Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 19
  1. #1
    Lounger
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Denver, Co USA
    Posts
    28
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts

    I have two WD My Book Essential external hard drives both 1TB that are USB 2.0 drives. I checked with Western Digital and if I get USB 3.0 they will both utilize the higher speeds and I 'have heard' that Win 7 Service Pack 1 (when it comes out) will add USB 3.0 support to Windows and I was wondering if the existing USB ports will automatically be handle USB 3.0 devices and transfer data at the higher speed? Or will I have to get additional hardware?

  2. #2
    Super Moderator RetiredGeek's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    Manning, South Carolina
    Posts
    9,434
    Thanks
    372
    Thanked 1,457 Times in 1,326 Posts
    James,

    It won't make any difference if Win-7 SP-1 adds support for USB 3.0 unless your computer's ports are electrically USB 3.0.
    Secondly, I don't understand how WD could tell you that a USB 2.0 Hard drive would work faster with software support for USB 3.0. To get higher speeds you need USB 3.0 ports on you computer, a USB 3.0 External Hard Drive and USB 3.0 support built into Win-7 or provided as an loadable driver by the HD manufacturer. This is of course unless I am missing something in my understanding of the problem.
    May the Forces of good computing be with you!

    RG

    PowerShell & VBA Rule!

    My Systems: Desktop Specs
    Laptop Specs

  3. #3
    Administrator
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Portugal
    Posts
    12,519
    Thanks
    152
    Thanked 1,398 Times in 1,221 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by RetiredGeek View Post
    James,

    It won't make any difference if Win-7 SP-1 adds support for USB 3.0 unless your computer's ports are electrically USB 3.0.
    Secondly, I don't understand how WD could tell you that a USB 2.0 Hard drive would work faster with software support for USB 3.0. To get higher speeds you need USB 3.0 ports on you computer, a USB 3.0 External Hard Drive and USB 3.0 support built into Win-7 or provided as an loadable driver by the HD manufacturer. This is of course unless I am missing something in my understanding of the problem.
    I don't think you are missing anything.

    @James,
    When Windows 7 supports USB 3, you will still need USB 3 ports (probably you will be able to buy a PCI add-on card) but unless you buy USB 3.0 drives, you won't be able to use the new speeds. Existing drives won't be able to use those speeds. Here is some info on USB 3.0.
    Rui
    -------
    R4

  4. #4
    Lounger
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Denver, Co USA
    Posts
    28
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
    For Retired Geek,
    I read a PDF from WD that said the drives (2.0) would utilize 3.0 if plugged into a 3.0 slot. As for "unless your computer's ports are electrically USB 3.0" could that be accomplished by flashing the BIOS on the MB?

  5. #5
    5 Star Lounger
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    South of the North Pole
    Posts
    919
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
    I have USB 3 on one XP system, built into the mobo. Its not standard yet so requires drivers wether on board or add on card. USB 3 is compatible with USB 2 but you will not get any more speed out of a USB 2 device. That means you can run your USB 2.0 external drives off of the USB 3 port but you do not realize any speed gains, no matter what you do. Get a USB 3 drive and cable to go with the USB 3 port and everything starts a hoppin!
    I max out my slow internal spinners,or maybe I'm maxing out the external drive but the USB 3 connection itself is ready for more. I can only imagine how fast the transfer speed would be between 2 SSDs.

  6. #6
    Super Moderator RetiredGeek's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    Manning, South Carolina
    Posts
    9,434
    Thanks
    372
    Thanked 1,457 Times in 1,326 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by James Tepe View Post
    For Retired Geek,
    I read a PDF from WD that said the drives (2.0) would utilize 3.0 if plugged into a 3.0 slot. As for "unless your computer's ports are electrically USB 3.0" could that be accomplished by flashing the BIOS on the MB?
    James,

    Utilize = Work. However, no increase in speed. Most new standards are backward compatible, i.e. old equipment will work but at the old speeds. As to upgrading to USB 3.0 via a BIOS flash, sorry but I'm not an Electrical Engineer so I can't comment on weather or not that is possible.
    May the Forces of good computing be with you!

    RG

    PowerShell & VBA Rule!

