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I've spent some time this week trying out different layouts to get both internal and external connections on the same PCB. The consensus seems to be that is the best approach, which I don't disagree with: it would be nicest to order one set of PCBs, possibly pre-populated with the passives, and use them everywhere. Unfortunately I haven't had much luck coming up with a workable design that doesn't require ripping everything up and basically starting the layout from scratch. There are some other wrinkles to consider:

  • The width of the 50-pin connector means that power has to go somewhere else. I think flying leads are the best option, since it lets the board have a simple pair of +5VDC / GND pins that you could attach a Molex lead to, or a barrel plug for outside the case.
  • Apple went with a strange layout on the DB-25 connection where the data and control lines are opposite of what they are on the standard 50-pin connector. This requires some weaving of traces or flipping one of the connectors. I have no idea why they did this, maybe it was something about the Plus logic board.
  • In the prototype layouts, I added mounting holes for the standard 3.5 inch and 2.5 inch bottom-mount hard drives. The former works directly, and the latter can be used with those cheap SSD-to-3.5 brackets. On my clone SCSI2SD v4 boards this was very helpful for giving flexibility on mounting. The downside is it eats lots of space and really mucks up the existing layout. Maybe this would work better if these were discarded?

Anyway, after this I'm still thinking separate boards for internal/external. That said, I'm no PCB layout expert and I would be thrilled if there was an alternative. If anyone wants to take a shot at it I'd love to see the results.

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4 hours ago, saybur said:

I've spent some time this week trying out different layouts to get both internal and external connections on the same PCB. The consensus seems to be that is the best approach, which I don't disagree with: it would be nicest to order one set of PCBs, possibly pre-populated with the passives, and use them everywhere. Unfortunately I haven't had much luck coming up with a workable design that doesn't require ripping everything up and basically starting the layout from scratch. There are some other wrinkles to consider:

  • The width of the 50-pin connector means that power has to go somewhere else. I think flying leads are the best option, since it lets the board have a simple pair of +5VDC / GND pins that you could attach a Molex lead to, or a barrel plug for outside the case.
  • Apple went with a strange layout on the DB-25 connection where the data and control lines are opposite of what they are on the standard 50-pin connector. This requires some weaving of traces or flipping one of the connectors. I have no idea why they did this, maybe it was something about the Plus logic board.
  • In the prototype layouts, I added mounting holes for the standard 3.5 inch and 2.5 inch bottom-mount hard drives. The former works directly, and the latter can be used with those cheap SSD-to-3.5 brackets. On my clone SCSI2SD v4 boards this was very helpful for giving flexibility on mounting. The downside is it eats lots of space and really mucks up the existing layout. Maybe this would work better if these were discarded?

Anyway, after this I'm still thinking separate boards for internal/external. That said, I'm no PCB layout expert and I would be thrilled if there was an alternative. If anyone wants to take a shot at it I'd love to see the results.

 

From your comments on the cross crossing of the connections between the 25pin and 50 pin connectors, it might make a difference from a PCB layour perspective, but I am indifferent on mounting holes as it would be easy enough to build a 3d printed bracket that would allow for easy mounting.  Definitely agree on the flying leads for power to free up some space.

 

I don't know if you had thought much about it, but I'd love your perspective on the feasibility of a wifi version to see if it's something that might be worth pursuing.  My background is pretty limited here but I think that ESP-HOSTED I linked to before might work.  I don't have any other Scuznet PCBs here, so I'm thinking I might remove the network chip from one of the two I have built and wire in an ESP32 in its place.

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7 hours ago, saybur said:

I've spent some time this week trying out different layouts to get both internal and external connections on the same PCB...


All that effort is so much appreciated!!!

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8 hours ago, superjer2000 said:

From your comments on the cross crossing of the connections between the 25pin and 50 pin connectors, it might make a difference from a PCB layour perspective, but I am indifferent on mounting holes as it would be easy enough to build a 3d printed bracket that would allow for easy mounting.  Definitely agree on the flying leads for power to free up some space.

