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Strix Z690-G External USB3 "spinning rust" hard drives disappear / stop functioning

spatula75
Level 7
I've had this problem with three different external spinning-rust USB3 hard drives, though all three are from Seagate (Costco specials). The system is a Windows 11 Strix Z690-G, bios version 1003, with the most recent driver updates. The BIOS is configured mostly with default settings (except for turning Aura off, configuring a RAID1, and increasing the graphics memory to the maximum). I have disabled USB selective suspend and excluded all the USB controllers from being shut down by power management.

The symptom is that after a while and somewhat often immediately after a reboot, the spinning-rust drives (and ONLY spinning-rust drives) become unavailable in Windows. If the drive letter still shows up in Explorer, attempting to browse the drive will hang indefinitely. In some cases the drive letter disappears completely and the drive also fails to appear in Disk Management.

This happens regardless of whether the disk is plugged directly into a USB port or plugged into a hub.

Other USB devices are not affected; my camera, sound capture device, keyboard, mouse, etc., all function normally and without interruption (though these are all USB2 devices). An external Samsung SSD drive (USB3) also does not have this problem.

While this is happening, Windows logs a great many instances of "An error was detected on device \Device\Harddisk1\DR1 during a paging operation." which is probably expected if the USB connection to the disk isn't behaving itself sensibly.

Unplugging the drive, waiting a few seconds, and plugging it back in tends to resolve the problem until it recurs.

Is there anything special about spinning-rust (as opposed to SSD) drives that could explain this behavior, or are there any known issues with external USB3 drives?
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junkyard2902
Level 7
I have similar issue with my USB ports, see my thread https://rog.asus.com/forum/showthread.php?127672-Z690-F-USB-Power-Delivery-Issue
I believe there is a power delivery issue to the usb ports

junkyard2902 wrote:
I have similar issue with my USB ports, see my thread https://rog.asus.com/forum/showthread.php?127672-Z690-F-USB-Power-Delivery-Issue
I believe there is a power delivery issue to the usb ports


That's interesting. I moved around a bunch of my USB devices (as in, to what they connect) as I was reorganizing my desk, and my spinning rust drive hasn't disconnected since then. Looking now, I see that the changes put my webcam on a different root hub than my hard drives. I wish there were a way to see the current power consumption of the devices on a hub- it might help confirm your theory. I don't see any report of current usage in HWinfo64 unfortunately.

spatula75 wrote:
That's interesting. I moved around a bunch of my USB devices (as in, to what they connect) as I was reorganizing my desk, and my spinning rust drive hasn't disconnected since then. Looking now, I see that the changes put my webcam on a different root hub than my hard drives. I wish there were a way to see the current power consumption of the devices on a hub- it might help confirm your theory. I don't see any report of current usage in HWinfo64 unfortunately.


Well, I guess I spoke too soon. Of course it was a few hours after I left on a trip that my external USB backup drive stopped working again. When it does this, the ONLY thing that can get it working again is to physically unplug it and plug it back in. Attempts by Windows to access the drive tend to hang for a very long time and then either time out with an error, or never recover at all. It cannot be recovered by disabling/enabling the device, and it isn't possible to run Disk Manager because it hangs trying to read the drive.

Curiously, the drive still shows up in the Device Manager, and Windows believes the drive is working properly... but any actual communication with the drive fails.

This has happened on multiple drives, though all from the same manufacturer, Seagate.

HWinfo64 is able to find the drive and its controller, but it is unable to read any details about the geometry of the device, its partitions, etc., just the model, the total capacity, and the drive firmware. For the other external USB drive, a Samsung, it's able to read details about geometry, transfer modes, etc. The Samsung device does not randomly stop working, but it is a flash device, not a spinning-rust device.

I'm at a loss to explain it at this point, but it's incredibly irritating.

junkyard2902 wrote:
I have similar issue with my USB ports, see my thread https://rog.asus.com/forum/showthread.php?127672-Z690-F-USB-Power-Delivery-Issue
I believe there is a power delivery issue to the usb ports


Out of curiosity, and for another data point, how many watts is your power supply?

hellokitty
Level 11

yeh that sucks, shuck the drive cases , i went to seagate they have many drives. you got alot of options, put them in "powered" usb cases, if they are externaly powered, i think you will be ok. Well goodluck.