I finally surpassed the 100mb limitation on a vulcan CF drive....
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Hello and welcome to the community.
Any pics on the used CF2IDE adapter and the used CFcard ???
Details about partitioning and used software?
Mod to the EPROM code ?
Had the same screen show up but also wasn't able to use over 100mb
I've been struggling to make this work. I have the controller card for a pre-existing 40MB vulcan which stopped working.
I've tried two CF cards (32mb canon and 128mb sandisk) but when I run the vulcan partition manager on the IIGS, I get a message saying there isn't a partition block.
I get the option to create one Y/N but either choice just sends me back to the finder eventually.
Do I need to pre-partition the cards? Can I do this ony my mac? I've tried mac disk utility to create smaller partitions (40mb max on the 128) but every attempt gets the same result.
I've ordered a few different cards that others have stated are compatible.
Any help would be appreciated!
If you’re going to use the Vulcan card on the IIgs then I’d suggest getting the Vulcan Gold ROM upgrade. It allows a little more latitude in drives. If you did that, you’d also need to use a different version of the partition manager.
No version of the Vulcan Partition Manager will format any drive over 100mb and only a couple of 100mb drives at all. Your 40mb ROM will limit you to formatting CFs under 40mb.
Someone did write a program for formatting Vulcan drives on a Linux PC.
It’ll partition larger drives and CFs. You still can’t have more than 4 active partitions.
I sort of gave up on my Vulcan drives, and moved to the ReActive Micro CF solutiion or to pain old SCSI.
It's nice to have an internal HDD, but with two Vulcan cards, and the Gold ROM, I was unable to get anything working. I could have purchased a 20MB IDE drive to replace the one that died, or taken apart the bad drive and serviced it, but in the end, it wasn't worth the hassle.
Perhaps one day I will service the mechanism. I've done this with old Rodime, Conner, Winchester, Seagate and similar drives in the past.
I'm mostly using mine with a CF. I ran a wire to power them off the card. Makes a handy drop in card if I want to back something up or transfer some files from one computer to another
Oh, does the CF need external power? That could very well be why I never was able to get one working.
Some IDE implementation supplies 5v power on pin 20, but this is not always true.
so most CF to IDE adapters has a power pigtail attached in case the host IDE bus does not supply power (or you just don't feel comfortable powering the CF with bus power.)
The Vulcan doesn't supply power to the CF adapter via the ATA connector. I used an external power supply for a long time then decided to get +5v from the card. The CF adapter gets the ground via the ata connecter so I only needed to use 1 wire. I did use a connector so I could easily disconnect the CF adapter in case I wanted to use the original hard drives at any time
Well, I feel silly. I'll need to try that, as both of my Vulcan cards may be usable due purely to a senile moment. I should have run a simple test for +5 n the header. I was clearly thinking of the 44 pin 2.5 PATA headers where this always exists. Checking the IDE spec, the 40 pin specification never requires it, as you derive VCC from the four pin Molex.
In fact, in the spec, P20 is lisated as KEY, so it should never be an open pin, and should always be n/c. Having VCC on P20 must hae been a particularly bizarre custom configuration that very few systems or devices supported. I'd be curious as to what devices or systems had that feature/hack.
I found several 32 MB cards on eBay and tried them out. These were all from the "vetted" set of cards I saw on the image from this forum.
To my dismay, when any of those cards are slotted in the Vulcan controller, when the vulcan system disk boots up, it shows a clock, beeps, and then all you are able to do is mouse the clock icon around. If I boot with some other cards (a 128, 64 or other 32 that was not in that list of "vetted" cards - the machine starts up ok, but the partition manager of course fails as I described before).
Does anyone have an idea why certain cards would cause GS/OS to sieze up when the finder launches?
Do I need to hot-swap the CF card on the first go? I could then at least get the partition manager to launch.
The Partition Manager is a ProDOS 8 app, not a GSOS app. If you put ProDOS and the Partition Manager on a floppy you should be able to boot it.
That’s the way my Vulcan floppies are set up. I don’t want to wait while it boots GSOS when I can quickly boot the app
I'll try that. For now I got it working by carefully inserting the CF card after GS/OS was up.
I created 2 partitions and formatted them as ProDOS, but I don't see them on the desktop when I leave Partition Manager.
