The Apple Discussions Forum reports that for many Mavericks users, external Firewire drives will not sleep, even when ejected to the Trash. The only way (after ejecting of course) is to switch the drive off (that is, switch off its DC power supply). The upgrade to OS 10.9.1 has not cured it. Thunderbolt drives are probably also afflicted but USB drives are not.
This is a problem particularly for users who need a Firewire drive spinning all the time, yet need to spin down for wear and energy consumption reasons when the Mac sleeps. These uses include a Time Machine drive, an automatic daily clonable backup, and any drive that is needed for its speed (USB being too slow for some uses), and other uses. LaCie told me that Apple were aware of the problem.
For users who do not need a firewire drive to be spinning all the time while the computer is awake, (eg., for occasional backups, occasional contact with applications, utilities or data) any insomniac Firewire drives having a USB connection can be reconfigured to USB.
The many posts on the Apple Discussions include the following:
1. Firewire is being phased out in favour of Thunderbolt and therefore Apple will not fix the bug despite there being may users needing a sleeping Firewire drive;
2. Apple want to ditch Firewire as quickly as possible and the quickest way to do that is to purposely make Mavericks fail to sleep it and force people to change quickly to Thunderbolt;
3. Irritation has been caused by the lack of notice given by Apple to allow time to change over, and to prevent users wasting money on new Firewire drives;
4. Irritation that there is no sign from Apple that they recognise the problem nor that they are working on it.
Has anyone any comments, especially on a way to get Firewire drives to sleep in Mavericks?