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I'm troubleshooting an external hardrive for photographer friend. She has a year's worth of photos stored on the external drive, unfortunately, Windows (her go-to operating system) does not recognize nor mount it. It would be nice to recover the information, even if the hardrive is trashed.

The hardrive is a BUP Slim SL disk-drive with a usb connector, manufactured by Seagate. I've plugged it into a working usb drive (pre-tested with another device for assurance) on a machine running Ubuntu. I have attempted the following:

(1): Tried fdisk, which never recognizes the drive:

sudo fdisk -l

(2): I tried twice successively:

dmesg | tail -n 20

At first, the drive is recognized:

[user]$ dmesg | tail -n 20
[75790.056781] usb 2-1.5: new high-speed USB device number 8 using ehci-pci
[75790.223408] usb 2-1.5: New USB device found, idVendor=0bc2, idProduct=ab26
[75790.223415] usb 2-1.5: New USB device strings: Mfr=1, Product=2, SerialNumber=3
[75790.223420] usb 2-1.5: Product: BUP Slim SL
[75790.223424] usb 2-1.5: Manufacturer: Seagate
[75790.223429] usb 2-1.5: SerialNumber: NA9DCBRL
[75790.225879] scsi host11: uas
[75790.226838] scsi 11:0:0:0: Direct-Access     Seagate  BUP Slim SL      0108 PQ: 0 ANSI: 6
[75790.246556] sd 11:0:0:0: Attached scsi generic sg7 type 0

In this brief window of time before disk spin-up, sg7 appears in /dev:

[user]$ ls /dev | grep sg
bsg
kmsg
sg0
sg1
sg2
sg3
sg4
sg5
sg6
sg7

A few moments later, I check dmesg again to find the disk spinning up and the following output:

[user]$ dmesg | tail -n 20
[75790.246556] sd 11:0:0:0: Attached scsi generic sg7 type 0
[75798.642812] sd 11:0:0:0: [sdf] Spinning up disk...
[75800.421000] usb 2-1.5: stat urb: status -71
[75800.632234] usb 2-1.5: USB disconnect, device number 8
[75800.632402] sd 11:0:0:0: tag#0 uas_zap_pending 0 uas-tag 1 inflight: CMD 
[75800.632410] sd 11:0:0:0: tag#0 CDB: Test Unit Ready 00 00 00 00 00 00
[75800.366209] .ready
[75800.722111] sd 11:0:0:0: [sdf] Read Capacity(16) failed: Result: hostbyte=DID_ERROR driverbyte=DRIVER_OK
[75800.722120] sd 11:0:0:0: [sdf] Sense not available.
[75800.812119] sd 11:0:0:0: [sdf] Read Capacity(10) failed: Result: hostbyte=DID_ERROR driverbyte=DRIVER_OK
[75800.812127] sd 11:0:0:0: [sdf] Sense not available.
[75800.878119] sd 11:0:0:0: [sdf] Write Protect is off
[75800.878128] sd 11:0:0:0: [sdf] Mode Sense: 00 00 00 00
[75800.908167] sd 11:0:0:0: [sdf] Asking for cache data failed
[75800.908176] sd 11:0:0:0: [sdf] Assuming drive cache: write through
[75801.084129] sd 11:0:0:0: [sdf] Read Capacity(16) failed: Result: hostbyte=DID_ERROR driverbyte=DRIVER_OK
[75801.084137] sd 11:0:0:0: [sdf] Sense not available.
[75801.174187] sd 11:0:0:0: [sdf] Read Capacity(10) failed: Result: hostbyte=DID_ERROR driverbyte=DRIVER_OK
[75801.174194] sd 11:0:0:0: [sdf] Sense not available.

There appears to be some error upon spin-up, however I am unable to garner much else from this output. I tried searching the inter-webs for 'dmesg: status -71' with no luck. Also, at this point, the device dissapears from /dev:

[user]$ ls /dev | grep sg
bsg
kmsg
sg0
sg1
sg2
sg3
sg4
sg5
sg6

Has anyone run into a similar problem mounting a external disk-drive, or understand the output of dmesg? As previously stated, I searched for 'dmesg output: status -71' online, yet nothing came of it. Maybe it isn't a dmesg error code? I'm clueless. It would be nice to know if the photos on the drive are salvageable, even if the drive itself isn't.

