Wednesday, 12 December 2007

Western Digital blanket block on sharing some types of files

It looks as if anyone purchasing a Western Digital hard drive for networking purposes may now need to think twice.

Western Digital have instituted a heavy handed ‘blanket’ block on the sharing of certain types of files, copyrighted or not.

They have incorporated a ‘guilty until proven innocent’ block on file sharing into their Anywhere Access software, (or at least Anywhere Access - except for over 30 types of files) maybe they just assume all their customers are natural copyright violators.

So Western Digital apparently thinks it has more right to decide what you do, than you yourself do - even if what you want to do is perfectly legal.

Prospective purchasers may need to factor this in their decision making process when purchasing hard drives in future, or they may find what they end up with is not fit for the purpose it was purchased for.

If in doubt ask - In the UK, under the Sale of Goods Act 1979, goods should be of a satisfactory quality and reasonably fit for the purpose(s) that goods of that particular kind are commonly purchased including any particular purpose asked for by a buyer.


James Higham said...

Good thing I use a Mac.

Surreptitious Evil said...

Just rar or zip the bloody files up. 'Access Nowhere' doesn't do inspection.

I agree that Western Digital are barking however we can all vote with our wallets. What you all really need / want / desire is one of these: LaCie Poulton, one of these if you need network capability or one of these if you are a poser (diff'rent strokes et al).

No, I don't work for them ...

CFD Ed said...

Surreptitious, Well researched. I particularly liked the LaCie Ethernet Disk RAID, but at even one terabyte, a bit beyond what I would care to fork out. Still with the cost of storage dropping all the time…

The point is that although the block only affects networked drives and can be got round regulating and preventing perfectly legal usage is none of Western Digital’s business and shouldn’t have to be got round in the first place.

Presumably one can avoid the whole problem by not installing ‘Access Nowhere’ in the first place. Often the software (other than the drivers) that comes with pieces of kit just takes up unnecessary drive space and slows operation down anyway.