amtm USB drives failing

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johnv621

New Around Here
Hi all -

I'm pretty sure my amtm/Diversion USB drive has failed. It is still recognized as a drive (i.e., it shows up via fdisk -l and is recognized as an unmounted HP flash drive in the GUI) but it's failing the amtm/entware automatic disk check at boot and it is not mounting. As expected, Diversion disappeared, and Skynet has the USB error.

Heres the fdisk-l output:

Code:
Disk /dev/sda: 31.0 GB, 31048335360 bytes
64 heads, 32 sectors/track, 29610 cylinders
Units = cylinders of 2048 * 512 = 1048576 bytes

   Device Boot      Start         End      Blocks  Id System
/dev/sda1               1       29610    30320624  83 Linux
and the disk check log

Code:
 Sun Oct 18 21:52:03 CEST 2020 Waited 5s for NTP to sync date
 Sun Oct 18 21:52:03 CEST 2020 Probing 'ext4' on device /dev/sda1
 Running disk check v2.9, with command 'e2fsck -p' on /dev/sda1
 e2fsck: Read-only file system while trying to open /dev/sda1
 Disk write-protected; use the -n option to do a read-only
 check of the device.
 Sun Oct 18 21:52:03 CEST 2020 Disk check done on /dev/sda1
I'm guessing the answer is a failing drive and just need to trash it and start with a new one, but I don't want to lose everything. I think I have the Diversion white/blacklists backed up, but I'm not sure what else is stored on the USB (vice JFFS).

Is there any way to remount the drive or backup its contents?

Assuming it is a failed drive...are there any tips on improving drive life? I've had two other drives fail in the last 6 months (they failed completely - devices weren't even recognized). I've added a 6" USB extender to help with any heat issues. If it matters, I'm running pretty much all of the add on scripts.

Thanks!
 

ColinTaylor

Part of the Furniture
It looks like the drive has gone into read-only mode. What make is the drive? I know that SanDisk drives go read-only when they detect a problem so that the data is still recoverable.
 

L&LD

Part of the Furniture
Use a better-quality USB drive or find a cheap external USB SSD.

Others may be helpful in salvaging your data from the read-only USB drive that has failed, but I suggest you simply start over with a fresh install, including formatting the JFFS partition on the next boot, hit 'Apply' at the bottom of the page, and then rebooting 3 times in the next 10 to 15 minutes, waiting 5 to 10 minutes between each reboot. Before inserting a brand-new USB drive (stick or SSD).
 

johnv621

New Around Here
Use a better-quality USB drive or find a cheap external USB SSD.

Others may be helpful in salvaging your data from the read-only USB drive that has failed, but I suggest you simply start over with a fresh install, including formatting the JFFS partition on the next boot, hit 'Apply' at the bottom of the page, and then rebooting 3 times in the next 10 to 15 minutes, waiting 5 to 10 minutes between each reboot. Before inserting a brand-new USB drive (stick or SSD).
Thanks. Can you recommend a good brand of USB drive? So far I've killed an HP, Verbatim, and a no-name drive.

Out of curiosity, I guess the swap file is (might be?) constantly reading/writing to the drive, but are there other amtm scripts constantly accessing the USB?
 

John Fitzgerald

Regular Contributor

L&LD

Part of the Furniture
Yes, other amtm scripts can write to the USB drive (see the options in the @Jack Yaz J'x' scripts for the ones that have that capability).

The USB drive that I am having great success with is the 256GB Patriot Supersonic Rage Elite USB 3.1 models (or larger).
 

RMerlin

Asuswrt-Merlin dev
Thanks. Can you recommend a good brand of USB drive? So far I've killed an HP, Verbatim, and a no-name drive.
These past few years I've been using Patriot drives (I currently own two Patriot Rage for my regular uses).

In the past I was going all Kingston, but at one point they started to be lackluster in performance. I still have 10+ years old Kingstons that are in use, like the one currently on my main router.
 

PeterR

Regular Contributor
I'm using a 10 year old 1Gb Toshiba drive on my router, it's been in use since lonelycoder introduced AB-Solution. As with many products, USB drives have been 'value engineered' to e-waste status.
 

