Drive being dropped by OS

I have a 750gb external drive and am running Windows 7. I am having the same problem mentioned by several individuals, that the drive is not being  consistently recognized on any of the USB ports. I find that I can connect often by powering the computer off, connecting the drive, and restarting.

    However, recently I have been experiencing another problem; the drive is recognized for a while, then it will be disconnected, and then, often, it will automatically reconnect, all without my touching it. This will often happen four or five times. Along with this are some of the other problems mentioned: once, no files in the directories listed, and several times warnings that my drive has to be reformatted before continuing. Also, sometimes that there is no device driver.  I did not install the WD backup software

    This is the second WD drive I  have had in the past 6 mos. with failures.