Any help is greatly appreciated!

Paul .

Note: I posted this same question to the Ubuntu forums yesterday, but it gained zero traction. https://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=2397579

Update #1: I discovered this post (https://forums.suse.com/archive/index.php/t-5133.html) from 2014 (from user clausbc) concerning the same line of Seagate usb hard drive. The problem looks identical, with the device disconnecting after disk spin-up, reading:

[ 3618.458008] sd 3:0:0:0: [sda] Spinning up disk........................
[ 3644.096435] usb 1-6: USB disconnect, device number 2
[ 3645.020070] .ready
[ 3645.020154] sd 3:0:0:0: [sda] READ CAPACITY(16) failed
[ 3645.020157] sd 3:0:0:0: [sda] Result: hostbyte=DID_NO_CONNECT driverbyte=DRIVER_OK
[ 3645.020162] sd 3:0:0:0: [sda] Sense not available.
[ 3645.020194] sd 3:0:0:0: [sda] READ CAPACITY failed

Which is almost identical to my dmesg output:

[75798.642812] sd 11:0:0:0: [sdf] Spinning up disk...
[75800.421000] usb 2-1.5: stat urb: status -71
[75800.632234] usb 2-1.5: USB disconnect, device number 8
[75800.632402] sd 11:0:0:0: tag#0 uas_zap_pending 0 uas-tag 1 inflight: CMD 
[75800.632410] sd 11:0:0:0: tag#0 CDB: Test Unit Ready 00 00 00 00 00 00
[75800.366209] .ready
[75800.722111] sd 11:0:0:0: [sdf] Read Capacity(16) failed: Result: hostbyte=DID_ERROR driverbyte=DRIVER_OK
[75800.722120] sd 11:0:0:0: [sdf] Sense not available.
[75800.812119] sd 11:0:0:0: [sdf] Read Capacity(10) failed: Result: hostbyte=DID_ERROR driverbyte=DRIVER_OK
[75800.812127] sd 11:0:0:0: [sdf] Sense not available.

The forum user jmozdzen said that the line "[ 3645.020157] sd 3:0:0:0: [sda] Result: hostbyte=DID_NO_CONNECT driverbyte=DRIVER_OK" suggests that (from the kernel's point of view) the driver is not connected.

Is there a way for me to keep the external drive connected, such that it continues to show in /dev as sg7? Or is this a safety feature to protect the hard drive in case of some critical malfunction? Currently, the only functioning tool I have to study this problem is dmesg, and only for this brief window before disconnect...

Update #2: I discovered the following via lsusb:

