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How To Fix ‘Error Splicing File: Input/Output Error’ When Transferring Files to External Hard Drive

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In the complex world of file management and data transfers, encountering errors is not uncommon. One such error that users often come across is the ‘Error Splicing File: Input/Output Error’. This error typically appears when you are transferring files to an external hard drive. This article will guide you through the process of troubleshooting and fixing this error.

Understanding the Error

The ‘Error Splicing File: Input/Output Error’ usually indicates a problem with the storage media. This could be due to a faulty drive, a filesystem issue, or even a corrupted file. The error could also occur when transferring large files or when multiple storage devices are connected.

Troubleshooting Steps

Step 1: Check the Health of Your External Hard Drive

Before proceeding with any other steps, it’s crucial to check the health of your external hard drive. To do this, you can use the gnome-disk utility or a similar tool.


This command will open the Disks utility, where you can select your drive and view its health status.

Step 2: Backup Your Data

If the drive shows signs of failure, such as the message “DISK IS LIKELY TO FAIL SOON,” it is recommended to backup all your data immediately. Continuing to use a failing drive can lead to further data corruption and loss.

Step 3: Repair the Filesystem

If the drive appears to be healthy, the next step is to repair the filesystem. To do this, you’ll need to unmount the drive and use a filesystem checking tool like fsck.

First, unmount the drive:

umount /dev/<drive>

Replace <drive> with the appropriate device name for your external hard drive.

Next, run fsck to scan and fix any errors:

fsck /dev/<drive>

The fsck command checks and repairs filesystem inconsistencies. The /dev/<drive> parameter specifies the drive to be checked.

Step 4: Adjust Your File Transfer Process

In some cases, the error may be related to the specific file transfer process. If you have multiple storage devices connected or are copying large files, try unplugging other devices and copying smaller batches of files at a time. This can help avoid any potential conflicts or bugs related to multiple hardware devices or large file transfers.

Step 5: Consider Encryption Issues

The error can occur when moving encrypted disks between different operating systems. Ensure that you properly unmount the disk on one system before connecting it to another to avoid any data corruption.


The ‘Error Splicing File: Input/Output Error’ suggests a problem with the storage media, potentially due to a failing drive or filesystem issues. By following the steps outlined in this article, you should be able to troubleshoot and resolve this error. Remember, always backup your data to prevent any potential data loss. If the error persists, consider seeking professional help or contacting the drive manufacturer for further assistance.

What should I do if the ‘Error Splicing File: Input/Output Error’ occurs frequently?

If you encounter this error frequently, it could indicate a more serious issue with your external hard drive. In such cases, it is recommended to backup your data and consider replacing the drive to prevent further data loss.

Can I fix the ‘Error Splicing File: Input/Output Error’ without using the command line?

Yes, there are graphical user interface (GUI) tools available for repairing filesystems, such as GParted. You can use GParted to check and repair the filesystem on your external hard drive without using the command line.

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