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External HDD I/O Device Error


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#1 Alexander Ceed

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Posted 07 April 2016 - 09:58 AM

I have an internal HDD, with 2 partitions: 100GB and 930GB, which I use it with this device http://www.scythe-eu...-connect-3.html

 

After some innactivity time (usually 10-20 minutes), the drive outputs the following error:

The request could not be performed because of an I/O device error.

 

This happens everytime I try to open a file or browse to a folder. And only happens on the biggest partition (930GB). The smallest one always work but all my data is one the other one. This is usually solved by unplugging and replugging the drive.

 

I've been trying to find a fix for this for a long time and found nothing. It's really irritating and don't know why it does this. I've been fiddling arround with windows power options and set everything to High Performance, never sleep, hybernate and nothing.

 

Any insights would be appreciated. Thank you.



#2 steve6375

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Posted 07 April 2016 - 10:06 AM

What is the make and model of the drive?

Are you connected via USB to your PC?

 

Are you booting to Windows, DOS, linux, Mac, android?

Are you booting from the device or booting from an internal HDD?

 

You say it never happens on the smaller partition - are you sure? Maybe it is because you never access the smaller partition after 20-30 minutes? Of do you mean that when you get the I/O device error on the large partition, you can still access the smaller partition?



#3 Alexander Ceed

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Posted 07 April 2016 - 10:22 AM

What is the make and model of the drive?

 

I don't have the exact make of the drive but it is an Western Digital Black 5400RPM 1TB 2.5'' Drive.

 

Are you connected via USB to your PC?

 

USB

 

Are you booting to Windows, DOS, linux, Mac, android?

 

On the 100GB I have Windows 8.1 installed. The drive is used as a windows live HDD.

 

Are you booting from the device or booting from an internal HDD?

 

The HDD is connected via USB to my laptop's internal HDD, which also runs Windows 8.1.

 

Of do you mean that when you get the I/O device error on the large partition, you can still access the smaller partition?

 

That's it. When I run an executable off the large partition it gives I/o error but I run a file or exec off the smaller partition everything works fine.



#4 steve6375

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Posted 07 April 2016 - 10:35 AM

Sorry,  I am still not clear. Can you outline the steps you take to reproduce the problem (i.e. step 1 - connect X to Y, step 2 - switch on laptop, step 3 - boot to XXX, step 4 - do yyyyy, step 5 - do zzzzz, step 6 - etc.)?

 

Do you get the problem both when booting from the USB partition 1 to Win8  AND when you boot from the laptops internal HDD to Win8?

 

Can you access the 2nd partition normally, without problems, when you first boot, but then if you do not access the USB drive for 20 minutes, you then get the error.

 

If the drive is going into standby after 20 minutes or so due to having no accesses, then both partitions would be inaccessible??



#5 Alexander Ceed

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Posted 07 April 2016 - 10:46 AM

This HDD is used as a Windows live disk. When I boot from it everything works fine. The problem occurs when the HDD is plugged in as a removable drive in an already booted laptop (inside windows).

 

For instance, my laptop is running Windows 8.1. I'm already inside the os, logged in with a few programs running. I plug in the USB HDD, open some PDF files and an executable off the large partition, and then close the files and executable. After 20 minutes, the same PDF suddenly outputs I/O error when trying to open. This goes for every document, not just the one I previously opened. And all of this happens only on the 930GB partition.

The 100GB partition works any time. Even after several hours and still works.

 

Do you get the problem both when booting from the USB partition 1 to Win8  AND when you boot from the laptops internal HDD to Win8?

 

No, this only happens when the drive is plugged in an already booted system (directly to windows, as a removable drive).

 

 

If the drive is going into standby after 20 minutes or so due to having no accesses, then both partitions would be inaccessible??

 

No, only the larger on. But the driver never goes to sleep as I have disabled all power options in windows.


Edited by Alexander Ceed, 07 April 2016 - 10:48 AM.


#6 steve6375

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Posted 07 April 2016 - 10:51 AM

That is most odd! It makes no sense!

Did you check the Windows Event Logs and look for errors to do with that volume ?

