Loss of Wifi when connecting WD Elements HDD

Dear WD Community,

When I plug my WD Elements Portable 2 TB to my Macbook Pro get a 15-20 dB drop in Signal to Noise Ratio (SNR) of my Wifi.

The Hardware that I am using:

  • Macbook Pro Late 2016 13" with Touchbar (4 USB-C Ports)
  • WD Elements 2 TB HDD WDBU6Y0020BBK - 05
  • Aukey USB-C to USB-A adapter
  • HDD connection Cabel (shipped with the HDD)

The Story:
I have had the Macbook since December 2016, I have had the HDD since Spring 2016 (or so). I came back from a 4 week holiday on the 16th of September 2017 and suddenly experienced Wifi issues at my home work desk. Before that I have never experienced any trouble with the Wifi when connecting the HDD.

What changed / could have changed in the past 4 weeks I was not home at my work desk:

  • I had to exchange the router just before I left on my vacation
  • I installed Windows 10 via Bootcamp on my Mac
  • Hypothesis: The SNR drop caused by the drive was present all the time. However in the last 4 weeks the neighbours got a new router or other device that weakens the Signal in my apartment so much, that the HDD SNR drop now causes complete wifi loss on my computer.

What I have done so far:

  • Plug 2 different HDD when my computer was connected to different Wifis. SNR drop occured independent of network and HDD. (Check Graphs attached)
  • Created a new user in Mac OSX to see if the issue is related to my user account. Problem remained
  • Tried out different USB-C to USB-A adapters and cabel combinations. Problem remained
  • Split my Wifi up in 2.4 GHz and a 5 GHz network. In the 5 GHz network the SNR does not drop, however, I am to far away from the router for the SNR to be high enough. HDD interferes only with 2.4 GHz.
  • Try to shield the HDD by covering it with a pot, plastic bowl, tin can. Problem remained

Questions:

  • Is this a WD problem or is it a general HDD issue?
  • What is the reason for this problem to only occur now and not in the past?
  • Is it possible, that the HDD suddenly generates a 2.4 GHz noise due to an internal damage, interfering with the Wifi? Or has it always been creating this noise?
  • What is your advice to resolve the issue? (Cover HDD in aluminium Foil? Buy a repeater to increase network strength at my Work desk? Anything else?)

It surprises me that there is so little discussion about this issue on the internet.

Any help much appreciated,
Best
Niko

Figure 1

Figure 2

Hi niko_93,

Maybe you should try contacting WD’s Technical Support about this.

To Contact WD for Technical Support

Will do. Thanks!

Hello, I have same issue too, do you find any solution?