WD My Passport Ultra and My Passport Slim Reviews


How many of us work on multiple computers and end up wasting time looking for files? How many of you have lost files due to a crash because you hadn’t gotten around to backing them up? If you don’t have a reliable, convenient-for-you storage system and backup storage system in place, you should stop reading this and back your files up immediately. I know I’m not the only one out there that has gone years with a really dodgy file backup system.

Portable hard drives are not a hot, new technology. However, the western-digital_wd_passport_slim and western-digital_my_passport_ultra drives feel a bit sexy compared to standard drives. They are lightweight, small (I keep mine inside of it’s accompanying pouch in my purse) and they feel very sturdy. In fact, the My Passport Ultra has a metal enclosure.

Very helpful and efficient for the photographer, graphic designer, media professional, or anyone in parallel industries on the go, these super compact drives hold a lot of files and they are very fast. Gone are the days of cheap, flimsy, or large devices (or if you are like me, a plastic baggie full of thumb USB drives nestled into my purse or camera bag!).

Here’s how it changed my life a bit:

  • I was able to save 562 large photo files that were unsafely sitting on my laptop and save them onto my Passport in 2 minutes and 15 seconds.
  • It streamlined my organization by setting up files on the Passport based on my most common folder names (ex. top level: work, personal, blog, etc.; second level: garden, people, food, etc.).
  • Just a few small Passports will allow me to get rid of my old, clunky, un-sexy hard drives that take up a lot of room and offer far less storage.
  • The transition between work and home computers is now seamless.
  • I always have my files when I need them.
  • Peace of mind.

Saving a copy of image directly to WD My Passport Ultra from Photoshop Elements


  • Automatic Cloud backup
  • Password protection (if you wish)
  • 1-2 TB capacity
  • My Passport Ultra comes in: black, blue, red, grey
  • My Passport Slim comes in: silver metal
  • Both come with a handy pouch to protect the drive (though the pouch has no cushion, which I would have liked for added protection)
  • 3 year warranty
  • Automatic backup


  • My Passport Ultra: $119.99 for 1TB, $179.99 for 2TB (though you can find them discounted at most major retailers)
  • My Passport Slim: $119.99 for 1TB

There isn’t a major size or weight difference between the two Passports, but note the Slim is slightly smaller and has a metal enclosure.

Top: My Passport Slim
Bottom: My Passport Ultra

The only minor complaint I can offer would be that after carrying around the My Passport Ultra daily for about a month, it did get a little scuffed up, but not terribly. Also, these drives are PC-ready. They require a few additional formatting steps for Mac users, which may turn those of you who would prefer a plug-and-play device off. I didn’t feel it was a big deal.

Overall, this is a very handy tool for the creative professional or hobbyist.

My Passport Ultra in pouch

For more information, visit www.wdc.com.



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    • I got the WB My Passport Ultra 1TB HD a few weeks ago.  The included SmartWare utility makes simple automated data backups very easy.  However I haven't tried setting it up to recover from a complete system HD crash - I'm just using it to back up my photos and other data.

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    • I have three 2Tb Passports used for Time Machine backups on Apple gear. Two of them alternate the backups, one of those gets rotated to the car every week or so, to provide an easy off-site backup reserve. So far, so good. 

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    • Very useful review.  It is high time that I upgraded to these fast, smart and sexy hard drives.  My old hard drives are sexy enough but not made for carrying about.  

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