 

I've been trying to keep away from needing 3D printed parts, mostly due to not having a decent 3D printer myself (I do have a Prusa i3 on order somewhere in their backlog and I know enough OpenSCAD to be able to make something crude). If 3D printing isn't a dealbreaker for people or if a purchasable case isn't important, maybe that's the approach to use: a 100x100mm board without those holes would be much easier to lay out than the internal/external combo form factor. Does anyone have thoughts on that?

 

8 hours ago, superjer2000 said:

I don't know if you had thought much about it, but I'd love your perspective on the feasibility of a wifi version to see if it's something that might be worth pursuing.  My background is pretty limited here but I think that ESP-HOSTED I linked to before might work.  I don't have any other Scuznet PCBs here, so I'm thinking I might remove the network chip from one of the two I have built and wire in an ESP32 in its place.

 

I don't know much about the ESP32 ecosystem. If they (and/or the Arduino cores) support raw packets, my guess is you'd be better off rewriting the entire firmware from scratch targeting that platform and drop the XMEGA entirely. The Nuvolink has picky timing requirements due to the reselection step and is probably out of the question, but your Daynaport version should be doable without super-high timing accuracy. @cheesestraws mentioned some other chipset options and the low-level issues you might run into. It's a big project, and probably outside the scope of scuznet, IMHO. If you get it working it would definitely be awesome, having internal WiFi in my Powerbook 145 would be so cool!

 

Alternately, I wonder if anyone has tried RaSCSI on the Raspberry Pi Zero W in a Powerbook. That might be the easier approach.

 

5 hours ago, pfuentes69 said:

All that effort is so much appreciated!!!

 

Thanks! I'm really glad people have found this project interesting :)

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19 hours ago, saybur said:

I don't know much about the ESP32 ecosystem. If they (and/or the Arduino cores) support raw packets, my guess is you'd be better off rewriting the entire firmware from scratch targeting that platform and drop the XMEGA entirely. The Nuvolink has picky timing requirements due to the reselection step and is probably out of the question, but your Daynaport version should be doable without super-high timing accuracy. @cheesestraws mentioned some other chipset options and the low-level issues you might run into. It's a big project, and probably outside the scope of scuznet, IMHO. If you get it working it would definitely be awesome, having internal WiFi in my Powerbook 145 would be so cool!

 

Alternately, I wonder if anyone has tried RaSCSI on the Raspberry Pi Zero W in a Powerbook. That might be the easier approach.

 

I am hoping it's more straightforward than you might be thinking.  I didn't really see any prior comments with specific chipset options (just that there might be) or low level issues but I wouldn't plan on trying to address this at a low level.  From what I've read, Ethernet and WiFi are fundamentally different so there are a couple of options unless one is inclined to develop a complete solution including a Macintosh WiFi driver (well outside of my expertise).

 

The two options are:

 

1) Essentially inserting a Wifi Router in between the Scuznet and Wifi:

    a) This could take the form of something similar to what Ants did previously for his SE/30 (VONETS WiFi bridge,Wireless bridge, mini wifi router, wireless repeater, wlan repeater - VM300--VM300--Products).  Unfortunately, that solution would be too large for an internal Powerbook solution.

    b) Using something like a WizNet 630S which seems to provide the same type of capability via OpenWRT in a smaller form factor with an internal antenna.

 

2) Using the ESP-Hosted

  Note that the ESP-Hosted claims to be able to take 802.3 frames and push them over WiFi.  So from a development perspective, assuming the use of DaynaPort firmware, I'm thinking it would largely be a matter of taking off the ENC28J60 and the Ethernet jack and replacing that with the ESP32.  Note that the ESP32 (and ESP32S2) are next gen of the ESP8266 and I think are generally just used to push serial data over Wifi but the specific ESP Hosted firmware/solution allows for the translation of Ethernet to Wifi.  The ESP32 allows for SPI interfacing which I think is how you connected the ENC28J60, so my thought is it shouldn't really need much of a change in firmware:  ESP32 receives a packet and pushes it to Scuznet and vice versa.  Trying to rewrite the firmware (which would include all of the SCSI stuff) for a different chip would be a significant undertaking.

