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Windows 7: Remove WD external hard disk bundled software?

19 Aug 2015   #1
pcwin

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 Bit
 
 
Remove WD external hard disk bundled software?

I want to buy a 2.5 external hard disk that do not require any external power.
I want to buy a 2.5 external hard disk that do not require any external power.

1. I am considering WD my passport 2TB or 3TB. Is 3TB the biggest size for a 2.5 external hard disk?

2. Do WD sell 2.5 external hard disk without any software bundled in it?

3. I am looking at WD my passport and I saw it has lots of software (VCD, WD SmartWare...) that is bundled into the disk that cannot be removed (see links below), is it still the case now? How can I remove it?

We want to Remove the VCD from our passports, not ... - WD Community
Remove 'WD SmartWare' from your Western Digital Pa... - WD Community

Thanks


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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19 Aug 2015   #2
CKWD

Windows 7 Home Premium x64
 
 

Hello pcwin!

1. The size would depend on the model WD My Passport that you'd choose, but for now the WD portable My Passport drives for Windows are up to 3TB, this being the new My Passport Ultra.
2. WD portable drives come with WD backup software (WD Smartware or WD backup) for the customer's ease and backup solutions.
3. If you don't want any of the software that comes with the drive, you are not obliged to use it or even have it. A simple reformatting of the drive should wipe it off and leave it completely empty.

Hope this helps!

CK_WD
My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 Aug 2015   #3
jumanji

Windows 7 Home Premium 32 bit
 
 

If at all you want to buy a Western Digital external go for plain WD elements only. It does not have all these extras like Smartware, Backup and the like which is more a PITA than pleasure when something goes wrong. The most dreaded feature is the Hardware Encryption in Passport and Passport Ultra which has the potential of locking you out should something go wrong with the Interface Electronics inside the enclosure. No one else except the WD authorised Recovery partners can recover the encrypted data in the HDD. In the elements, there is no hardware encryption in the enclosure Electronics. If the electronics fails - it fails more often - and the HDD itself is good anyone can recover the data for you easily. - even yourself with some expert guidance if need be. Another factor you should consider is that in most WD externals, the interface Electronics is integrated to the HDD inside ( unlike other manufacturer's externals) so it is impossible to separate the HDD and connect it as the usual SATA drive on a desktop for data recovery. I am not sure the Western Digital elements also is one with integrated electronics. Watch out.
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19 Aug 2015   #4
pcwin

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 Bit
 
 

Thanks.

WD elements seems good. The biggest drive is 2TB.

WD elements is just like any brand normal external 2.5 external hard disk correct?

Is it that WD My Passport is the only one that has 3TB 2.5 external hard disk?

I did not see any other brands have 3TB 2.5 external hard disk
My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 Aug 2015   #5
pcwin

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 Bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by CKWD View Post
3. If you don't want any of the software that comes with the drive, you are not obliged to use it or even have it. A simple reformatting of the drive should wipe it off and leave it completely empty.

Hope this helps!

CK_WD
CK_WD, it seems like not just a format will do (as mentioned by some buyers, see below). WD Passport seems to bring a lot of frustration to the buyers, unless things have changed now. I liked WD Passport because it has 3TB, but I shall not consider it if your bloatware is so difficult to remove.

"The Virtual CD manager only disables the VCD image. There is no way to remove it from the disk." source How to remove (disable / hide) the Virtual CD (VCD) for Windows or Mac OSX on a WD My Book or WD My Passport

"Add me to the ever growing list of dissatisfied customers. I use to be very loyal to Western Digital as I've always found their products very reliable and cost effective. I found it very misleading that nothing on the packaging states that a portion of your drive is taken up by a hidden partition that cannot be removed. Nothing says that a virtual CD will be loaded everytime you plug in the drive. Nothing says that you will have to path out to the driver folder on the hard drive to install all the drivers that windows needs to load. Nothing says that this process may take an unecessary amount of time.

I know there is a patch out so you can hide the VCD but, this is unacceptable. Even though you hide the VCD, it shows up again on every new PC that you plug the drive into. This is further compounded by having to install three different drivers. The option should be ours on whether we want to use the software or not. What's more annoying is that I have yet to see any responses to concerns presented in these forums from Western Digital."
"And yet another disappointed customer here. I just wanted a standard portable drive where I could use ALL of the space without any hassles. Instead I am left feeling betrayed by WD - they have forced this "Smartware" onto people whether they want it or not then make them jump through hoops to 'hide' it. You don't even get the space back."
"I wanted to purchase WD Passport Essential SE of 1Tb capacity, but from this topic I see it cannot be used as generic USB HDD on any system? "
source We want to Remove the VCD from our passports, not ... - WD Community
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Aug 2015   #6
CKWD

Windows 7 Home Premium x64
 
 

Giving an example with the new WD My Passport Ultra, and quoting its User manual (p.29): “Erasing your drive does not erase the WD Drive Unlock utility (password protection) software files that are on the drive’s virtual CD. They remain, even after erasing or reformatting the drive.”

But this would take, as mentioned in the WD KB link you provided, about only 20MB. Any other software that would be on the drive, like WD SmartWare and WD Backup, would be larger in size and could be deleted with a simple reformat if you don't want or need it.

The VCD remains with the thought that the user at some point could change his/her mind and download and restore the WD software. So the remaining “software” taking only 20MB should not be “bloatware”.

Just as an example, my brother has a WD Elements portable and a WD My Passport Slim, which he wanted to reformat to not have or use any software and just copy-paste, and he doesn't have any problems with the drives or difficulty using them.

Moving on, the WD Elements portable actually does come with only a free trial of SmartWare Pro, which again the user is not obliged to use if he/she doesn't want to. But the Elements doesn't have the hardware encryption.

Also, yes, the new My passport Ultra, that I previously mentioned, is the only WD portable one for Windows to have a 3TB version at this point.

CK_WD
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 Remove WD external hard disk bundled software?




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