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Computer problems, can anyone help?
Old 12-12-2007, 09:17 AM   #1
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Computer problems, can anyone help?

Last night, I was copying files from one external hard drive to another external hard drive. Each hard drive was plugged into a USB slot on my computer. As it was copying, it froze up a few times. I had to reboot the computer each time. This is the first time I have copied files this way. Is this problem common? If so, are there better ways to do this? Also, I found that the computer did not always recognize both external hard drives at the same time. My computer is about 3 years old, so maybe that is the problem. Any suggestions would be helpful. Thanks.
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Old 12-12-2007, 10:03 AM   #2
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Do you have other items plugged in using other USB plugs? You may want to just unplug them when you are doing the transfer. Or another solution may be to just copy the files from one external drive to an INTERNAL hard disk AND THEN copy from the internal drive to the other external one. You may be overloading the USB Plugs and/or one in USB 2 and the other one is USB 1 (my system is a bit older than yours but on the front of the machine it has USB 2 and the rear has USB 1).
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Old 12-12-2007, 10:35 AM   #3
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Using Windows Update to make sure you have the latest drivers (or get them from the drive manufacturer web site if the drives have their own drivers) might help.
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Old 12-12-2007, 12:22 PM   #4
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What sort of computer, what operating system and other details would be very helpful.

There are some patches for Windows (if thats what you're using) to solve problems with long transfers to external disk drives.

It might also be good to mention what make/model the external drives are. Some older drives had problems like you're mentioning and even some current models using cheap, crappy chip sets seem to have more problems than one would expect. In some cases a firmware upgrade for the external unit is available from the manufacturer to fix timing and compatibility issues. Sometimes not.

One other possibility is heat. Some drives have terrible cooling and after a while the unit will overheat, hang, fail to be recognized, or freeze the main computer.
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Old 12-12-2007, 12:26 PM   #5
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BTW you can download (340 Plus MB) Windows XP SP3 RC1 from Major Geeks MajorGeeks.com - Download Freeware and Shareware Computer Utilities.. Not much different and it takes a while to install which I did this morning. I cannot notice anything defferent although System is now listed as 5.1.2600 Service Pack 3.V.3244 Build 2600. I just installed it like any other upgrade, left the Firewall, S&D configured as it was, and it went well. Also I am running Foxfire and Thunderbird along with some other open source programs and there appears to be no impact (they all seem to run just fine).

Not this has anything to do with OP's question.
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Old 12-12-2007, 12:30 PM   #6
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I'd be really, really careful about installing service pack release candidates. They go through a lot of changes and I've had a LOT of problems with RC1/RC2 SP's. IIRC I even had trouble with an RC3 service pack for XP.

Thats way too many acronyms...

Somebody offers a free service that rolls up all the patches for XP and makes a "service pack" installable image that does all the installs/reboots in the right order, and you can make a CD or DVD from the result. Makes bringing a system up to current a fairly simple and unattended affair.
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Old 12-13-2007, 12:42 AM   #7
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One of my older computers did the same thing when I plugged in one too many USB devices at once. I'm sure you can upgrade drivers and firmware and OS patches and the like to fix the problem, but the easiest solution for me is to unplug the USB devices I'm not using at the time and the rest work fine. It ain't really 'broke' in my opinion as it's a minor inconvenience, and as others have warned - I'm leery of software patches.

Not sure if this solve the OPs problem, but figured I'd second the prior post about unplugging the other USB devices to see if that helps.
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Old 12-13-2007, 05:23 AM   #8
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CFB - This one is pretty good IMHO. I too have had problems in the past with Beta Software which this basically is. However, MS gave some thought to this one in that before installation it backups all the necessary system files, makes a restore point, then it installs. Additionally, if you want to remove it there is a entry in the Add/Remove listing in Control Panel specifically for SP3 RC1 that sets everything back the way it was and it actually works, at least on my system. I even left the Firewall and S&D along with Avast running through all of this - had to answer a lot of "ok's flags" in the Firewall and a couple of registry changes in S&D but anyway it works just fine. Frankly, I have not come across any changes and everything seems to work as before installation, system seems to be a little faster but that is probably the "placebo effect".

However, that being said, if one is not comfortable doing this stuff they should not do it.
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Old 12-13-2007, 10:13 AM   #9
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SP3 does allegedly contain some performance improvements, and actually darn good ones. Supposed to make XP up to 30% faster than vista in some benchmarks.
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