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  1. #1
    Uranium Lounger CWBillow's Avatar
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    OK, suddenly, my external USB drive keeps cutting in and out, losing connection.

    I checked 3 different ports, and got the same result, so I don't *think* it's hardware, because once it's connected, it works fine. I restored from a backup image last night, and now it seems OK.

    Question is:

    Can a driver for a USB port just "go bad", and if so, is there a way to fix that without having to revert to a full backup recovery or re-installing Windows 7 (RTM)?

    Regards,
    Chuck Billow
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    ~ A(lan) A(lexander) Milne (1882-1956)- "House at Pooh Corner"

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    Quote Originally Posted by CWBillow View Post
    OK, suddenly, my external USB drive keeps cutting in and out, losing connection.

    I checked 3 different ports, and got the same result, so I don't *think* it's hardware, because once it's connected, it works fine. I restored from a backup image last night, and now it seems OK.

    Question is:

    Can a driver for a USB port just "go bad", and if so, is there a way to fix that without having to revert to a full backup recovery or re-installing Windows 7 (RTM)?

    Regards,
    Chuck Billow
    Based on your description, I would think there is a problem with the drive itself. Possibly the power or the USB connection from the drive side.
    It is unlikely that 3 ports malfunction at the same time.
    Do other USB devices work OK?
    When the USB drive "loses the connection" does it power down?
    Have you tried a different USB cable?
    Does this happen after Windows 7 sleeps or hibernates?
    Have you checked the power management settings for the drive?

    Joe
    Joe

  3. #3
    Uranium Lounger CWBillow's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by joeperez View Post
    Based on your description, I would think there is a problem with the drive itself. Possibly the power or the USB connection from the drive side.
    It is unlikely that 3 ports malfunction at the same time.
    Do other USB devices work OK?
    When the USB drive "loses the connection" does it power down?
    Have you tried a different USB cable?
    Does this happen after Windows 7 sleeps or hibernates?
    Have you checked the power management settings for the drive?

    Joe
    Joe:

    This is a WD Book drive;
    All other USB devices seem to be functioning;
    I don't know "power down, it just loses connection;
    Tried a cable, but not connected long enough to tell;
    Windows 7 isn't set to hibernate;
    Is there power management for each device? I have hibernate etc., turned off.

    I restored Win& froma abckup, and now the drive isn't cutting off -- on/off/on/off -- like it was.

    Chuck
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    Chuck,
    You still need to learn to remember EVERYTING you have done to your machine, so we can help you troubleshoot them.

    What kind of tweaking had you been doing before this started happening?

    Now running HP Pavilion a6528p, with Win7 64 Bit OS.

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    Uranium Lounger CWBillow's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DaveA View Post
    Chuck,
    You still need to learn to remember EVERYTING you have done to your machine, so we can help you troubleshoot them.

    What kind of tweaking had you been doing before this started happening?
    Dave:

    Actually, this time it wasn't anything. I had bought Win_7 RTM, and was setting up everything from scratch -- no hardware changes.

    I reached a point, and then made an image backup -- last night -- and then "out of the blue" my external USB drive started dropping out.

    I checked the cable, I unplugged and re-plugged, I re-booted. I could get at it, and then it would drop out again -- in 15 seconds or so.

    I restored from an image backup, and now it *seems* to be working -- although I thought I remembered that it would stop running after a certain amount of time (go into a "pause" mode?) which I had asked WD about when I first got the drive, because when I would go to access it, it would have to "wake up", but WD said that was the design, so I quit worrying about that.

    I had tried different ports -- same result. I did NOT switch out cables, since at that point I couldn't find an extra.

    And yet, now, as I said, since the restore of the image, it seems to be fixed, and has been working now for a couplke hours fine.

    I had some sort of "thing" with a USB once years back, and I recall that I ran a "fix (upgrade?) on XP that fixed it too.

    Are USB ports run by drivers? Could it/they get trashed?

    Chuck
    -------------------------------------------------
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    ~ A(lan) A(lexander) Milne (1882-1956)- "House at Pooh Corner"

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    Uranium Lounger viking33's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CWBillow View Post
    Are USB ports run by drivers? Could it/they get trashed?
    Chuck,
    USB ports and hubs do indeed have drivers. Get trashed? Sure, like any other file.
    BOB
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  7. #7
    Uranium Lounger CWBillow's Avatar
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    Bob:

    Well, maybe this time I was or am lucky, because it seems to be running OK now. I think I'm going to get one or two more drives, and rotate them.

