This is a nightmare!

I got a WD My Passport Essential (500 GB) a couple of months ago and promptly backed up the HD on my Toshiba laptop running Win XP Pro, which has two partitions - one for system & apps files and the other for data.  This was supposed to help me recover from a catastrophic failure like a hard drive crash, right?  Wrong again, Bucky. 

Well, the worst possible thing happened and I had to replace the HD.  Not to worry, I thought, since I have everything backed up… until I tried to install WD SmartWare (v.  The Backup and Retrieve tabs were inaccessible so I tried to upgrade to v., but I got an error message from the Software Updater instead saying that it cannot be installed (error code 1603). 

I was lurking around this forum when I read one suggestion to make a backup of the new drive, but that was unhelpful since the Backup tab is grayed out.  Then I tried to uninstall the program, but I got another error message saying “There is a problem with this Windows Installer Package.  A program run as a part of the setup did not finish as expected.”  Then the Add or Remove Programs said “Fatal error during installation.” 

I was able to retrieve some of my data since I had saved them as files.  However, I really need to recover my Outlook.pst file in the Sys/Apps partition that was stored as folders.  I went into the WD SmartWare.systor file looking for it in the Documents and Settings folder, but it said that “Access is denied” even tho I have Administrator privileges. 

Now I’m totally confused about what to do next.  Any idea how I can get out of this mess?  Before I bought this device I was assured that WD made the best hardware and I foolishly thought that the software might be good as well, but now I’m beginning to wonder. 

I think its better for you to contact tech support, so they can help you with the Smartware problem. 

I agree with you completely.  Been there & done that.  Just waiting for a reply from them now. 

Make sure your XP has SP3 installed and is up to date. Make sure your Adobe Flash is up to date. When you install the Smartware make sure your AV is off.


Uh, yes, I downloaded all of the MS updates first thing after installing the OS on the new HD.  I don’t think that Flash was there yet when I installed the Smartware, but it is now.  The odd thing is that I can access the files on the Data partition that were saved as files, but I still can’t get into the Documents and Settings folder on the System and Application partition because I keep getting an error message saying that I don’t have Administrator privileges.  You know, I changed the name of my computer system when I reinstalled the OS.  Should I change it back to the one that I had used before? 

I probably should have turned the AV off, but I didn’t.  I wish that I had been advised to do so at the time.  Now I have a bigger problem because I can’t uninstall SmareWare since there apparently was some sort of malfunction when I tried to update it.  Is there any workaround for this or do I have to give it to some geek to dig it out of my registry manually?

Mr Don I would like to give you some advice,I work on PC’s alot and I have never had any use for any backup software because all it takes is one little bug and everything is gone,I have seen alot programs that alway’s claim they are the end all to all your problems and never seem to fully deliver.

I know this advice won’t help you now but at least it may help you in the future,if I were you I would get a RAID Card for your PC and run it,if you are farmilar with RAID and what it does read on,with RAID you run 2 Harddrive that are the same and what RAID does is makes a perfect of the Master Harddrive and incase one fail’s everything thing will be 100% the same on both drives,so if the Master drive did fail you just take it and toss it and change the cables from the Master to the Slave drive and  your PC will still run as your Slave drive will be a perfect clone of the Master and then all you need to do is just get another Slave drive of the same size.

Also for myself I just use an External Harddrive and Manualy back thing’s up myself that way I do not have to depend on something to do it for and risk having a problem later on,all I do is just make a Music Picture Movie Folder and so on and when I ad a new Music album I just create a folder for it an then drag it into the main Music folder,I know alot of people are going to say that’s alot work but I have never found it to be to bad.