Troubleshooting: System locks up while testing (run-sequential, run-area-test)
This hang is a new OS X bug introduced in 10.9 Mavericks (bug report filed at Apple, bug also confirmed by multiple 3rd parties also). It exists in 10.9.1 and 10.9.2 and probably 10.9.3.
When the hang occurs, the system must be hard-rebooted. DiskTester will stop and everything else on the system will lock up, then the rainbow beach ball will appear.
But the test folder and file will hang the system again even after reboot if accessed or an attempt is made to remove/delete.
Conditions under which it occurs
- Apparently requires the use of journaled HFS (the OS default format).
- Triggered when running certain DiskTester commands on software RAID volumes such as run-sequential and run-area-test (but not fill-volume).
- Sensitive to the volume capacity, generally being provoked in the 1-2TB range but it can also occur with larger volumes.
- Independent of the type of drive (SSD or hard drive).
- Persists across reboots in that the test file cannot be deleted; the system will hang when attempting to remove the “disktester-test” folder at the top of the volume or the test file within it.
- The file system verifies properly when examined in Disk Utility (no damage, no issues).
The workaround is to temporarily disable HFS file system journaling. This is a non-destructive and easily reversible file system setting.
This workaround is also recommended for drive testing:
- Disable HFS journaling.
- Run the desired tests.
- Re-enable HFS journaling when done testing).
Open a Terminal window and use the commands in red. Enter only the commands in red (the # lines are comments and the rest is output which might vary a bit for each system).
# Disable HFS journaling on volume 'Scratch' diglloyd: lloyd$ diskutil disableJournal Scratch Journaling has been disabled for volume Scratch on disk14 ... now remove the “disktester-test” folder, e.g., put into trash and empty trash ... # Enable HFS journaling on volume 'Scratch' diglloyd: lloyd$ diskutil enableJournal Scratch Journaling has been enabled for volume Scratch on disk14
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