How do I format a Micro SD card for use with scsi2sd devices

Started by Rob Blessin Black Hole, September 13, 2018, 07:35:26 pm

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Rob Blessin Black Hole

Hello NeXT Community:    Specifically Version 6 ...the battle I have going with this version of the card it is personal at this point lol

There are 3 versions of Microsd SCSI2 Cards

Version 5.    DD Works   , I have it down  this is the thread you need for version 5 http://www.nextcomputers.org/forums/viewtopic.php?t=3737&postdays=0&postorder=asc&start=0

Version 6   ..... I'm trying to figure out how the heck I did this before as it can't be this difficult.  

Version 5.1 the newest version   DD Works  , only a few quirks

Here is the problem most SCSI SD Cards especially EXTREME PRO CARDS are now only available in 16Gb or 32GB  so NeXT does not handle anything above 2 gb partitions .


I'm trying to figure out how to simply do a fresh install on any of them on a NeXT 68K box using a boot floppy and scsi cdrom drive.    It says the SD Card is not formatted , how do I format the scsi sd card to be NeXT compliant .....

Version 5 , I've been using DD and terminal app on OS X to copy an existing image , works great in under 5 minutes.

VERSION 6 :  

I guess the question should be,  do we format a 16Gb or 32Gb Card on the  Card Reader >  using disk utility under MAC OSX ?  
or
The Version 6 MICROSD Card itself as you can write to it directly but it spawns errors . I've noticed using DD it is always 1 file short if I try to dd an image to the card , same image that works on 5.0 and 5.1


All I want to do is set up a 2gb drive partition that is seen on any NeXT hardware version without error's , it can't be this hard.   I had it working which is why this is maddening to me I can't seem to replicate what I did .

May be it is because I'm using a Cube, I'll try a Turbo Color....  Any help appreciated.

I might try a low level format as it looks like it works with 2940 so in theory if I make 2 or 4 gb partitions and spoof the SEAGATE  ST!%!%)N Drive   maybe it will low level format the partitions , then on the neXT side it will see them ...... I'll lt you know off to golf.
Rob Blessin President computerpowwow ebay  sales@blackholeinc.com http://www.blackholeinc.com
303-741-9998 Serving the NeXT Community  since 2/9/93

barcher174

In the scsi2sd software you can set firmware limits per drive. It will look to the next like there are multiple physical disks in the system.  Just make multiple 8gb drives and then let the OS make multiple partitions on the drive.

Rob Blessin Black Hole

Hello NeXT Community:  VERSION 6    so it shows it is working  here

https://github.com/trodemaster/next  

http://www.nextcomputers.org/forums/viewtopic.php?t=4215&highlight=codesrc    

I'm laughing because I can not replicate this after weeks of trying WTF .

I used the Version 6 Card  , I'm wondering if it is the REV of the Card as I have C and it is up to F causing the issue?

It has the latest version of firmware 6.1.3

diskutil unmountDisk /dev/disk3
Unmount of all volumes on disk3 was successful

MY SD CARD ...... When I use my mac to DD directly to the Card that is in the Version 6 Micro Sd!
Obviously an error .....

SUDO DD if=/file.iso of=/dev/rdisk1 BS=1M  

Input/output error
8192+0 records in
8191+1 records out

When I take the SD out of  the version 6 and put it in a card reader  and then do dd    NO ERROR
60774+0 records in
60774+0 records out
15931539456 bytes transferred in 7359.219767 secs (2164841 bytes/sec)

This image works again and again on Version 5.0 and version 5.1 cards using 16GB Micro SD's

********************
I understand the firmware for 5.0 and 5.1 and updating the firmware and using XML file to update the drive parameters for our sd card 512 byte, 139 sectors and 4 tracks  .... setting 2gb partitions as that is the maximum understood by NeXTSTEP to support multiple drive formats adding them in XML  having successfully done hundreds of them using DD on version 5 cards. check check check ....


*********************

This is about VERSION 6 cards only as the above recipe is broken by different software and hard ware ?

The XML configuration files are similar , I copy and pasted Trodemasters XML file saved it and uploaded it to the device  CODE SRC Version 6 device
#######################

I'm using a Color Turbo  , new floppy drive, known good working cdrom disk and a 2Gb Seagate drive fresh install of 3.3 , all these work great ...

Also known good scsi cables , does this cause the problem , perhaps a non standard scsi cable

properly terminated , I think  both ends are terminated as you set termination on the card .



Power splitter and powering up the Version 6 using the cable and for good measure the 4pin floppy connector

**************

Lets unpack the Version 6 SCSI2Code SRC Drive ,

I know I am far from alone on frustration with it, let's unravel this madness , I'm just trying to solve it as I actually had it working before that is what is making this exponentially more frustrating.

