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Old 02-26-2003, 10:25 PM   #1
Registered: Aug 2002
Posts: 189

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usb hard drive crash, kernel 2.4.20 and ext3 mount failure

I have a Redhat 8 with kernel 2.4.18-24. I have an external usb 2 hard drive. I am able to mount the hard drive and access the files, however after a few minutes of reading video data off of the usb drive, the system crashes. Hoping to increase the stability of the usb drive, I decide to go install the latest kernel 2.4.20. The install process went well, however, on the reboot, my ext3 data partition on top of an LVM would not get mounted. The os complains of wrong fs type or bad superblock or too many mounted parttions or something like that. I thought I hosed the data. Went back to 2.4.18-24 using Norton Ghost and a couple of reboots later Linux can mount and read the ext3 data partition. The problem seems to be specific to kernel 2.4.20. Any ideas how to improve the stability of the external usb 2 storage? How do you fix the ext3 problem in the latest kernel? Thanks
Old 03-04-2003, 01:48 AM   #2
Registered: Feb 2002
Location: Jerusalem, Israel
Distribution: Fedora Core 3
Posts: 154

Rep: Reputation: 30
hope this helps:

"Andrew Morton [interview] posted on the lkml, "In 2.4.20-pre5 an optimisation was made to the ext3 fsync function which can very easily cause file data corruption at unmount time". This bug only affects people using ext3 in the uncommon "data=journal" mode, or files operating under "chattr -j", and does not affect the 2.5 series of kernels.

... Until a proper fix can be developed, he recommends that people "please avoid ext3/data=journal". Since "data=journal" is not the default ext3 mode, it is unlikely most people running ext3 will be affected by this. However, it is a data corruption bug so you should double-check that you use either "data=ordered" or "data=writeback" as your ext3 mode of operation. "

although not directly related, it points to a prob with the ext3 fs
on the new kernel.
Old 03-04-2003, 07:59 PM   #3
Registered: Aug 2002
Posts: 189

Original Poster
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Thanks. I decided to apply the pre4 patch to 2.4.20 and it works fine. While the usb storage seems more stable, it is still crash prone. My network is much more stable though and I have not needed to restart it for the past 24 hours and counting. I am intrigued by kernel 2.5.X though and wonder what the difference between this and the 2.4 kernel tree is.


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