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I've seen this posted before here and there on the net, but never could find any conclusion to the problem. I'm hoping somebody can enlighten me a little.
All of the linux distros (and bsd, for that matter) do the same thing; when I power down my laptop (a Toshiba M55), just as the power is going off, it makes a loud dying beep, which gets cut short, and everything dies abruptly. I've been told that this is the hard drive doing an emergency park because the *nix kernels aren't powering them off correctly.
I love linux, been using it for a long time, same with unix and the other *nix's. But on this laptop, I don't want to kill my hard drive by constantly doing emergency parks every time I shut it down...it's only rated for a few hundred of those, from what I understand.
The only circumstances I'm aware of that cause an "emergency park" are in a system with Active Hard Drive Protection, as in thinkbooks and many macs. These use an inertial sensor to determine when the system is being dropped for an emergency park. Shutting down the system should not cause an emergency park, AFAIK.
Hi there, thanks for the info. I thought that too...the odd thing, though, is that it is silent on shutting down under winxp. There's been some threads in the ubuntu bug tracker (i put mine there as well) on this issue, but I can't tell if it's actually something wrong with everybody's systems or if this is just a system beep that gets cut off too quick or something. It's the same sound that the computer will make if you just hit the power button without "shutting down". Kind of a dying beep. I don't mind the sound, I just want to be sure that my HD isn't going to croak.
I think this is because of SMART capabilities, or rather lack thereof. First off I should warn you that this post is based on no research whatsoever but only my findings by experience.
A hard drive arm is moved by magnetism. When there's no power going to the hard drive, the arm is magnetically pulled to a spot not meant for reading/writing, called the 'landing zone'. There's 2 ways to get there: cutting the power as I mentioned, or directing the arm to the landing zone by means of a digital signal. Your linux distro probably doesn't send that signal while windows does. I believe this is based on SMART, which also does temp monitoring etc.
The sound you hear is the arm being snapped to the landing area at very high speed (the magnets in hard drive are very powerfull), when using windows there's no sound since the arm is already there. With older hard drives this used to be a problem because when te power was cut the arm would not also move sideways, but down as well, hitting the disc and scratching it. Modern harddrives however do no longer have this 'flaw' and should have no (fysical) problems on power cuts.
As a little test, running 'hdparm -Y /dev/hda' (this tells your drive to take a nap) should also cause the sound you described (if I am correct about all this stuff that is).
Ok, I tried what you said. As root, I issued "hdparm -Y /dev/sda" (mine is sda, obviously); and it said "command issued", and didn't do much. No noises or anything, other than when I tried to run a program or something, it would be totally dead in the water. I couldn't do much of anything. In frustration I finally just hit the power button, which after 5 seconds turned it off without a sound.