Linux tearing up your Harddrive? FUD?

Sambit Bikas Pal sambitbikaspal at
Sun Nov 23 07:07:08 UTC 2008

On Sat, Nov 22, 2008 at 19:00, Chris <chris062689 at> wrote:
> I keep on hearing about how this bug has never been fixed,

> Is this just Linux FUD being spread around?  Or is this a "real" bug?

Most Harddrive manufacturers set aggressive power management features
as default. This causes the hdd to spin down every few seconds. But it
hardly serves any purpose, as normal disk activity causes it to spin
up no sooner than it goes idle. The result is unnecessary load/unload
cycles which reduces the life of the hdd. This can be easily overcome
by running "sudo hdparm -B 254 /dev/sda" (replace sda with the
appropriate disk) manually at boottime. This sets the least aggressive
power management.
But there is another serious issue. The harddisk is not being turned
off properly, it is not spinning down before shutdown. This is leading
to an increase of POWER RETRACT COUNT at every shutdown. This problem
was there in Feisty and Gutsy, but was absent in Hardy. Now it has
again surfaced back in Intrepid. Using the old 2.6.24-21-generic
kernel in Intrepid doesn't give this trouble. So  I guess this must be
a issue with the new kernel.

Sambit Bikas Pal
MS 3rd Year
Indian Institute Of Science Education & Research Kolkata,
HC 7, Sector-III Salt Lake, Kolkata-700106
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