USB hard drive disconnects and reconnects spontaneously

I've got a USB hard drive (Intenso 320GB 2.5") which is plugged into my Pi.
It auto-mounts to /media/pi/ but I umount it from there and
manually mount it to a folder /mnt/recordings where it is used as the
destination for TV recordings made by TVheadend.
I've noticed that at random times (not related to movement of the USB
connection between drive and the Pi), the drive disconnects itself. The
first I know is when I see a pop-up dialogue "Removable media is inserted -
Open in File Manager". It remounts to /media/pi/ - always the same ID.
However I notice that the raw device /dev/sda and sda1 changes to
/dev/sdb(1) and then sdc(1), and so on for each successive disconnection and
I was going to reconfigure TVheadend to refer to the /media/pi/ mount
point, but there's something that prevents TVHeadend working in this case,
even though I can "ls" the files on the drive and the mount point has 777
Any suggestions? The drive is formatted as NTFS. Could that be relevant:
does NTFS have some sort of auto-dismount capability.
I'm about to try another drive to see if that fails in the same way. I
didn't notice a memory stick (formatted as exFAT) fail in this way, even
though it appears as the same raw device /dev/sda(1).
The drive has been used for ages on various Windows PCs without any signs of
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I think you have a loose connection or a faulty controller (on one side or the other).
The successive device names imply that this is about the device, nothing to do the filesystem on it.
Reply to
Richard Kettlewell
On a sunny day (Wed, 19 Sep 2018 09:04:14 +0100) it happened "NY" wrote in :
Looks like a power failure to the drive to me, could be caused by a bad USB connector or power supply not strong enough. You can check that when if it changes from sdb1 to sdc1 by typing mount to see when it says sdc1 if sdb1 is still mounted, that would mean it is not properly un-mounted, check cable... power supply.
I have had a _lot_ of bad USB cable incidents all over the place. USB drives take a lot of power, current on the USB.
Reply to
Jan Panteltje
You could link /mnt/recordings to /media/pi/, or bind-mount it on /mnt/recordings. This way it will be available there immediately once it reconnects.
Reply to
Andreas Neumann
It's happened with a different disk (Transcend) so it looks as if it's the Pi that's doing it. I wonder whether it's a power supply issue, as someone suggested.
I'll try linking /mnt/recordings to /media/pi/ - is it better to make a hard link or a symbolic one? I've not heard of bind-mounting. I'll research it.
I'll also get a powered USB hub. I've seen warnings about not powering too many things from the Pi itself, even if it has a Pi-branded 2.5A PSU. I hoped I'd be able to stay under the limit. I've read something about a low-voltage warning as a symbol in the top right of the screen, but I've never actually witnessed it.
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If it actually is a hardware issue, it is of course better to resolve that.
I have never used hard links, all my linking works fine being soft :-)
It is a way to mount an already mounted resource simultaneously at another place, the manpage should suffice for explanation as it is easy to do.
That might help, as stability depends on peak current consumption of the drive. OTOH I am running an SSD off the Pi without any problems, current uptime is 158 days.
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Andreas Neumann
Sounds an excellent idea to be able to mount a device in two places in the filesystem.
I've just checked the voltage at the +5V and GND pins on the GPIO and *at the time of testing* I'm getting 5.1V, so definitely not below spec. It is interesting that with the drive in a different USB port (bottom left rather than bottom left, looking with the Ethernet port to the left of the USBs) the new drive hasn't bombed out yet.
But I think a powered hub might be useful - or else a HDD with its own power supply. I have one somewhere - but I can't think where that "somewhere" might be :-)
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It may well only be dropping when a certain pattern of activity is occurring - high CPU load, disc being accessed, other peripherals active, so you really need to check when stressing the system.
I would always recommend running a spinning disc from a separate power supply. Small consumer spec SSDs are OK to power from the Pi.
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Yes it's my own fault. I've seen it recommended not to power "greedy" devices like spinning HDDs and even DVB-T adaptors from the Pi itself. I'll get a powered hub.
It's been running for a good many hours now with a pen drive in place of the spinning HDD, so it's not a generic USB port problem. I wonder where I put my HDD that has its own power supply - those are usually a PITA but this might be a case where it comes into its own ;-)
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