USB external hard drive disconnecting

Bill Davidsen davidsen at
Tue Feb 19 18:47:50 UTC 2008

Reid Rivenburgh wrote:
> 2008/2/17 Bill Davidsen <davidsen at>:
>> I apologize for missing this earlier, if this is a FreeAgent or similar
>> drive, the drive goes to sleep, the interface shuts down, and comes back
>> up with part as USB 1.1 and part as 2.0 (I may be describing this
>> poorly, it's been a while). Anyway, help is here, plug in the drive and
>> run the attached script (if the mailer doesn't eat it). If the drive
>> plugs in as sdf (mine does) run "FixFreeAgent sdf" and the problem
>> should go away.
> Hi Bill.  Thanks for the information.  I've done a lot of searching
> regarding this problem and have since seen that info.  Unfortunately,
> I have a Cavalry drive, and sdparm reports things like this:
> # sdparm --clear STANDBY -6 /dev/sdd
>     /dev/sdd: Generic   External          1.04
> change_mode_page: page offset failed: given response length too small,
> offset=4 given_len=4 bd_len=0
> I assume my brand isn't known by sdparm or doesn't speak the right
> protocol or something.  So I've had to resort to workarounds like cron
> jobs that fiddle with the disk.

Did you look at your mode page? You might be able to find info from the 
vendor, not having the drive stay online is painful. And since Staples 
and OfficeMax have them on sale regularly, they make great cheap backup 
> I'm sure your post will help some poor Seagate user, though!

Sorry it didn't help you, I hope you're right about helping someone, I 
kind of put this together from multiple places.

Bill Davidsen <davidsen at>
   "We have more to fear from the bungling of the incompetent than from
the machinations of the wicked."  - from Slashdot

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