WD1600E1MSBK compatability with different Windows PC operating systems

New to community, but read some concerning reports about lost data when portable HDD’s are plugged into another PC with a different operating system. I have already lost both data and a flash drive doing this.  Now I have data that was made with Windows XP and saved to this WD portable drive.  If I plug it into my new laptop with Windows 8.1, will I lose my data and perhaps even the drive as well?

Welcome to the Community.

This is up to the file system and how it was configured. Newer versions of Windows (Windows 7, 8, 8.1) may not be backwards-compatible with certain partition configurations from Windows XP. This applies to both FAT32 and NTFS. The best way around this is to partition the hard drive first in Windows 8.1, then connecting the hard drive back to Windows XP to transfer the data.

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Thanks Trancer, that sounds like good idea for a new usb drive.  My WD1600EiMSBK usb drive already has data on it that I want to keep.  So it’s probably too late to partition my current drive because I think it would have to be reformatted first.

However, using your fix, I could transfer data on the usb drive to my old PC hard drive, then format and partition the usb drive in the Win 8.1 PC.  Would the old PC with Win XP still recognise the reformatted & partitioned external usb drive?

Yes, Windows XP should recognize a hard drive partitioned in Windows 8.1 as long as it’s not configured as exFAT, or NTFS with GPT, or NTFS with 4K allocation size.