How to shut down external hard drive

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How to shut down external hard drive

Postby fjdz on Wed Jan 16, 2013 11:28 am


I have an old external Lacie hard drive (connected through firewire) which I mostly use for backup, and therefore would like to shut down automatically when it has been idle for some time. I first tried using hdparm, but I receive this:
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sudo hdparm -Y /dev/sdb

 issuing sleep command
SG_IO: bad/missing sense data, sb[]:  70 00 05 00 00 00 00 0a 00 00 00 00 20 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00
I get the similar results with the options "--idle-unload" or "--idle-immediate". I then tried with
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sudo sg_start --stop /dev/sdb
which actually had some effect: the drive starts to shut down but then spins up again right afterwards. So it seems like sg_start could actually work if I could just figure out what makes it spin up again, and somehow prevent that from happening. Any ideas? Also It would be interesting to know what the difference is between sdb1 and sdb. In "System information", the drive is listed as sdb1, but all commands appear to have the same effect if I simply use sdb instead.

Edit: I forgot to mention that I have Linux Mint 14 Cinnamon.
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