I'm having an issue on Debian where my external USB 3 storage devices are not recognized when first booting up the system. If I issue a reboot after powering up, then they will be recognized.

This issue specifically affects USB 3 devices; my USB 2 storage drives work fine.

Symptoms: connected devices are not reported as being connected at all. There are no entries in dmesg or lsusb when I connect the device. The behavior is the same if the device was already connected on power up.

Types of device tested: USB mass storage (enclosed hard disks and flash storage alike), Android device in file transfer mode.

Since the drives consistently work after performing a reboot and only exhibit the issues on first boot after powering on, I don't think this is a hardware issue. Since there isn't even a record of an attempt to connect the device in dmesg I have not ruled out some sort of firmware issue, but I don't know a good way to test this. If it helps, the PC in question is a 2nd generation Intel NUC.

This issue has happened on several versions of Debian, but I have only found the pattern on this latest installation (no way to confirm behavior previously). I have not tested other distros. I am running Linux 4.19.37.

  • 2
    Compare dmesg after first boot and reboot, look for differences or error messages wrt. USB 3 root devices (xhci). – dirkt Jun 29 at 19:46
  • It's likely to be firmware (UEFI) related - cold boot vs. warm boot - and not OS related. I suggest updating UEFI, if such update is available. – GabrielaGarcia Jun 30 at 10:30

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