As I mentioned in my last post, I recently picked up a Western Digital My Book Essential 1 TB external hard drive. Although it doesn't as yet display the same problems that my Simpletech hard drive was having, it does come with an annoying Virtual CD installed, literally in the unit's firmware, that contains Western Digital's SmartWare backup software. Of course the software is not linux compatible and wouldn't be something I would want to use anyway. The big question I had was: how do I get rid of it?
Well the problem has been well documented on the internet, with many people complaining about it. I found a helpful comment on a blog maintained by a mac admin. User 'yakkoj' suggests in his comment to make an entry in the /etc/fstab file on your mac that basically tells Mac OSX to ignore the Virtual CD so that it doesn't load and show up on your desktop. As Mac OSX is a relative of Linux, his comment was easily adaptable as a solution for my Ubuntu system too! Following is the line that I put in my /etc/fstab file and I can vouch that I now no longer see an icon for the WD Smartware Virtual CD on my desktop:
/dev/sr1 none udf rw,noauto 0 0
The Virtual CD always shows up as /dev/sr1, and I don't think there's any danger of other devices taking up that partition label. So, put the above line into your /etc/fstab file, and it will basically tell Linux that any time a device pops up and wants to inhabit the /dev/sr1 partition then it shouldn't be mounted at all. Then you will no longer have to stare at the dumb WD SmartWare icon on your linux desktop again! However, please note that this does not in fact rid the hard drive of the software, it just tells your computer to ignore it.