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luckybob

bootable sata, the eternal struggle

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I've kept my ear to the ground for one of these Frankenstein cards, and I finally found one!  At a steal of a price.

 

https://www.ebay.com/itm/SIIG-SC-UNS012-USB-2-0-Firewire-SATA-Combo-PCI-Adapter-Card/222969030865?ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT&_trksid=p2057872.m2749.l2649

 

For those who dont want to click the link, it is a USB, Firewire, sata combo card.  I'm hoping the sata can be flashed to a bootable version.  the usb will be great, but I couldn't care less about the firewire.

 

Does anyone have any experience BOOTING this card in a G3 with OS9?  My plan here is to use it in my desktop G3, saving the other 2 slots for VooDoo 2's.  It LOOKS to be the SIL 3112 chipset.  I dont care if the usb runs at 1.1 ( because OS9 )  it will only be used for keyboard/mouse

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I have flashed two of those cards before.

Works just fine in the Macs I could test it in (9600, Beige G3, various G4s)

The two cards had different PCI-PCI bridges and one of them does not play well with OSX. As long as you stick to OS9 that won’t be an issue though.

 

Pretty sure the card will not work in a 6500/TAM because of the PCI-PCI bridge on there. There was some info on that in the old 3112 flashing thread but it looks like it has vanished.

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Just the standard Sonnet/Seritek firmware you can find everywhere. You have to swap the ROM chip as well to one of the three or four chips supported by the Sonnet firmware just like you would have to do on a normal Silicone Image 3112 card.

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I'm suddenly curious about the FireWire 400 option on these multi-port cards under OS9. How does it compare as a disk interface bottleneck to standard (pre-ATA-xx?) TAM/6500/6400 IDE throughput?

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I'm finding a lot of crazy numbers out there, but it looks as though an SSD adapted to FireWire 400 hooked up to your card under OS9 or one of the few FW/USB cards that support the TAM may be faster than TAM's first gen IDE bus. At first look, my Tempo Trio's ATA-66(?) should be  better than an SSD adapted to FW400 on a PCI bridge in my 6360/6400 boards. Your native SATA should be much better, or is that bridged?

 

I'll never have a TAM, but it would be nice to find  a way to bust through that architecture's IDE bottleneck. 6500 boards I've got and they've got the same 2 slot limitation of the TAM. [}:)]

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Forgive, perhaps I missed something, but if this card has a SIL3112 and it is bootable, wouldn't that by definition be better than the onboard IDE?

 

Firewire would be nice and firewire disks are not that hard to come by, but presuming cable routing wouldn't be an issue, you can connect a SATA disk and use that instead of IDE.

 

Is IDE that big of a limitation on those machines? I've been using my beige G3 and now that I've got the oriiginal 8 gig disk and it has been fine, even when starting to use a little bit of software from after the 1998 era.

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yea, by a large margin.  IIRC the G3 has 16.6 mb/s ide.  So with sata capable of almost 10x that...  yes.  in all ways the matter it will be better.  

 

"real world" on other machines I have, I can only get about 75ish MB/s on the standard pci bus.  Things like video, sound, ethernet, take up valuable pci bandwidth.  I'm currently using a pci ide-100 controller with a sata/ide converter and said converter is clunky to say the least, and honestly wiggles its way loose sometimes.  Hopefully this card will let me use a locking sata cable.

 

 

 

 

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Disk performance on the Beige G3 was appalling.  But then, the PATA hard drives that Apple shipped in those machines (at least the one in my G3/300 Minitower) were even slower than the 16.6 MB/s bus.    Just replacing the drive with something more modern is a speed boost.  Adding any PCI disk interface card will be even more of a boost.

 

IIRC, Apple offered a disk system upgrade by way of an Atto SCSI controller and a small array of fast SCSI disks.

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4 hours ago, trag said:

IIRC, Apple offered a disk system upgrade by way of an Atto SCSI controller and a small array of fast SCSI disks.

