Nicely boxed, containing usb cable (about 1.5m), power block and power cables - both British and American. Nicely solid metal "pages", despite the black plastic "book cover". Quite stylish green circle on the side, although not ultra bright.
It doesn't power on until you plug in the usb cable as well as the obvious power cable, but once set up it is automatically picked up by Windows 2000 (or above) and starts up a window asking if you want to install Google software (toolbar for IE, Google desktop search and Picasa), Acrobat and the pdf manual or Western Digital disk tools. WD Tools seem slightly pointless apart from a disk eraser tool but even then I would download a free open source military grade version from the internet to use rather than theirs. The WD tests just seem to say Pass or Fail - would have liked to see more information about these. Apparently the disk contained is a SATA WDC WD5000KS disk.
Copied 1.9gigabytes (as measured by Windows folder properties rather than the 2gb WD would call it) as represented by 2500 files, to the disk in about 7minutes 35seconds - so a rough throughput of 250megabytes a minute. Very quiet buzz&clicking when writing data - not bad considering you can actually look in through the cooling vents and see the physical disk inside.
Gets slightly warm after extended effort so placing it on it's end like an actual book seems best due to the cooling slots then available on top.
It powers itself down from it's already quiet state to utterly silent after about 15minutes and then takes about 7 seconds to power back up if you access it. Very quiet unless on a resonating surface (i.e. a wooden desk) when it makes a slight hum from the vibration - however the supplied sticky rubber feetpads only have mounting points if it's laid down on it's side so you'll need to improvise.
All in all, a very good drive for backups at a very good price point.