Also, what does the Disk Management GUI show?

Try using DISKPART in a command console to view the status of the disk and volumes when the error occurs.

 

diskpart

list disk

sel disk 3   (where 3 is USb disk)

detail disk

sel vol U:   (where U: is USb volume)

detail vol

 

etc.

exit



#7 Alexander Ceed

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Posted 07 April 2016 - 11:08 AM

Full output of diskpart:

DISKPART> list disk

  Disk ###  Status         Size     Free     Dyn  Gpt
  --------  -------------  -------  -------  ---  ---
  Disk 0    Online          298 GB      0 B
* Disk 2    Online          931 GB      0 B

DISKPART> select disk 2

Disk 2 is now the selected disk.

DISKPART> detail disk

Jmicron Corp. USB Device
Disk ID: 22F0D273
Type   : USB
Status : Online
Path   : 0
Target : 0
LUN ID : 0
Location Path : UNAVAILABLE
Current Read-only State : No
Read-only  : No
Boot Disk  : No
Pagefile Disk  : No
Hibernation File Disk  : No
Crashdump Disk  : No
Clustered Disk  : No

  Volume ###  Ltr  Label        Fs     Type        Size     Status     Info
  ----------  ---  -----------  -----  ----------  -------  ---------  --------
  Volume 3     G                NTFS   Partition    100 GB  Healthy
  Volume 4     H                NTFS   Partition    831 GB  Healthy

DISKPART> select volume H:

Volume 4 is the selected volume.

DISKPART> detail volume

  Disk ###  Status         Size     Free     Dyn  Gpt
  --------  -------------  -------  -------  ---  ---
* Disk 2    Online          931 GB      0 B

Read-only              : No
Hidden                 : No
No Default Drive Letter: No
Shadow Copy            : No
Offline                : No
BitLocker Encrypted    : No
Installable            : Yes

Volume Capacity        :  831 GB
Volume Free Space      :  457 GB

DISKPART> select volume G:

Volume 3 is the selected volume.

DISKPART> detail volume

  Disk ###  Status         Size     Free     Dyn  Gpt
  --------  -------------  -------  -------  ---  ---
* Disk 2    Online          931 GB      0 B

Read-only              : No
Hidden                 : No
No Default Drive Letter: No
Shadow Copy            : No
Offline                : No
BitLocker Encrypted    : No
Installable            : Yes

Volume Capacity        :   99 GB
Volume Free Space      :   88 GB

I'll try to check eventviewer but there are so many entries in there, I don't even know where to start.

 

The Disk Management GUI says nothing. Only Disk 2 and says it's Online. Both partitions healthy.


Edited by Alexander Ceed, 07 April 2016 - 11:12 AM.


#8 steve6375

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Posted 07 April 2016 - 11:25 AM

Is that after you get the error or before you get the error?



#9 Alexander Ceed

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Posted 07 April 2016 - 11:58 AM

The above is after the error.

 

The following is before the error (did a fresh restart):

DISKPART> lis dis

  Disk ###  Status         Size     Free     Dyn  Gpt
  --------  -------------  -------  -------  ---  ---
  Disk 0    Online          298 GB      0 B
  Disk 1    Online          931 GB      0 B

DISKPART> select disk 1

Disk 1 is now the selected disk.

DISKPART> detail disk

Jmicron Corp. USB Device
Disk ID: 22F0D273
Type   : USB
Status : Online
Path   : 0
Target : 0
LUN ID : 0
Location Path : UNAVAILABLE
Current Read-only State : No
Read-only  : No
Boot Disk  : No
Pagefile Disk  : No
Hibernation File Disk  : No
Crashdump Disk  : No
Clustered Disk  : No

  Volume ###  Ltr  Label        Fs     Type        Size     Status     Info
  ----------  ---  -----------  -----  ----------  -------  ---------  --------
  Volume 3     G                NTFS   Partition    100 GB  Healthy
  Volume 4     H                NTFS   Partition    831 GB  Healthy

DISKPART> select volume H:

Volume 4 is the selected volume.

