Formatting SD/CF cards for use on RISC OS 3.1

Arc/RPCs, peripherals, RISCOS operating system & ARM kit eg GP2x, BeagleBoard
iainjh
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Re: Formatting SD/CF cards for use on RISC OS 3.1

Post by iainjh » Thu Jan 19, 2017 12:17 am

I'm afraid thats beyond me. plus it seems I need a working build to upgrade the rom(?)

I then thought I'd found a working pi zero build, grabbed the Pi zero out of the master but that loads but hangs.

Ok, wish I hadnt passed on my pi 2 now!

Trapper
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Re: Formatting SD/CF cards for use on RISC OS 3.1

Post by Trapper » Thu Feb 09, 2017 3:38 pm

Ladies and Gentlemen:

Use ANY CF Card to IDE reader and this EXACT CF card and it'll work. I've been trying for months, but this CF Card not only reports to !HForm correctly, but formats, initializes and allows use. It's only 256MB - but still larger than a rust HDD.

I used !HForm v2.56 on RISC OS 3.10 by removing the UtilityManager 3.60 requirement from !Run.

This is guaranteed to work. Nothing else will, and I've tried dozens of cards and adapters


https://www.amazon.co.uk/d/Memory-Cards ... B00009EC53

RobC
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Re: Formatting SD/CF cards for use on RISC OS 3.1

Post by RobC » Thu Feb 09, 2017 8:37 pm

Yes - I have two of those in a dual adapter in my A3000 on a Castle IDE mini-podule.

Trapper
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Re: Formatting SD/CF cards for use on RISC OS 3.1

Post by Trapper » Fri Feb 10, 2017 4:09 pm

Dual adapter arrived this morning. Wahey HardDisc4 and HardDisc5 now!

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Re: Formatting SD/CF cards for use on RISC OS 3.1

Post by oo00Kman00oo » Tue May 08, 2018 11:17 am

I know this is an old thread but I recently got my Acorn A310 down from the loft to find the hard drive is sticking. Having manually pushed the head it does boot and seems to have all of my data still in tact. Not wanting to loose everything, I purchased this (http://www.cjemicros.co.uk/micros/indiv ... AR-SDIDE40) SD-IDE interface last week. Using a 1gb SD card, I followed the info in the post by steve3000 and setup my SD card using a Raspberry Pi 2. With the original hard disk drive unplugged, I put the SD-IDE interface on the last plug on the IDE cable (master) and plugged the power into the splitter on the floppy drive. The interface lights up power lights etc and ready and then the access light flashes every 10 seconds on/off. When the machine boots I see one hard drive icon labelled IDE:4 appears greyed out. I have tried clicking on it with all mouse buttons but nothing happens.

Has anyone else had this happen? - What could be the reason? - Does it suggest that the drive isn't formatted or initialised quite right?

The SD-IDE interface is connected to an ICS ideA IDE board and so according to the original post by Steve3000 it happens to be one of the one's he knew to actually work on a A310.

I have also tried downloading the original !IDEFormat application for my ICS interface, but it doesn't seem to do anything different. There was one strange thing however, when I run this application it doesn't show the heads/cylinders etc I setup on the Pi but instead shows the heads/cylinders for the entire SD card. It may just be that this is what the application is designed to show but thought I would mention it. The other thing I found strange was that there was no option to format using !IDEFormat, and instead you could only initialise the drive. Does that sound correct?

Any help would be very much appreciated. I really would love to be able to keep and use my beloved A310 going forward, and I am in desperate need of a way to backup the ailing hard drive which I thought this would be perfect for. Thanks in advance.
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Re: Formatting SD/CF cards for use on RISC OS 3.1

Post by steve3000 » Tue May 08, 2018 12:54 pm

oo00Kman00oo wrote:Has anyone else had this happen? - What could be the reason? - Does it suggest that the drive isn't formatted or initialised quite right?
My A310 is currently packed away, so I can't compare directly, but the greyed out icon suggests the drive is either unformatted or not being detected correctly.

