USB Drive Reliability

Jeffrey Goldberg jeffrey at
Tue Aug 19 03:03:56 UTC 2008

[mailed and posted]

On Aug 17, 2008, at 7:36 PM, Jason C. Wells wrote:

> I realize that this is primarily a tech support forum. I wasn't  
> asking for a solution to the problem.  I was asking for other  
> peoples experiences. If the USB support in FreeBSD was spotty  
> according to other people, as has been reported, then I plan to not  
> even try to work on it more until I install 7.1.
> Just for the record:
> - crashes the system on attachment
> - crashes the system on detachment
> - the system hangs on attachment but resumes responding if you pull  
> the drive
> - installing the drive results in the little blue light coming on  
> with dmesg reporting attachment, but attempts to mount fail with  
> "device not configured" or somesuch
> - dataloss on the device that chkdisk in DOS couldn't save

Dien dobre Jason,

I have one system (7.0) which becomes extremely unstable if I have a  
USB drive connected.  I usually get a system crash in 10 to 30 minutes  
after mounting the USB drive.  It has never crashed without the USB  
drive attached, and it has never gone for more than three days with it  
attached.  Usually the failure is much sooner.  This was with 7.0- 
RELEASE.  I haven't checked since I've moved to 7-STABLE.

I have another system (identical software, different hardware) which  
is solid as a rock with the identical USB drive attached.

Unfortunately, the crashing system is a small form machine and there  
is no way to put in a different USB controller.  The USB drive was for  
backups, which I now do over the network to the machine that is  
working just fine.

Best of luck with this.


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