VOGONS


First post, by kikendo

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You guys are gonna hate me... yeah I have problems again 😜

I got a 512MB CompactFlash after advice given in this thread and I went to set it up but I ran into several problems. I had done this before but never on a machine this old.

First of all there was the issue of geometry. I found a post here where someone said the settings for a 512MB card should be 993 cyls, 16 heads and 63 sectors. Put that in and the machine stopped giving "Fixed Disk Failure" errors, but there's two more settings I left at 0 that I don't know if is what is causing trouble. In the BIOS they are called LZ and WP.

Even leaving those two at zero, I managed to install DOS 6.22 in the disk, but when I restart, the machine simply says "Error!" and stops.
Now I think this isn't the first time I run into this problem: when I set up a CF for my Toshiba Libretto, I think I ran into the same issue, but I have no idea how I fixed it.

I did the whole installation in the 386 itself from virtual floppies on a Gotek drive running FlashFloppy.
I let DOS partition and format the CF drive after having erased all partitions on the CF using Partition Magic.

At this point I have no idea what is going on. Inserting the CF in my newer PC shows that there are files there, everything looks in place.
If I boot from a floppy, I can see the files in the CF.

Any ideas where I screwed up?

Reply 2 of 7, by cyclone3d

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What brand/model is the card?

I have a few cards that will not work with "standard" settings. I had to install them in a newer computer to autodetect the settings, write the settings down and then install in the older computer with those settings.

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Reply 3 of 7, by appiah4

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kikendo wrote on 2020-06-18, 21:58:

First of all there was the issue of geometry. I found a post here where someone said the settings for a 512MB card should be 993 cyls, 16 heads and 63 sectors.

Not necesserily. You need to run IDEINFO.EXE on the CF-IDE adapter/card combination, possibly on another PC where the controller can read the geometry. Then and only then will you know how you manually have to set it up so that it works properly.

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Reply 4 of 7, by kikendo

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SodaSuccubus wrote on 2020-06-18, 22:05:

FDISK /MBR?

I'll try that!

appiah4 wrote on 2020-06-18, 22:31:

Not necesserily. You need to run IDEINFO.EXE on the CF-IDE adapter/card combination, possibly on another PC where the controller can read the geometry. Then and only then will you know how you manually have to set it up so that it works properly.

Where do I get IDEINFO?

Reply 6 of 7, by Pierre32

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I also like https://archive.org/details/whatide

Doing this myself soon for the first time on a 386 (I've done it on other systems) so I'm reading about any problems and solutions with interest.

Reply 7 of 7, by kikendo

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Ok as always, teh simplest solution was the one that worked!

SodaSuccubus wrote on 2020-06-18, 22:05:

FDISK /MBR?

This fixed it. thanks so much!

Pierre32 wrote on 2020-06-19, 15:10:

I also like https://archive.org/details/whatide

Doing this myself soon for the first time on a 386 (I've done it on other systems) so I'm reading about any problems and solutions with interest.

Thanks for that info, I'll try it! And good luck. Let me know if I can help you in any way.
At this point, I am pretty much done with my 386 restoration, save for one repair. I can't wait to post teh finished, restored build!