Are you sure the IDE cable is the connected the correct way round - especially important to check this if the cable plug isn't keyed.
oo00Kman00oo wrote:The SD-IDE interface is connected to an ICS ideA IDE board and so according to the original post by Steve3000 it happens to be one of the one's he knew to actually work on a A310.
The SD-IDE adaptor I have is slightly different, mine has the 2-chip design, which is the type that also works on the Acorn IDE interface, but the 1-chip adaptor you have should be fine on your ICS interface.
oo00Kman00oo wrote:I have also tried downloading the original !IDEFormat application for my ICS interface, but it doesn't seem to do anything different. There was one strange thing however, when I run this application it doesn't show the heads/cylinders etc I setup on the Pi but instead shows the heads/cylinders for the entire SD card.
Does the format application show the SD adaptor make and model? This would confirm the cable is correctly fitted.

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Re: Formatting SD/CF cards for use on RISC OS 3.1

Post by oo00Kman00oo » Tue May 08, 2018 6:44 pm

My A310 is currently packed away, so I can't compare directly, but the greyed out icon suggests the drive is either unformatted or not being detected correctly.
How do you actually format the drive? - The instructions on the Raspberry Pi setup says only to perform an initialisation. When I run !HDFormat there is an option 6 to initialise the drive but again no where do I see an option to format the drive. Oddly it does say on the main screen in !HDFormat that there drive has never been formatted before.
Are you sure the IDE cable is the connected the correct way round - especially important to check this if the cable plug isn't keyed.
Yes, cable definitely the correct way as this one is keyed and doesn't fit any other way.
Does the format application show the SD adaptor make and model? This would confirm the cable is correctly fitted.
I don't have it in front of me now but it definitely showed that it had found an SD card adapter of some description. !HDFormat also displayed the correct size for the entire SD card, which changed if I ran it with a different card. I tried a 1gb and a 256mb and all info displayed matched the card inserted so I guess I can assume the SD-IDE is working ok at least.

Thanks.

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Re: Formatting SD/CF cards for use on RISC OS 3.1

Post by steve3000 » Tue May 08, 2018 8:15 pm

oo00Kman00oo wrote:I don't have it in front of me now but it definitely showed that it had found an SD card adapter of some description. !HDFormat also displayed the correct size for the entire SD card, which changed if I ran it with a different card. I tried a 1gb and a 256mb and all info displayed matched the card inserted so I guess I can assume the SD-IDE is working ok at least.
That sounds encouraging!

IDE drives shouldn't need physical formatting, unless they are known or suspected defective and you need to find and map out defects. SD cards via an adaptor probably don't support the format function, so yes initialisation is all you need :)

If you have a 256mb SD card to hand, try connecting this to the A310, then initialising using the ICS software to the default settings it suggests. For SD cards <500 mb the defaults suggested under RISC OS 3.1 should be fine.

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Re: Formatting SD/CF cards for use on RISC OS 3.1

Post by oo00Kman00oo » Thu May 10, 2018 7:57 am

Ok, so I used an SD formatting tool on a Windows machine to format the 256mb SD card. I then took this card and popped it into the Acorn and ran the ICS tool !HDFormat. Photo 1 is the result of this. It immediately showed an Error - &AB at &C00 and said press any key. After pressing the space bar it continued into the tool and I think it correctly id's the SD-IDE as MEMORY CARD ADAPTER. It then displays the details of the card:

965 Cylinders
16 Heads
32 Sectors per track
Parking cylinder 964
giving 252968960 Bytes of storage capacity

I then went straight to option 6 - Initialise all drive partitions. Output can be seen in photo 2. Everything seemed to work just fine and it went back to the main menu without any errors. I then chose option 0 - exit and the application closed having told me that I needed to reboot the machine. Once back to the desktop I performed a ctrl+shit+f12 to shutdown and was greeted by the Bad defect list message as shown in the photo 3. After a reboot of the machine the hard drive icon was still Grey and the same message popped up when I did a shutdown again.

This is different from what happened with the 1gb card. That seemed to never throw any errors at all and never had the bad defect list message when shutting down the OS. This card didn't show any errors when I formatted on the Windows machine though.
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SD card 256mb
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Output from HDFormat option 6 initialise
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Initial output of HDFormat util

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Re: Formatting SD/CF cards for use on RISC OS 3.1

Post by steve3000 » Thu May 10, 2018 8:13 am

Interesting. Try doing the same but add a new partition (option 1) before initialising.

I've not used the ICS formatter for a long time, but some formatters create a default partition automatically and some don't. The warning about no partition in the table, suggests this formatter might not create a default partition (although it is strange that it allows you to proceed if that is the case...).

