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Seagate Freeagent freezes pc

by hogan / March 7, 2008 11:09 PM PST

I'm running Windows XP SP2, 2G5 Intel processor.

I have an old Seagate 250G external HD which works fine, and a 500G Maxtor external that works fine. I just plug them in and drag files or directories over to copy them .

The Freeagent gives me hassle though.

When I plug it in and try to copy info, my screen and entire system freezes, so I have to switch it off and turn it on again. Another fault is that the windows crash, so I have to re-open them and start copying again.

When I was playing some music over my pc while copying, the sound 'looped' over a single note when the screen froze.

I have tried looking at the task manager to see what is happening but that also freezes and is not showing any odd characteristics.

I have noticed that it performs better if I don't have my internet connection working (USB wireless).

This is the second Freeagent drive I've tried and both have created the same errors, last time Seagate took it back as faulty and gave me a refund but the problem seems to be more than just one off.

Any ideas?

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by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / March 7, 2008 11:21 PM PST

Install a new PCI USB 2.0 card and see if it works better on that.

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seagate freeagent
by hogan / March 8, 2008 12:47 AM PST
In reply to: Try...

Thanks for you suggestion.

I have 6 USB ports, 4 back, 2 front and they work with other USB 2 products - my other external HD's, scanners, cameras etc.

The drive does work better when it is plugged in to the socket away from the wireless USB, so it does seem to be a swap problem somewhere. Is there some alterations I need to make to my memory allocations? I'm not sure why this is happening thought, moving files around doesn't use huge amounts of memory of power and I'm using a scanner while I'm sending this, as well as running a background transfer of some older work to a remote site, so other functions are fine.

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The reason for that has to do with USB "hubs", chips.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / March 8, 2008 1:37 AM PST
In reply to: seagate freeagent

You've confirmed it's an issue with your PC. This area can be rough on some because they'll feel it's the new product fault. But your observation moves the issue from the device back to the PC.


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freeagent problems
by hogan / March 8, 2008 2:08 AM PST

The problem does seem to be pc generated but then all my other external products work, so it would also indicate that there is something wrong with the freeagent drives and the software that is on them, otherwise I would experience other problems.

If it is a hangup due to swapping problems and data sizes/ packets, this might be because of something on the buffer register on the Seagate product.

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by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / March 8, 2008 2:11 AM PST
In reply to: freeagent problems

Hard disks and all that work triggers an issue with your PC. If there was a product issue then the product would vanish from the shelves.

I understand why owners take such a position but it won't get the issue resolved. In fact I can't help because the details are missing in your post about your PC.

If this is not working with your PC, it's time to return it if you can't tackle USB issues on your PC.


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Freeagent problems
by hogan / March 9, 2008 3:02 AM PDT
In reply to: Or...

Manufacturers don't take product off the shelf when there is a problem - DDT, tobacco etc. When the cost outweighs profit, then they think about improving it, or pack it off to a low cost area. I was working with a cable box company five years ago and their engineers didn't use Seagate because of performance problems. I was hoping that they had cured it by now.

When my pc hangs, the external drive does too, so I have to power down both.

When I try and copy files from the Seagate to my internal drive, windows crashes (just the GI, leaving me with my desktop background and nothing else). This happens even when I shut everything else down, which leads me to suspect there is a buffer problem with the Seagate product.

I'm running an Intel 4 3G2, with USB2 ports (all show fully functioning , which function fine for my older Seagate and a Maxtor I bought a few months ago.

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Can I be more blunt?
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / March 9, 2008 3:08 AM PDT
In reply to: Freeagent problems

You gave me a sliver of the info I needed to help. How about the make and model of the PC or the motherboard or both?

Then I can share a link to the USB motherboard chipset driver I suspect. You would also have your BIOS current.

-> Remember that many don't want it to work and parade the failure around showing that companies don't pull off the defective gear. Your choice here but having cured this too many times you won't be convincing me it is an issue we see on the occasional PC. Even more often on homebuilt PCs with out of date BIOS and motherboard drivers.

The disk is in your court.

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Parting thought (sorry I didn't mention it early)
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / March 9, 2008 3:14 AM PDT

Most of these drives arrive with aging and now pathetic FAT32 file system. You can see the issue when you try to copy a 5GB file to the drive and it fails.

-> Would you call this a defect in the product?

On to what I do to resolve this. When I get a new USB hard disk the first thing I do is to remove all the partitions, create a new NTFS volume and let Windows format it.

Now I'm off to a fresh start with a damage resistant (not damage proof) file system.

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Seagate FreeAgent Drive Corruption
by Bill00TN / July 22, 2008 10:54 AM PDT

Similar problem but related... PC/laptop cannot detect Seagate FreeAgent 500GB drive USB after several weeks/months of use. I starts with the drive just disappearing aafter a period of it killing performance on my system. Then it is not detected after reboot, etc. Early solumtionis to unplug drive and then it comes back. But finally it goes south and does not come back.

I have had this happen to three (3) drives so far.

One guy at Seagate said if Linux EVER mounted drive, it would eventually go corrupt. Now I don't know what Linux has to do with it.
I have two other USB drives [One Seagate 160GB non-FreeAgent drive and one WD MyBook] that have survived 100% thru Windows XP and Linux and back. What does that one Seagate person know or was he covering for a badly implemented drive. I have NOT booted Linux since told that, but the drive is gone again (July,2008).

Anyone have any insight to this problem?

At least, it is under warranty until 2012, but who wants a drive that is not dependable???

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What I do is...
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / July 22, 2008 1:15 PM PDT

Move the drive to another enclosure and unless the drive has been dropped or fried it usually comes up happy.

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