western digital elements usb hard drive+11.2

i have had this hard drive for some time and have had no issues with previous releases but now it bogs down my system to the point of locking up after a few moments, as well as disappearing file options I.E. delete, cut, etc. the only difference i can think of is that the hard drive is in an ext3 format and i switched to ext4 for my system. there is nothing irreplaceable on the hard drive as i use it for dvd rips from my collection for deployments and such. if anyone has any ideas on why this is happening or even a way to reformat the drive to ext4 i would greatly appreciate the advice