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Re: Swapping Hard Drives on the fly

On Wed, Jun 24, 1998 at 11:29:38PM -0700, Damon Muller wrote:
> Hey Folks,
> I have a 1.2G IDE HD that I have in a removable drive cady on my Bo
> system. It's not a 'hot-swap' drive or anything sophisticated like that,
> and on my Windoze system I wouldn't have even considered pulling it out
> while the PC was running.
> However, under Linux, shouldn't I just be able to unmount or mount the
> drive at will?  Would that damage or confuse anything? Or possibly put
> in the drive once I have booted without it?
> Anyone have a similar setup?
Hotswapping devices not intended for it is a Bad Thing(tm). However, if you are
determined... I have safely hot-swapped network/sound/serial boards under Linux
with no problems, BUT that does not mean it is safe. Chances are you will fry
something. I do _NOT_ recommend that you even attempt a hot-swap of an IDE
device. If you are going to hotswap, you _must_ turn off the driver for it
first, ie rmmod it. Since you are booting off an IDE device, it is compiled in
the kernel, and you can't rmmod it- so when you disconnect the drive, the kernel
will complain _loudly_. I tried it once, just to see- ended up hard resetting
my box.

If you wanted a hot-swappable setup, you might try setting up some sort of
ramdisk root fs with the ide driver compiled as a module and all your important
stuff (/usr, /var etc) mounted off your ide drive, you could then drop to single
user mode, umount the ide devices, rmmod the driver and maybe have a chance.

| ian eure, network admin, freelance security consultant, and  |
| manically depressed paranoid schizophrenic, at your service. |
;           <ieure@minion.org> - http://minion.org             ;
:           raw speed = 105.6 wpm with 4.5% errors             :
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