My Passport Ultra for Mac (USB-C) suddenly got really slow

Product that i purchased brand new on Amazon exactly 13 months ago : “My Passport Ultra for Mac (USB-C) - 5TB”.

I purchased the aforementioned external HD to use on my 2009 Macbook. On my desktop, it appears as “My New External HD 2022”.

For the first 13 months, i was very satisfied with it. However, about 2 weeks ago, it all of a sudden slowed down to a snail’s pace (ex: tried to transfer a 400mb music mix from my iTunes into the external HD, and what would normally take about 7 seconds, took 2 hrs!!!

Keep in mind that I have only used about 1 TB of space on my 5 TB drive.

I also noticed other symptoms besides the ultra slow speed :

  • the drive would take super long to eject
  • once ejected, the drive would take a long while before appearing on my desktop
  • opening files in the drive would take super long
  • basically everything slowed down; it wasnt even progressive, it happened suddenly

Again, all of this just happened suddenly. I have done nothing drastic to the Macbook. Also, the external HD never gets moved around as it just sits there on my table.

PS: i also have another (older) external hard drive (called “My Passport for Mac”; also a WD product) which after 11 yrs still works perfectly fine, so i know that the issue detailed above has nothing to do with my old ass Macbook.

I called WD customer service and they quickly recommended an RMA return because it is still under warranty.

Question #1: does this sound like a failing drive which merits a return?

Question #2: i would like to erase all of the data on my drive before sending it to WD. I havent done it yet, because i am mentally stuck on a step in Disk Utility (which is the main reason for having come to this message board). Let me explain further.

So, Disk Utility (DU) has a Security Options button which offers a high grade erase option which formats the drive 7 times. Ok fine. Sounds really good. I choose that and immediately click the “Erase” button, only to get a window that pops up asking the following question :

"Are you sure you want to erase the partition “My New External HD 2022” and create a new partition?

Now, what has me stuck is that Disk Utility is prompting me to create a password for it to encrypt.

My question: if i go ahead and do such an erase and encrypt it, etc, … will WD still be able to run its tests in their lab and determine if my slowass external HD warrants a replacement, or will they say to me that they cannot access the drive because it is encrypted?

Hi @Djsinister,

Have you opened a Support Case? If not opened, for more information, please contact the WD Technical Support team for the best assistance and troubleshooting: