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I recently bought an external drive from Western Digital, a My Passport Essential se 1TB drive; the smartware software continually says "discovering" and does not stop. On Windows, the operating system my computer is running, the drive does not appear, it only shows using the hardware management tool.

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What operating system? Does the drive appear in Disk Management? Was the drive detected and working whenyou tried to install the Smartware software. Is it possible it conflicts with another drive letter for some reason? If so, can you manualy assign? –  Dave M Apr 13 '12 at 23:53
    
Maybe this will help you: superuser.com/a/487310/34371 –  Endy Tjahjono Oct 13 '12 at 15:11

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