Start up computer fails if HD is connected


I got an external WD My Passport 320 Gb hard drive. I want to back up my stuff on it so i formatted it new to NTFS (as it was FAT32 before) so that i can use the Win7 backup tool. 1st try worked. Then a week later it tried to backup again and it failed. I think it's because it didn't overwrite but just tried to create a second copy and there wasn't enough space (the 1st backup used about 250Gb). Somehow the HD let my explorer fail and i had some other trouble too so i restarted my system. The computer "froze" before even running through the memory!
I finally after several tries took away the external HD (while the conputer was on) and it continued starting up normally.

Now i tried to whipe everything away from my HD. Somehow i couldn't set free 10Gb (of the 298Gb i normally had) so i thought formatting it new could help. I did the slow formatting and after about 3h it froze having finished about 90%. It just didn't do anything anymore. I aborted the formatting giving up for that day. Next day, i want to start up my computer - same problem as the other day, it doesn't with the HD connected.

I then did the quick formatting and it succeeded and finally it's now in the process of backing up my data.

2 main questions:
- What's the problem with starting up, why does it freeze with the external HD hooked up?
- Is their a way to set the backup tool so that it overwrites the last backup or just replenishes the old backup?

Thank you for your help!
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More about start computer fails connected
  1. Some motherboards just do not like having USB drives connected during the boot process. Two of my desktop systems are like that. My three Gigabyte systems, however, work properly.

    With backup software, you can do a full backup or an incremental backup (just what changes). You can have the software overwrite a previous backup.

    I don't bother with incremental backups. I do, however, keep the last three full backups.
  2. I have a Gigabyte system and the weirdest thing is that this never occured before, the boot problem. I had the HD connected before without any problem while booting but the problem occured just after this failed backup.

    Is there any good free backup software that you could recommend me?
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