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-   -   Can I use an 8GB Compact flash card for hard disk in an A1200 (http://eab.abime.net/showthread.php?t=88614)

Xav 14 September 2017 02:09

Can I use an 8GB Compact flash card for hard disk in an A1200
I want to be able to play all WHDLoad games which would take up 5.3GB of hard disk device storage. I currently use a 4GB Compact Flash card that is not big enough. So I would need a minimum of a 8GB but also amazon.co.uk sells a genuine SanDisk 32 GB compact flash card for £22.

I would create a first partition of 500MB for Classic Workbench. After that can I create a 2nd partition using all the remaining space, about 29 GB,using PFS3 filesystem?

I thought I could put all the WHDLoad games on a samba network share and access that on the A1200 using a 3com 3c589 PCMCIA ethernet network adapter, Miami TCP/IP and smbfs program. But it seems that is not possible because WHDLoad suspends the whole operating system including network drivers and TCP/IP.

emufan 14 September 2017 02:34

here is a good thread about the partition size issue.
you need to update the scsi.device - Don Adans or the one from aminet.

maybe ClassicWb already comes with one of them.
instead of PFS3 you should use the more recent version pfs3aio.

Xav 15 October 2017 02:20

I did a mistake in cheaping out on getting a non branded 8GB Compact Flash card for £6 (https://www.amazon.co.uk/SODIAL-Prof...+compact+flash). It failed after 3 days of use but at least I will get a refund.

I have ordered a genuine San Disk 8GB Compact Flash card for £14

In the mean time I have learned about the different types of file systems. I have redone the 4GB Compact Flash using SmartFileSystem following this guide 'How to add a 8 GB Compact Flash hard drive to your Amiga 1200 (works with 4 GB too)' (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hM7F-mGNFMY). That guide has a link to HDToolBox V6.9 that mostly shows correct drive capacity and partition sizes. But there are still some incorrect numbers. I have found that Classic Workbench - with patched V43. 24 scsi.device (for A1200) in Devs: won't boot on my A1200 with a Individual ACA1221EC accelerator plugged in with either the MapRom function disabled or enabled. But without scsi.device file in Devs: Classic WB can boot fine.

Going from Bloodywych guide (http://eab.abime.net/showthread.php?t=32256) I should be ok without needing a scsi.device to update the ROM if all I need is up to 8 GB hard disk device support.

Jope 15 October 2017 19:10

SFS v1.84 will use directscsi, so yes. Any SFS release with a bigger version number will not work without a patched scsi.device.

guybrush 15 October 2017 22:37

IT is a bit of a waste; at least for classic WB. I have a 8 GB card that is more than half empty; and I have all the games I play, a ton of mods; a ton of demos and applications.

There are few great videos on youtube about how to prep the card;I did it so long ago, and then I made an image of my CF card so I can restore it at any time; so I don't really remember the whole thing; but it did involve change the file system with a more modern one; including some hex numbers; to have access to anything above 1 GB.

Akira 16 October 2017 15:59

I installed all the WHDLoad games, AGA games and Demos from the Turran packs, and I still have lots of space in my 8GB card. This is thousands of demos and games, literally.

I had to patch scsi.device. I'm using one PFS3-AIO partition, the rest are FFS.

32GB seems overkill.

Xav 16 October 2017 22:50

I can't edit the forum post title to change it from '32 GB' to '8 GB' which is what I am now intending to setup for the capacity of compact flash card. Like others have said 8 GB will be enough for all the WHDLoad games.

prowler 16 October 2017 23:17


Originally Posted by Xav (Post 1192630)
I can't edit the forum post title to change it from '32 GB' to '8 GB' which is what I am now intending to setup for the capacity of compact flash card.

I've done it for you. :)

Xav 25 October 2017 05:49

Got the 8GB SanDisk Compact Flash card installed. I created a 490MB partition for Classic Workbench and a second partition using the rest of the space for WHDLoad. Dopus file manager shows identical A > Z directory byte sizes for the WHDLoad source and target CF copied directories so it seems I have setup SmartFileSystem correctly.

I got a Compact Flash kit that uses the spare trapdoor on the rear of the A1200. So now I don't have to open the case to insert\remove a CF. The H. Disk led on the case is now working which is a bit of magic because back in the 1980's/early 1990's to have a hard disk in a Amiga was gravy.


I have a spare 2.5" 20 GB SATA hard disk that was originally part of a Xbox 360 hard disk pack that attaches to the side of the console. I got it to work with a SATA > IDE adapter with my games PC. It was recognized as a 20GB disk in my A1200 with HDToolbox V6.9. But I don't know how to partition it and get it working in my the A1200 that won't boot with a scsi.device file in devs: because of a Individual ACA1221EC accelerator plugged in. I ran a Windows benchmark on it and it was much faster than the 4GB and also the 8GB CF cards I have. And that includes all transfer tests from 512 byte chunks doubling up to 64 MB. But as far as I know the A1200 IDE interface can only do up to about 3 MB a second max transfer speed so I will stick with Compact Flash. But still the A1200 boots into Classic Workbench Lite in 9 seconds that is faster than my games PC with Windows 10 on a SSD!

Daedalus 25 October 2017 09:39

Setting up a hard drive is no different to setting up a compact flash card. You need to sort out the filesystem and scsi.device in exactly the same way. You're correct though, the IDE port is really the bottleneck for speed - even if the CF card is slower than the hard drive, it's probably still ten times faster than the IDE port can handle so I wouldn't worry about it. Good job getting it up and running! Now enjoy :)

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