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rickyzhang

Need a guide to transfer files to PB 540C

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I bid PowerBook 540C recently after placing a watch on PB540C in eBay for 3 years. I knew this is a major upgrade from my 68K Mac collection since this is the last 68K CPU Mac.

 

My PB didn't come with PCMCIA extension or AAUI Ethernet adapter. It runs on a rare 2.5 inch SCSI hard drive. I really have no better way to transfer files there.

 

Although it has a 1.44MB 2.5 inch floppy drive, I knew that modern Mac OS X doesn't support write in HFS to a USB floppy. My Mac SE only write in HFS to 800K floppy.

 

The only software that I can find inside the PB540C hard drive that may be able to transfer files is ZTerm. I knew it only works for serial port or analogy phone line modem. I'm not sure if I should use USB-to-Serial chip I got from Arduino to hack rs422 mini-din 8 port. It may burn the board if I would make a mistake.

 

Another possible way is through Ethernet. The OS is System 7.5 in PB. It comes with Apple File Share. I wonder if I can enable Apple File Share in my Mac SE which has an emulated Floppy and SCSI Ethernet connection so that I can transfer files easily from my Mac SE to PowerBook 540C through Ethernet. I already bid an AAUI Ethernet adapter today. It is on my way home.

 

I will appreciate any advice!

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I assume you have a modern Mac? I’d get one of those new v5.5 external SCSI2SDs, and a PowerBook SCSI adapter. This way you can get the SCSI2SD set, copy what you need on your modern Mac to the SD card using SheepShaver, Basilisk, or the like, and hook it to your PowerBook.

 

Alternatively, you could possibly fit a SCSI2SD in the PB, but I don’t have experience there.

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I did find a SCSI2SD Powerbook edition. In fact, I got a SCSI2SD 4 years ago to renovate my Mac SE.

 

But I remember at that time it was not easy to create a bootable SD card image for my Mac SE. I need help from Michael (the creator of SCSI2SD) to fix partition table and add SCSI driver manually for me.

 

I'm not sure how much trouble I would get myself into to create a bootable SD card image for PB 540C. I won't get any additional help like my Mac SE where I can copy any floppy image into an emulated floppy drive.

 

 

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I have an 8.1 boot drive for my PB 540.  I also have a SCSI2SD v6 that has an HFS+ Partition on it such that I just plug in the SCSI2SD via usb to my modern Mac and I can write to that partition.  If that is too much trouble setting up an ftp server and using Fetch works good if you have an aaui dongle and networking set up.

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@pcamen

 

I don't want 8.1 because it is too slow. Even in my PB1400C, 8.1 is way too slow in PPC. Let alone 68K.

 

I wonder how do you install 8.1 to PowerBook 540c at the beginning? Do you need to fix boot partition like installing SCSI driver?

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8.1 seems fine to me on my PB 540c speed-wise.  I haven't actually noticed any difference between that and system 7 speed.  I have a SCSI2SD Powerbook edition in it that dual boots (triple boots, I forget) with 8.1 and 7.6, possibly 7.1 too.  I can boot into 8.1 when I want to read/write to my HFS+ partition on my external SCSI2SD v6, works great. 

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How do you install OS 7.6 or OS 8.1  in SCSI2SD? Do you install it on BasiliskII and then DD the image to SD?

 

If you install them directly on PB540C, that requires tons of floppy disk or a external CD-ROM? I have neither of them.

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I simply took two existing machines I had and copied the entire drive contents to two different SCSI2SD partitions.  Or it might have been three as I can't remember if I have a 7.1 boot partition as well.  That gave me the 7.6 and 8.1 boot partitions.  I did that by taking my SCSI2SD Powerbook edition and connecting it using a 40 to 50 pin SCSI connector (I think that is what they were) and then a 50 pin to DB 25 converter (sold by Inertial Computing who sells the SCSI2SD) and then an HDI30 to DB 25 dongle for the Powerbook, so that it was an external drive, and then copying each Powerbook in turn. 

 

If you get a SCSI2SD Powerbook edition, you can send it to me and I'd be happy to set it up the same as mine (read in settings using the SCSI2SD utility connected to my unit and then write them to your unit) and then clone my SD card to yours.  Then you'll have the same setup, which includes functional networking for both 7.6 and 8.1, sometimes not a small feat in itself.  PM me if you are interested. 

 

Alternately, I think I can save the settings from my unit and do a DD backup and put it on an FTP or Dropbox for you if you can figure out how to write it yourself.  I think that will all work. 

Edited by pcamen

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@pcamen

I got my AAUI to Ethernet adapter from Ebay yesterday. It is lucky that PB540C comes with MacTCP installed so that I can connect to my Mac SE and copy files over Apple Share.

 

After I copied iCab web browser from Mac SE, I setup an Apache server in my Dell T20 Linux server to list all my 68K software. From then on, I could copy more files.

 

Thanks for your offer. I will consider buying a SCSI2SD Powerbook edition. But it might be easier for you to send me a bootable 7.x SD image with OS installed only. I will ping you later.

 

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@pcamen

 

A zipped DD SD card image works for me.

 

I ordered one from Inertial Computing. It will arrive on Sep 19 tomorrow.

 

I ordered a SCSI2SD for my Mac SE from Michael in Australia 4 years ago. At that time, he wrote a half-baked user manual. The doc is still half-baked even I revisited now (http://www.codesrc.com/mediawiki/index.php/SCSI2SD). I bet he is a very technical guru who doesn't want to write any doc.

 

TBH, I have no clue how to start with this new SCSI2SD Powerbook edition gadget. Because I get no extra help from an emulated floppy drive like my Mac SE.

 

Please create a bootable image 7.5 image with MacTCP and iCab web browser installed. I will leave these all software in my ownCloud. I really appreciate your generous help!

Edited by rickyzhang

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That was a puzzler for me too.  The PB SCSI2SD doesn't indicate pin 1, and since there is no plastic housing around the pins, there is no positioning notch.

 

I _think_ I figured it out by finding some documentation on the SCSI2SD PowerBook edition that indicated pin 1, and then identified pin 1 on the original hard drive to match them up. 

 

But for you it will be easier as you can just look at my pictures. :)

 

IMG_9186.thumb.JPG.08ff081f7d2af49c4d7225cd4e463283.JPG

IMG_9187.JPG

IMG_9188.jpeg

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Actually, the middle hole in the top of female adapter is blocked. It is not possible to plug in wrong direction.

 

I'm thinking of 3D printing a case for SCSI2SD. There is no such model in thingivers yet. I may design one in Fusion 360.

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For the PB 540 drive bay?  That would be nice.  I have a 3D printer so I'd love to get the STL when you are done. 

 

For some reason, I don't think on mine that was the case with the blocked hole.  Or, both of the pins in that row were missing.  I can't remember

now, but I do seem to remember that there was some confusion as to which way to plug it in as both ways were possible. 

Edited by pcamen

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On 9/27/2019 at 11:04 AM, rickyzhang said:

Actually, the middle hole in the top of female adapter is blocked. It is not possible to plug in wrong direction.

 

I'm thinking of 3D printing a case for SCSI2SD. There is no such model in thingivers yet. I may design one in Fusion 360. 

Did you ever get around to this?

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There is a universal one made by Joe the zombie, but i think it's way too big for your application.  Too bad, it works great in a bunch of different models we use.

Edited by Iamanamma

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I believe that is for the full sized, SCSI2SD not the PowerBook compact one.  I've got one of that design in my SE/30 at the moment. 

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