    My Systems: Desktop Specs
    Laptop Specs

  7. #7
    Lounger
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Denver, Co USA
    Posts
    28
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
    RetiredGeek,
    This is copied from a WD pdf;
    Dual USB 3.0 and USB 2.0 connectivity
    A single drive with universal compatibility today and next-generation speed for tomorrow. Use it with USB 2.0 now and step up to USB 3.0 speed when youíre ready.
    Up to 3x faster transfer rates
    When connected to a SuperSpeed USB 3.0 port this drive lets you access and save files up to three times faster than USB 2.0. Transfer a 2-hour HD movie in just three and a half minutes instead of 13 minutes.*
    *Performance may vary based on userís hardware and system configuration.

    I found it in their FAQ sheets Item #14: Specifications for the My Book Essential USB 3.0 & 2.0 External Hard Drives
    Found on this page; http://wdc.custhelp.com/cgi-bin/wdc....p_new_search=1

    It sounds like the drives can be for both 2.0 and 3.0 if the computer is capable. If I am reading it correctly..

  8. #8
    Administrator
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Portugal
    Posts
    12,519
    Thanks
    152
    Thanked 1,398 Times in 1,221 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by James Tepe View Post
    RetiredGeek,
    This is copied from a WD pdf;
    Dual USB 3.0 and USB 2.0 connectivity
    A single drive with universal compatibility today and next-generation speed for tomorrow. Use it with USB 2.0 now and step up to USB 3.0 speed when youíre ready.
    Up to 3x faster transfer rates
    When connected to a SuperSpeed USB 3.0 port this drive lets you access and save files up to three times faster than USB 2.0. Transfer a 2-hour HD movie in just three and a half minutes instead of 13 minutes.*
    *Performance may vary based on userís hardware and system configuration.

    I found it in their FAQ sheets Item #14: Specifications for the My Book Essential USB 3.0 & 2.0 External Hard Drives
    Found on this page; http://wdc.custhelp.com/cgi-bin/wdc....p_new_search=1

    It sounds like the drives can be for both 2.0 and 3.0 if the computer is capable. If I am reading it correctly..
    I think this applies to very latest drives with USB 3.0. Supposedly, drives that support SuperSpeed (the highest possible transfer speed, specific of USB 3.0), should have the SuperSpeed logo:

    [attachment=91047:superspeed.jpg]

    If yours have it, the USB 3.0 speed should be supported.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Rui
    -------
    R4

  9. #9
    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    California & Arizona
    Posts
    6,121
    Thanks
    160
    Thanked 609 Times in 557 Posts
    In order to take full advantage of USB 3.0's speed and bandwidth, ones' motherboard has to have a USB 3.0 supported hardware controller.
    ...Otherwise any peripheral USB 3.0 device you have will be limited to USB 2.0 bandwidth functionality.

    You motherboard has to have built in USB support either via the chipset, or from a PCIE slot with a USB 3.0 supported addon card and driver.
    Built in USB 3.0 support on the mainboard is the preferred way to go.
    DRIVE IMAGING
    Invest a little time and energy in a well thought out BACKUP regimen and you will have minimal down time, and headache.

    Build your own system; get everything you want and nothing you don't.
    Latest Build:
    ASUS X99 Deluxe, Core i7-5960X, Corsair Hydro H100i, Plextor M6e 256GB M.2 SSD, Corsair DOMINATOR Platinum 32GB DDR4@2666, W8.1 64 bit,
    EVGA GTX980, Seasonic PLATINUM-1000W PSU, MountainMods U2-UFO Case, and 7 other internal drives.

  10. #10
    5 Star Lounger
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    South of the North Pole
    Posts
    919
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
    Seagate is doing something kind of interesting, though it should have perhaps been done several years ago in anticipation, but thier GoFlex drives are componentized so that the bridge and cable can be exchanged for whatever kind of connection is needed or comes along, such as USB 3.0. Seems a bit pointless now since one would presumably just buy a USB 3.0 external to begin with.

    I thought maybe I would get more of the nominal performance (up to 60 MB/s) out of a USB 2.0 drive on a USB 3.0 connection seeing as there was more carry capacity and query protocol was not the same, but alas, it was still in the 25 MB/s range as usual.

