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Thread: 12.04 freezes when moving files

  1. #1
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    Nov 2008
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    Ubuntu 10.04 Lucid Lynx

    12.04 freezes when moving files

    Hey all. I just installed 12.04 after transferring my 11.10 personals to a 500 GB external hard drive. The install went without a hitch (as usual), but every time I try to transfer files from my external hard drive, the entire systems freezes hard. No mouse movement, clock stops, the works. The same result occurs in Gnome Shell and in Unity. It doesn't matter if I'm transferring music or my 40 MB Pidgin config folder, it freezes every time.

    The issue doesn't appear to be in the release notes, or on the forum. Any help would be appreciated greatly!

  2. #2
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    Apr 2012
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    Re: 12.04 freezes when moving files

    my dear
    u must transfer data while in small patches. it means that u must transfer minimum data at one select . after this transfer u must again select rest of the files . it will help u. can u tell me that how much actuall data u r transfering.???
    Last edited by mobisallen; April 28th, 2012 at 08:43 AM.

  3. #3
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    Ubuntu 10.04 Lucid Lynx

    Re: 12.04 freezes when moving files

    ~160 GB total, but I'm not dumping it all in at once. Like I mentioned previously, I tried transferring just my .purple folder to restore my Pidgin settings. It got to around 30 MB out of 38 and the whole computer locked up. I'm fairly certain that it is something to do with the external hard drive, because Ubuntu has frozen 8 times in the past 4 hours, and only when I'm transferring files. My uptime is currently at 1.5 hours without issue, because I'm too scared to mount my external again.
    Last edited by shrimpy89; April 28th, 2012 at 10:15 AM.

  4. #4
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    Ubuntu Development Release

    Re: 12.04 freezes when moving files

    transferring 160gb in one batch SHOULDN'T be a problem whatsoever. I have no idea where mobisallen got the notion that you have to do it in multiple operations. That's just plain idiotic. This isn't fat32 we're dealing with. Ubuntu uses ext4. I work on the Fedora Project as a quality assurance officer, and when we integrated ext4 support, one of the things we did was test how it handled high usage of cache and IO operations. And I know I've copied a good 300gb in one operation using an external disk and ext4. And there's no difference between ext4 on Fedora and ext4 on Ubuntu. (ext4 should be the format of your boot drive, if you didn't specifically choose another)

    First I'm going to focus on potential physical problems:

    How is your external drive powered? Is it one USB cable for power and data, or two usb cables, AC adapter, etc?

    Is it SSD or Rotating?

    If it's an actual hard drive, and not SSD, while holding your ear up to the disk, plug it in. Does it click before it spins up? Does it spin up smoothly?

    Now for the potential software problems:

    Check the format of both the internal and external drive. While the external drive is plugged in, open the unity dash, and type in "system monitor". When it opens, click on the tab marked "File Systems". If you're unsure which disk is which, you can post a screenshot of the window, and I'll help you sort it out. If the external drive is NTFS, then it might be the source of the problem. Linux NTFS support is still in a semi-beta stage, and so it can get quirky. I can help you with reinstalling NTFS support if your external drive does use that format. It's worth a go at the least.

    Another thing to check for would be an issue with USB drivers, and/or caching on your boot disk. One way to check to see if it's an issue with the usb configuration, would be to try copying files off of another USB device (such as a flash drive). Checking disk cache is a little harder, but you can look at the drive activity light on your computer for a ballpark estimate. (always on, flickers consistently, or flickers every few seconds or so). You can also have a look at the "Resources" tab of the system monitor. Check what the "swap" usage is. It should be at around 0% when the system is idle.

    I hope some of this will help you sort out your problem. I will warn you that there could be quite a bit of investigating to do.

    Cheers!
    -Camden

  5. #5
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    Ubuntu 10.04 Lucid Lynx

    Re: 12.04 freezes when moving files

    Thanks for the reply, Camden. I'll try to give you as much info as possible. My Ubuntu FS is ext4, and the external HD's is FAT32. The external is powered using an AC adapter, and uses USB 2.X to transfer files. It's your standard disk-based hard drive.

    It spins up as smooth as can be, with no audible clicks. It is ~4 years old, which definitely could be a contributing factor.

