Art Alexion on 22 Aug 2009 12:08:54 -0700

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[PLUG] Foreboding behavior on IDE controller

My motherboard support a bunch of SATA drives and one IDE controller.  The 
SATA slots are mostly full.  I have an optical drive on the IDE controller.

From an prior system, I installed a Promise PCI/IDE card to support two IDE 
hard drives on which I mostly keep music.  At boot, the Promise card loads 
its BIOS and detects the drives before grub loads, and after the POST.

I have an iPod Touch which I haven't been able to get to work with Linux, so I 
popped a Mac Mini on top of the Linux box and mounted the aforementioned 
drives as Samba shares.  I mostly only use the Mac to manage the iTouch.

Last week while trying to load some music, I noticed that iTunes could not 
find a lot of the files in its library.  I looked at the share in Finder and 
could only see Lost+Found and one directory.  I switched to the Linux box, 
and in Konqueror, I could only see the same.

The output of the ls command was strange.  It found a lot more directories, 
but before displaying them, it voiced a lot of complaints about stuff it 
couldn't find.  I never saw this before.  Usually ls finds stuff or it 
doesn't, but I have never seen it complain about stuff that should be there 
that isn't.

I decided to unmount and remount it to see if that would bring things back.  
It refused to remount.

When I tried to reboot, it stalled at the point where the Promise card is 
scanning for drives.  Repeatedly.  I figured that was the problem.  I decided 
to pull the card and see if it would boot.  Then, if it did, replace the card 
and selectively detach the drives to see if the card or the drives were the 

When I pulled the card, it booted fine.  The card was dusty, so I cleaned it, 
and put it back.  Tried it again and it booted fine without pulling any of 
the drives.  I have booted it several times since, and no problem.

Freak one time issue?  Card going? Drive going? Guesses?

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