It was determined that this needed to be posted here on AppleFritter as well in the event that there might be a 'FritterCritter poking around who may want to get involved.
This is my post from 68kMLA:
This is a post I made on MacMod back before MacTech took over..then it turned into AppleCentral sometime when I was not looking. <_< >_>
I never got involved with MacTech but I want this here as well because it is useful information. (IMO anyway)
I have a Syba SD-SATA-150R in my Digital Audio G4. It is a card that uses the Sil3512 chipset and like other Sil3512 cards with suitable eeprom, can be flashed with the wiebetech TCS1-1 firmware.
I know it can be flashed because there is a forum thread in another language based in another country that google translates very badly. It has a link to the firmware, a screenshot of System profiler with the card being used in OS X but as far as I recall I never read anything about booting off the card.(at least nothing translated into english)
I was looking for something to do just now and I remembered that I wanted to see if my card was in fact bootable so I poked around on google for a bit to try and find what wiebtech cards were bootable in Macs.
Turns out the Sil3512 based WeibeTech TeraCard is in fact bootable. After verifying that I was actually using the same firmware as the bootable card, I booted my G4 off a Leopard install disc then installed to the SATA drive as a test.
This is incredibly awesome.
This is the card I got:
Others should work as well but not all. I have a Sil3512 based cheapo noname shady bargain-bin in Japan card and it seems that it cannot be flashed at all, even with DOS flashing programs. *shrug*
Anyway, this is how I went about doing it.
Insert the card into Mac.
Run the flasher program.
Follow the prompts and select the Firmware option.(it looks like Firmware option = Mac and BIOS option = PC, I might be wrong, I did not extensively test aside from that if you use the BIOS option it is no longer usable in OS X)
Check System Profiler for card recognition.
Shutdown and connect drive
To be fair, you might not need to do that extra reboot between flashing and connecting the drive. I just did not have the drive in my case at that point of testing.
TCS1-1 flasher is here:
The WiebeTech site says that this card should support hotswap but I do not recall having that work. So far I have had to connect my drives while my Mac was off for them to work. However, since it is bootable then I would want to boot off it simply because it means I can remove my older and more likely to fail PATA drive from the case and completely sidestep the LBA48 issue that forces me to partition my PATA HDD then use an enablery-mabob to access the rest of it.
Also of note. My Quicksilver 2002 would not initialize the video adapter or even chime with this card in it no matter what slot I put it in or what other cards are in it. According to the macgurus forum this is a known issue with some Silicon Image cards and some Digital Audios and Quicksilvers. It is not related to the WiebeTech firmware on the card or the fact that the card is flashed! Looks like at this point nobody knows the real cause, only that you need to try another card or another Mac.
With regard to the hotswap and non-boot issues.. YMMV.
Either way, this is frikkin great!
It is about time we had this posted somewhere in english. :
I did later get a second Sil3512 card that also flashed well.
I need to mention, you cannot boot or otherwise use OS 9 or lower with Sil3512. At least not with this firmware. OS X only. Still though, great for G4s and G3s that run X only.
And a picture of one of my cards(they have slightly different layouts but the same chips):
I actually recently tried hotswapping on mine and it did work, even though previously I seem to recall it did not.. idk what the deal is but if it works for you then great. Also, my own experience with this card is limited to Mac OS 10.5 specifically.
As well as a followup post by Renegade in the same thread:
I'm happy to report that the card is recognized by 10.2 & 10.4 installers, and is bootable on my B&W G3.
So that is about that. In the PC world You see people crossflashing Sil3512 and Sil3112 cards so if you can only get one, you may still be in luck.
Not really sure what else I should add here, but if you have any questions or comments please do post.