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Gotek like Optical Driver Emulator - Is it possible?

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Reply 100 of 110, by weedeewee

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Never heard of one with a PATA SATA or SCSI connection but they do exist with a USB connection
http://iodd.kr/wordpress/product/iodd-2531/
https://www.zalman.com/EN/Product/ProductDeta … ?productSeq=914

Reply 101 of 110, by darry

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The problem with SATA optical drives is that they typically do not have an analogue audio out connector or a headphone jack, so they will not allow cd-audio to be played when playing mixed-mode CD games under DOS .

Reply 102 of 110, by megatron-uk

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If it's win2k you are after supporting then I'm sure I've had it pxe booting before via dnsmasq, with tftpd to serve the initial loader and then samba for the install media.

Reply 103 of 110, by hyoenmadan

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Gopher666 wrote on 2021-02-05, 20:00:

I wonder if anything like this exist on a reasonable price for ATA which similarly to the Gotek can take .iso images and boot from it.

ATA (and the ATAPI command subset need for optical media emulation) are a pain in the *ss to work on compared to SCSI and/or USB, from hardware developer standpoint. Plenty of documentation and libraries are available for the most popular microcontrollers and embedded ARM processors, and you don't need to layer communication as would be required for ATAPI (it is basically SCSI over ATA). That's why all the emulator devices are made with SCSI or USB (basically SCSI over USB) on mind.

Reply 104 of 110, by Gopher666

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megatron-uk wrote on 2021-02-06, 00:32:

If it's win2k you are after supporting then I'm sure I've had it pxe booting before via dnsmasq, with tftpd to serve the initial loader and then samba for the install media.

Well if you know a simple way to pxe install win2k to NTFS please share it.

As I said I was looking for a generic solution to get rid of CD/DVD drives for life same as getting rid of floppies. There are so much hassle with them, ppl are complaining about old hdds slow, noisy, failing and use CF to IDE adapters but just how much more problems we had with optical media?! Spend tons of money buying them, tons of time writing them out, they get dirty, scratchy, the layer rots down from them and ultimately yeah time is money so even if retro computing is your hobby you might want optical media out of your life forever. These days you can get a 10TB hdd for nothing and put tens of thousands of images on it.

Win2K was just an example as I said, there are so many other like what if I want to install Novell Netware 6.5 which ditched dos already or AIX 5.1 on my RS6000 from CDs or Solaris or some older Linuxes like Kororaa 0.3?!
With Linux what makes pxe an extra pain is the module and kernel version changes (in case you don't use the last version of a line) for example for some reason you want to install Debian Wheezy 7.5 not 7.11 the last official version which was released. You made a shiny pxe installer back then for it it used to work until a point when they went over 7.5 and the kernel modules it would try to fetch from the official repo got newer that is when its gonna break. In the meantime if you just got the CD or DVD images for 7.5 that would install fine forever not to mention that doing network install with these legacy OSes will just become more and more pain over the years as some of them gets scrapped from the archives or their whole repo is shut down completely.

What I liked back in the days before this download all teh things era is that you have bought a software like Windows, Starcraft or Diablo and you owned it. You could install it any time just take a look at what they did to Steam and xp compatibility anyway we are getting out of topic. If you know how to PXE install win2k to NTFS please share.

This looks good btw but for 200$?!
https://shop.tattiebogle.net/product/prod_EkTnv3Tk2Trxhf

Reply 105 of 110, by Warlord

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well like i said you can install 2000 over pxe using 2000 server or 2003 server with RIS installed you said you didn't want to do that. But how hard is it to put one of them in a VM. I have done it through a VM its easy.

I personally cannot get rid of CDs becasue I play games on my retro computers that require CD audio, and daemon tools only takes you so far for windows games with wdm drivers but doesn't work with dos games or vxds.

Reply 106 of 110, by megatron-uk

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With Linux what makes pxe an extra pain is the module and kernel version changes (in case you don't use the last version of a line) for example for some reason you want to install Debian Wheezy 7.5 not 7.11 the last official version which was released. You made a shiny pxe installer back then for it it used to work until a point when they went over 7.5 and the kernel modules it would try to fetch from the official repo got newer that is when its gonna break. 

Well, yes, of course you need to keep the network installer kernel and initrd image in sync with the version of the OS you want to install.

I maintain the Linux netboot installation service for our institution (www.ncl.ac.uk) and yes, if you want to netboot Ubuntu 20.10 (for example), you're going to have to get write a new PXE menu entry for it, download the correct network installer kernel and initrd and put the 20.10 package tree somewhere. You can't just rely on the 18.04 netboot kernel, or even the 20.04 release to work correctly. It's not a set-up and forget service - it needs constant updating to keep all the new versions working. So does RIS/WDS and now MECM if you want to run a Microsoft-only netboot service for Windows.

But do it properly and you can have virtually every flavour and version of Linux or *BSD served by the same service.

There are some limitations however; IRIX doesn't like to be network booted from a Linux tftp/nfs server - it prefers a *BSD based one due to differences in the Linux NFS implementation. Solaris/SunOS is another - it uses rarp and bootp, so there's another set of services to keep configured compared to the generic dhcp+tftp+nfs trio needed for most modern x86 operating systems. There are ways around most of these issues.

Reply 107 of 110, by gex85

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The creator of that Tattiebogle emulator is here on Vogons, by the way. He did also participate in this thread. Seems he is still actively developing and improving the device.

However, all of these projects seem to be quite far from becoming the Gotek of optical media in terms of price, availability and usability.

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Reply 109 of 110, by Hojo82

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Gopher666 wrote on 2021-02-06, 06:06:

I really would like CD emulation myself (and actually think $200 isn't outrageous for this), but you have to realize that the expense is caused simply because emulation of a much higher throughput device requires a much higher power CPU. My understanding of this device is that the bulk of the cost is right in the microcontroller itself. What would be amazing is if someone could build a 3D printed drive case along with a holder for a small OLED display and a couple buttons/rotating selector like the Gotek drive. That would take this device from being an interesting and moderately useful device to killer app territory.

Reply 110 of 110, by SScorpio

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Hojo82 wrote on 2021-02-11, 16:30:

I really would like CD emulation myself (and actually think $200 isn't outrageous for this), but you have to realize that the expense is caused simply because emulation of a much higher throughput device requires a much higher power CPU. My understanding of this device is that the bulk of the cost is right in the microcontroller itself. What would be amazing is if someone could build a 3D printed drive case along with a holder for a small OLED display and a couple buttons/rotating selector like the Gotek drive. That would take this device from being an interesting and moderately useful device to killer app territory.

I have to wonder how the Raspberry Pi Pico will affect things. It's a $4 quad core microcontroller that should have more than enough power to handle something like this. I've seen talk of using regular Pis in this type of system, but the Pico seems like a better solution for something that doesn't need a UI.