Drive starting to "dissapear" from my PC

Hello all!  This is my first post, so please be nice!  :wink:

OK, how do I describe my problem… Let me start with the model #, which is WDCWD3200AAVS, an older 320GB external hard drive.  It has worked just fine for years, but in the last week or so, I notice it “dissapears” from my PC.  The lights will be on, but the computer doesn’t see it.  Sometimes I have to unplug the USB and/or power plugs, and it then shows up once again as drive F. 

BUT the other day it would power up, then power down, over and over.  I messed with the power plug a bit, and finally got it all to work out. 

What I am wondering is, is there something wrong with the a) drive itself b) power cord c) USB cord.  Can a USB cord actually go bad?  What about the power-up issue I had?

Odd stuff, hence my asking folks here what they think.


Uhoh, just noticed right above my post there is a sticky topic that seems to be similar to mine.  It does make me wonder, though, can it really be my USB cable, even if the thing is never touched?  Can it still go bad?  What about the odd power-up issue I had before? 

I don’t want to post a duplicate post, but would like some opinions.