Tags: firewire

06/20/11

  10:17:34 pm, by The Dreamer   , 610 words  
Categories: Hardware, Storage

TARDIS got a new drive...sort of

So, after I finally replaced the backup drive on gumby...I noticed a strange whining sound, but I couldn't figure out where it was coming from, so I went on to other projects.

Later when I was going to bed, I found it really annoying...so I went to look for the source.

Well, it was emanating from TARDIS....I eventually decided it was probably the external drive, and tried to safe remove and power it off to confirm. I couldn't get it to disconnect, and TARDIS was wanting to reboot after having applied patches but also wanting to know if I wanted to update other stuff.

So, I ended up turning the external drive off hard. That stopped the whine. Eventually, I got things mostly patched and set it reboot and went off to bed.

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06/18/11

  05:40:36 pm, by The Dreamer   , 841 words  
Categories: Hardware, Software, Storage

Gumby got a new drive

It isn't that new....in fact I had picked it up from a clearance table a couple months ago. But, it sure is tiny compared to what was sitting in its place before.

For sometime, the latest storage configuration was a pair 300GB firewire drives and a 1TB firewire drive connected to the box and its 160GB system drive. The 1TB drive broken into two partitions...1/3 & 2/3...the larger as MMCVideo storage and the smaller for local stuff. The 1TB replaced what was 3 300GB firewire drives, when one of the drives failed....and it was a total loss, but I had restored some 400GB from backuppc to recover.

I had kept the 2 remaining 300GB drives as a two set disk2disk backup of the system drive (with the help of Retrospect 6).

Well, the remaining two 300GB drives had started failing a few months back. One of them failed completely a couple months ago....prompting me to eventually buy a new drive.... But, the other 300GB drive continued to work more or less and I changed the backup schedule to only use that drive. It did lead to some bad crashes now and then, but apparently not enough to take it off.

This morning while I was looking at other things, including tweaking backuppc...and push some fulls now that I'm in a quiet period of system activity (gumby is now more of a TiVo Desktop machine than MMC, but its kind of a quiet period for new TV...even though I'm really behind on my watching, and could find that some recording didn't happen and then need to find somewhere to buy the show....)

But, I decided it was time to retire the other 300GB drive before something worse happened...and break out the 250GB drive I had purchased.

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08/08/10

  01:49:12 pm, by The Dreamer   , 519 words  
Categories: Hardware, Computer, Furnishings, Storage

the 'gumby' upgrade, not so good.

actually, pretty bad....

So, while I was looking at the items for the 'lhaven' upgrade...I happened to type other things I might want, and came across a PCI PS/2 adapter.

The new 'gumby' is legacy free...which was causing problems working under my KVM setup. Not quite ready to upgrade the KVM to one that does both PS/2 and USB....so I've been using USB to PS/2 adapters. So far I've tried two. Kingwin and Trendnet. The KVM is a Trendnet, so I kind of hoped the Trendnet one would work.

The Kingwin was first....it works pretty good, except that once in a while the mouse to stops moving. I have to let the mouse sit idle for a moment and then I can move it again. If I don't let go of it, the mouse still being active prevents the 'reset'. Annoying....

So, I got the Trendnet adapter....well, things work...pretty much all the time...except the scrollwheel. And, I've gotten quite fond of using it. Whenever it stops working, I have to unplug the adapter and plug it back in. This is inconvenient and even more annoying....

So, I switched back to the Kingwin, until I decide on what I would use. I wondered if there were a more hardware solution...IE: PCI PS/2.

So, I snapped one up on eBay to try out.

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05/26/10

  10:20:48 pm, by The Dreamer   , 845 words  
Categories: Hardware, Computer, Storage

Yay, I used backuppc to restore almost 400GB of data

So, yesterday...I finally decided to buy the new external firewire drive for 'gumby'. Originally the plan was so that I would have retrospect express backups of the system drive, that I could boot from its restore CD and get that part back....with backuppc protecting my data.

