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I just purchased a new 2TB Drive External Seagate, My main system uses both Windows and Ubuntu So I am pretty much stuck with keeping my drive as NTFS. I have done this without any problems before but since I got this new drive I have been having issues. When I first load up Ubuntu the drive mounts and runs fine, after an unspecified amount of time i start getting Input/Output errors when accessing the drive. When I goto the Disk Utility I get a message stating the drive is "Unknown or Unused", If I disconnect and reconnect the drive or reboot everything is fine again.

There's no errors coming up with S.M.A.R.T and it seems to work fine while under windows.

Any thoughts?

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migrated from Jun 16 '10 at 20:18

This question came from our site for system and network administrators.

Does $ dmesg show the USB device disappearing when this happens? Any other relevant logs messages in /var/log/syslog or /var/log/messages? – EEAA Jun 16 '10 at 3:31
I don't see anything in the logs, But I did do a ton of searching around today, and I found out that it might be some sort of power management thats built into the drive causing the problem. The drive going into hibernate where Ubuntu, sees the drive as gone and isn't properly powering it back up, and windows is properly powering it up. – gopherman Jun 16 '10 at 22:26
up vote 3 down vote accepted

I have found the problem and hopefully a solution

This will be my last Seagate Drive I purchase.


It has been 12 hours, after installing sdparm and running the command recommended in the link, and I have not lost connection to the drive or experienced the errors I was getting previously here is what I did

apt-get update
apt-get install sdparm
sdparm --clear STANDBY -6 /dev/sd[YOUR_DEVICE] 


  • Ubuntu: Ubuntu 9.10 (Karmic Koala)
  • Kernel: 2.6.31-22-generic
  • Fully updated.

Everything looks good now.

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that page is a couple of years old, and the last section indicates kernels newer than 2.6.24 contain a fix. if you could, please update this answer with what exact steps you took to fix the problem (and what version of ubuntu and linux kernel you're using). thanks! – quack quixote Jun 17 '10 at 16:37
I don't usually upvote folks who find their own answers, but you found a solution to a weird problem, so here you go! – kmarsh Jun 18 '10 at 13:53

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