 

Note that all of these solutions would require configuration of the Wifi part outside of the Macintosh.  They all seem to support AT style commands, or other command protocols to connect to Wifi stations so for sure it would be possible to build a Mac application that would send a specific SCSI command out to say read a list of SSIDs and connect to a specific one etc. but from a proof of concept perspective that wouldn't be necessary.

 

I've ordered an ESP32 module to see what would have to happen here but from a physical connection perspective, I am thinking it might be just a matter of soldering the SPI connections to the relevant pads for the ENCJ2860.  If that can be made to work then I'm sure replacing the ENC and jack on the PCB with the Wifi hardware and adding a Powerbook specific SCSI/power connector would be possible.

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I took a brief look through that ESP-Hosted documentation and it does look promising for what you want. The physical interface is similar:

  • The usual 4 SPI lines,
  • A "Enable/Reset" line like "/E_RST" on scuznet,
  • A "data ready" line like "/E_INT," active high instead of low on scuznet,
  • A "handshake" line, which is an addition. You'll need to scavenge a pin somewhere off the microcontroller for this one.

The logical interface looks quite different and doesn't appear to have the pointer-based system the ENC28J60 uses. That could probably be worked around. There definitely would need to be additional code for the Ethernet/WiFi frame conversions, but I'm not familiar with how WiFi works and don't know how hard that would be.

 

As for WiFi configuration, I've been toying around with the idea of moving all the configuration information to the flash card in a future scuznet firmware, instead of storing the data in EEPROM. The flash card would be in FAT32, with each virtual hard drive being a file on the device. This would make it way easier to do system setup in something like Basilisk and would also let configuration be done in a text file on the card (or something). Maybe if that was implemented, you could add WiFi configuration information in that config file? It wouldn't be as elegant, but it sounds much easier than having to write a Mac utility to send SCSI commands.

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I’m still looking at the ESP-Hosted solution but in the interest of simplicity I’m going another route as well that I think will be very easy to get up and running. I ordered a couple of the Vonnet Vm300 modules @ants had used. As far as I can tell it looks like I can pull the  WAN Ethernet jack off the module to reduce its size. The LAN jack plugs into the module via a breakout Molex connector and the Ethernet magnetics are on the board. My plan would be to get a similar magnetics IC style component to replace the Ethernet jack on the Scuznet and then just connect the two cards with less bulky jumper wires. 
 

This would have the benefit of reusing ants wifi selection work and I think would still be small enough to fit into a PowerBook with the Scuznet.  This would also be a potential solution for Internal wifi in a compact Mac. 
 

Two downsides. First is I need a different  style antenna for a PowerBook than What ships with the vonnet. Second is I have no idea what the power consumption is which might make the PowerBook option less feasible. Third I guess is the cost. The vonnet modules are $25 each.   Still that would put a wifi and Scsi2sd solution at about $60 which is pretty reasonable. 

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On 5/4/2021 at 11:28 AM, superjer2000 said:

I’m still looking at the ESP-Hosted solution but in the interest of simplicity I’m going another route as well that I think will be very easy to get up and running. I ordered a couple of the Vonnet Vm300 modules @ants had used. As far as I can tell it looks like I can pull the  WAN Ethernet jack off the module to reduce its size. The LAN jack plugs into the module via a breakout Molex connector and the Ethernet magnetics are on the board. My plan would be to get a similar magnetics IC style component to replace the Ethernet jack on the Scuznet and then just connect the two cards with less bulky jumper wires. 
 

This would have the benefit of reusing ants wifi selection work and I think would still be small enough to fit into a PowerBook with the Scuznet.  This would also be a potential solution for Internal wifi in a compact Mac. 
 

