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  1. #1

    USB memory stick can't be unmounted

    My new USB memory stick can't be unmounted. when I try to do so, the error message is:
    umount: /media/memstick: device is busy
    umount: /media/memstick: device is busy
    Please check that the disk is entered correctly.

    the memory stick is entered correctly, and no process uses it.
    some times the line "Please check that the disk is entered correctly." gets printed, and sometimes it isn't.

    also, the device name sometimes changes from /dev/sde1 to /dev/sdf1. I haven't figured out on what occasions exactly it does this. The change seemingly occurs at random times.

    I'm running Debian Sid.
    what can I do about this?

    thanks in advance for help!

  2. #2
    Linux Guru lakerdonald's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    St. Petersburg, FL
    make sure you're not inside /media/memstick when you unmount
    there's also this one command which totally kills anything touching a certain device, but i forget what it is.

  3. #3
    I'm not in /media/memstick when I umount, and it still doesn't work.

  4. $spacer_open
  5. #4
    Linux Guru sarumont's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Some program somewhere is probably accessing the mountpoint. Make sure you didn't hide a terminal that's cd'd to that dir or leave something open that was using a file in that dir. You can probably use 'umount -f' to unmount it forcefully, but this is not the recommended COA.
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  6. #5
    I tried the "-f" option before, and it doesn't work either.
    I'm pretty sure that I'm not in the mounted directory, since all did was just a 'mount /media/memstick' and 'umount /media/memstick'

  7. #6
    I have seen the exact same thing here. If you write something to the disk, it is always "busy". If I do not write something to the disk, I can umount it as normal. I did a little bit of google searching, but didn't find anything.

  8. #7
    Actually, for me the disk also says it's busy when I don't write anything to it

  9. #8
    Just Joined!
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Oxford, UK

    Someone mentioned a command to check/kill what is locking the device - the command is 'fuser'


    fuser -v -m /media/memstick

    There is also an option to auto-kill the tasks, but I think you want to investigate manually.

    If you want to know what Linux is up to when it allocates the device names, these are done on a first-come first-served basis, but unless you have another removable drive you should get the same one each time. There will be some cryptic explanation in the output of dmesg - you should check it out.

    HTH - TIM

  10. #9
    Linux Engineer
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Montreal, Canada
    fuser /media/memstick
    will give you the process that uses the device,

    a good place to learn fuser, you could also get info from
    man fuser
    dont hesitate to ask for more information if ever those reading dont satisfy you [/url]
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  11. #10
    Well, fuser says that no process is using /media/memstick:


    Also, I can't get filenames longer than 8 char's on the drive with linux. It is formatted with FAT. How can I fix that?

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