4TB Elements unwanted automatic Windows startup

Hi guys,

Had the above drive for about 6 months now and it’s been fine. In the last couple of weeks though it appears to be turning itself on, on its own… I often come back from work, my PC has been powered down all day, but the power led on the drive is flashing?

I use the drive for monthly backups, so it isn’t on that often and when I do need it, I turn it on manually using the power button on the rear of the device. Manually trying to switch the device off no longer appears to work - well, the button doesn’t respond. Powering the drive on is fine using the button? I have to resort to pulling the power lead.

Have I got a faulty unit?


It is recommend that external hard drives be powered off when not in use, although it is safe to leave a hard drive running continuously. You should safely plug out the USB cable from computer when it is not in use.

However, you can use WD Data Lifeguard Diagnosis to check the health of your WD Element. If fails, indicates about the issue and should be replace under warranty period.

Hi guys,

I thought I’d edit my last thread save starting a new one…

So three years on and my drive has been good but in the last week or so it’s taken it upon itself to start powering itself on from off state when I start my computer. I have upgraded my machine, to a Ryzen build, so I’m wondering if this might be fixed with a bios setting?

I just don’t want to have to keep manually powering down the drive each time I start my machine. The drive is always connected but I only need it on demand, for backups etc., and when I do, I want to be able to turn it on manually myself.


Just a thought, but why even have a power button if it doesn’t work as you’d expect?! I’ve used external drives in the past from other vendors and most had a rocker style switch and ‘off, meant off.’

I’ve unplugged the power supply now but this isn’t a real solution.