Two downsides. First is I need a different  style antenna for a PowerBook than What ships with the vonnet. Second is I have no idea what the power consumption is which might make the PowerBook option less feasible. Third I guess is the cost. The vonnet modules are $25 each.   Still that would put a wifi and Scsi2sd solution at about $60 which is pretty reasonable. 

Another interesting option would be doing much the same thing but with an OpenWRT-based device. @ants ' software already works OOTB with OpenWRT, and there are many little boards  (see here also) that run OpenWRT and are designed to solder directly into another PCB in the matter you desire.

 

I've long meant to do a similar project with the Asante Maccon in my SE and SE/30.

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if anyone wants I have a pretty basic set of 3d brackets designed to allow the original version to be mounted in the se/30's hdd cage. they aren't anything special just a quick and dirty design to do the job. I have a board mounted on one of my se/30 using this and it works well enough while also being pretty quick to print

 

IMG_0513.thumb.jpg.424c176cb998b8102e402abf41c9f550.jpg

 

scuznet HDD Mount.stl

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7 hours ago, Chopsticks said:

if anyone wants I have a pretty basic set of 3d brackets designed to allow the original version to be mounted in the se/30's hdd cage. they aren't anything special just a quick and dirty design to do the job. I have a board mounted on one of my se/30 using this and it works well enough while also being pretty quick to print

 

 

scuznet HDD Mount.stl 22.35 kB · 0 downloads

Hey!!!  Where did you get that adapter??  I found various adapters but they weren’t the right gender. I think I found idc 50m to db25f. Is that what you’re using with a 25m/m gender changer?

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9 hours ago, superjer2000 said:

Hey!!!  Where did you get that adapter??  I found various adapters but they weren’t the right gender. I think I found idc 50m to db25f. Is that what you’re using with a 25m/m gender changer?

 

I can't remember where I got it, but I think its from the scsi2sd GitHub repo perhaps. ive attached the Gerber files here of you want to get some boards made just make sure when you solder the connectors on the pcb that you do so the same way shown In the picture in my last post as the connectors are then flipped the right way for a male db25 socket. the original use of the board I believe was to have a female db25 mounted the other side of the board.]

 

btw I don't think it supplys termination power to pin 25 from memory its disconnected on this pcb

 

 

db252IDC50.zip

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just been thinking about the wifi option, would it be in theory possible to use the same scuznet hardware with maybe a openers of volnets board soldered onto the main pcb as a bridge from ethernet to wifi. I think from memory there is a Mac app that allows connecting to wifi using the menubar is the correct hardware is available.

 

so im summary could the scuznet board be enlarges to a full size 3.5 inch hard drive form factor with the required scuznet+wifi and then just run a wifi patch cable to the say the se/30 expansion board?

 

also saybur what's the status of the version 2 board, i.e vibe checked you githut repo but still no update there. I'd like to help out with testing when the new version is ready though my machines are somewhat limited to a couple se/30's, and Mac Iici and a Quadra 630.

 

in regards to the idc50 pin connector:

the normal db25pin connector and the idc50 have flipped pins for lack of a better description and you mentioned that having both connectors is a bit troublesome, is that because its a 2 layer board or is it more complicated then that?

im just asking because I think if that is the case then it probably makes sense to just have 2 versions, and internal 3.5 inch version and the current external version. it going down this road then it allows for some more flexability with the internal version i.e having a daughter board with the magjack and possibly in future incorporating a wifi module onto the main board or the daughter board.

 personally I think that having a daughter board for internal installs makes sense for the lan connector but again if might make more sense to allow provision for a wifi mule on and internal board space wise

 

also one3 last thought regarding the psu for the board, as some boards have trouble with powering via term power would it make sense to use a boost/buck psu configuration?

 

would be great to hear you thoughts on this when you get a chance

 

 

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8 hours ago, Chopsticks said:

also saybur what's the status of the version 2 board, i.e vibe checked you githut repo but still no update there. I'd like to help out with testing when the new version is ready though my machines are somewhat limited to a couple se/30's, and Mac Iici and a Quadra 630.