[user]$ lsusb -v

Bus 002 Device 013: ID 0bc2:ab26 Seagate RSS LLC Backup Plus Slim Portable                Drive 1 TB
Couldn't open device, some information will be missing
Device Descriptor:
  bLength                18
  bDescriptorType         1
  bcdUSB               2.10
  bDeviceClass            0 (Defined at Interface level)
  bDeviceSubClass         0 
  bDeviceProtocol         0 
  bMaxPacketSize0        64
  idVendor           0x0bc2 Seagate RSS LLC
  idProduct          0xab26 Backup Plus Slim Portable Drive 1 TB
  bcdDevice            1.08
  iManufacturer           1 
  iProduct                2 
  iSerial                 3 
  bNumConfigurations      1
  Configuration Descriptor:
    bLength                 9
    bDescriptorType         2
    wTotalLength           85
    bNumInterfaces          1
    bConfigurationValue     1
    iConfiguration          0 
    bmAttributes         0x80
      (Bus Powered)
    MaxPower              500mA
    Interface Descriptor:
      bLength                 9
      bDescriptorType         4
      bInterfaceNumber        0
      bAlternateSetting       0
      bNumEndpoints           2
      bInterfaceClass         8 Mass Storage
      bInterfaceSubClass      6 SCSI
      bInterfaceProtocol     80 Bulk-Only
      iInterface              0 
      Endpoint Descriptor:
        bLength                 7
        bDescriptorType         5
        bEndpointAddress     0x81  EP 1 IN
        bmAttributes            2
          Transfer Type            Bulk
          Synch Type               None
          Usage Type               Data
        wMaxPacketSize     0x0200  1x 512 bytes
        bInterval               0
      Endpoint Descriptor:
        bLength                 7
        bDescriptorType         5
        bEndpointAddress     0x02  EP 2 OUT
        bmAttributes            2
          Transfer Type            Bulk
          Synch Type               None
          Usage Type               Data
        wMaxPacketSize     0x0200  1x 512 bytes
        bInterval               0
    Interface Descriptor:
      bLength                 9
      bDescriptorType         4
      bInterfaceNumber        0
      bAlternateSetting       1
      bNumEndpoints           4
      bInterfaceClass         8 Mass Storage
      bInterfaceSubClass      6 SCSI
      bInterfaceProtocol     98 
      iInterface              0 
      Endpoint Descriptor:
        bLength                 7
        bDescriptorType         5
        bEndpointAddress     0x01  EP 1 OUT
        bmAttributes            2
          Transfer Type            Bulk
          Synch Type               None
          Usage Type               Data
        wMaxPacketSize     0x0200  1x 512 bytes
        bInterval               0
        Command pipe (0x01)
      Endpoint Descriptor:
        bLength                 7
        bDescriptorType         5
        bEndpointAddress     0x82  EP 2 IN
        bmAttributes            2
          Transfer Type            Bulk
          Synch Type               None
          Usage Type               Data
        wMaxPacketSize     0x0200  1x 512 bytes
        bInterval               0
        Status pipe (0x02)
      Endpoint Descriptor:
        bLength                 7
        bDescriptorType         5
        bEndpointAddress     0x83  EP 3 IN
        bmAttributes            2
          Transfer Type            Bulk
          Synch Type               None
          Usage Type               Data
        wMaxPacketSize     0x0200  1x 512 bytes
        bInterval               0
        Data-in pipe (0x03)
      Endpoint Descriptor:
        bLength                 7
        bDescriptorType         5
    bEndpointAddress     0x04  EP 4 OUT
    bmAttributes            2
      Transfer Type            Bulk
      Synch Type               None
      Usage Type               Data
    wMaxPacketSize     0x0200  1x 512 bytes
    bInterval               0
    Data-out pipe (0x04)

I read somewhere that there may be a conflict with the module uas and these Seagate usb drives. I turned off the module using "sudo modprobe -r uas", but this was not helpful.

  • By listening to it, can you tell if the disk is actually spinning? If not, maybe a small rap with a pencil eraser will jar it enough to free it up. – ubfan1 Aug 2 '18 at 15:56
  • @ubfan1 The device disconnected immediately after spin-up. I discovered some posts online regarding this line of Seagate usb drives, (from what I understand is) suggesting that this may be an issue with it being a usb3 device plugged into a usb2 port. I removed the uas module, which was the reported issue, and now I can continue to see sg7 in /dev. I've tried mounting it, but it failed to recognize it as a storage medium. I'm trying a data dump (dd) from /dev/sg7 to an image. Putting my ear up to the drive, I hear what could be the mechanical motion of a spinning disk. – Paul Eugenio Aug 2 '18 at 16:33
  • @ubfan1 Actually, I lied. The device continues to disappear from /dev. Unfortunately, removing the uas module wasn't helpful, and the data dump did not copy anything. My desperate attempt ended in failure >.< – Paul Eugenio Aug 2 '18 at 17:05
  • Try an external power supply for the external USB case, or at least a Y USB cable, to ensure enough power is available. – ubfan1 Aug 2 '18 at 17:20
  • Searching for "stat urb: status -71" shows many reports of defective USB cable or plug – Andrea Corbellini Aug 2 '18 at 19:30
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There is a certain chance that only the USB controller part of the drive is defective.

So your chance is unboxing the drive from the USB case and directly connecting it to a SATA port (or 2,5" IDE port via an adapter if this is an old drive) of your computer.

Then you can directly access the drive and - if it still works - copy all data from it. This way you can also get a more informative S.M.A.R.T. value read-out with smartctl.

You can install S.M.A.R.T. tools with

sudo apt-get install smartmontools

and get all the values with (adjust the drive path /dev/sda)

sudo smartctl --all /dev/sda

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