Matthew Patrick

Senior Member
Copying my reply from another thread :

Actually. You don't need an SSD . Just use a good micro-sd to USB adapter with the new SanDisk Max Endurance lineup. 32gb is quite cheap and the TBW is about 150++ . 40MBps/40MBps on USB 2 is more than enough. More on USB 3 ofc. With that good of TBW it's a set and forget drive for scripts etc. If you need higher TBW , get the higher capacity ones. But I reckon 150++ TBW is more than enough.
 

bitmonster

Senior Member
My USB drive is driving me nuts, it keeps mounting in read-only mode. I have rebooted, replaced it, swapped ports and tried three different file systems (EXT4 formatted externally, and NTFS / FAT formatted on the router).
It insists on remaining unmounted / read only. No idea. It's broken all the scripts.
Running Merlin 384.19 on Asus rt-ac86u
Everything I can think of pulling from the logs here
https://pastebin.com/wHQ2yzqt

Currently formatted (via router) as FAT
fdisk -l

Disk /dev/sda: 15.5 GB, 15525216256 bytes
97 heads, 1 sectors/track, 312605 cylinders
Units = cylinders of 97 * 512 = 49664 bytes

Device Boot Start End Blocks Id System
/dev/sda1 84 312606 15157312 83 Linux

Disk check log

Any assistance appreciated.
 
Last edited:

L&LD

Part of the Furniture
@bitmonster what are you using the USB drive for?

When you replaced it, was it for a different brand of higher quality?

What is the capacity of the drives you have used?
 

bitmonster

Senior Member
@bitmonster what are you using the USB drive for?

When you replaced it, was it for a different brand of higher quality?

What is the capacity of the drives you have used?
Just used for external storage for scripts and traffic monitoring.. for the router OS, no media.

Both 16GB but it's just standard commodity drives. Should I try a better brand like Sandisk or something..... The logs posted above hint that it may be trying to mount as EXT4 when it's formatted as something else too..

Should I try formatting as EXT3 on a Linux laptop with gparted or something...

I'll get a better USB stick for now too. But it's odd that a brand new stick would give this issue so I'm not sure it's related.

The other stick refused to mount on my KUbuntu laptop too though so I figured that was indeed stuffed.
 

L&LD

Part of the Furniture
@bitmonster I would not use anything else other than amtm and the amtm Step-by-Step Guide to set up a new USB drive for the usage indicated. (Note, of course, that you do not have to install amtm in that older guide, it is included in all current RMerlin firmware).

And yes, I would try a better-quality brand. The ones I recommend are the Patriot Elite USB drives of 256GB or larger, but there is a 128GB version available too if you want to save a couple of dollars.

Before you insert a new USB drive into the router though, I would check the box to 'Format the JFFS partition on the next reboot' and then hit 'Apply' at the bottom of the page. Then, reboot the router 3 times in the next 15 minutes or so, waiting 5 to 10 minutes before each reboot.

Now, insert the new USB drive (I would have formatted it in NTFS format to be sure it will be fully and properly formatted in the router to the file system it wants/expects) and follow the pertinent steps in the guide mentioned above from the link below.

 

bitmonster

Senior Member
@bitmonster I would not use anything else other than amtm and the amtm Step-by-Step Guide to set up a new USB drive for the usage indicated
Excellent I will do that. I am currently remote (using VPN). I suppose JFFS will kill VPN so would have to wait until I get home then, and then format and reboot three times like you suggest, insert the USB and format to NTFS (so EXT3 / EXT4 is out?). And I will follow the guide.
 

L&LD

Part of the Furniture
No, you have the formats wrong. Please read the guide carefully. :)

Executive Overview:
Remove all USB drives from the router. Format a new (or old) USB drive in a PC as NTFS and leave the USB drive to the side (do not insert it into the router yet). Format the JFFS partition and after the third reboot, insert the prepared NTFS drive and then follow the amtm Step-by-Step guide to format it to Ext4, with journaling, including all the other details listed in that guide.
 

bitmonster

Senior Member
@bitmonster I would not use anything else other than amtm
Wow I notice ColinTaylor in the author list lol... yep it takes care of everything.

Did a fd but it's complaining that it's mounted read-only and can't format it.... I'll keep trying... I just hope there isn't something wrong with my router :-(

But I'm working remotely so I'll try the full steps when I get home.
 

L&LD

Part of the Furniture
If your drive is read-only, then you probably need a new USB drive.
 

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