EDIT : It turns out the partitioning and formatting didn't work. Back to PM and it turns out when I try to format, I see "could not read block 2". Maybe I need to try a different CF card, tomorrow.
The first card showd me 32 megs and would fail to format with that "could not read block 2" error.
The 2nd card showed multiple 32 meg paritions.
These are all the same exact kind of card (I bought 4 in a batch on ebay).
So far none have ever been able to make through the format phase.
I assumed since the CF was visible to the system it was getting power, but maybe not enough?
If I get one of those standard 4-pin molex power cords did I read correctly you were able to get +5v from the Vulcan controller card? Do you have an image of what you connected? I see 2 pins on the Vulcan card which have the same spacing as the 4 on my CF adapter, but without a schematic its just a guess
Cfs don't use a lot of power
Can you post a pic of the CFs you're trying to use?
You need +5VDC and Ground, on the same power circuit.
I probably should have mentioned that I only had to run the one wire because the adapter gets ground through the ATA connector . If you were using something other than the apple II's power supply then you'd need to run 2 wires
I have the original Vulcan in place of the Apple power supply and fan (just the drive itself died somehow).
I’m guessing that’s likely the Vulcan Gold EPROM. I’ve never seen an original. I have original EPROMs for the IIe 20 & 40mb and the IIgs 40mb.
I’m using 3 of those CFs. One of the adapters I’m using appears to be identical to yours.
Pin P1 is for an optional external activity light. It wouldn’t power the CF adapter
I appreciate all the answers. How did you decide which lead to solder from on the back of the card? I don't happen to have a voltmeter although I should...
At first I was going to run the wire from near the slot connector but that would have meant using an inconveniently long wire so I looked up the pinout for a chip near the ata connector.
I just remembered something that may solve your problem.
After booting the Partition Manager type AE
It should say
COULD NOT READ A VALID PARTITION BLOCK
PRESS ‘Y’ TO CREATE NEW ONE
After that in the next message you can decide whether you want to scan for bad tracks or not.
No is quicker
After that press Y to save your partition block
With luck you should then be good
Could I use something like this for an easy solution to power the card?
Does anyone have a recommended 5v supply for this? Amazon is notably short on 4-pin 5V
You can use any basic 500mA 5V DC supply and wire it to fit, externally. You can also tap the //e internal +5VCD and Earth to get it. In fact, if you want to be creatve, you could tap it using a proto board and the slot 3 connector. Otherwise, ust splice into the +5 and Earth signals, anywhere.
ANother option is to use a 7805 voltage regulator with a 9-10V power supply and drop the voltage down to a regulated 5VDC: In fact, I would adsvise using a 7805 with any external power source as that source may be unregulated (and most cheap Chinese stuff often is).
Order a variety pack of jumper leads, as ribbon, tear off a four wire strip, connect two leads to your +5 and Earth signals and terminate the other two by trimming them off; or ust use two individual wires. That. or buy a 4-pin mini Molex connector wired up for mini IDE, and wire it up either to the //e PCB, to a proto card on a slot, or to a normal barrel connector. IIf you use the internal +5 and Earth, grabbing those should provide regulated voltage. Using a 7805 is still safer IMO.
It'd take a bit of adaption to make that work
I used one of these power supplies https://www.ebay.com/itm/12V-5V-2A-USB-to-SATA-IDE-Hard-Drive-Adapter-power-supply-IDE-power-adapter/254368091501?hash=item3b39850d6d:g:cZsAAOSwk1haH4UE
With this kind of adapter going to the CF adapter https://www.ebay.com/itm/Molex-Power-Internal-Floppy-Disk-Drive-FDD-Connector-Convertor-Cable-Lead-Wire/293132757475?epid=1240405382&hash=item444012e9e3:g:uwsAAOSw0Z9dEjBD
These are just ads with pics of the hardware I happened to have on hand. I’ve never dealt with and know nothing about those companies
Great - found some comparable parts I think will work, arriving sunday.
So far its been failure with every CF so I have to assume there isn't enough power to the CF reader. Aside from the Vulcan card there are 3 other cards inside - ZipGs, DataLink modem, and a I think a SonicBlater card. I have to assume they are drawing power. No sense in trying to pull them out as the ZipGS replaces the processor (no idea where the original might be).
The external power supply was the issue - CF card works, formats, and is now running my IIGS.