Strange SCSI card behavior

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Strange SCSI card behavior

OK, problems continue with SCSI.

I installed a Jackhammer NuBus card in the Quadra 950, along with a 68pin cable (I think this is a U320 cable), terminator on the end, and a 1GB SCA HD containing a 80 to 68/50 pin adapter. When I boot up the computer, it takes forever to boot up. First there is ~5min long wait before it even starts the boot up process (just mouse pointer on the screen) and then the splash screen comes up but before any extensions start to load it waits for ~15-20min (these are real times, not feeling). Once it boots up, the drive doesn't mount and the Jackhammer control panel doesn't see it but it sees the card. It doesn't matter whether the drive is hooked up or not, the wait is still this long. If I remove the cable from the card, it boots up fine.

So my question is, does it matter what kind of cable it is? I thought that as long as it was 68pins, it would be OK.

Thanks

IC

Jon
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There are different types of

There are different types of termination, active and passive. Also, the 80-68/50 adapter should have a jumper to en/dis-albe term power from the drive. You'll need to check and see if the JackHammer provides term power, and if not, then enable it on the drive. FWIW, you could just swap the U320 cable for a basic 68-pin cable and be fine. The U320 cable could be worth more than the JackHammer card, anyway. Wink

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Yeah

... I think it is the cable. It is actually U160 cable according to the sticker. Does that mean that it is the termination piece that is at the end of the cable that is not compatible with the card (a cable is just a cable, it can hardly be incompatible)? If that termination block was doing its job, I didn't think I needed to worry about having the drive terminated. Am I wrong?
I need to do a lot of more tesing, it just takes time with all the boot-up, shut-downs.

Thanks

IC

Jon
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Active termination needs powe

Active termination needs power from somewhere. Eitehr the card will supply it, or a drive will. If neither is set to do so, then termination will be flaky or not working. Enabling term power is different than enabling termination. I'm not positive if there is an issue with both the drive and card supplying term power, but there exists a possibility.

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Re: Yeah

... I think it is the cable. It is actually U160 cable according to the sticker. Does that mean that it is the termination piece that is at the end of the cable that is not compatible with the card (a cable is just a cable, it can hardly be incompatible)?

If it's an LVD SCSI cable with a built-in terminator it *may* not actually work properly with an older SCSI card. See if the terminator/cable has a sticker or other marker on it that reads something like "LVD/SE". If it just says "LVD" or doesn't say anything at all then the cable could be your problem, as Ultra160 and higher speeds *require* LVD. An "SE" marker would indicate the cable is multi-mode, and thus backwards compatible.

As an aside, those SCA->68/50 pin adapters can be nothing but trouble.

--Peace

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Re: Yeah, now I"m stuck


If it's an LVD SCSI cable with a built-in terminator it *may* not actually work properly with an older SCSI card. See if the terminator/cable has a sticker or other marker on it that reads something like "LVD/SE". If it just says "LVD" or doesn't say anything at all then the cable could be your problem, as Ultra160 and higher speeds *require* LVD. An "SE" marker would indicate the cable is multi-mode, and thus backwards compatible.

As an aside, those SCA->68/50 pin adapters can be nothing but trouble.

--Peace

I checked the cable, the terminator says LVD / SE so that should be OK then. But here is some more info:

The drive (it has a 80 to 68/50 adapter) works fine on the internal SCSI bus using the 50pin connector. So the drive and the adapter is fine (well, on the internal bus).

The drive does not work when hooked up to the 50pin port on the Jackhammer, even if the end of the SCSI cable is terminated with a plug. The Drive Setup (OS 8.1) sees the drive and indicated it can initiate it but initiation fails.

Hooking the U160 LVD/SE cable up to the Jackhammer card causes the computer to take extremely long time to boot up (regardless whether a drive is hooked up to the cable or not).

I have the Jackhammer control panel and have tried couple of different options there but nothing helps. I think I have found an old version of FWB HDToolkit, but I haven't tried to see if that can format the drive.

So, right now I'm stuck. It almost looks like the card is broken. Does it have a flashable ROM? Maybe it has gotten corrupt (is that possible?).

Thanks for the reply E.

IC

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I would usually suspect the

I would usually suspect the cable, but also the 68-50 pin adapter,and then the SCA drive itself.
The card is probably fine...try it with a matching HD 1st if possible.

Dave

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Well what do you know ...

I would usually suspect the cable, but also the 68-50 pin adapter,and then the SCA drive itself.
The card is probably fine...try it with a matching HD 1st if possible.

Dave

I decided to try Dave's recommendation and hooked the internal drive up to the card. The system on this drive had been giving me some problems at bootup so I had been booting up from an external drive (hooked up to the Quadra bus). So I booted up, expexting the Q to boot up to the external drive. No, it booted up to the internal drive through the Jackhammer card. And it booted up all the way.
So I guess there is actually some truth to the "myth" of using good adapters. TylerS posted here some months ago that he alwasy recommended avoiding cheap adapters to others but used them himself without problems. And I had used two in a S900 without any problems.

Is there any possibility that hooking them up to the Jackhammer card with a "proper" 68pin cable will be any better? Is the 80 to 68pin conversion any more forgiving than a 80 to 50pin conversion?

Thanks all

IC

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Re: Well what do you know ...

Is there any possibility that hooking them up to the Jackhammer card with a "proper" 68pin cable will be any better? Is the 80 to 68pin conversion any more forgiving than a 80 to 50pin conversion?

Many (most?) SCA->50 pin converters don't bother terminating the unused data lines coming out of the drive. Some drives don't care, some do. So, yeah, in theory a 68 pin conversion is slightly less flakey assuming termination on the rest of the chain is set up correctly.