They apparently did. My G3 mini tower had a stock-looking SCSI card and (I think) Apple branded 9 GB SCSI hard drive when I got it, but both the disk and the card seemed to die shortly after (it's a shame, too, as there were lots of neat software programs on it; I'd love to try recovering it one day, as maybe the failure was due to the card and not the drive).

 

It has a regular ATA drive in there now, and as I recall (haven't booted it up in a few years), performance was acceptable. Not earth-shattering, but okay.

 

c

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Even an ATA-66 PCI card would do well in a Beige G3 MT. I wish I snagged a few more of those Mac ATA cards when they were still around for a few bucks. The Mac compatible SCSI cards are a good option if you can find a decent SCSI disk for them. Apple used so slow drives in their expensive machines back then.

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Yea, I literally got a pile of 320gb sata2 drives, designed for 24/7 surveillance cameras. (new)

 

so they are low power, silent, and quick.  considering I'm only using 1/2 the drive, I'm essentially short stroking the drive.  Performance is great and would only be surpassed by the 0ns seek times provided by SSD drives.

 

Oh, by the way, I got the card today.   has the sst 010 chip.  Ill need to source a 040.  Going to check my pile of broken parts before i run out and buy one.  At the very least I'll install a socket, so I only need to solder it once.

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Be sure to get a chip supported by the Seritek firmware:

 

 

There are two more chips that are compatible but I can't seem to find the info on those anywhere...

Also check if your current chip is a 5V or a 3.3V part. I am not completely sure anymore if I had to move a VCC jumper or not on that card.

 

Edited by Bolle

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onTu8hdm.jpg ThEWhPtm.jpg

 

got my hot air gun out, pulled a socket off a crappy nic and got a socket on the card.  I'll be testing tonight if I screwed anything up.

Edited by luckybob

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Got the sst040 chips yester from mouser.  Some reason they were in a air-tight static bag.  Raised an eyebrow initially.  usually they are just taped closed, but I plowed ahead.  Inside the bag was a moisture sensor, silicone desiccant pack, and a box.  The box was the size of a deck of cards.  inside was the 3 chips i ordered (I always get spares).  imho total overkill.  Just the box would have been more than sufficient.  the chips were only $1.80 each.  Whatever.

 

Going to flash teh chip tonight and drop it in my g3 and see how it goes.

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Don't know if it's true in your case, but in my experience, PLCC32 sockets often don't work if the chip is pressed to the bottom of the socket.  Try inserting the chip until it is securing held by the pins, but not all the way at the bottom of the socket.  IIRC, get the top of the chip flush with the top of the socket, but not pressed down to the bottom of the socket.

 

I have this issue with my PLCC32 - DIP adapters.

Edited by trag

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Same problem with my PLCC DIP adapters here as well. The socket on those adapters wears out pretty quickly. As trag said you can try to not push the chip down all the way inside the socket. This usually works well for me.

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I'll play with it later.  I'm in the middle of 12-hour work days so I just cannot summon the energy right now to do anything.  maybe monday.  :P

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OK, I finally got the socket from china.  Paid a bit extra for one that shouldn't fail after a few insert/remove cycles.  

 

t3opfSBm.jpg

 

Anyway, I dropped in the chip, and it worked perfectly.  Well the programmer anyway.  It does not boot in my beige G3.  It does show up in the profiler:

 

Please excuse the crap cellphone image of the screen

F4IqGtYm.jpg  

 

In my beige g3, it comes up as shown.  usb and sata doesn't work.  I don't have firewire so I couldn't test that.  It did better than my blue G3.  That machine only had "pci bridge" in the profiler.  I also tried my G4 but that system has decided not to work anymore.

 

Is it possible the bios chip?  I found some other posts here with a different file, tried that and got the same results.

 

Its a real shame, I really wanted this card to work.  :(  

 

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