[rescue] looking for a Multia

Curtis H. Wilbar Jr. rescue at hawkmountain.net
Sat Aug 16 16:48:00 CDT 2003

>From: "James Birdsall" <jwbirdsa at hotmail.com>
>> If you get an IDE or SCSI to CF setup, that might do it...
>If only it were that easy. I actually tried this, and hit a lot of dead
>There's a lot of SCSI-based PCMCIA readers out there. I tried three
>different brands. The Nikon didn't even show up on the bus scan -- I think
>it was just DOA, not surprising given its heavily-used condition. Another
>one (sorry, I don't remember the names and they're all buried deep in
>storage now) showed up on the bus scan but didn't grok CF -- it insisted
>that there was nothing in its slots. The third one was achingly close to
>working. I was able to partition the CF, create a filesystem, and install an
>OS, but when I tried to actually boot from the thing, the SCSI controller
>said there were errors and it wouldn't boot.

argg.... the agravation (that is the PC world)....

I've been battling getting Win2K and all the peripharals working on a
PCChips M760V... finally did it, but oh what grief...

>Scratch SCSI.
>Then I tried IDE solutions. There's at least one PCMCIA IDE reader on the
>market which can take all kinds of media, shows up just like an ordinary
>drive, can boot from CF -- it sounds great until you actually buy it and
>read the manual, where you find in the fine print that to boot from it
>requires BIOS support for an IDE ZIP drive.

err... more grief....

>Scratch that.
>The only solution which I have gotten to work, and it works very well, is to
>actually buy a compact flash IDE drive. SimpleTech makes them, among others.
>The 2.5" form factor units seem to be a lot cheaper than 3.5" units, enough
>to make it worth buying a 2.5" and then getting a 2.5 to 3.5 adapter.
>They're noticeably slow, but other than that they are indistinguishable from
>an ordinary hard drive, and they're great for small single-purpose machines
>like firewalls and routers.

I'll second that.  I have a firewall running with OpenBSD running a
transparent bridging firewall using a 3.5" 200Meg Flash Drive.  Works
like a champ.  Read speed isn't bad... write is a bit slow, but you
don't change drive contents much on a firewall.

A lot better than having moving parts (hard drive) in it !

>The units that I have turn out to be a fuselage and plug adapter around a
>PCMCIA card. One of my next projects is to see whether I can replace the 64M
>card in there with a 128M CF card in a PCMCIA adapter.

hmmm.. the units I have (the 3.5 in the firewall, and a 2.5" 200+ Meg
drive here on the shelf) look like hard drives... I don't dare open
them....  they might be of an older generation such that they may not be
built that way.

Both are Sandisk drives.

>--James B.
>rescue list - http://www.sunhelp.org/mailman/listinfo/rescue

-- Curt

Curtis Wilbar
Hawk Mountain Networks
rescue at hawkmountain.net

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