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Re: Formatting SD/CF cards for use on RISC OS 3.1

Post by oo00Kman00oo » Thu May 10, 2018 8:29 am

Just tried creating the partition but it didn't seem to make any difference. It then got me thinking about the possibility that it might be a power issue. I tried booting, running the format util, unplugging the power from the floppy drive and just having the SD-IDE connected but it made no difference. Then I thought I would try the device on my Windows machine. Booted up fine, bios detected the drive with the same name as the Acorn, Windows installed the drivers etc and the removable disk appeared in explorer. I clicked on it and it said it needed to format the card which I thought was strange as I had only just formatted it in using my laptop. I let the format go ahead and within seconds windows popped up an error message saying that it could not format the card, and asking me to check whether the cables were connected :) - I then shutdown and repeated the test with another memory card and bingo.... same problem. I therefore suspect this could be an SD-IDE device problem rather than anything Acorn related. I will drop the seller of the card CJE/4D an email this afternoon and see if I can get a replacement device. Thanks.

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Re: Formatting SD/CF cards for use on RISC OS 3.1

Post by oo00Kman00oo » Wed Jun 06, 2018 9:20 am

So it did indeed turn out to be a faulty SD-IDE adapter. Having now received a replacement, followed the instructions at the start of this post, I can confirm that I have a working SD-IDE memory card / hard drive. I have tested on my A310 and I can read and write files to said SD card. Now comes the next problem..... The whole point of this exercise was to backup my original ailing hard drive, which works most of the time but the head often gets stuck on the platter. I have tried every possible configuration of jumpers and positions on the cable, but I simply cannot get both the SD-IDE interface and the original Acorn hard drive on at the same time :( - The old Acorn HD always took a little while to appear active in the desktop, and it just seems like while this delay occurs, the SD-IDE interface jumps in and steals the show. The Acorn one then never appears. I have tried the !Configure app and it just led to lot's of Bad Drive icons appearing. I have also tried setting these to none and configuring via the IDEDiscs setting but no joy. All out of ideas. I really think I am destined to never be able to backup this hard drive :( I have spent far too many hours on this project.

Thanks.

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Re: Formatting SD/CF cards for use on RISC OS 3.1

Post by Andy1979 » Wed Jun 06, 2018 10:00 am

I haven't tried using an SD to IDE adapter on an Acorn, but I did recently try one on a Pentium system.

The problem I found with my brand of adapter was that it wouldn't work with a secondary IDE device attached. Supposedly it supported 'cable select' mode, but I couldn't make it work. Ended up going back to Compact Flash in the end.

Do you have access to an IDE to USB adapter? If so you could use this to make an image of your old drive. If you have access to a Raspberry Pi running Risco OS 5 then you might be able to access the A310's original drive from that using a USB to IDE adapter (I use a CF card in my A3010 and that works great in a USB card reader connected to my Pi).

Perhaps others can recommend a way of getting this to work on your A310.

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Re: Formatting SD/CF cards for use on RISC OS 3.1

Post by oo00Kman00oo » Wed Jun 06, 2018 11:56 am

Just looking into the possibility of an IDE to USB adapter. Not sure whether Risc OS on the Raspberry Pi would support a drive of this age though (170mb Conner). I had read that it only supported newer drives, but I am just trying to find where I once read this.

Thanks.

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Re: Formatting SD/CF cards for use on RISC OS 3.1

Post by oo00Kman00oo » Wed Jun 06, 2018 12:16 pm

This post viewtopic.php?t=14439 seems to suggest I would probably not be lucky in trying the USB - IDE scenario:

Looking in the RiscOS Open forums, this seems to be a common problem. It would seem that original RPC600-era drives can’t be read in this way and the given explanation is that the Pi uses SCSIFS to read USB devices, rather than the ADFS they’re written in.

Other people have reported succes with SA-machine drives. Possibly because later machines used a different version of FileCore (long filenames, greater capacity etc)?

Perhaps RiscOsPi only has support for drives formatted for later versions of FileCore because that’s all it was ever expected to see...

Some people seem to have had success reading the drive to an image under linux, then working from the image instead.

