I have an old disk that often gets stuck in some form of loop, and often I need to perform a full reboot to get it "unstuck", whereupon I had found out about the
hdparm -w command. However, its manpage lists this command as dangerous:
Perform a device reset (DANGEROUS). Do NOT use this option. It exists for unlikely situations where a reboot might otherwise be required to get a confused drive back into a useable state.
What are the dangers, and do they exceed the dangers of data loss due to a hard-reboot?