Replacing My Book Essential


I am new to this board and would appreciate some advice.  I believe my external hard drive has failed.  It has NOT backed up my data successfully for the past month or so.  I use the BACKUP option that I access through the CONTROL PANEL of the Windows 7 OS on my 5 year old Dell Studio XPS 8100 computer.  The external drive came with the computer purchase so it is also 5 years old.  

The BACKUP process has always been slow, but recently it has ground to a halt.  After about 2 hours, it shows 59% complete and after another 2 hours, it shows 60%.  After another 2 hours, it still shows 60% which is when I usually give up.  

I finally have had some time to investigate and discovered the DIAGNOSTIC feature of the WD Smartware and ran all 3 tests.  It failed all 3.  I am planning to order a replacement.  My concern is that the process may to be above my level of computer expertise and therefore way out of my comfort zone.  I have removed and reinstalled other software programs in the past successfully, but there was never been any hardware involved.

My question is will there be enough information coming with the new drive to accomplish removing the old and replacing it with the new?  Is this difficult to do?

Thanks in advance for any advice/suggestions you may have.


Replacing the external drive will be as easy as unplugging the old one and plugging in the new one.

You can either backup using the software the comes with the drive of the Windows backup software.