This thread may help me http://www.nextcomputers.org/forums/viewtopic.php?t=3899&highlight=format   ....

The key seems to be matching sectors , I'm using a 1 Gb disk just to get it to bloody work lol ..... so it looks like I have to make NeXT's rom happy or it doesn't take as it can't see the size of the SD.......

So now I'm going to try and match Trodemaster's  XML File to match the MicroSD disk  i i i it can't be this hard.


This is about Version 6 Cards ONLY ....  a few people have it working , the chosen ones. We are not you please enlighten us of GURU with your magic.


*********** I have my Fresh 1GB Card I figure lets do baby friggin steps as how hard can it possibly be to FORMAT a 1Gb microsd card so that NeXT see's it lol  

WHERE DO I FORMAT THE CARD? , when I try doing it through scsi disk utilities it does not work , it formats it but not  in a format NeXT recognizes

I tried all the options .

Do I format it in a Card Reader using Terminal and DD or some other command , what do I use to write a lable and format that NeXT will understand on a mac?   Is it even possible or do I need Linux?

So if I have a 16Gb drive how do I make a 1Gb partition that NeXT sees and get it to ignore the rest of the drive.


Brian It won't format the 8Gb split in 2 with 4 2gb partitions each , I've tried unless I'm doing something wrong.


The problem is anytime you have an UNFORMATTED drive the NeXT install won't start until it is FORMATTED  and aborts it  

How the heck does anyone simply format  an SD, micro sd or compact flash drive to be NeXT compatible...... formatting is different from initializing the drive

So this project

I have a 1Gb micro SD in hand

I have a Mac Mini and Terminal window and a Card reader ....

Under Disk Utility on the mac offers many ways to format the drive DOS, MAC , ETC    ..... I've tried them all , it appears to initialize them on the Mac side but shows as unformatted on the NeXT side   ......  my guess is there is a way in terminal to format an sd disk on the mac to be NeXT formatted, I also tried seagte adaptec tools no joy.  

Also tried DD images that work on 5 and 5.1 , they don't work on 6. Also tried DDing a previous drive image

DO I format it in any way first what am I missing

Firmware is 6.1.3  

I have tried this every which way and 20 times on Sunday  . To make it as easy as humanly possible I have a 1Gb microsd and a Version 6 Card  What do I do to get the boot floppy and cdrom drive to see the Micro sd .  

Also tried tricking it by giving it the Seagate string as suggested in the XML file.

http://store.inertialcomputing.com/SCSI2SD-v6-p/scsi2sd-v6-revf.htm    
Rob Blessin President computerpowwow ebay  sales@blackholeinc.com http://www.blackholeinc.com
303-741-9998 Serving the NeXT Community  since 2/9/93

wa2flq

Rob,

A few thoughts.

You should not need to "format" the microSD card under OSX or Linux.  By "format", I mean the low level disk format.  

I believe that the V6 card is not reporting the correct size to NeXT.  On the V6 cards the configuration of the emulated disks is located on the microSD card itself, not on the SCSI2SD device. The last block on the microSD is used.  So I suspect when you copy the images over, you are overwriting the configuration of disks and sizes at the end.    

You should be able to check the configuration by downloading it from the V6 card.  

If you have a known image that boots on the V5 cards and is only 2GB suggest the following.

1) Configure the V6 card and microSD for the correct sizes (including necessary sector and track sizes)

2) Copy using DD as before but limit the number of blocks to size of the partition. I don't remember the edge cases for sizing 2GB, but say if you use a count=4194310 (assumes bs=512) that includes a few extra blocks.  That won't be enough to overwrite the configuration area the V6 cards look at.

There are other ways to deal with this, but try the above and see if you get the same error message as before.

Good luck,
Jerry

Rob Blessin Black Hole

Quote from: "wa2flq"Rob,

A few thoughts.

You should not need to "format" the microSD card under OSX or Linux.  By "format", I mean the low level disk format.  

I believe that the V6 card is not reporting the correct size to NeXT.  On the V6 cards the configuration of the emulated disks is located on the microSD card itself, not on the SCSI2SD device. The last block on the microSD is used.  So I suspect when you copy the images over, you are overwriting the configuration of disks and sizes at the end.    

You should be able to check the configuration by downloading it from the V6 card.  

If you have a known image that boots on the V5 cards and is only 2GB suggest the following.

1) Configure the V6 card and microSD for the correct sizes (including necessary sector and track sizes)

2) Copy using DD as before but limit the number of blocks to size of the partition. I don't remember the edge cases for sizing 2GB, but say if you use a count=4194310 (assumes bs=512) that includes a few extra blocks.  That won't be enough to overwrite the configuration area the V6 cards look at.

