I take it your external drive is your backup drive in which case they must have been copied? Like you I don't know the reason for them being there but if you are sure they are empty I would delete them.
"Unwanted" files are the files of a multi-file torrent which the user decided not to download, but which are still created because they are adjacent to the downloaded files and share the same torrent piece. They are usually located in the hidden .unwanted folders in the torrent's folder structure.
My external hdd is a maxtor-the only other similar issue I have had is with unknown files popping up on a partition and the same external drive. I think I posted about that before, and it turned out that the system simply using them as temporary space for a program installation, and didnt delete these files afterwards, eg
click here. Some of the other 'unwanted' hidden folders were possibly related to a download, but after a check there are no related programs installed, and I could not see these folders until now. I think you may be right about some old drives having their own drivers or files already present on a new drive, but I believe the external I have here did not.
The external hdd is shared but hardly used, so hopefully its not starting to become corrupt (western digital elements). It does seem to be working fine and passes error checks, although it has never been defragmented on a regular basis (!)
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