WD Elements portable USB drive not recognized by Windows

This is a relatively new 1TB drive, less than a year old, and only connected to a PC maybe two times before now. It’s the kind that draws both power and data through USB - it does not plug in to wall power.
But suddenly it is not recognized by Windows (Dell PC) when plugged into the front USB 3.0 port. No drive letter appears in Windows 7 File Explorer, even though the WD drive shows the tiny white power light on it. As attempted workaround, I bought a “power booster” Y cable that plugs into 2 USB ports simultaneously - but there was no difference - Windows still shows nothing for it.
Then I tried the same drive in a brand new Dell Windows 10 computer, with the same result - no reaction from Windows when drive is plugged in.

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