SG_REQUESTS(8) SG3_UTILS SG_REQUESTS(8)
sg_requests - send one or more SCSI REQUEST SENSE commands
sg_requests [--desc] [--help] [--hex] [--maxlen=LEN] [--num=NUM] [--progress] [--raw]
[--status] [--time] [--verbose] [--version] DEVICE
Send SCSI REQUEST SENSE command to DEVICE and output the parameter data response which is
expected to be in sense data format. Both fixed and descriptor sense data formats are sup-
Multiple REQUEST SENSE commands can be sent with the --num=NUM option. This can be used
for timing purposes or monitoring the progress indication.
Arguments to long options are mandatory for short options as well.
sets the DESC bit in the REQUEST SENSE SCSI cdb. The DEVICE should return sense
data in descriptor (rather than fixed) format. This will only occur if the DEVICE
recognizes descriptor format (SPC-3 and later). If the device is pre SPC-3 then
setting a bit in a reserved field may cause a check condition status with an ille-
gal request sense key, but will most likely be ignored.
output the usage message then exit.
output response in ASCII hexadecimal.
where LEN is the (maximum) response length in bytes. It is placed in the cdb's
"allocation length" field. If not given (or LEN is zero) then 252 is used. The max-
imum value of LEN is 255 (but SPC-4 recommends 252).
perform NUM SCSI REQUEST SENSE commands, stopping when either NUM is reached or an
error occurs. The default value for NUM is 1 .
show progress indication (a percentage) if available. If --number=NUM is given, NUM
is greater than 1 and an initial progress indication was detected then this utility
waits 30 seconds before subsequent checks. Exits when NUM is reached or there are
no more progress indications. Ignores --hex, --raw and --time options. See NOTES
output response in binary (to stdout).
if the REQUEST SENSE command finished without error (as indicated by its SCSI sta-
tus) then the contents of the parameter data are analysed as sense data and the
exit status is set accordingly. The default action (i.e. when this option is not
given) is to ignore the contents of the parameter data for the purposes of setting
the exit status. Some types of error set a sense key of "NO SENSE" with non-zero
information in the additional sense code (e.g. the FAILURE PREDICTION THRESHOLD
EXCEEDED group of codes); this results in an exit status value of 10. If the sense
key is "NO SENSE" and both asc and ascq are zero then the exit status is set to 0 .
See the sg3_utils(8) man page for exit status values.
time the SCSI REQUEST SENSE command(s) and calculate the average number of opera-
tions per second.
increase the level of verbosity, (i.e. debug output). Additionally the response
(if received) is output in ASCII-HEX. Use this option multiple times for greater
print the version string and then exit.
In SCSI 1 and 2 the REQUEST SENSE command was very important for error and warning pro-
cessing in SCSI. The autosense capability rendered this command almost superfluous.
However recent SCSI drafts (e.g. SPC-4 rev 14 and SBC-3 rev 14) increase the utility of
the REQUEST SENSE command. Idle and standby (low) power conditions can be detected with
The REQUEST SENSE command is not marked as mandatory in SPC-3 (i.e. for all SCSI devices)
but is marked as mandatory in SBC-2 (i.e. for disks), SSC-3 (i.e. for tapes) and MMC-4
(i.e. for CD/DVD/HD-DVD/BD drives).
The progress indication is optionally part of the sense data. When a prior command that
takes a long time to complete (and typically precludes other media access commands) is
still underway, the progress indication can be used to determine how long before the
device returns to its normal state.
The SCSI FORMAT command for disks used with the IMMED bit set is an example of an opera-
tion that takes a significant amount of time and precludes other media access during that
time. The IMMED bit set instructs the FORMAT command to return control to the application
client once the format has commenced (see SBC-3). Several long duration SCSI commands
associated with tape drives also use the progress indication (see SSC-3).
Early standards suggested that the SCSI TEST UNIT READY command be used for polling the
progress indication. More recent standards seem to suggest the SCSI REQUEST SENSE command
should be used instead.
The exit status of sg_requests is 0 when it is successful. Otherwise see the sg3_utils(8)
Written by Douglas Gilbert.
Report bugs to <dgilbert at interlog dot com>.
Copyright (C) 2004-2008 Douglas Gilbert
This software is distributed under a FreeBSD license. There is NO warranty; not even for
MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE.
sg3_utils-1.26 April 2008 SG_REQUESTS(8)