 

in regards to the idc50 pin connector:

the normal db25pin connector and the idc50 have flipped pins for lack of a better description and you mentioned that having both connectors is a bit troublesome, is that because its a 2 layer board or is it more complicated then that?

im just asking because I think if that is the case then it probably makes sense to just have 2 versions, and internal 3.5 inch version and the current external version. it going down this road then it allows for some more flexability with the internal version i.e having a daughter board with the magjack and possibly in future incorporating a wifi module onto the main board or the daughter board.

 personally I think that having a daughter board for internal installs makes sense for the lan connector but again if might make more sense to allow provision for a wifi mule on and internal board space wise

 

I got stuck working on the internal/external PCB design and put the project down for a few days to think about it. My Prusa also showed up, which has been competing with this project for attention. So far the printer has been winning, Prusa makes a pretty nice piece of equipment (at least for this 3D printing newbie)! :)

 

After mulling it over, I think I'm going to stick with the version 2 layout I posted that is external-only. Even removing the mounting holes, I was still running into fundamental issues with the board layout when the IDC50 connector was added. I'm pretty sure the problems can be fixed, but I really don't want to toss out the verified aspects of the original design. Also, on a more "meta" level, I'm mentally ready to move on to other aspects of this project, like incorporating the Daynaport support @superjer2000 added and making some additional software-side fixes. With everything being open source, I would definitely encourage anyone who wants to take a shot at a hybrid board to do so and post how things go. I'd really interested in what people come up with. Stuff like your awesome 3D printed rig shows how creative this community can be when they want to accomplish something!

 

I'll be shipping these boards off to JLCPCB later today or tomorrow. Once they get back and I can verify they're working I'll post the files publicly. If you'd like a copy in advance, let me know and I can PM them. Just be aware they're totally untested and you may end up with a nice stack of drink coasters.

 

8 hours ago, Chopsticks said:

also one3 last thought regarding the psu for the board, as some boards have trouble with powering via term power would it make sense to use a boost/buck psu configuration?

 

That's probably the smart approach. I've never designed a board with a switching regulator and am a little nervous about the requirements, so I've traditionally stuck to linears. Especially if someone wanted to make a version for a Powerbook the switching regulator would help cut down on power consumption.

 

On 5/8/2021 at 10:37 PM, Chopsticks said:

btw I don't think it supplys termination power to pin 25 from memory its disconnected on this pcb

 

It's also disconnected on scuznet, which sources termination power off +5VDC exclusively. IMHO it's pretty hit-or-miss whether TERMPWR is reliable. Between bad fuses, models that omit it, abnormally low voltage, etc, I figure it's easier to ignore the line.

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3 hours ago, saybur said:

 

I got stuck working on the internal/external PCB design and put the project down for a few days to think about it. My Prusa also showed up, which has been competing with this project for attention. So far the printer has been winning, Prusa makes a pretty nice piece of equipment (at least for this 3D printing newbie)! :)

I’m not sure how I feel about those Prusa printers. Prusa printers are used to print new Prusa printers. It all sounds like a great idea until we lose control and there is more of them than us and the printers figure out how to extract filament from human beings.  Not so fun then, is it??

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If it’s not to much trouble it’d be great if you can pm me the files, I have to do and order of other boards at jlcpcb in the next 2-3 days so adding this latest scuznet revision to that order is only a few dollars. I don’t mind if there’s turns out to be an issue and the boards become coasters fwiw.

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On 5/10/2021 at 12:34 PM, superjer2000 said:

I’m not sure how I feel about those Prusa printers. Prusa printers are used to print new Prusa printers. It all sounds like a great idea until we lose control and there is more of them than us and the printers figure out how to extract filament from human beings.  Not so fun then, is it??