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Re: Formatting SD/CF cards for use on RISC OS 3.1

Post by oo00Kman00oo » Wed Jun 06, 2018 12:18 pm

I have already tried the Linux suggestion and this didn't work either. My oldest PC's bios recognised the ID of the hard disk (Conner) etc, but couldn't get any block size or free space information. I suspect because of this, it would not report any device ID to Linux and therefore I couldn't perform any operations on the disk :(

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Re: Formatting SD/CF cards for use on RISC OS 3.1

Post by Phlamethrower » Wed Jun 06, 2018 12:38 pm

oo00Kman00oo wrote:
Wed Jun 06, 2018 11:56 am
Just looking into the possibility of an IDE to USB adapter. Not sure whether Risc OS on the Raspberry Pi would support a drive of this age though (170mb Conner). I had read that it only supported newer drives, but I am just trying to find where I once read this.
Possibly this thread? viewtopic.php?f=16&t=14439

Some googling suggests that lack of CHS support is a known limitation of USB adapters. But, theoretically it can be made to work - you just have to do some voodoo to map between CHS and LBA. If the voodoo part can be worked out, then the rest should be pretty straightforward (under RISC OS you can easily read arbitrary LBA sectors using the SCSIFS_DiscOp SWI)

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Re: Formatting SD/CF cards for use on RISC OS 3.1

Post by JonC » Wed Jun 06, 2018 4:50 pm

Check your SD-IDE adaptor, does it have a jumper to switch between CS/D1/D2 etc?
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Re: Formatting SD/CF cards for use on RISC OS 3.1

Post by oo00Kman00oo » Wed Jun 06, 2018 4:51 pm

Its a SD-IDE interface rather than CF and doesn't have any jumpers on it sadly.

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Re: Formatting SD/CF cards for use on RISC OS 3.1

Post by oo00Kman00oo » Wed Jun 06, 2018 4:54 pm

I got so desperate this afternoon that I even tried hot plugging the devices in :O - I booted with the old IDE hard disk drive running fine, copied something into a ram disc and then plugged in the SD-IDE to see whether it would override the HD. The OS just asked me to insert the original hard disk drive. I then tried naming the SD-IDE drive the same name as the original hard drive but it still didn't work. I suspect the OS keeps a cache of the directory structure in memory as it just reports broken directory structure. After playing about I did retest both drives and they still work just fine. I won't be doing that again as it felt a little too dangerous and didn't work anyhow.

So I still have no idea where to go from here. A second ICS ideA interface might work but they are so expensive and rarely come up on eBay.

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Re: Formatting SD/CF cards for use on RISC OS 3.1

Post by JonC » Wed Jun 06, 2018 5:02 pm

How much data do yo have to move? A few 800kb floppies might be ok if it's a small amount?
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Re: Formatting SD/CF cards for use on RISC OS 3.1

Post by Phlamethrower » Wed Jun 06, 2018 5:21 pm

Hot-swapping hard discs isn't something the OS was designed to cope with, but you could probably get it to work if you *dismount each drive before unplugging it. Possibly also a *RMReInit of the filing system module (e.g. ADFS) after inserting the new drive.

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Re: Formatting SD/CF cards for use on RISC OS 3.1

Post by oo00Kman00oo » Wed Jun 06, 2018 5:24 pm

How much data do yo have to move? A few 800kb floppies might be ok if it's a small amount?
170MB in total (the entire Conner HD).
Hot-swapping hard discs isn't something the OS was designed to cope with, but you could probably get it to work if you *dismount each drive before unplugging it. Possibly also a *RMReInit of the filing system module (e.g. ADFS) after inserting the new drive.
I did try dismounting, but what is the RMReInit? it did feel like something needed refreshing.

Thanks.

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Re: Formatting SD/CF cards for use on RISC OS 3.1

Post by oo00Kman00oo » Wed Jun 06, 2018 6:28 pm

After a quick Google I can see that an RMReInit IDEFS might help. I will give it a try tomorrow, after the dismount and see what happens. I had to move my Acorn as for some reason my family don't like eating around it whilst at the dining room table :) Just no love for retro computers.

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Re: Formatting SD/CF cards for use on RISC OS 3.1

Post by IanS » Wed Jun 06, 2018 6:34 pm

oo00Kman00oo wrote:
Wed Jun 06, 2018 4:54 pm
So I still have no idea where to go from here. A second ICS ideA interface might work but they are so expensive and rarely come up on eBay.
Why does it have to be the same interface? (two cards from the same manufacturer, or even the same filing system is unlikely to work together)
Do you have a backplane in your machine?
Would a loan card for the cost of postage be of any use? (are you in the UK?)
You could use it with ZIDEFS and a compact flash card or CF->SD adapter, and copy all the data across.

