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Western Digital, My Passport SSD

Backup for Laptops

I’ve been a laptop user for a few decades now, and I run my business using a MacBook Pro, so having my data intact is a big deal in case of a failure. My 2019 MacBook Pro uses Solid State Storage (SSD) for storage, and the theory is that an SSD is more reliable than the older, magnetic-based Hard Disk Drive (HDD). Just this last week my backup 2TB HDD failed, so it was time to replace it with either another HDD or a newer SSD. Pricing for a 2TB HDD was about $100, while the 2TB SSD was $235, so I opted for the more expensive, and reliable SSD over the HDD.

Three brands were available at my local retailers:

  • LaCie
  • Western Digital
  • SanDisk

Having a MacBook Pro I also wanted a USB-C connection, without using any adapters, pure and simple for me.

The LaCie came in a ruggedized, brilliant orange sleeve, and I didn’t want the color screaming at me all day. On the SanDisk SSD there was a red keychain opening, and it looked like a gimmick to me, so in the end I went for the Western Digital choice it’s called My Passport SSD, mostly because of its looks and support of USB-C.

Western Digital – My Passport SSD

I still had my short USB-C cable from the failed HDD, but I prefer the even shorter cable included in the Western Digital box.

As I plugged it in for the first time, my Mac knew that it was a new disk, but it first asked to Erase the content and get it all ready, so I clicked the OK prompt. In the Time Machine app I had to change the drive used for backups, and in under 2 minutes I was making my first backup to the new SSD. With this solid state technology there is no noise, unlike the old HDD which I could hear spin up to speed every time that a backup was happening. There’s not even a light on the SSD, so I just trust that it’s powered on and running during a backup. Time Machine does hourly backups, and it’s all done in the background, so I’m not sure how much faster the SSD backups are compared to the older HDD.

I recall that replacing my HDD in an older MacBook Pro with an SSD, the boot times were reduced from a minute to under 20 seconds, so 3X faster at least.

I’m hoping to get many years use out of this 2TB SSD backup drive. I’m also using DropBox to store many of my business documents in the cloud, so that’s another popular approach to keep business files safe.

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