If the formatting of this msg is mucked, I apologize -- this is the only mailer 
available to me at the moment (ISP problems, and I'm not going to email from work).

> > Welp, this is the n-dozenth time that the ATA driver has 
> > wedged large parts 
> > of my entire system because it feels it needs to reset my 
> > CD-R when I'm 
> > trying to start burning a CD.  I get the good old
> > 
> > acd0: WRITE_BIG command timeout - resetting
> > ata3: resetting devices .. 

I don't get this on CD drives, but I do get a lot of ata command timeouts on other ata 
drives. The worst offender is my quantum bigfoot (a slow ugly drive) -- for a while 
the system was almost unusable. It was being attached in WDMA2 mode, but if I knock it 
down to PIO4 or PIO3 it purrs like a kitten. (Of course I should get rid of it anyway, 
because when it is cold it won't spin up on its own -- I have to pull it out, give it 
a good ole twist in the air and put it back in real quick-like..)

> I don't know this case, but I've seen such behavior with non dma-capable
> hdd
> on udma controller. take a look at sysctl hw.atamodes (may look like
> 'dma,---,---,dma') and try change it (sysctl -w
> hw.atamodes=dma,---,---,pio)
> to PIO mode. it might help.
> Buki

I noticed a few days ago that a new command was added to -current, called 
"atacontrol". This command provides a real handy way to smack the ata controller into 
a slower mode. I presume it does something like the above.


Phil Knaack
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