On that criteria...I was trying to decide if 500GB was sufficient or perhaps smaller. Since the system drive is 160GB. And, whether USB 2.0 would be sufficient or if I still needed firewire. Old 'gumby' only had USB 1.1 and Firewire 400 ports. New 'gumby' came with USB 2.0 ports and I had added a Firewire 400 card to it.

Looking at the computer store at the K-State Student Union and various online sites (such as NewEgg, Tigerdirect, eBay)....that there wasn't a whole lot of good options in the under $100 mark.

OTOH, I had suspicions that another one of the 300GB firewire drives connected to 'gumby' was failing. I thought maybe I'd get a bigger drive. Looking again at the selection at the K-State computer store, I found a few reasonable choices....1TB, USB2.0/Firewire 400...and one USB2.0/Firewire400/Firewire800/eSata...all under $150 ($125+) So, then I wondered if I should get the Firewire800 option. I knew it was unlikely that I would stick an eSata controller in 'gumby' But, I wondered if I could swap the Firewire 400 card for a Firewire 800. Turns out there's very little in the way of 32-bit PCI Firewire 800 cards out there. And, they weren't cheap....enough for me to jump on. So, I decided that I would just settle for one of the USB2.0/Firewire 400 external drives. Namely the cheapest one at $125....plus it was kind of a known quantity....I already had an older (physically larger) Iomega Ultramax 1TB USB2.0/Firewire drive connected to my other Windows XP box ('tardis')...doing just backups.

I hooked it up and tried to get it going....at first it would detect and then it caused other issues, crashing my computer. Eventually I got the wizard to show up so I could initialize it and reformat it from Mac format to NTFS. The crashing seemed to cause some strangeness with the rest of the system. At first I was cursing having put off re-establishing some kind of Restrospect Express backup on the new 'gumby' (lost the old when the first of external drives died on the old 'gumby' -- used to have Maxtor OneTouch ?? externals...), but then I remembered that I can get the configs / apps restored using backuppc. (Hmmm, wait...I should be able to fix my firefox settings using FEBE. OK)

Meanwhile...I didn't notice those minor app issues until this morning. But, what I started to do was copy data from both externals over to the new drive. At first I was going to come up with a new organization and a single drive letter...when I decided that I would do two partitions, so that they could go into the same original drive letters. And, the old drives would go somewhere else. That way I wouldn't need to reconfigure the apps that look for the data, and backuppc would continue to see things in the same place, etc.

And, the plan was to use the two old 300G drives as the store for local (Retrospect Express) backups.

I debated whether it would be faster to copy between firewire drives or restoring the data using backuppc (both computers have 1Gbit NICs...old 'gumby' only had 10/100). I ended up doing both...restore one drive/partition from backuppc and copying the other drive/partition locally.

As luck would have it....the drive I was copying locally then decided it was time to die. And, things came to a halt.

Piecing back together... ended up restoring both drives from backuppc onto the new 1TB drive.

Once finished, I changed drive letters again...and rebooted to make things work (Windows was hungup about write issues on the failed drive, so it wouldn't let me change drive letters without some force.)

Later I got Retrospect Express working...currently I reformatted both old 300GB drives and have it doing two sets of backups to the drives. I kind of expect that one of them is going to fail me at some point in the future....but it should buy me time until I get the next external drive for this computer.

Running an initial backup right now, and when done I'll create a new restore image....and I should get to burning it after I do the next set of upgrades on this computer.

Oh yeah, yesterday I also finally changed out the USB to PS/2 adapter on it....the old one was annoying because the mouse would stop working periodically....have to be really still for a while and then the mouse would work again. Annoying! New adapter I got is a Trendnet (same brand as my KVM)....so far it seems to be working better, at least in the mouse department. The keyboard has had some issues....stuck repeating 3's.

On tap for next set of upgrades (likely to take place sometime this long weekend), change out DVD-ROM drive for a DVD burner and upgrade the memory to 4GB (after upgrading 'orac' to 8GB and moving the 2GB from there to here).

Now instead of subjecting some poor random forum to a long rambling thought, I will try to consolidate those things into this blog where they can be more easily ignored profess to be collected thoughts from my mind.

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