"Delayed Write Failed - Windows was unable to save all the data for the file G:\$MFT

I have an external USB 500 GB drive connected to a windows 2003 server box.  It has been working fine for a couple of years but suddenly I am getting the message " Windows was unable to save all the data for the file G:\$MFT... the data has been lost, the error may be caused by failure of your computer hardware or network  connection. "

This happens when the computer is just sitting idle, and I am not even trying to copy to the drive.  It also happens though when I am browsing the drive and copying to or from the drive.  

I am able to see all the files and folders until I get the message and then I am only able to see the folders which are empty.  The capacity of the folders tends to fluctuate.  If I reboot, I am able to see all the files until the error pops up

I have already done the popular solutions such as
1.) MS Hotfix for the issue
2.) Write Caching is disabled and always has been.
3.) Memory usage is set to optimize for programs as opposed to system cache.
4.) Changed USB ports
5.) Cold Boot

This problem seemed to start when I connected to the drive over the network from a Linux Ubuntu box.  I never actually was able to copy files over from the Linux box due to some ISA firewall issues but the Linux box was connected to the share for a few days.  I have since resolved the ISA issue but now I can not copy to it anyway.

I am starting to think this is a hardware issue but I am on the fence with that due to the drive actually showing up and showing me the files briefly.

I have obviously thought about reformatting the drive but would like avoid it if possible.  

***NOTE: I do have a second 500 GB WD external USB drive connected and it has NO problems!

Thanks for the help in advance!
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I think it's more likely a problem with the USB enclosure than with the hard drive itself.  Do you have another USB enclosure you could try putting the drive in?
I agree hardware issue.

You can scan the drive with the manufactures disk or something like spinrite to see if it has errors.. or do a chkdsk /r on it.. if it were me I would do a full, not quick, format.  If it happens again after that then if it is under warranty RMA it.
I would lean toward a hardware failure about to occur.  Of course backup data asap if needed and find a manufacturer hard disk diag tool or a 3rd party tool.
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Just in case it is a manufactured enclosure.. and it is still under warranty then RMA it don't open it up or you would void that warranty.
jkocklerAuthor Commented:
I don't have another enclosure except for the other wd usb ext drive.  I would be hesitant to bust that one open for testing.  I would however be interested in taking the problem drive out of the enclosure and maybe hooking it up ide for testing.  Anyone know how to get these WD external usb drives open?  Its one of the "my books"
jkocklerAuthor Commented:
I think it is out of warranty... 2 years old by now but I will call to check for sure.
jkocklerAuthor Commented:
Good call Akahan!  I pulled the drive from the enclosure, connected it directly to the board, and it is running up to par again!  I wanted to be thorough and make sure that it was in fact going to stay stable, so I have copied at least a few gigs to and from the drive.  No issues thus far.  Thanks again!
Great!  Thanks for reporting back!
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