Thought some people would be interested to have hope…
Well even knowing that I may get stuck with the dumb Virtual CD thing and wasted 700MB+ it was just too good a sale to not get an Essential SE 1TB. (would have been still very annoyed and not recommended to many)
It turned out that this must be a more recently manufactured version as it has a newer VCD software/firmware than what you can download and no USB connection problem as it even uses a good friction lock/bump system.
The first time I plugged in the drive I made sure not to let smartware or any non-standard drivers to install. And to my surprise after checking in multiple parition & device managers from multiple windows versions and linux distributions I find no VCD or other WD software and only 1 partition on the drive with ALL the space I would expect the drive to have like any other 1TB drive. Although I did do a backup of the folders with the Smartware etc. and kept the SES driver available; I was able to completely delete and manage the files like normal. (231MB was dotnet3.5 install with around 720MB total software).
Now a VERY IMPORTANT note. You DO want the SES driver for windows or the ‘like’ driver for MACs as the speed with it is at least 3-4 times greater average transfer rate. (I manually installed it after testing without).
Once I removed all the original software just keeping the SES drivers for use when I need full speed on someones computer; I had all the space back, no extra drives when getting plugged in and no special software doing anything. You will get a warning about the SES driver not working each time you plug-in to a new computer though if you do not install it; but the HDD does work on only standard windows drivers, just much slower.
As a final thought or warning though. If you do install the smartware or VCD software I could see it maybe ‘then’ locking up its files. But by default the newer releases are no longer pre-handicapped if you can figure out how to discover/choose a newer release over an older.