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Redhat 9 / Fedora Hard Drive Light Flashing

Posted on 2003-11-18
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Last Modified: 2013-12-06
Currently, as my computer sits in Gnome... or even KDE my hard drive light will come on... come off... come on... come off. It is in regular intervals and stays lit for only 1/2 a second, and then waits 2 seconds and comes on again. I have no programs running, and the screensaver is even off. The system monitor shows nothing running, and I have shut down all of my daemons. I had Redhat 9 installed and then switched to Fedora, but I am finding no relief from this problem. These are fresh installs after I installed all of the updates to each of the OSes... has anyone else had this problem... or does anyone know how to fix it?

My computer is:

Motherboard: Asus P4PE
CPU: Pentium-4 2.4ghz 512k cache
Memory: 512 mb pc2700
Hard Drive: 40gb... I think it is 100m/s

Okay, and here is what I have come up with so far. While I am in Gnome or KDE... if I su to root, and run /sbin/init 3 it will take me to a terminal only... and the hard drive light will stop consistently blinking. I think it might by an X-windows deal... not sure though. Oh, when I am in KDE the light blinks like twice as fast... instead of a 2 second interval, it's a 1 second interval.

I am going to list the services I have running, but keep in mind, these services are also running when I am in terminal mode (when the hard drive does not have this problem) I have also shut down each and everyone of these before with the same problem still resulting:

acpid - I didn't have this one running in RH9
anacron
atd
autofs
crond
cups
cups-lpd
gpm
hpoj
ip6tables
ipchains
iptables
irqbalance - I didn't have this one running in RH9
kudzu
mdmonitor
messagebus - I didn't have this one running in RH9
microcode_ctl
network
portmap
privoxy
random
rawdevices
sgi_fam
smartd - I didn't have this one running in RH9
syslog
xinetd
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Question by:karl_herrick
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Expert Comment

by:shivsa
ID: 9776556
it might be because of any of these reason.

1. This sounds like Cron is running its scheduled jobs on your machine. Cron will run until the scheduled jobs are complete. If you reboot or switch off your machine whilst Cron is running, Cron will run again when the machine is up and not being used. You can scheduled these tasks for another time if you want. Cron is the daemon to execute Scheduled commands.
2. It may be indexing the files too. It may also be updating the journal and cache.
3. disk cache routine is working on, When you are doing nothing the cache start writing  which has not been written to disk.
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Expert Comment

by:Gns
ID: 9780342
Another guess would be konqueror or nautilus "polling after removable media". If the blinking light is all the "erroneous behaviour" you see, I'd just ignore it:-).
I'm sure you can switch that off... somehow:-).
Or it might be some swaping activity ... not that likely, but possible. Look at top for a while...

If you install IceWM or WindowMaker and run any of those, or if you run a failsafe session, do you get the "blinking" phenomenon?

-- Glenn
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Author Comment

by:karl_herrick
ID: 10180558
I need a refund on the points for this question because I have answered it myself.

Here is the problem.

Redhat 9, and Fedora use the following:

Autorun on KDE
and MagicDev on Gnome.

When these processes are run with a LITE-ON cdrw drive... it may have something to do with my P4PE motherboard as well, it will cause the hard drive light to blink constantly. It is searching for cd's in the drive.

Kill these processes or uninstall the cd drive, and it quits.

I uninstalled the cdrw drive.
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Author Comment

by:karl_herrick
ID: 10180613
I've also read the above combinations may cause problems in windows also.

here are other websites to read about the issue.

http://www.linuxquestions.org/questions/archive/5/2002/11/3/35989
http://club.cdfreaks.com/showthread/t-61346.html
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Expert Comment

by:Gns
ID: 10207883
PAQ with refund. Karl_herricks hard work shouldn't be flushed down the drain.

-- Glenn
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