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Hello,
I am new to this forum and apologize for the double post (wrong area). I have an old PC with a bios/chipset that can only see 8.4 gigs. I added a Promise Ultra66 card to get over the 8.4 gig limitation. I have an unformatted Quantum fireball 20 gig drive I want to use with the Promise controller. To partition and format the drive, I tried using a Win98 Startup diskette. After the tools and ramdisk are loaded, the Quantum drive is not visible so I can't fdisk it. Anyone know what the problem is? I sure would appreciate your advice.

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  • Actually it can be used that way. I have an UltraATA Promise Controller Card, and to make it work I just modified the Windows 98 boot disk by adding the sys file or com file (can't remember which right now) to the boot disk and modifying the autoexec.bat/config.sys files to … Read More

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Quantum sold their hard drive division to Maxtor some time back, and Maxtor now provide support for the drives.


You've gone to extremes buying that controller to sort out your problem, as all you needed was a downloadable software utility to 'break' the drive size barrier imposed by BIOS. The utility you should use is the one provided by Maxtor, which you'll find at:

http://www.maxtor.com/portal/site/Maxtor/?epi_menuItemID=3c67e325e0a6b1f6294198b091346068&epi_menuID=976d37cd478c5826433f226075b46068&epi_baseMenuID=976d37cd478c5826433f226075b46068&channelpath=/en_us/Support/Software%20Downloads/ATA%20Hard%20Drives&downloadID=57

Please read the information on the download page, and all included instructions before you use it.

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Quantum sold their hard drive division to Maxtor some time back, and Maxtor now provide support for the drives.


You've gone to extremes buying that controller to sort out your problem, as all you needed was a downloadable software utility to 'break' the drive size barrier imposed by

Thanks. If you are referring to EZ-BIOS, a dynamic disk overlay program, yes I have used it for about 2 years now. It tends to make disk access very slow due to the additional translation required and there is, I hear, some risk that the LBA translation may not be standard. If the DDO is corrupted, you lose all the data. A few weeks ago, I removed the DDO from a 13.6 gig drive and put it on a Promise controler (and prayed!). After backing up my data, of course. Well, it worked fine.

Now I want to put a 20 gig HDD on this card without resorting to a cloning program to transfer the OS; I want to do a clean install of Win98SE on this drive. But I can't seem to get it formatted. There is a trick, I'm sure. Just don't know what it is!

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The utility program you'll find at the link provided is called MaxBlast3, which is a more recent version of the form of software solution you refer to, which I've not heard such problems reported in relation to.

I'm unsure about your hardware solution. If you disable the onboard IDE channels in BIOS setup does the drive then show up? Windows 98 is certainly intended to reside on drive C:

Have you a model number there for your add-in controller?

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Yes, I used MaxBlast3 to partition the Quantum drive last night by using the on-board IDE controller. MaxBlast reports One FAT32 Partition. I don't know if the size of the partition is determined by what the on-board IDE controller can see (8.4 gig). I then booted to a Win98 startup disk. This created the RAM drive ("C") but the Quantum HDD is not visible so I can't format it. I wonder if MaxBlast3 already took care of the formatting since it reports the FAT32 partition. By the way, MaxBlast3 loads CDROM drivers but the CDROM, which is on the Promise IDE channel 2, is not visible from MaxBlast.

The Promise card is an ULTRA66 card.

My next step is to put the HDD back on the Promise card and see if Win98 startup can see it.

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From what I can tell, the card can't be used in the way you want to use it. It needs drivers loaded in Windows to work, and can't operate as a boot device.

It would be a better setup anyway to have Windows 98 installed on your smaller drive, and use the new one for storage. You could even move 'My Documents' and your program folders to it, should you choose to do so.

I'd be splitting your 8.4Gb drive into a 2Gb partition for Windows, and a 6Gb partition for programs, and using the new larger drive for data storage.

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Actually it can be used that way. I have an UltraATA Promise Controller Card, and to make it work I just modified the Windows 98 boot disk by adding the sys file or com file (can't remember which right now) to the boot disk and modifying the autoexec.bat/config.sys files to load the drivers.

Worked just fine. I have used it as the boot source for Windows 98 in a dual boot configuration!

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WOW! That's a really neat trick! I never though to put the card's drivers on the boot floppy!
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In an earlier post in this thread, I mentioned I removed the DDO on a 13.6 gig Win98SE drive and it works fine on the Promise card. It boots fine and I can see the entire 13.6 gigs because the Promise BIOS is not limited by the 8.4 gig barrier. So I know that the Promise card is capable of booting. Also, I did not have to disable the onboard BIOS. I set the primary and secondary master and slaves to AUTO.

I know Windows loads a SCSI controller to operate the Promise card, but at bootup this must not be necessary as these device drivers are loaded only after Windows loads.

I should have menitioned that I have these drives mounted in docking trays so I can swap the entire drive with operating system, data and all. What I want to have is my 20 gig drive operate like my 13.6 gig drive.

By the way, is there a spell check option on this message board?

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Actually it can be used that way. I have an UltraATA Promise Controller Card, and to make it work I just modified the Windows 98 boot disk by adding the sys file or com file (can't remember which right now) to the boot disk and modifying the autoexec.bat/config.sys files to load the drivers.

Worked just fine. I have used it as the boot source for Windows 98 in a dual boot configuration!

Hello Palladin!
You may have the key I am looking for. Can you look up your modified Win98 boot disk and tell me what I need?

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Sure will. I am sure I still have it in a box somewhere. I will try to post back sooner than I did this time. :-( Sorry dude!

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Well for the life of me I can not find my boot disk. But here is a site ClickMe has some old DOS drivers for various Promise Controller cards.

:cool: Saying that, I re-read your post and I must apologize as I wasn't reading it clearly. So I have another solution, as the way I fixed my problem was that is was not the same, as what you are currently experiencing was different. :cry: But none the less you can fix your problem by using the attached file. Unzip it to a floppy disk and use it after booting up with a Windows 98 boot disk and run DM.exe (Drive Manager)

Why? Because DOS by nature does not support UDMA so the above drivers probably won't be much help.

So instead try hooking your system up to the regular connections and use the floppy disk to configure your drive. It is the last version I have heard of for Quantum's Drive Manager w/ Dynamic Overlay which worked wonders for me. Hope it helps you. :-|

Hope this helps!?! :D

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Thanks Paladine,

I installed a new 40 gig Western Digital drive with no problems. So the problem must hav been the Quantum drive. Perhaps the drive has a quirk that does not allow the Promise card to see its full capacity.

The Promise card does not need a DDO to see the full 20 gig of the Quantum. All it sees is 9 MB (out of 20 gigs!). Or perhaps the drive is just bad.

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Hey glad to hear you go things fix mcamax! Sounds like the quantum drive is toast if the drive is not reading correctly. Believe me I feel your pain. :( Quantum hard drives were the best in their time. Every drive I had since Windows 3.11 days was a quantum. I was the first on my "block" to have a 1GB Quantum. Oh how sweet that was. :D And fast too boot!

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Hi Paladine,
Well, the Quantum drive is not toast after all. Some additional research on the web suggested that the drive may be locked - necessary for TiVo, I hear. Anyway, I found two unlocking programs called qunlock and diskutil. These run from DOS and send an unlock signal to the attached drive. I'm not sure which one worked, but one of them did! And my Quantum now shows the full 20 gigs rather than the 9MB. So all's well!

Ah, the days of Win 3.1... did you ever try a shell called Calmira that made Win 3.1 look like Win 95 GUI? I still have a box of small drives. Smallest is 100MB from my 1991 Dell 433 (33 MHz 486SX).

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