    Isn't there any way to re-install or restore drivers if they get trashed? It would certainly be faster than having to restore a whole partition.

    Regards,
    Chuck
    -------------------------------------------------
    "Good judgment comes from experience, and experience - well, that comes from poor judgment."

    ~ A(lan) A(lexander) Milne (1882-1956)- "House at Pooh Corner"

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    Quote Originally Posted by CWBillow View Post
    Bob:

    Well, maybe this time I was or am lucky, because it seems to be running OK now. I think I'm going to get one or two more drives, and rotate them.

    Isn't there any way to re-install or restore drivers if they get trashed? It would certainly be faster than having to restore a whole partition.

    Regards,
    Chuck
    In Control Panel, classic view, check Problem Reports and solutions occasionally, since if you do have a problem, Windows 7 will log it and keep an eye out for solutions for it. This may only apply to certain types of problem, but itís worth a try. While in Control Panel, check Device Manager, as that includes USB Controllers at the bottom of the list. Add Hardware, and Administrative Tools, are two additional possibilities to look at. In all cases you should run as Administrator. Depending on your system sounds, Windows should make a sound to let you know that it has discovered the drive when you plug it in. You can also look for it in Computer.

    If this is a desktop computer, the USB ports at the back of are likely to be slightly better than those at the front. A short USB cable with gold terminals would provide the best connector. Is there any reason to suspect a power interruption?

    My Book drives do have a feature that allows them to spin down and snooze when they have not been used for a time, so when you do want it, give it a chance to spin up. You might, for example, explore it in Computers to get it spinning and ready for action, although I have never tried it with mine, and I have three.

    Finally, what is the state of the data on the drive? How much free space is there, and how badly fragmented are the data? Maybe you ran out of free space, or maybe the drive is a fragmented mess, or maybe there are drive errors, all of which is unlikely with a new drive, but something that tends to accumulate the longer you have it, as you add and remove data. You can right-click on the drive in Computer, then left-click on Properties (which will show you the free space), then Tools, where you can run Check for Errors, and Defragment.


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    Uranium Lounger viking33's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CWBillow View Post
    Isn't there any way to re-install or restore drivers if they get trashed? It would certainly be faster than having to restore a whole partition.

    Regards,
    Chuck
    Device Manager>Properties>select device>select uninstall or rollback or update or details.
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    While having a good laugh at Bob's new (?) signature joke, I remembered one additional detail in the far-fetched assortment of refined drive management reminders: the external drive is configured to be FAT32 by default, for backward compatibility. I refomatted all of mine to NTFS to enjoy the alledged benefits of it, and you might consider doing the same. For anything that requires FAT32 (or earlier), saving to DVD is fine.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CWBillow View Post
    Bob:

    Well, maybe this time I was or am lucky, because it seems to be running OK now. I think I'm going to get one or two more drives, and rotate them.

    Isn't there any way to re-install or restore drivers if they get trashed? It would certainly be faster than having to restore a whole partition.

    Regards,
    Chuck

    Have you checked the Western Digital site for diagnostic software?

    Joe
    Joe

  12. #12
    Uranium Lounger CWBillow's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by peterg View Post
    While having a good laugh at Bob's new (?) signature joke, I remembered one additional detail in the far-fetched assortment of refined drive management reminders: the external drive is configured to be FAT32 by default, for backward compatibility. I refomatted all of mine to NTFS to enjoy the alledged benefits of it, and you might consider doing the same. For anything that requires FAT32 (or earlier), saving to DVD is fine.
    Peter, mine is NTFS as well. It came loaded with backup software that I had no use for, so I reformatted it then.

    Chuck
    -------------------------------------------------
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    ~ A(lan) A(lexander) Milne (1882-1956)- "House at Pooh Corner"

  13. #13
    Uranium Lounger CWBillow's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by joeperez View Post
    Have you checked the Western Digital site for diagnostic software?

    Joe
    Thought so Jow, but haven't found any. But I gotta take another look, 'cause right now it's running without a problem.
    ?

    Chuck
    -------------------------------------------------
    "Good judgment comes from experience, and experience - well, that comes from poor judgment."

    ~ A(lan) A(lexander) Milne (1882-1956)- "House at Pooh Corner"

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