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usb flash drive removal (Re: Desktop NetBSD needs your help)

On Mon, Feb 09, 2009 at 02:39:28AM +0100, Johnny Billquist wrote:
> David Holland wrote:
> >On Mon, Feb 09, 2009 at 12:07:33AM +0300, Aleksej Saushev wrote:
> > > What happens if you pull out mounted USB flash medium? Kernel panics, 
> > right?
> > > Maybe not necessarily, but the probability is high then, right?
> > > Do you defend, that this should be left as is, so that all R&C stuff,
> > > who dared to choose NetBSD for its seemingly higher productivity and
> > > easier maintainance, learnt painfully that one should manually umount
> > > media as fast as possible?
> >
> >This is a red herring, because that is not a desktop bug, that's a
> >storage-level (storage being a server-grade thing, remember) kernel
> >bug. The same thing happens with any removable media if you eject it
> >while it's mounted.
> >
> >(It is also not trivial to sort out, which is why it remains live...)
> It is also a double red herring in that you cannot design around the 
> fact that removing an USB flash medium is a physical action. No software 
> can stop you from doing that at the wrong time.
> You can just hope that the user is sensible enough to not do it while 
> the device is mounted.

I think that there should not _be_ a wrong time to remove a USB drive.  
Yes, it may be hard to implement it in NetBSD, but it is entirely possible 
to have a system that doesn't crash, and even does something reasonable.
(e.g. like providing an api for prompting the user to reattach the device)


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