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WD My Cloud Mirror (Gen 2) review: Your files here, there, and everywhere

Jon L. Jacobi | Oct. 20, 2015
The 4TB entry-level version of WD's mirrored NAS is easy to set up and allows easy access to your home storage from all your devices.

Not all the WD My Cloud apps are available for the Mirror. One absence of note is Milestone video surveillance, which is reserved for WD’s My Cloud DL boxes. And though the press presentation touted it, there didn’t seem to be a TV-recording app available. 

While the My Cloud series can’t match the breadth of apps and functionality offered by the Synology’s and QNAP’s of the world, with the recently released 3.0 SDK, it seems that WD at least now seems to be interested in closing the gap. And please note that backup is one area where WD actually leads the pack. WD Sync continuous backup keeps designated folders (up to five versions of any file) on your PCs backed up, and the mobile apps will automatically sync photos back to the My Cloud Mirror.

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Three licenses for WD’s SmartWare Pro backup program comes with the My Cloud Mirror. There’s also WD Sync and apps for every major compute or mobile device platform. 

There’s also support for Apple’s Time Machine and three licenses for the company’s SmartWare Pro, which takes a more traditional scheduled backup approach. My only complaint about Smartware Pro, which features handy automatic file selection and supports Dropbox as a destination, is that it seems to allow only one drive or partition per backup job. I have quite a few partitions on my system with data divvied up among them. It would be nice to be able to back them all up in one job.

Fast for its class, streams well

The My Cloud Mirror offers basic connectivity via a single gigabit ethernet port and two USB 3.0 ports for storage. The CPU is a 1.3GHz Marvel ARMADA 385 dual-core (the first-gen My Cloud mirror came with a single-core processor), there’s 512MB of DDR3 memory, and our 4TB version shipped with two 2TB WD RED NAS drives striped in RAID 0 for speed. RAID 1 mirroring is available if you prefer data redundancy (two copies, one on each drive) and fault tolerance (you can still access your data if one of two drives fails). Unless you really have a lot of stuff (in which case you should consider the 6- or even 8TB models), I recommend using RAID 1 to keep it all safe.

That hardware is good enough to make the HTML configuration interface responsive, transfer large files at about 90MBps, and smaller files and folders at about 60MBps. That’s as good as anything in its class. Streaming performance, even for Ultra HD video (resolution of 3840x2160 pixels), was fine—at least via the DLNA server played by Windows Media Player with the LAVA filters and PowerDVD 15. There’s no easy way to play content via a web browser, but streaming to the iOS My Cloud app was fine.

 

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