DISKPART> detail volume

  Disk ###  Status         Size     Free     Dyn  Gpt
  --------  -------------  -------  -------  ---  ---
* Disk 1    Online          931 GB      0 B

Read-only              : No
Hidden                 : No
No Default Drive Letter: No
Shadow Copy            : No
Offline                : No
BitLocker Encrypted    : No
Installable            : Yes

Volume Capacity        :  831 GB
Volume Free Space      :  457 GB

DISKPART> select volume G:

Volume 3 is the selected volume.

DISKPART> detail volume

  Disk ###  Status         Size     Free     Dyn  Gpt
  --------  -------------  -------  -------  ---  ---
* Disk 1    Online          931 GB      0 B

Read-only              : No
Hidden                 : No
No Default Drive Letter: No
Shadow Copy            : No
Offline                : No
BitLocker Encrypted    : No
Installable            : Yes

Volume Capacity        :   99 GB
Volume Free Space      :   88 GB

Edited by Alexander Ceed, 07 April 2016 - 12:13 PM.


#10 steve6375

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Posted 07 April 2016 - 02:08 PM

Maybe try accessing the volume from the command line

 

dir H:\

 

could also try a rescan in diskpart?

 

Also, maybe assign a different drive letter to the H: volume  (no idea why, but just trying to think of experiments!).



#11 Alexander Ceed

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Posted 08 April 2016 - 10:23 AM

When double clicking on the files, the error is The request could not be performed because of an I/O device error.

When trying drag-and-drop to notepad++ the error is H:\WinNTSetup\cfg.ini doesn't exist. Create it?

 

I was mistaken, this issue happens on both partitions (100GB and 831GB). Sorry for confusing you.

 

 

Well, I have tested diskpart> rescan and it worked. I do not know why it works, maybe someone can shed some light.

I'll also check how long it lasts before the I/O error appears again.


Edited by Alexander Ceed, 08 April 2016 - 10:28 AM.


#12 steve6375

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Posted 08 April 2016 - 10:38 AM

Ahh, OK, so the drive is going into standby - presumably it is not spinning?

 

There are some suggestion here. Also some 'keep alive' utils/tricks here. Maybe disable selective suspend here.



#13 Alexander Ceed

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Posted 08 April 2016 - 10:45 AM

USB Suspend have been disabled for a long time, power options have been set to full performance and HDDs are set to 0 (never turn off). Still, it does this.

 

I was actually wanted to make a script to write to it but was affraid of wearing out the drive. My laptop is on non-stop, and this external HDD is connected non-stop. With this in mind, writing 5MB every 3 minutes, won't wear out the drive?



#14 steve6375

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Posted 08 April 2016 - 10:49 AM

NoSleepHD seems OK. You can set it to write every 15 minutes. I don't see what harm it would do to the drive considering that a page file is updated loads of times a second on system hard drives...



#15 steve6375

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Posted 08 April 2016 - 11:43 AM

You can check your Windows settings using powercfg. Use -l to find current active profile and then -query to get all settings. You can redirect to a file and then look for USB and Disk settings.

Attached Thumbnails

  • CapturePowercfg.PNG

Edited by steve6375, 08 April 2016 - 11:45 AM.


#16 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 08 April 2016 - 01:43 PM

Maybe a stupid thought :unsure:, but why exactly one would need to actually write to a hd to keep it spinning? :dubbio:

 

I mean, maybe it is needed to avoid that a read command may result in a no-start because of disk cache, but what about copying (reading) a large (larger than disk cache) from the disk to NUL device?

 

Or interrogating the device SMART (if pass-trough the USB bridge)?

 

Would hdparm to disable APM (Advanced Power Management) for the disk work? (the USB bridge may well not allow or ignore it):

http://disablehddapm.blogspot.it/

https://sites.google...ablehddapm/home

 

:duff:

Wonko



#17 cdob

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Posted 08 April 2016 - 02:13 PM

USB Suspend have been disabled for a long time, Still, it does this.

Some WD are set to spindown after 10 minutes.
It's a internal feature of the hard disk firmware, not a windows setting.

Adjust the firmware setting
https://wiki.archlin...ndex.php/hdparm
You may have to connect the hdd to the motherboard chipset.

