Red Hat Bugzilla – Bug 88292
(IDE)System hangs when doing heavy disk access
Last modified: 2007-04-18 12:52:51 EDT
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Description of problem:
System hangs when doing heavy disk access. Most of the time this has happened
when using "Add/Remove Applications" and the program reads the system state or
installs a new package. When the system hangs, the hdd led is lit constantly and
the only option is to push the reset button. I suspect it has to do with my disk
controller, a Highpoint hpt366.
I've looked in /var/log/messages but can't see anything relevant.
Version-Release number of selected component (if applicable):
Steps to Reproduce:
1. Start program "Add/Remove Applications" under "System Settings" menu.
Actual Results: System hangs/freezes. hdd led is lit constantly.
CPU: Celeron (Mendocino) 500 MHZ
Memory: 256 MB
Motherboard: Abit BE6
BIOS: Award Software International, Inc. - 07/05/2000
Diskcontroller: Highpoint hpt366 (UDMA66 onboard chipset)
Disk: Seagate ST380011A 80GB DMA100
Output from doing "hdparm -I /dev/hdg":
ATA device, with non-removable media
Model Number: ST380011A
Serial Number: 3JV07SE6
Firmware Revision: 3.04
Used: ATA/ATAPI-6 T13 1410D revision 2
Supported: 6 5 4 3
Logical max current
cylinders 16383 65535
heads 16 1
sectors/track 63 63
CHS current addressable sectors: 4128705
LBA user addressable sectors: 156301488
LBA48 user addressable sectors: 156301488
device size with M = 1024*1024: 76319 MBytes
device size with M = 1000*1000: 80026 MBytes (80 GB)
LBA, IORDY(can be disabled)
bytes avail on r/w long: 4 Queue depth: 1
Standby timer values: spec'd by Standard
R/W multiple sector transfer: Max = 16 Current = 16
Recommended acoustic management value: 128, current value: 0
DMA: mdma0 mdma1 mdma2 udma0 udma1 udma2 udma3 *udma4 udma5
Cycle time: min=120ns recommended=120ns
PIO: pio0 pio1 pio2 pio3 pio4
Cycle time: no flow control=240ns IORDY flow control=120ns
* READ BUFFER cmd
* WRITE BUFFER cmd
* Host Protected Area feature set
* Write cache
* Power Management feature set
Security Mode feature set
* SMART feature set
* FLUSH CACHE EXT command
* Mandatory FLUSH CACHE command
* Device Configuration Overlay feature set
* 48-bit Address feature set
SET MAX security extension
* DOWNLOAD MICROCODE cmd
* SMART self-test
* SMART error logging
not expired: security count
not supported: enhanced erase
HW reset results:
CBLID- above Vih
Device num = 0 determined by the jumper
I have tested this system with Red Hat 8 and this bug is NOT reproducible with
Ok, I think I have found a way to reproduce the bug more frequently:
1. Start "Add/Remove Applications"
2. Choose to install a really big package such as "kernel source"
3. The installation starts, and after a while (30% finished) the system freezes.
I reproduced something like this during a heavy swap storm on my 1GHz Sony Vaio FXA36
Athlon laptop. I had a misbehaving application that forked repeatedly creating 9MB sized
processes. X appeared to freeze completely while the disk went crazy for 30 minutes. OOM
killer didn't engage. Forced power off was the only way to recover.
Ok, I think I have found the problem.
By mistake I had 2 active swap partitions, one on the Seagate disk I reported
earlier as hdg2, and one swap partition on a IBM disk on the the other IDE
channel as hde3. They were both listed in /etc/fstab and therefore activated on
By removing the hde3 swap partition from /etc/fstab, I can no longer lock up the
system. However, I'm not sure why the system locks up by having two swap
partition defined. It is possible that the IBM disk is faulty. Until I know for
sure I leave the bug as unresolved.
Thats a useful clue, but two swap partitions is entirely valid.
Thanks for the bug report. However, Red Hat no longer maintains this version of
the product. Please upgrade to the latest version and open a new bug if the problem
The Fedora Legacy project (http://fedoralegacy.org/) maintains some older releases,
and if you believe this bug is interesting to them, please report the problem in
the bug tracker at: http://bugzilla.fedora.us/