Sleep (aka Power management) problem with external USB (Maxtor Basics)harddisk


P

Peter Dassow

Hi everybody,

I really would appreciate it if anybody can give me a hint about that.
I bought a Maxtor Basics (1TB) USB drive, and it runs well so far.
BUT after a few minutes the external drive ALWAYS go into sleep mode (it
flashs slowly with the drive LED), and if I am accessing the drive, it
costs about 10 secs to spin up and get ready.
I have NOT used a windows (xp) power management settings like spin down
the harddrive after x minutes - NO I am using a desktop and I set all
settings to DO NOT SLEEP nor any other power saving setting.
Also, I controlled the USB interface settings with the device manager
(of Windows) and I disabled all kind of "computer can use
powermanagement settings" with that USB interface.

And last but not least, I own also other USB harddisks and they never go
into sleep mode with the SAME computer.

I was also so crazy and I opened the case of the Maxtor Basics drive and
I exchanged the drive temporarily with a Hitachi 500 GB harddisk drive
to see what will happen. And surprisingly it still sleeps after a few
minutes. So I am sure it does NOT depend on the harddisk itself, it must
be related with the USB/SATA interface electronics of the Maxtor Basics
drive.

Any idea how to influence that "sleep" behaviour if it does NOT depend
on the harddisk drive itself and also it does NOT depend on Windows (XP)
settings ? How can I influence that Maxtor Basics interface electronics
or is it just crap hardware and we have to warn everybody to buy a
Maxtor Basics USB harddrive ?

Regards
Peter
 
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A

Arno Wagner

Previously Peter Dassow said:
Hi everybody,
I really would appreciate it if anybody can give me a hint about that.
I bought a Maxtor Basics (1TB) USB drive, and it runs well so far.
BUT after a few minutes the external drive ALWAYS go into sleep mode (it
flashs slowly with the drive LED), and if I am accessing the drive, it
costs about 10 secs to spin up and get ready.
I have NOT used a windows (xp) power management settings like spin down
the harddrive after x minutes - NO I am using a desktop and I set all
settings to DO NOT SLEEP nor any other power saving setting.
Also, I controlled the USB interface settings with the device manager
(of Windows) and I disabled all kind of "computer can use
powermanagement settings" with that USB interface.
And last but not least, I own also other USB harddisks and they never go
into sleep mode with the SAME computer.
I was also so crazy and I opened the case of the Maxtor Basics drive and
I exchanged the drive temporarily with a Hitachi 500 GB harddisk drive
to see what will happen. And surprisingly it still sleeps after a few
minutes. So I am sure it does NOT depend on the harddisk itself, it must
be related with the USB/SATA interface electronics of the Maxtor Basics
drive.
Any idea how to influence that "sleep" behaviour if it does NOT depend
on the harddisk drive itself and also it does NOT depend on Windows (XP)
settings ? How can I influence that Maxtor Basics interface electronics
or is it just crap hardware and we have to warn everybody to buy a
Maxtor Basics USB harddrive ?

Basically your only chance is to get software to change this either
from Maxtor or from the manufacturer of the USB-SATA bridge
in the enclosure. You cannot influence this from the host computer
in any standardized way. The only thing you can do on the host
is to send a small request periodically that prevents the sleep
mode. This requires at least basic programming skills.

Arno
 
P

Peter Dassow

Arno said:
Basically your only chance is to get software to change this either
from Maxtor or from the manufacturer of the USB-SATA bridge
in the enclosure. You cannot influence this from the host computer
in any standardized way. The only thing you can do on the host
is to send a small request periodically that prevents the sleep
mode. This requires at least basic programming skills.
There is no software available from Maxtor/Seagate which do this job,
their "SeaTools" does not help, nor the "Maxtor Blast" one.
I guess the drive is crap and nobody should buy it.

Regards
Peter
 
P

Peter Dassow

Peter said:
There is no software available from Maxtor/Seagate which do this job,
their "SeaTools" does not help, nor the "Maxtor Blast" one.
I guess the drive is crap and nobody should buy it.
Correction. There is no software explicitely mentioned. But I downloaded
from Seagate the Maxtor OneTouch for Lite software (and inside is a
program named "Maxtor Manager"), which was NOT recommended for my Maxtor
Basics Desktop drive. If installed, I can select my external drive and I
can set the sleep intervall. That solved my problem.

Regards
Peter
 
A

Arno Wagner

Previously Peter Dassow said:
Correction. There is no software explicitely mentioned. But I downloaded
from Seagate the Maxtor OneTouch for Lite software (and inside is a
program named "Maxtor Manager"), which was NOT recommended for my Maxtor
Basics Desktop drive. If installed, I can select my external drive and I
can set the sleep intervall. That solved my problem.

Thanks for posting that info.

Arno
 
P

Peter Dassow

Christian said:
At least Maxtor OneTouch 4 is one of those recent USB-devices supporting
standard SAT (SCSI/ATA Translation, T10/1711) ATA PASS THROUGH in the
USB-bridge.

This allows to send ATA commands directly to the drive in a standardized
way. It reportedly works with smartmontools and hdparm (>= 9.7), at
least on Linux.
http://smartmontools.wiki.sourceforge.net/overview_USB-Support

So probably this is also the case for the Maxtor Basics drive.
Unfortunately, vendors typically don't mention this useful feature in
the product specs.
Christian,

unfortunately this would not help, because the problem (the sleep
mechanism) was NOT related with the drive) was located in the USB bridge
/ interface electronics. I changed the harddrive and it still shows the
same behaviour, so I know it was not helpful to send ATA commands.

Regards
Peter
 
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A

Arno Wagner

At least Maxtor OneTouch 4 is one of those recent USB-devices supporting
standard SAT (SCSI/ATA Translation, T10/1711) ATA PASS THROUGH in the
USB-bridge.
This allows to send ATA commands directly to the drive in a standardized
way. It reportedly works with smartmontools and hdparm (>= 9.7), at
least on Linux.
http://smartmontools.wiki.sourceforge.net/overview_USB-Support
So probably this is also the case for the Maxtor Basics drive.
Unfortunately, vendors typically don't mention this useful feature in
the product specs.

Not quite relevant, as this is not a drive issue, but useful info
nonetheless!

Also good to know that the first devices that can do standardized
pass-through are beginning to appear.

Arno
 

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