 

It was a weird day and I really needed the laugh, thank you! :)

 

On 5/10/2021 at 10:18 PM, Chopsticks said:

If it’s not to much trouble it’d be great if you can pm me the files, I have to do and order of other boards at jlcpcb in the next 2-3 days so adding this latest scuznet revision to that order is only a few dollars. I don’t mind if there’s turns out to be an issue and the boards become coasters fwiw.

 

I've attached a copy. You obviously know but in case anyone else comes along a reminder that these are not tested. I'll post a final revision to Github once I've built some of these new ones.

scuznet_v2_preview.zip

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thanks saybur, I'll see how the boards go when they come back from manufacturing.

 

also ive been messing around with kicad (I use Eagle myself) and while I don't really know the software well I started work on a proof of concept for an internal version with a daughterboard for the ethernet jack. i really need to neaten up the changed made when swapping connectors but as I had to get an order sent off to JLCpcb asap its still pretty messy and I may in fact have wired up the idc50 connector in reverse...

jack quick hack job atm to see if things work (and assuming that v2 is working too).

 

 

 

 

376301925_ScreenShot2021-05-13at4_56_52pm.png.8cd9404dfac6e14928bac051b9a28e44.png

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First version of ScuzNet Wifi edition - 

 

1) Removed magnetics jack from ScuzNet - Replaced with the transformer chip from the WAN port on the Vonet VM300 (I don't use the WAN port)

2) Remove ethernet jack from VM300 to save space

3) Interfaced the VM300 to the Scuznet through the ethernet transfomers

4) Powered the VM300 from the 5V in from the Scuznet

 

And it worked - first try-

 

Next is to rig up a Powerbook interface to replace the DB25 and barrel connector and jam it into a PB.

 

Wifi1.thumb.JPG.34012712cf6c466cc023f0fc17d7ca5d.JPG

Wifi2.thumb.JPG.d4bfdbda5750fd905bd64bb58470e733.JPG

Wifi3.thumb.JPG.9fdf6a537cdca1cfef73afd89225c938.JPG

Wifi4.JPG.64e8ede6ecdd815acc9eb6d366fe5bc4.JPG

 

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Posted (edited)

Note that this is more just a proof of concept. I think adapting Scuznet to use a transformer in place of the Ethernet jack and then finding a way to mount a pcie connector would clean this up and would allow a simple addition of a VM300 or an external jack. 

 

One note as well - I was a bit concerned about power usage before throwing it into a Powerbook - It looks like it's drawing (ScuzNet + VM300) a max about about 400mA which is still less than a standard 2.5" SCSI disk (about 500mA) per an eBay image I found (although I'm not sure if that's just at spinup and it might be a fair bit lower after) so I don't think I'll be pulling too much current and damaging the PowerBook.

 

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42 minutes ago, superjer2000 said:

Note that this is more just a proof of concept. I think adapting Scuznet to use a transformer in place of the Ethernet jack and then finding a way to mount a pcie connector would clean this up and would allow a simple addition of a VM300 or an external jack. 

You’d probably want to mount the pcie connector on the bottom of the scuznetboard for space reasons, I don’t see there being an issue in doing that signal routing wise 

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38 minutes ago, Chopsticks said:

You’d probably want to mount the pcie connector on the bottom of the scuznetboard for space reasons, I don’t see there being an issue in doing that signal routing wise 

 

I'd mount it where the Ethernet jack currently is.  That's where all of the signals are originating.

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Posted (edited)

Be aware though that the connector on the Vonets Vm300 just looks like mPCIe, the contacts won’t line up with a mPCIe slot and short out.

 

See here:

 

Edited by Bolle
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1 hour ago, Bolle said:

Be aware though that the connector on the Vonets Vm300 just looks like mPCIe, the contacts won’t line up with a mPCIe slot and short out.

 

See here:

 

Thanks for that. Unfortunately it’s a moot point now. I had it in my head that Scuznet was 70mm wide, same as a 2.5 hard disk. I don’t know why I was thinking that because it’s definitely  larger and so won’t fit in the HD space. So this will just be an external wifi device unless Scuznet can be shrunk down. Double sided might work well but not my area. 

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