Skip to navigation

Western Digital My Book Live Duo 4TB review

Western Digital My Book Live Duo - front


Oodles of storage, decent performance and usable 
remote access features make for a solid all-round NAS device

Review Date: 17 May 2012

Reviewed By: Sasha Muller

Price when reviewed: £250 (£300 inc VAT)

Overall Rating
4 stars out of 6

Features & Design
4 stars out of 6

Value for Money
5 stars out of 6

4 stars out of 6

Following the same styling as the rest of Western Digital’s My Book range, the My Book Live Duo packs twin 2TB drives and a whole host of cloud storage features into a thick dictionary-sized case.

The two drives are configured as one huge 4TB repository by default, but it’s also possible to build a 2TB RAID1 array for greater data security – something we’d highly recommend doing.

The WD’s plastic chassis doesn’t feel especially sturdy. It’s good to see that the drives are removable, but the plasticky flaps attached to each drive feel cheap. The metal fascia keeping the drives in place occasionally proved tricky to close, too.

As for connectivity, there’s only a single USB 2 port, which allows a drive to be shared across the network, or act as a backup target.

Thankfully, the device’s web interface makes amends. A strip along the bottom of the screen shows operational status and remaining storage. The rest of the WD’s features are easy to locate and accompanied by useful walkthroughs.

Western Digital My Book Live Duo - front

The WD 2go service gives remote access from any internet-connected PC, and users can log into the service from anywhere. Handily, the service maps a network drive into Windows Explorer, so files can be copied to and from the My Book Live Duo as if it were connected locally.

The My Book Live Duo is also accessible via a suite of Android and iOS apps. The free WD Photos app is simple but effective; the free WD 2go app (for general file browsing) is less convincing; you’ll also have to spend £2 on WD 2go Pro if you want automatic file sync, the ability to download, or the option to send files via email.

We clocked the My Book Live Duo at 67MB/sec while reading large files, and writing large files saw that drop to 40MB/sec. Small-file transfers, however, fell to 3.8MB/sec and 2.4MB/sec.

Considering the price, Western Digital has put together an excellent package. Performance is adequate, and the remote access is easy to set up. Synology’s DS212j is vastly superior, but at this price, the Western Digital is well worth considering.

Author: Sasha Muller

Subscribe to PC Pro magazine. We'll give you 3 issues for £1 plus a free gift - click here
Be the first to comment this article

You need to Login or Register to comment.


Latest Category Reviews
Synology Rackstation RS3614xs+ review

Synology Rackstation RS3614xs+

Category: Storage appliances
Rating: 5 out of 6
Price: £3,524
HP MSA 1040 Storage review

HP MSA 1040 Storage

Category: Storage appliances
Rating: 5 out of 6
Price: £4,990
Areca ARC-8050T2 review

Areca ARC-8050T2

Category: Storage appliances
Rating: 5 out of 6
Price: £1,136
Netgear ReadyNAS 716 review

Netgear ReadyNAS 716

Category: Storage appliances
Rating: 5 out of 6
Price: £1,999
Qsan AegisSAN Q500-P20-D316 review

Qsan AegisSAN Q500-P20-D316

Category: Storage appliances
Rating: 5 out of 6
Price: £8,580
Compare reviews: Storage appliances


Most Commented Reviews
Latest News Stories Subscribe to our RSS Feeds
Latest Blog Posts Subscribe to our RSS Feeds
Latest Features
Latest Real World Computing


Sponsored Links


Your email:

Your password:

remember me


Hitwise Top 10 Website 2010

PCPro-Computing in the Real World Printed from

Register to receive our regular email newsletter at

The newsletter contains links to our latest PC news, product reviews, features and how-to guides, plus special offers and competitions.