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Old 18 May 2017, 19:01   #1
e5frog
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[SOLVED] Amiga 2000, A2090* hard drive LED?

I have a A2090 in my A2000 (8+1MB, no accelerator), I think it was initially a A2094 kit, I recall having such a disk.
I'm not using the ST506 drive since way back - it's still mounted though, have five SCSI disks from 40-120MB - as I got them nearly for free at the time. They're hanging on the side of a cleared ALF hard drive card from metal brackets - neat solution but for heat and sound volume I guess I should replace them with a single drive eventually.

I did some cleaning and swapped the battery - finally, it has been standing unused and open for years in the laboratory. Also fixed a simpler Kickstart switch than my homemade 3-in-1 version. It just toggles between 1.3 and 3.1 with the upper address pin.

Now that I had all of it out I noticed the "Hard Disk" LED on the front wasn't connected to anything. I found some information about the J4 and J5 jumpers by the SCSI-connector of the A2090 card. J5 seems to be powered all the time, J4 seems to prevent booting - actually didn't get any KS image either.

So question is can I find a hard drive activity signal somewhere on the SCSI bus - that will indicate read or write on any of my hard drives? I know some drives have connectors on them, but then I'd just get the activity from a single drive.
I'm not afraid of electronics, have CAD:ed and built many kinds of boards and also prototype electronics. Mostly U17 PLAnkton for C64 and then also Multi-Carts and Pac-Man for Fairchild Channel F

Just thought I'd ask first instead of diving in.
Help appreciated.

Last edited by e5frog; 19 May 2017 at 02:07.
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Old 18 May 2017, 19:16   #2
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Floppy disk

Couldn't find anything about notifications in settings or when editing the previous, so I write this with notification on so I don't miss any good tips.
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Old 18 May 2017, 19:30   #3
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Check page 13 of the A2090 user manual. You can either connect the LED cable to one of your hard disks, in which case only activity of that disk will be shown. Or connect to J5 on the A2090 which should show any HD activity (of disks connected to the A2090).
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Old 18 May 2017, 22:22   #4
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Thanks mark_k, I tried J5 again, didn't work it just has the LED on constantly. When trying J4 again I noticed there's actually a faint flicker when there's activity - so I guess J4 it is even if it's weak.

This is my card:


The D2764A-2 eprom at U36 (IIRC) is hard to read, it's worn and almost faded.


Otherwise I haven't had much luck today, my 1084S-P2 broke (image shrunk and flickered) and my 100MB Quantum Prodrive LPS hard drive stopped getting recognized after a few reboots. :-(
Not sure I have a backup.
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Old 18 May 2017, 22:25   #5
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You're doing better than me, I have the same card and am getting nowhere!

The ST506 drive died, so trying to replace it with a SCSI drive but am achieving nothing J5 does indeed keep the light on the case on solidly (which is annoying, as it worked for the ST506 drive!). I haven't yet tried J4, but I can't even get the amiga to boot with the drive connected.

Can I ask how you have your SCSI chain set up?
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Old 18 May 2017, 23:43   #6
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Maybe J5 is for ST506 and J4 is for SCSI.

I think max size is 256MB for the drive unless you run the soft fix - which I don't understand how it should work. I guess if you boot from a small drive and run the soft fix it will handle the larger drives as well.
If you have the first version of 2090 it won't autoboot. Not sure if it's enough to swap ROMs, I dumped mine if you want to try.

I have a cable with six connectors, one end goes in the card, there's a mark with 1 for the red line on the cable.
You set up the SCSI ID on the hard drive, it's a bit pattern with three jumpers you can put jumper blocks on (usually small jumper blocks). I think card is 0 in our case so you have 1-7 to choose from.
Last unit on the cable has to be terminated, so if you only have one drive it should be last on the cable and the resistor packs mounted (by the connector). This is to prevent bouncing signals, it's chance to run without them.
There are termination packs you can plug on the end of the cable - so you never have to terminate the drives.

Then you need to use the prep tools for the 2090, HDToolBox is not compatible, the 2090 doesn't handle the usual SCSI commands. I think it's a WB1.3 program, but if you fix things there you can reformat it later. Don't recall the details but I think you also need a Mountlist where you describe the drive, amount of blocks etc. It's possible it's jut needed for multiple disks,

I uudecoded some 2090 prep programs from a GUI file I had to look for with waybackmachine.
I think I have the actual disk though, just preparing and reading up.

It's a lot of work... not just plug and play.