    I've transferred files big and small from/to a 1 GB flash drive, and my system hasn't locked up yet. my uptime is nearly 4 hours so far. My swap is at 0%, and my RAM is at 35%, idle.

    I wouldn't mind doing a good deal of investigating, as long as I can put my music back on Ubuntu. Thanks again for replying!

  6. #6
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    Re: 12.04 freezes when moving files

    The first thing I'd start with would be your memory. Download a free copy of memtest86, burn the ISO and use it to boot and test your memory: http://www.memtest.org/#downiso

    I hope that comes back ok, because replacing memory can get very expensive based on the type. Then again, it would mean that nothing critical is wrong - you can always remove the bad stick of ram.

    One question I have is if you have access to a computer running Microsoft Windows XP sp2 or newer (dualbooting works). If so, then you can convert the filesystem from fat32 to NTFS, and see if copying the files will work (fat32 has filesize limits, so that could be your problem, as Windows will give you an error message, and linux will bite the bullet). I'd be more then happy to give you a tutorial on how to do it in Windows, and Linux (though it can get rather intense in linux)

    Also, how full is the disk? You mentioned that it was a 500 GiB, and I was wondering if it was much fuller then then 160 GiB that you're trying to copy.

    Cheers!
    Camden

  7. #7
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    Ubuntu 10.04 Lucid Lynx

    Re: 12.04 freezes when moving files

    I don't think it would be my memory. I transferred all this data (~160GB) onto the hard drive from my Ubuntu 11.10 install, and that transferred without a hitch. My 11.10 worked without freezing for nearly its entire life. Also, I'm dual-booting with a fully updated 64-bit Windows 7.

    With the 160 GB on it, the external HD is using 396 GB, with about 100GB of free space.

    Converting to NTFS would involve formatting the disk, wouldn't it? I don't know where I would back up so much information, if so.

  8. #8
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    Re: 12.04 freezes when moving files

    If you use windows to convert the disk from fat32 to NTFS, then no, you don't need to format anything. If you used linux, then it would involve shrinking partitions, and creating new ones. The process of converting from fat32 to NTFS is extremely safe, and I've used it in the past when I've had issues with fat32's filesize limitations.

    The interesting thing is that fat32 isn't supposed to used with a disksize greater then 32gb, so it sounds like this might be your problem.

    Boot into Windows, and type "command prompt" into the start search bar. Right click the command prompt, and choose "Run as administrator". Click "Yes" on the UAC dialog box that pops up.

    The syntax is as follows: convert <driveletter:> /fs:ntfs

    So, if your external drive used the letter E, then you'd type in:
    Code:
    convert e: /fs:ntfs
    If "Convert cannot run because the volume is in use by another process. Convert may run if this volume is dismounted first. ALL OPENED HANDLES TO THIS VOLUME WOULD THEN BE INVALID. Would you like to force a dismount on this volume? <Y/N>" comes up, then type "Y". No data will be lost.

    The convert process might make you do a diskcheck before you can convert the drive to NTFS. It's a pretty simple process; all you have to do is

    1. Open the "Computer" window
    2. Right-click on the drive
    3. Select the "Tools" tab
    4. In the Error-checking area, click <Check Now>.

    After the conversion is complete, boot back into ubuntu, and attempt to copy your files again. It should work without a hitch.



    Cheers!
    Camden

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    Tucson, Arizona
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    Re: 12.04 freezes when moving files

    I seem to be experiencing something similar to this and just filed a bug report.
    https://bugs.launchpad.net/ubuntu/+bug/999386

    Might be similar, as this was the only thing that seemed similar I found when Googling.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
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    12

    Re: 12.04 freezes when moving files

    This affects me as well.

    I have 11 drives in the system (all are in perfect health).

    8 - 2TB drives
    2 - 3TB drives
    1 - / SSD.

    When transfering files between drives (doesn't mater what drive) it hard locks on large transfers. Forces me to copy 10-20GB at a time. Over that it's hit or miss upto about 50GB, after that and it's 50/50 it'll hard lock.

    Given its a complete hard lock the logs have no indication of what might be causing the issue.

    Normally I'm not transfering large amounts of data except that I'm replacing the 2TB drives with 3TB drives one at a time.

    Also it happens on nfs mounts. Doesn't mater if I'm downloading or uploading to the server.

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