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Re: Formatting SD/CF cards for use on RISC OS 3.1

Post by DutchAcorn » Wed Jun 06, 2018 7:13 pm

Have you tried putting the Conner in slave mode? See this post for the jumper config on a Conner.
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Re: Formatting SD/CF cards for use on RISC OS 3.1

Post by RobC » Wed Jun 06, 2018 8:16 pm

Whereabouts are you? Maybe someone on here can help by loaning you some kit?

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Re: Formatting SD/CF cards for use on RISC OS 3.1

Post by oo00Kman00oo » Thu Jun 07, 2018 7:39 pm

Good news everybody :) - but first I want to thank each and every person that took the time to reply to all of my messages. I cannot believe how nice the Acorn community is and I am so pleased to be a part of it.

So my news.. After reading some of the posts about Conner drives not labelling their master/slave jumpers correctly, I thought I would have another go this afternoon playing around with them. First I removed all discs from !Configure. I then manually did a configure IDEFSDrives 2. I put the old hard drive on the middle connector on the IDE cable and the SD-IDE interface on the end. I then tried a few combinations with the jumpers but had no luck. It was around this point that I realised that the hard drive wasn't initialising properly (again) and so my tests thus far were probably invalid. I opened up the hard drive and the head was stuck firmly on the platter. I managed to move it off and resealed the hard drive. I then wrote down all the possible combinations for the jumpers and ignored the information on the front of the drive. After a few variations the machine booted and displayed two drive icons!!!! - You can imagine my joy :) - The only problem now was that I had labelled the drives with the same name from my testing yesterday 'hot swapping' them. I disconnected the hard drive and ran the system with just the SD-IDE interface, renamed the drive and put everything back how it was before (I took the photos so I would remember how it went). It booted up and I was able to click on both hard drives and bring up their contents.

I couldn't contain my excitement at this point, honestly I have spent so long on this. With both drives now open on the desktop, I went to copy a file.... (can I just add at this point that I am sure someone or something has been trying their hardest to stop me from backing up my old failing drive)... So there I am about to copy the file when BANG! - WTF? - What's that smell, and why is the display on my Acorn monitor going crazy and shrinking. A few fizzles later and I run for the plugs when I realise that it smells like the monitor is now on fire!! - Thinking quickly I managed to get it outside and that's where it's staying. It smells awful and I am pretty sure it's beyond my expertise level of repair.

I spent the next few hours hunting around for an old flat screen TV which I have in storage. Having found it I tried for a while to make it work on the RGB but failed and so resorted to running through the B&W video output which seemed to work just fine. It was good enough for me to make sure the hard drives were still working and I finally managed to backup the entire contents to my SD card. A quick test in my Raspberry Pi confirms that all the files are there and everything is in tact. To my absolute amazement, there wasn't a single error received when I copied the files. I was sure all of the times I had to push the head off the platter would have damaged something.

So there we have it, I now have a backup and no longer a monitor. My next project is going to be trying to get a VGA monitor or some other form of colour output from the machine. For the time being though I will be happy if I can just get some of the bits running via emulation. Not sure whether any of the Arc emulators can read direct from SD cards or whether I will still need to figure out how to make an image of the HD, but hopefully that's something I can do (if needed) from the Pi.

Just for complete sake and in case anyone comes here after Googling a similar issue, my setup is:

Acorn Archimedes A310 (upgraded to 4mb I think, with a VIDC enhancement), running RISC OS 3.1.
SD-IDE interface
Conner CP30174E 170MB hard disk drive
ICS ideA IDE interface
Watford Electronics 4 way podule board (not sure if that's what you can them, it's the thing the ideA interface plugs into)

The jumpers on the Conner hard drive for master:
C/D jumpered, no other jumpers on.
For slave mode I had to take all jumpers off apart from CAM1

That's it for now (I hope). Thanks again.
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Re: Formatting SD/CF cards for use on RISC OS 3.1

Post by BigEd » Fri Jun 08, 2018 9:20 am

Fantastic!

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Re: Formatting SD/CF cards for use on RISC OS 3.1

Post by Andy1979 » Fri Jun 08, 2018 10:50 am

That's amazing - what an adventure =D>

Sorry to hear about your monitor - can't believe it chose that moment to fail, you couldn't make it up.

Most important thing is that you have your files back. There are a few good RiscOS3.10 emulators available for RiscOS - I eventually plan to 'clone' my A3010 onto a Pi - running whatever I can natively under Risc OS 5, and emulating the rest. Have a good few hundred floppies to sort through first though.

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