I'm currently trying to reach the Amiga-drives from my PC using a SCSI-card. It's visible in system settings but I can't put a device letter on it - and not attach it in WinUAE nor open it with WinHex - not even one of the working drives.

So... that's the current status.
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Old 19 May 2017, 00:35   #7
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Sidenote:
Found my drive in WinUAE, can't boot from the working boot drive nor the hdf it was possible to create. :-(
Difficult...
I just plug it in the A2000 and it boots up, don't know how to make it run in WinUAE, should be set to DH2 there as well I guess.
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Old 19 May 2017, 11:28   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by e5frog View Post
Maybe J5 is for ST506 and J4 is for SCSI.
Possibly, if you haven't seen it - this is worth a read: http://gunkies.org/wiki/A2090

Quote:
Originally Posted by e5frog View Post
I think max size is 256MB for the drive unless you run the soft fix - which I don't understand how it should work. I guess if you boot from a small drive and run the soft fix it will handle the larger drives as well.
Yeah, I went for a 213MB drive to sidestep this issue for now

Quote:
Originally Posted by e5frog View Post
If you have the first version of 2090 it won't autoboot. Not sure if it's enough to swap ROMs, I dumped mine if you want to try.
I have the A version with the three ROMs, although the machine does nothing with these installed, I had to remove them to get it to boot from floppy

Quote:
Originally Posted by e5frog View Post
I have a cable with six connectors, one end goes in the card, there's a mark with 1 for the red line on the cable.
You set up the SCSI ID on the hard drive, it's a bit pattern with three jumpers you can put jumper blocks on (usually small jumper blocks). I think card is 0 in our case so you have 1-7 to choose from.
Last unit on the cable has to be terminated, so if you only have one drive it should be last on the cable and the resistor packs mounted (by the connector). This is to prevent bouncing signals, it's chance to run without them.
Hmm, I have a 50 pin cable, one end into the card (observing the pin one marking) middle connector has nothing, and the other end of the cable is into the drive where I have set a SCSI id of 6, and inserted the termination resistors.

Quote:
Originally Posted by e5frog View Post
I uudecoded some 2090 prep programs from a GUI file I had to look for with waybackmachine.
I think I have the actual disk though, just preparing and reading up.

It's a lot of work... not just plug and play.
Yes, rapidly realising it's not as straightforward as I'd hoped Thankfully the tools seem to be here: http://amiga.resource.cx/exp/a2090a in dms format - I need to prod it more!

Quote:
Originally Posted by e5frog View Post
I'm currently trying to reach the Amiga-drives from my PC using a SCSI-card. It's visible in system settings but I can't put a device letter on it - and not attach it in WinUAE nor open it with WinHex - not even one of the working drives.

So... that's the current status.
Thanks for your help, and good luck getting things sorted. This whole setup sure is a lot more complicated than the one in my A1200!
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Old 19 May 2017, 13:15   #9
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That wiki seems to be the same as the .GUI file I found.

You can copy those uuencoded files and decode them online, that's what I did - but I had to grab the data from hex editor and not Wordpad - or it wouldn't work. So I hope they haven't screwed it up. I see no reason not to have the files in an archive in the wiki. I'm tempted to make an account and do some edits. Add image of the A2090a for example.

I got some life in my DH4: disk hooked to the PC, started by opening it up (Quantum ProDrive LPS 105S) and replace the tar-like pre rubber gunk that was bumpers some time ago - it was really sticky on the head assembly. No immediate life though so I tried swapping the logic board for a similar one (for a 40MB drive). Not much of a difference.
When changing back the logic board and running it without lid it suddenly identified properly and I was able to make a bit backup - same contents as the hardfile made from WinUAE. So at least there's (I made several reads) a raw backup, going to use tsgui to check all head/cylinder/block/track stuff needed to identify it in WinUAE. I should really migrate to newer disks - or at least make a file backup.

Not even the Mountlist that I grabbed with the hex editor has all the information asked for by WinUAE - or HDTools if you try that approach.
Just want to mount the hardfile/drive and copy the files over to a PC folder - it's a lot easier with the A600 and CF card adapter. ;-)

Maybe it's easier just to nullmodem over the files from the A2000... but that will take a loooooooong time. Maybe it's time to try the IDE interface that goes under the CPU.


The DH4: didn't like it when screwing the lid back on too hard, just going to see if I can grab the file and then I'll retire that one I think - even if it has nice new red bumpers it has been opened and will never be reliable again.
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