power (anti shock - water proof and stuff, had for 4 years and never let me down and I travel a lot). not much more expensive than normal one and always in my laptop bag.

on your laptop, search for file history.
choose the USB disk

set the schedule - default one hour. (I use this)
choose the folders you want to backup

let it run and forget about it. that is it. Every one hour it will scan for changes and backup in the background and hardly intrusive. You can also browse it for certain versions of file later to restore.

I recommend an extra step. Get a good USB stick (don’t buy a cheap one).

control panel > system and security -> Back up and restore (windows 7) <-- ignore it says windows 7
Choose the external USB disk (the same you used for file history)
Schedule a system image back up (this will create a system image. Useful when your laptop’drive dies and you want to restore as it was before you dropped it on the floor).
Might take an hour or so.
When done, attach the USB stick.
Now create a system repair disk. and choose the USB stick <— This will allow you to boot from it, and then restore the system image from the USB drive, when all is dead (assuming laptop can still boot).
Now buy a gold chain, hook the USB stick to it and wear it around your neck :slight_smile: ).

If you are well off and have Windows 10 pro, then enable BitLocker and all backups will be encrypted.

Just another way and it never let me down.

Ive installed WD my cloud yesterday and I ve the same doubt. I’ve a Mac and I’m using time machine as a backup application
Smart ware and wd Sync sounds useless for me but I’m not sure about cause I’ve not understood the difference too and how they work at all
Can you help me?

they both are important concepts. Both do different jobs. I am going to work now, but here is a good article:

Use timemachine for back up and wd sync for syncing laptop to wdmycloud.
Smartware is like timemachine but I prefer timemachine because it works.

Hi Bennor and jamalaya, thaks for your good willing helping me.
Let me make it simple to understand what’s my problem.
First I know the difference between sync. and backup, that’s not the problem.
But I don’t need encryption or real back ups.
Also I am not interested in “My Cloud” etc… or in WD Smartware.
JUST synchronise is enough for me.
I work with WINDOWS 7 on my laptop, is ok for me.
Now, my question … When I buy a new WD Elements or WD My Passport, then can I synchronise my data from my laptop to the external HD ? With no any software to install on my laptop.
In my previous WD My passport I used the function WD Smartware but this gave me lots of troubles, regularly could not back up some data because the software remarks “path name too long …”.
So I didn’t use that device any more and distroyed it… yes I did (FRUSTRATED, made me crazy!)
I also have an old WD My Passport, but only 160 Gb. With that divise I can easy make simple sync. with “WD Sync – v7.1.020”.
So terrible if I cannot do the same with a recent WD My Passport or Elements.
Thanks in advance for helping me.

Hi Roland,

i don’t have either of these drives (Elements and Passport), but I know that when you install wdsync, you need to sing in and it will find wdmycloud (even remotely). You cannot choose some other disk,

I don’t know how it will behave with passport and element best to wait for someone who has one to reply or check with support to be absolutely sure before wasting your money.