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Buffalo Drivestation DDR external hard drive advice


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Hi, I thought I'd share some advice here because when I had a problem with this hard drive, the internet did not help me.

I bought the Buffalo Drivestation DDR external hard drive (2tb) because a) 256gb on my Surface Pro 2 is not enough, b) It is supposed to be stupidly fast over USB 3 - faster than any other modestly priced external drive (thanks to the caching).

I plugged it in to the Surface Pro 2 and... it didn't work. The drive wasn't recognised and wouldn't even light up.

I tried it on a Windows 7 desktop and an iMac and it worked.

To fix the problem, I did 2 things so I'm not sure which of them fixed it, but I'd recommend doing both.

1. I formatted the drive to Fat32 (by default it is formatted to NTFS).

2. I downloaded the latest firmware from Buffalo and installed it on to the drive.

I had to do this on the Windows 7 desktop because it didn't work with the Surface, so I was lucky that the other PC was available to me. Buffalo don't recommend formatting the drive on a Mac (not sure why, but didn't want to risk it).

Anyway, I'm sure other people will buy this drive and experience the same issue, so hopefully this will help.

I haven't tried the drive out properly yet, but it copied an 80mb file from the drive to my computer in less than a second, so seems promising.
You shouldn't format a 2tb hard drive to fat32, because a Fat32 is not good anymore as it's an old system (windows 98 and XP) and you won't be able to store files larger than 4gb at once and its less secure because you wont be able to recover files from disk errors, there is many more reasons to NOT use FAT32 but I can't name them ALL in this post but do recommend Google(ing) it for more in depth reasons... also I'm quiet sure it has to do with downloading the drivers that got it to work, so I would reformat to NTFS ASAP
Coming from a hardware oriented IT background I would not have recommended the brand you purchased. Certain brands have earned a reputation for reliability and performance. Can you return it for a Western Digital?