There are other ways to deal with this, but try the above and see if you get the same error message as before.

Good luck,
Jerry
Hello Jerry: Thank you for this , that  explains why when I do a DD image using terminal directly to the SD when inserted into the version 6 PCB , it doesn't do an exact copy and mismatches 1 file as it may have a protected section on the SD the actual XML configuration file that can't be overwritten .  

If it is the last block that holds the configuration information , I'll try what you are saying and use a 1Gb disk , I'll set it to 980Mb in the XML file the copy it to the SD , then try a 1Gb or less image .

So in Theory

1) Version 6 Card update Firmware to latest 6.1.3  
2) Create XML File , remember to make sure enough room is left for the XML File
3) On clean or Erased SD Card , open your custom XML file in the SCSI2 version 6 Utility software  and save it to the SD Card, this positions the XML File so NeXT Hardware will see it as a scsi hard drive .
4)  From Terminal DD the less than 1Gb image to the disk partition on the scsi2 SD card and hope this does not overwrite the XML file  .
5) See if it now boots on NeXT hardware  , logic test 1
Result coming soon:

 Best Regards Rob Blessin
Rob Blessin President computerpowwow ebay  sales@blackholeinc.com http://www.blackholeinc.com
303-741-9998 Serving the NeXT Community  since 2/9/93

wa2flq

Quote from: "Rob Blessin Black Hole"Hello Jerry: Thank you for this , that  explains why when I do a DD image using terminal directly to the SD when inserted into the version 6 PCB , it doesn't do an exact copy and mismatches 1 file as it may have a protected section on the SD the actual XML configuration file that can't be overwritten .  

If it is the last block that holds the configuration information , I'll try what you are saying and use a 1Gb disk , I'll set it to 980Mb in the XML file the copy it to the SD , then try a 1Gb or less image .

So in Theory

1) Version 6 Card update Firmware to latest 6.1.3  
2) Create XML File , remember to make sure enough room is left for the XML File
3) On clean or Erased SD Card , open your custom XML file in the SCSI2 version 6 Utility software  and save it to the SD Card, this positions the XML File so NeXT Hardware will see it as a scsi hard drive .
4)  From Terminal DD the less than 1Gb image to the disk partition on the scsi2 SD card and hope this does not overwrite the XML file  .
5) See if it now boots on NeXT hardware  , logic test 1
Result coming soon:

 Best Regards Rob Blessin


I don't know if the last block is protected when you use the USB2.0 interface on the card to upload. Though if it was, I doubt you have seen the error identifying the drive type.  I don't use card usb interface for image transfer, as an external USB3.0 reader is so much faster when writing images in the GB range to an microsSD card.    

You steps above should work.  Just make sure the image copied is the right size and don't write to the last block on the microSD card.

You might want to do a dd or hexdump -C of the last block after updating the configurations and do a check after loading the partitions.  It should not change.  It won't be in XML format, just the actual configuration bits and bytes.


Notes:  The actual last block of a microSD card varies greatly from advertised size, even from the same vendor.  
Under OSX a "diskutil info /dev/disk<n>" where n = microsd device will give the number of sectors.  And remember that most *NIX utilities use 0 as the first sector or block.

$ diskutil info /dev/disk6
  Device Identifier:        disk6
  Device Node:              /dev/disk6
  .....
  Disk Size:                5.0 TB (5000981077504 Bytes) (exactly 9767541167 512-Byte-Units)
  Device Block Size:        512 Bytes
  .....


Good luck
Jerry

Rob Blessin Black Hole

Hello : So it turns out I may have a semi defective incompatible rev of the version 6 cards that renders them unusable with some not all scsi hosts. It is a chip swap out to make it more interesting my chip's apparently have no markings so I suspect during assembly they threw in these generics on this build strange they have no markings , what a pain.

>>>>>>
Issues with the V6 board was finally discovered May 2017, but It looks like your boards pre-date this. The symptom would be that SCSI reads would generally work, but SCSI writes failed, usually with parity errors.  The issues would only affect some SCSI hosts though - in many systems the boards work perfectly fine.

The fix is to replace the 74LVC14A chips at positions U104, U106, U108 with 74AHC14 chips.  I'll do the repair to your remaining boards if you ship them to me.  Please check the boards first and read the fine lettering on the chips to work out whether the boards are affected.

Regards,
Michael.

So we shall see if that was the source of weeks of frustration.....

Rob Blessin President computerpowwow ebay  sales@blackholeinc.com http://www.blackholeinc.com
303-741-9998 Serving the NeXT Community  since 2/9/93

barcher174

Wow. That is a nightmare scenario for a hobby project. You have to be careful with assembly houses even in low volume.