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Swap File Partition and Disk Drive Light

Posted on 1998-02-18
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Last Modified: 2013-12-06
I installed a quite old version of Red Hat Linux about 6 months ago. I noticed that the Hard Disk Light was always on, but since there did not seem to be any actual access of the Disk I did not worry about it too much. I also heard
various explanations, the most plausible of which seemed to be that there was a bug in the Disk Controller Software.

Anyway, I upgraded to Red hat ver 5 a couple of days ago. I still have the disk light problem but when I run XWindows, (i.e. the version that came with Red Hat 5) there is a Control Panel Program which has an option called "System Configuration". When that is activated it reports "Partition /dev/hda2 seems to have been deleted. Shall I remove it from
etc/fstab ?"

Regardless of whether I say Yes or No to this prompt. If I then close the System Configuration Application, the hard Disk Light always goes out and stays out for the duration of the session (except for when the system needs to legitimately read something from the hard disk).

Note also that if I edit fstab to take out the /dev/hda2 i.e the swap partition, it always reappears in fstab.

Does anyone have any ideas/suggestions/comments as to what is happening and more importantly, can they tell me how
to fix the problem permanentlyand correctly?
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Question by:grsshpper
8 Comments
 

Expert Comment

by:spjuver
ID: 1636148
Which kind of harddisk is it??
Which kind of IDE interface is it?
Which verion of kernel??
What drivers is compiled in the kernel??
What's in the BIOS for tha harddisk??
Do you have more harddisks on the same IDE-cable??
If you have what is tha for kind of harddisk??

I know that there can be problems with old IDE harddisks on E-IDE controllers. A combination of the BOIS-settings, kernel driver settings and BIOS with an old harddisk can cause problems.

If the HDD light lit when you have halt the machine DO NOT SWITCH THE POWER OFF!!!
I did and it was just to kiss thee HDD's good bye...


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Author Comment

by:grsshpper
ID: 1636149
The Hard Disk is a Seagate 1 Gigabyte Drive.
I will get the answers to the other questions, and post them here. However, I suspect the problem is related to the swap
partition rather than the hardware.
Also, I can solve the problem by running the System Configuration Application in X-Windows. What I really want to be able to do is to fix it without running X-Windows.
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Expert Comment

by:spjuver
ID: 1636150
OK,

What you say is that the fstab is showing an unexisting hda2 which is tied as swap.

That means you have done swapon on this partition, right??
Then you could find hda2 in mtab as well.

What shows swapon -s??

Try a swapoff before edit fstab.
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Author Comment

by:grsshpper
ID: 1636151
I took out the reference to the /dev/hda2 swap file from fstab and it has stayed out, but the light still stays on.

I ran swapon and swapoff - they both give the same message :
/proc/swaps : no such file or directory




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Expert Comment

by:spjuver
ID: 1636152
You don't have /proc/swaps.

Do you have /proc mounted??

Otherwise this is a very strange thing...
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Expert Comment

by:jlms
ID: 1636153
Most probably your hard disk led is not properly connected, this could be particularly true if your machine is hime made...
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Accepted Solution

by:
wreack earned 100 total points
ID: 1636154
Use fdisk and verify that the swap pertation is indeed there ,,if not vreat one...If it is delete and remake the swap.
I had something liek that on a ATT-486 computer with RH 4.1
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Author Comment

by:grsshpper
ID: 1636155
wreack, if I follow your procedure, does that mean I have to
compltely reinstall Linux and the Win 3.1 stuff I have on another
partition on the same HDD ?

When you answer this question I will give your answer a rating
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