#18 Alexander Ceed

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Posted 08 April 2016 - 06:03 PM

It's a internal feature of the hard disk firmware, not a windows setting.

I agree but I cannot change firmware, you must understand that I have many of these drives, used for testing stuff. Modyfing the firmware manually just wouldn't work for me.

 

 

I mean, maybe it is needed to avoid that a read command may result in a no-start because of disk cache, but what about copying (reading) a large (larger than disk cache) from the disk to NUL device?

What does selected text mean?

So basically, a script which reads the content of the entire partition recusively, and outputs to nul? Something like:

dir /b /s > nul . Would this work? Or did you mean copying a file and pasting it to nul?

 

 

 

Now, I have this question: why does diskpart rescan works? I mean all it does is to redetect unplugged devices. If this device is already plugged in, how can it redect it?


Edited by Alexander Ceed, 08 April 2016 - 06:09 PM.


#19 cdob

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Posted 08 April 2016 - 09:00 PM

I have many of these drives

The SATA USB adapter should wake up the hard disk. It's another firmware bug inside the SATA USB adapter.
Can you replace the SATA USB adapter?

#20 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 10 April 2016 - 03:37 PM

Well, it has to be seen if a command like dir /b/s >nul would be "enough"

 

But hold on your horses.

 

The specific adapter you have is a (re-branded) no-name, el-cheapo adapter and it is unlikely to have anything "programmable" or changeable, you would need to identify the chip inside it.

Those are intended to connect a disk in an emergency for recovery purposes or backup/imaging and not for being connected (unused) for long periods of time, I doubt they have a "keep-alive" provision, which may instead be present (but not necessarily) in controller/adapters inside external hard disk cases.

 

Some hard disks (and until you don't post EXACT make/model of the hard disk you have and that multiplied in the meantime to "many" there is no way to know if this is the case) may have a setting in the ATA accessible part of the firmware (so-called APM or Advanced Power Management feature) that puts them on sleep INDEPENDENTLY from the settings in Windows.

 

Do ALL the hard disks you have, when connected to that specific PC through that same specific USB controller/adapter behave like that?

Do you have another (different make/model) USB adapter?

Does the same disk(s) behave like that when in the other adapter?

 

IF the issue is the setting in the ATA accessible part of the hard disk, it can be easily set through hdparm (though it has to be seen if the specific adapter allows pass-through ATA commands, i.e. it is possible that in order to change the setting you will need to connect the disk directly to a motherboard).

IF the issue is with the USB controller/adapter, it is unlikely that it can be fixed. 

 

 

 

:duff:

Wonko



#21 Alexander Ceed

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Posted 10 April 2016 - 07:05 PM

Do ALL the hard disks you have, when connected to that specific PC through that same specific USB controller/adapter behave like that?

 

Yes. I came to the conclusion that it's due to the USB adapter because it works as expected if I connect the HDD to a computer/notebook as a secondary HDD (through SATA port).

 

Do you have another (different make/model) USB adapter?
Does the same disk(s) behave like that when in the other adapter?

Unfortunatelly, just this one.

 

 

I made a batch script that is executed through Task Scheduler. It runs every 5 minutes, and creates a new text file in the drive's root. This may not be enough but I'll have to test it. To exceed the drive's buffer, I;ll have to write > 70MB every 5 minutes.



#22 steve6375

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Posted 11 April 2016 - 08:44 AM

Why not just use this open source project?



#23 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 11 April 2016 - 12:57 PM

Yes. I came to the conclusion that it's due to the USB adapter because it works as expected if I connect the HDD to a computer/notebook as a secondary HDD (through SATA port).

Naah, that doesn't count, as the way the disk is mounted/accessed/whatever when directly connected to SATA may be different from when it goes through a bus converter which may well act as an "insulating" layer between the device and the PC.

 

:duff:

Wonko



#24 Alexander Ceed

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Posted 14 April 2016 - 07:57 AM

Well on this particular drive, a script that writes 1KB of data overy 5 minutes works fine. No issues for 5 days.

Issue solved, thank you all for your valued input.






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