proper way to disconnect/reconnect an external hard drive (1 Viewer)


Thread Starter
SatelliteGuys Pro
Sep 8, 2003
Springfield, IL
Probably a silly question & tried searching here, but since I'm not really an IT guru, I want to avoid doing something that could cause my external HDD to get corrupted...

Getting upgraded to 2 Hoppers (1 w/sling) & 2 Joey's tomorrow, & am moving shows off my 722k's to a WD Element, which has been working fine.
When I unplug the HDD from (any) receiver, is the correct way to unplug it from the power adapter first, THEN from the receiver USB?
Does it matter if the receiver is turned on/off? What about the activity light on the WD Element?

Then when you reconnect it, is the receiver first, THEN power adapter?

Thx much!


SatelliteGuys Pro
Pub Member / Supporter
Oct 30, 2003
Rochester, NY Region
Don't think it makes a diff. One of my Hoppers keeps loosing connection to the ehd. Sometimes I pull the power, other times the usb and then replug. Doesn't seem to make a diff. Usually the Hopper then sees the ehd. I'm moving stuff off since I'm getting 2 HWS;s later this month.


SatelliteGuys Pro
Nov 18, 2003
Los Alamos, NM
Generally it is inconvenient to remove the USB for me--they are wired to the receiver or a hub. I plug the power blocks into a strip as needed. A big however is that every once in a while the receiver will do a reset and mess up a unique show. Of course, this is usually while recording often multiple shows--bah and humbug. I think I have just got to get the patience to wait for a quiet time before disconnecting so that if it resets I don't lose anything.


SatelliteGuys Pro
Pub Member / Supporter
Jul 11, 2009
Columbus, Ohio
I have 4 EHD's on a 4 port switched USB switch. It's an older version of this one but works fine:

All 4 EHD's are the auto-spindown WD Externals so once USB power is disconnected they spin down even though they are plugged into each owns wall wart. So when I want an EHD to come online I just hit one of the switches, the drive spins up and the Hopper recognizes it. With 4 EHD's and only 3 EHD support on the hopper I just have to watch not to have all 4 switches on at once.

To handle the USB power draw I have the switched hub plugged into a powered hub that supplies the USB power to the hard drives so the Hopper only sees the draw of a single normal USB device.

Edit: Oh, if you have a 722K or something below the Hopper, then just make sure you turn off all the switches before you turn on the next one. You need to accept the USB disconnected message and external device detected message but it also works fine on the 622, 722 series that only support one EHD at a time.


SatelliteGuys Pro
Pub Member / Supporter
Oct 30, 2003
Rochester, NY Region
When I said I disconnect the usb, I meant the usb cable at the ehd, not the hub. I found that if I disconnect the power cable I get fewer receiver reboots.


SatelliteGuys Family
Sep 12, 2003
Related to thread but slightly different question. I have an ehd I used to transfer from the 722 to the hopper when I upgraded. I want to reuse this hard drive to store music, pictures and backup files from my laptop. I've moved the hard drive from the hopper to the laptop, but the laptop doesn't recognize it, and want let me reformat it. Is there a way to unboot or eject, not sure of the terminology, from the hopper so that it will be recognized?


A mighty and noble race originating on Altair IV.
Pub Member / Supporter
Jan 4, 2007
Fairfax, VA
No, you did all you could on your Hopper. The issue is that your 722 formatted your EHD with a Linux file system, called ext3, and Windows (without extensions) doesn't recognize ext3 partitions. It may not recognize the disk partition either. Just tell Windows to reformat that drive, and you should be good to go.


SatelliteGuys Master
Pub Member / Supporter
Lifetime Supporter
Oct 19, 2004
Lubbock, Texas
Use the windows management system (Computer - Manage - Dish Management) to remove the partition, then Windows can re-create an NTFS partition that it can use.

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