SCSI hard drives and setting heads

SCSI hard drives and setting heads

Post by Kerry J. Co » Fri, 25 Sep 1998 04:00:00



Howdy,
I am trying to set up my third Linux box (2nd at home). I got NFS to to
work well and it's speaking to my main Linux boxer no problem (this new
one has no CD-ROM).  Anyway, I'm using a couple of older SCSI hard
drives, a Quantum ProDrive LPS 170S (170 megs) and a Quantum Fireball
540S (540 megs)with a Future Domain 1600x SCSI card.  The drives
originally had MS-DOS 6.22 on them but when I went to install Linux
using fdisk it said I needed to set the heads and that the configuration
was all wrong.  I went to Quantum's page and downloaded all the specs on
them but could not find any info on heads, cylinders, etc.  Anyway, I
can't get Linux to install on the drives since I can't configure them.
Is this a hopeless hardware issue or is there some way to reset the
heads using Linux.  I tried a couple configurations but that was no
help.
Any help would be appreciated.  I'd like to have this box running so
that I cna bang on it and learn Perl and other languages without
screwing up my home Linux box.
Thanks.
KJ

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SCSI hard drives and setting heads

Post by John McKow » Fri, 25 Sep 1998 04:00:00


http://support.quantum.com/general/chs_chart.htm lists the LPS 170 C/H/S as
538/10/62. The Fireball 540 is listed as 1056/16/63.

 
 
 

SCSI hard drives and setting heads

Post by Rod Smi » Fri, 25 Sep 1998 04:00:00


[Posted and mailed]



Quote:> Howdy,
> I'm using a couple of older SCSI hard
> drives, a Quantum ProDrive LPS 170S (170 megs) and a Quantum Fireball
> 540S (540 megs)with a Future Domain 1600x SCSI card.  The drives
> originally had MS-DOS 6.22 on them but when I went to install Linux
> using fdisk it said I needed to set the heads and that the configuration
> was all wrong.  I went to Quantum's page and downloaded all the specs on
> them but could not find any info on heads, cylinders, etc.

Actual physical specs are 100% irrelevant.

For SCSI hard disks, the SCSI disk itself "talks" to the host adapter in
what's known in the IDE world as "LBA mode" -- that is, using a single
sector number rather than a CHS ("cylinder/head/sector") triplet.
Therefore, the SCSI host adapter has to INVENT an appropriate CHS geometry
for any attached disk(s).  Different SCSI host adapters may do this
differently, and even a single host adapter may do it differently based on
jumper settings, BIOS settings, etc.  Chances are that your drives were
used on some system with a different model of SCSI host adapter, or using
different settings on the current host adapter.  The most reliable way to
correct this is to perform a low-level format on the hard disk using your
existing host adapter.  This may be a SCSI BIOS option, or there may be
some sort of utility (probably a DOS program) to do it; check your SCSI
host adapter's documentation.  Another way to do it is to delete any and
all existing partition(s), then boot to DOS and issue FDISK /MBR commands
on each drive (you may need to reboot with one, then the other, drive
attached, since this only works with the first physical device found).
Then create new partition(s) on the drives.  Given the age of the drives,
I'd recommend the former course of action, since that will also spot and
remove bad sectors.

--
Rod Smith

http://www.users.fast.net/~rodsmith
NOTE: Remove the digit and following word from my address to mail me

 
 
 

SCSI hard drives and setting heads

Post by James Youngm » Sat, 26 Sep 1998 04:00:00



Quote:> Howdy,
> I am trying to set up my third Linux box (2nd at home). I got NFS to to
> work well and it's speaking to my main Linux boxer no problem (this new
> one has no CD-ROM).  Anyway, I'm using a couple of older SCSI hard
> drives, a Quantum ProDrive LPS 170S (170 megs) and a Quantum Fireball
> 540S (540 megs)with a Future Domain 1600x SCSI card.  The drives
> originally had MS-DOS 6.22 on them but when I went to install Linux
> using fdisk it said I needed to set the heads and that the configuration
> was all wrong.  I went to Quantum's page and downloaded all the specs on
> them but could not find any info on heads, cylinders, etc.  Anyway, I
> can't get Linux to install on the drives since I can't configure them.
> Is this a hopeless hardware issue or is there some way to reset the
> heads using Linux.  I tried a couple configurations but that was no
> help.

Often the geometry is printed on the drives themselves.   Use "x" in
fdisk to access the advanced (dangerous) functions.

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