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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
We've been piecing together various reports and for sure FW 800 users have serious risk until updated BUT there is significant number of reports on Firewire 400 situations - enough to make a protective suggestion.

DO NOT RESTART A PANTHER SYSTEM WITH ACTIVE FIREWIRE DRIVES ATTACHED. THERE IS A RISK OF DIRECTORY DAMAGE. This MAY also apply to Jaguar.

For AC powered drives
Dismount the drives before shut down then turn them off.
On restart leave them off until the system is up then turn them on - it is not necessary to unplug the FW cable.

In the case of bus powered drives unplug the FW cable after dismount and plug them in after the system is back up.

The issue appears to be upon restart when the drives were active upon shut down and active upon start up. Both of those situations can cause directory damage if improperly executed and that may be the issue here.

When I first reported possible problems it was with observation here of some anomalies with the G5, Firewire and Panther.

Then reports came of the FW 800 issue and the FW 400 scattered reports got lost in the 800 issue.

That said we've always had a small stream of FW drives come in with directory issues over the past 18 months. We had blamed those on user error, improper dismount etc but from this it may be a weakness in the OS/Oxford bridge dismount/remount communication.

So we would recommend the same procedure as noted above for all OSX situations.
Dismount first before shutdown.
Restart the drives only when the OS is up. :(

Tedious but likely far safer for now if data is critical.
I suspect the huge proliferation of FW drives is giving a better view of what were scattered problems.
We picked up on it because we build FW drives and also repair crashed drives and so have a lot of "instances" to build a picture with.

This situation would explain some of the odd behaviours staff have had with our service drives and we'll be dismounting now and not plugging them in until the OS is up.

Here's the link

http://www.macfixit.com/article.php?story=20031107063933215#firewire

It was info on this link plus our own observations that led to these conclusions.

This is not brand specific but applies to all Firewire hard drives both bus powered and ac powered.
There is an updater for the FW800 issue which is a known issue.

THERE IS NO HARDWARE FIX for the apparent FW400 risk and will likely be solved by improvements with the OSes. The risk is small with the FW 400s but in particular with Panther there is enough evidence to warrant this caution and suggest a somewhat safer method.
An ounce of prevention...........y'know.

[ November 09, 2003, 11:18 PM: Message edited by: macdoc ]
 

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Thanks MacDoc

I had heard about the FW 800 problems and wondered if it had anything to do with FW 400. I will be careful until 10.3.1
 

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Damnit. Now, this is getting bad. First, Ethernet gets broken in 10.2.8, and now THIS?

Thanks for the warning, MacDoc.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
"Now, this is getting bad."
yeah I agree but I also don't want it overblown. It's just a suggestion that a safer procedure be undertaken especially but not limited to Panther. With critical data ( which should be backed up anyway but....) it's even more important to be safe rather than sorry.

Then this from my own staff this morning


"Thanks David, but too late for my powered firewire drive I have at home, I only noticed last night that it's gone as well

Geoff " :(
 

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I had some 'good luck' using Data Rescue X to recover from a drive that had been reformatted. Maybe your employee could try that.
 

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I had the same bad experience with a FW400 backup drive and Panther. Never had this happen with Jaguar.

When I restarted, I did not unmount and turn off the drive. After the restart, one of the partitions would not remount. I had to erase the partition to get it to remount. Thank heavens it was just a backup drive


Lesson learned - do as the doc suggests - unmount and turn off FW drives before restarting
 

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Hello,
I've got problems like this with 10.1 and 10.2 using a Formac 40 Go FW400 and LaCie 120 Go FW400 after system crash.
Under normal condition, I always unmount an disconnect FW400 drives before standby or switching off powerbook G4.
I do the same with my IPods.

I tried patch offered by LaCie, but my drive was excluded by software.
 
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