Followed the steps provided below by Western Digital Service and Support and seems to be working adequately so far. Keeping fingers crossed against memory leakage/creep.
Note that I was already using the latest versions of the WD firmware, the WD software, and Windows.NET, so perhaps uninstalling and reinstalling was the trick in my case. I hope so.
Be aware that anti-virus and anti-spyware should be turned off first. In your case, you might try their method of checking that Java, Flash, and .NET are current, then updating firmware, then uninstall/reinstall latest WD software. Good luck.
The last portion (Step 4, regarding the stopping and restarting of WD services may also be crucial). I went through the whole thing, just as they laid it out... and so far, so good.
Thank you for contacting Western Digital Customer Service and Support...
We would like to apologize for the inconvenience. In order to stop SmartWare from running, please follow the following steps:
1. Open SmartWare through all programs.
2. Click on the Back-up Tab.
3. Click on the Stop Back-up button.
SmartWare is designed to run in the background when it is activated. You may also want to try the following steps to troubleshoot the issue:
1. Please update the WD SmartWare software and the drive's firmware to the latest version.
However, the following precautions should be taken before installing the firmware update:
A. Before updating the firmware on your drive, make sure you have a copy of all the data on your drive stored on a separate device.
B. If you are using a laptop, please make sure the battery is sufficiently charged.
C. During the firmware update, do not disconnect or disrupt the power to the drive.
D. All AntiVirus software must be disabled.
E. All Anti-Spyware software must be disabled.
F. All programs that would require drive access during the update must be disabled.
G .An Internet connection is required to install the firmware update.
To download the Windows release 126.96.36.199B (updated 4/3/2012) firmware updater, please click on the link below:
In order for you to use the latest version of WD SmartWare, you may need to have the following minimum requirements:
A. Windows XP 32-bit Service Pack 3, Windows XP 64-bit Service Pack 2, Windows Vista or Windows 7.
B. Microsoft .NET Framework 3.5 or higher installed on your computer.
C. Internet Explorer 7 or higher.
D. Please make sure that you have the latest version of Java and Adobe Flash installed in your computer.
To download the Microsoft .Net Framework 4.0, please click on the link below:
To download the WD SmartWare software updater, please click on the link below:
2. If you are already using the latest version of the WD SmartWare software. I suggest that you uninstall/reinstall the software.
For more information on how to uninstall WD SmartWare from Windows (7, Vista, or XP) and Mac OSX (10.4, 10.5, 10.6, and 10.7), please click on the link below:
3. Download the latest version of WD SmartWare from our website. To download the latest version of WD SmartWare, please click on the link below:
4. Please, reboot your computer after reinstalling the latest version of Smartware.
To make sure that the necessary services needed by the WD SmartWare are all enabled:
A. Click the Start Menu and the click Run. You may also press and hold the Windows key in your keyboard and then press the "R" key to launch Run.
B. Please type "services.msc" in Run (without the quotations).
C. Please look for WDDMService and double-click on it.
D. Kindly change the "Startup type" to disabled and click Apply.
E. Change the "Service status" to Stop and click Ok.
F. Please double-click the WDDMService again.
G. Change the "Startup type" to Automatic and click Apply.
H. Change the "Service Status" to Start and click Ok.
I. You would need to do steps a to h for WDFMEService and WDRulesService as well.
You may also reduce the backup speed of WD SmartWare and increase the speed of your system. Please follow these steps to reduce the WD SmartWare backup speed:
A. Launch WD SmartWare.
B. Click the Settings tab.
C. Click Set Up Software.
D. Click Backup Speed.
E. Please make sure that the "Run backup when computer is idle" option is checked.
If you have any further questions, please reply to this email and we will be happy to assist you further.
Western Digital Service and Support