--Peace

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re: Well what do you know ...

Heh, yeah, try using a 68-pin cable instead. Better in all ways, generally speaking, assuming you've got high quality parts. Term issues still apply however.

You really must have an actual data/instr. sheet for your SCA adapter, the myriad options are very easy to screw up if you don't set it just right.

Also, IIRC, SCA drives usually have no built-in termination, so you must rely on the adapter or other terminator. If the adapter's terminator is crap or set wrong, you'll have no end of problems. I generally recommend using a separate active terminator, having little-to-no faith in the adapters' built-in terminators.

dan k

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Re: re: Well what do you know ...

Heh, yeah, try using a 68-pin cable instead. Better in all ways, generally speaking, assuming you've got high quality parts. Term issues still apply however.

You really must have an actual data/instr. sheet for your SCA adapter, the myriad options are very easy to screw up if you don't set it just right.

Also, IIRC, SCA drives usually have no built-in termination, so you must rely on the adapter or other terminator. If the adapter's terminator is crap or set wrong, you'll have no end of problems. I generally recommend using a separate active terminator, having little-to-no faith in the adapters' built-in terminators.

dan k

The adapters come with few options:

RMT - Start : Doesn't seem to have any effect.
Start Delay : Haven't tried that one, but I thought that had to do with delaying the drive to wait for the system (or vice versa).
Synchronous : Computer doesn't boot with that set.

My 68pin cable has a terminator at the end so that should be taken care of and I have a terminator for 50pin internal cable. Hooking the 68pin cable up to the card causes the startup and boot process to take ~30min combined (bad cable/terminator?). And the 50pin setup doesn't work (bad adapter?).

I guess I need to get my hands on a different 68pin cable (with an active terminator, does anyone have a spare one?). Either that or I just hook the four 18GB SCA drives up to the system bus and use the Jackhammer for the 4.5GB 50pin drive and the CD-ROM.

Thanks again,

IC

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SCSI

So , If I am following the the thread correctly, the card IS good and so is your internal drive.
Then , yes the problems are either Drives, Cables , and / or
Termination...and possibly the way you have the card jumpered.
It has been a few years since I played with this so please bear with me.
1st, SCA drives are notorious for not playing well with consumer machines.
Some people are lucky, some are not.
2'nd avoid adapters as much as possible., If you have to use one use something of quality , which is quite expensive.
3'rd Cables are incredibly important wen you get into this game ,
again use high quality, = expensive.
4'th, Termination , another "you get what you pay for".
Ie; If you are just expermenting on the cheap, be prepared for hours of headaches, but a real learning experience.
Otherwise buy a couple of 68 pin LVD Seagates or Atlas drives and a quality LVD cable with termination.
Then the fun really begins...
Arghh I hope I said everything correctly,
Most of all, Have Fun !

Dave

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JackHammer Termination

This is so obvious that I hesitate to mention it, but do you have the termination resistor packs installed on the JackHammer card? Your problem could be that the JackHammer end of your SCSI chain is not terminated.

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Re: JackHammer Termination

This is so obvious that I hesitate to mention it, but do you have the termination resistor packs installed on the JackHammer card? Your problem could be that the JackHammer end of your SCSI chain is not terminated.

Well, the U160 68pin SCSI cable has this black "box" at the end of it. I"m assuming that that is the terminator.
It is clear now that (1) the SCA drives adapted to 50pin don't play well with the card (they seem to work fine with the internal bus) and (2) the U160 cable isn't playing well with the card (extremely long bootup time when only the cable is hooked up to the card).
Dankephoto has kindly offered me a quality 68pin cable that I'm going to try. Maybe it will work.

IC

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Re: JackHammer Termination

Heh, you may in fact not have the 3 termination SIPs in place; that could sure explain your troubles. There's 3 rows of holes near the front (furthest from the back) that accept 3 resistor SIP packs. If those are missing you'll either have to source some replacements, or ensure you have both internal and external 68pin ports terminated, whether or not you are using those ports.

SIP = Single Inline Package - I forget how many pins those have, but SIPs were widely used to terminate SCSI HDs before on-drive switchable active termination became the norm. I recall getting my Jackhammer sans SIPs and swiping some replacements from old SCSI drives.

dan k

Jon
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They should be readily availa

They should be readily available on ancient 20/40/80 MB Quantum drives from early 68k Macs... Wink

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Re: JackHammer Termination

This is so obvious that I hesitate to mention it, but do you have the termination resistor packs installed on the JackHammer card? Your problem could be that the JackHammer end of your SCSI chain is not terminated.

My apologies for the previous reply to this post. I was at work and didn't have time to read it properly and totally botch the reply.
But now I'm home and I checked the card. The resistor packs are there. Three blue 10pin packs.
I also got the cable from Dankephoto so I will try it out this weekend. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that it is the terminator on my 68pin cable.

Thanks all

IC

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Bad Termination

I tried the cable and terminator that Dankephoto sent me. Works like a charm. Then I used the U160 cable that didn't work and put the terminator on the last connector (right before the little black box on the end which I assume is a terminator) and it also worked.

So, the termination was the problem. Now, I have couple of options to make my setup:

1) Try to figure out the wiring of a proper terminator and try to "fix" the black box on the end.
2) Put the good terminator that I have on the U160 cable and just add another connector on it so that I can hook all 4 SCA drives to it.

I think I'll do 2) since that will leave the U160 cable alone and is considerably faster. But in general, is it difficult to make a terminator? Any schematics out there (I haven't looked but I'm going to once I hit "Post comment").

Thanks all. I'll post some pictures once I have everything done.

IC

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