  11. #11
    Super Moderator RetiredGeek's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    Manning, South Carolina
    Posts
    9,434
    Thanks
    372
    Thanked 1,457 Times in 1,326 Posts
    James,

    This {Dual USB 3.0 and USB 2.0 connectivity} sounds like a bit of marketing mumbo jumbo for the general consumer who may not know that drives are backward compatible. So what you have is a USB 3.0 drive that is backward compatible with USB 2.0. connections on your computer. Those marketing types are really good at saying something the hard way. Dilbert Lives!
    May the Forces of good computing be with you!

    RG

    PowerShell & VBA Rule!

    My Systems: Desktop Specs
    Laptop Specs

  12. #12
    Lounger
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Denver, Co USA
    Posts
    28
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
    Both of my drives specify "USB 2.0" and my MB is over 2 years old so unfortunately it seems the only solution for me is to be happy with usb 2.0 or get a new card or a new computer. Thanks for the discussion and insight. Thanks everyone!!

  13. #13
    New Lounger
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Los Angeles, California, USA
    Posts
    4
    Thanks
    2
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
    Hello all,
    I have not noticed, in this thread, anyone addressing some of what I consider to be the most important aspects of the exact differences between USB 2.0 and 3.0.

    USB 2.0 has 4 wires, 2 for a very low power 5VDC (usually less than .5 A per port as listed in Device Manager) and 2 for data.

    USB 3.0 has an additional 4 or 5 wires, for full-duplex data, and much more hardy DC Power wiring.

    The 4 wires in USB 2.0 are in the identical location as the new USB 3.0. So any 2.0 component in the line, whether the cable, the device, or the port: lacks the additional wires of 3.0, lacks the additional power capacity of 3.0, and so of course, only 2.0 capabilities are enabled.

    When the device, cable, and port are all 3.0, then the extra wiring of 3.0 runs the full distance, and the 3.0 operation is enabled.

    In a sense, the controller is irrelevant: if your port is 3.0, you HAVE a 3.0 controller. Nobody puts a 3.0 port on a card or motherboard, and leaves out the 3.0 controller.

    On the other hand, I have heard of 3.0 ports/controllers that did not properly identify certain 2.0 devices. So maybe some bugs need to be ironed out after all. Or maybe the person reporting the problem, had "Full-Speed" (old USB 1.1) or "Low-Speed" (old USB 1.0) devices.

    According to IEEE, the spec. NOT the "DRAFT" spec, the FINAL spec for "Hi-Speed USB 2.0" cables was identical to USB 1.1 "Full-Speed". So when a certain cable co. started marketing Hi-Speed 2.0 cables, the only difference from the previously labeled "USB no-speed-mentioned" cables, was the ink on the package. Just like spending $100.00 on a six-foot HDMI cable, as if that will perform at all better than a $3.00 six-foot cable (it won't, unless you kink the cheap one).

    Anyway: 5 extra wires. Full-Duplex, not Half-Duplex. More current/power output for the device.

    USB 3.0 ports and cables seem to be standardizing on using a blue connector to differentiate from USB 2.0.

    Hope this clarifies. If the extra wires are there and run the total signal length, it is USB 3.0.

    If not, it will work at USB 2.0 rates, with USB 2.0 power limitations.

    DrWattsOn

  14. #14
    Lounger
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Denver, Co USA
    Posts
    28
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
    DrWattsOn ,
    That was some 'very good' information and yes that was just what I needed to hear and what I was originally asking. Thank you so much. There are so many smart people on this forum.

  15. #15
    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    California & Arizona
    Posts
    6,121
    Thanks
    160
    Thanked 609 Times in 557 Posts
    So the answer to your original question is NO.
    If you don't have a USB 3.0 compatible motherboard your USB 3.0 devices will not transfer data at the higher speed. PERIOD
    DRIVE IMAGING
    Invest a little time and energy in a well thought out BACKUP regimen and you will have minimal down time, and headache.

    Build your own system; get everything you want and nothing you don't.
    Latest Build:
    ASUS X99 Deluxe, Core i7-5960X, Corsair Hydro H100i, Plextor M6e 256GB M.2 SSD, Corsair DOMINATOR Platinum 32GB DDR4@2666, W8.1 64 bit,
    EVGA GTX980, Seasonic PLATINUM-1000W PSU, MountainMods U2-UFO Case, and 7 other internal drives.

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •