500GB My Passport


So far, the drive works fine without any installation at all.  But,  every time I restart my computer or plug the drive in, I get a pop-up asking to install the recommended drivers.  For now, I just choose Ask Me Again Later, but at some point I want to either say yes or no so the wizard won’t start up all the time.

Now, I absolutely do NOT want this Smartware trash that came on the drive (or any other WD software) on my machine.  No way, no how.   I just want a simple, clean, no-frills drive; I don’t need the encryption features.  So my questions are as follows:

  1.  This pop-up about recommended drivers - if I choose install, will it install Smartware?  Or will it just install a simple driver?  What exactly is it going to install?

  2.  Do I really need the driver?  Is it going to improve performance at all?  The drive is a little slow - will installing the drivers change that?  What real benefit is there to installing them if the drive already works.

  3.  The drive works fine out of the box, but should I format it anyway?


It’s probably the virtual CD. Look in Computer and see if it shows there as another CD drive. If so run the virtual CD manager to disable or just go into the device manager and disable the virtual CD there.

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Installing “Smartware” will install the Smartware program.

Installing the SES driver will install the SES driver.

KB Article 3739:

Windows attempts to install a driver called the SES Driver every time I connect the drive to a computer. What is this driver, why is it required and how can I get rid of the repeated prompts to install the driver?

Your new Western Digital My Passport/My Book hard drive requires a special communications channel (SCSI) between your PC and the drive to enable certain features such as password protection, LED control, and access to the drives label if applicable.

At install, the Windows operating system detects this SCSI communications channel and attempts to install a SCSI Enclosure Services (SES) driver. This driver is only used by your hard drive and is installed by default when you first attach the drive to a computer.

However if you did not install the driver upon first install and chose not to install WD Smartware, Windows will continue to prompt you to install the driver each time you connect the drive to a computer. This will continue to occur unless the SES driver is installed.

We recommend that you install the driver by selecting the Install the software automatically option on the popup screen. Windows will automatically find the Windows SES driver online, and the prompting will disappear. This will not affect your operating system negatively in any way."

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I haven’t yet used my “WD My Passport Essential, 500GB” yet (I got it yesterday). I use “DAEMON Tools Pro Standard” and I need my “SCSI Virtual drive” to be drive E:\ in order to be able to hear in-game music when an image is mounted. It needs to be the first drive after the main DVD-R/RW drive or I won’t hear music when I play a game. Will installing the “SES driver” replace my virtual drive E:?. Will I be able to use “Computer Management” to change the drive letter if it decides to use it?.

Sorry, I meant the “VCD”, not the “SES” driver.

I don’t think it will change any drive letters. I think it takes the next unused letter. I would disable the VCD before I did anything else. Remember never trust important data to just one physical drive internal or external. If you are using on something like a PS3 you will probably have to reformat and possibly partition it.


I have flash drives I keep my data on, as well as CD-Rs. I also have another internal drive inside another computer.

Does the “VCD” get installed as soon as you connect the drive?. I don’t see it being a problem to me, as long as it doesn’t muck with my drive letters. I only wanted to use the drive like I do a flash drive. Connect it, copy the files I want backed up, then use “Safely Remove Hardware” to shutdown the device. I never planned on using it as a external desktop drive. I’m gonna opt not to install the “SmartWare” software and avoid any problems. Are there “disk diagnostic tools” that are like the ones included in the “SmartWare”?. Is “check disk” sufficient for this drive?.

It will depend when they made your drive. They changed a few months ago so it isn’t so much trouble. Mine was the older style. I thik the new ones are more of a hidden file that you have to click to activate. I would use the checkdisk in Windows I’d only use the diagnostic tools if I suspected problems with the drive. You mentioned games in the first post. There may be a formatting issue there.


It must be the newer type, just got the drive the other day and never used it yet. Won’t be using it until I get a longer USB 3.0 cable. The cable that comes with it is way too small. Have to order it because the stores where I live don’t carry them and they never heard of them either, except for the adapter. Their all USB 1.1 (Full-Speed) and 2.0 (High-Speed) cables.  :frowning:

I’d like to order a cable from the WD Canada store, but they only have one size, which is what I have (18 inches, USB 3.0 (SuperSpeed) USB A to Micro B). I looked on Amazon Canada and Amazon.com, but there’s very little to choose from. I’m kinda stuck, all I need is 3.2 feet of cable. Here’s what I have to choose from, would you buy this?. ( http://www.amazon.com/Cables-Go-54176-Micro-Cable/dp/B003VTZ0D4/ref=sr_1_1?s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1292720902&sr=1-1)) or this one?. ( http://www.amazon.ca/gp/offer-listing/B003WV5DO2/ref=dp_olp_new?ie=UTF8&qid=1292721491&sr=1-3&condition=new)..)

All I’ve ever seen is WD keep telling people not to use a cable longer than 18", so personally, I wouldn’t buy anything longer.

I would bet you’ll have no end to the headaches you end up having if you use more than double what WD will “allow”.

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That’s dissapointing, I’m using the drive for a Desktop PC, not a Laptop, the PC sits on the floor. I wanted a cable long enough that I could place the HD on my desk, plug it into the drive, then into the front of my computer. Now I’ll have to buy a storage box or something, and have the HD sit on it in front of the computer, when I need to use it.  :frowning:

What kinda problems would I encounter?. Drive recognition, loss of connection, corrupt data, etc?.

Shining_Force wrote:

What kinda problems would I encounter?. Drive recognition, loss of connection, corrupt data, etc?.

Drive not recognized, corrupted data, etc.  You need a cable that is no longer than 18 inches.

Okay, I ended up not buying a new one, thanks for the advice guys. I’ll stick with the cable that comes with it.

i have pretty much the same issue with my WD PAssport that’s a 500GB 3.0… and  cant seem to find the solution anywhere… could somebody help me out? it doesn’t detect… it says windows is installing software and then it doesnt open at all. could the HD be damaged in total? or is it just the cable? i tried changing the cable but it didn’t help…


Look in to these two threads if you have time to read.  They might help you to resolve your issue.