Firewire drive enclosure and upgrading Tivo to +320 gigs

Discussion in 'TiVo Upgrade Center' started by PinheadX, Jan 25, 2006.

  1. PinheadX

    PinheadX New Member

    Aug 4, 2004
    Houston, TX


    Just wondering about a couple of things. When I did my original 160 gig upgrade to my SAT-T60 I couldn't get it to work on my machine and had to use someone else's machine because I don't think my mobo will see a drive over 137 gigs.

    I recently got a pair of 320 gig drives for about $120 each and plan to put one in a newly purchased (from Weaknees) Philips DSR7000. Since I know my machine probably won't take the drive on the IDE chain, I also bought a USB2/Firewire enclosure for one of the drives to reside in until such time as I get a new machine built. The drive enclosure works great, sees all of the 320 gig drive, works as advertised.

    Can I use MFSTools or one of the other boot disk thingies and get the drive recognized, so I can add it to the DSR7000 along with the original drive? This will be connected via Firewire as I don't have USB2 on this mobo either... yeah, I know, "buy a new machine dude." I also want to make sure the partition size sees the full 320 gigs, so I suppose I need to use that r - 4 or whatever option when setting it up, and I also want to run Zipper on it, so I can network to it and not have to do the 30 second skip deal when the power goes out, etc.

    Does anyone have any specific or even general experience trying an upgrade with a externally connected drive (not on the IDE chain)?

    If I need to, I can get Linux running on a spare drive I have laying around here. Would that be easier?

    For those who are curious, the mobo is a Gigabyte BX chipset dual proc mobo that has been pretty reliable since I got it in like... '99 I think. It's just showing it's age.
  2. classicsat

    classicsat Astute User

    Feb 18, 2004
    Ontario Canada.
    Why not connect it to the IDE inside the PC?

    Whatever linux you use (it can be a live boot linux), it hast to be able to recognize firewire or USB2.0 interface and drive case.
  3. PinheadX

    PinheadX New Member

    Aug 4, 2004
    Houston, TX
    i'm pretty sure, as I stated in my OP, that the BIOS won't recognize a drive that large, but the firewire enclosure has it's own bios independant of the mobo's bios. I couldn't get my computer to see a 160 gig drive before, which is why I had to borrow a computer to do my original upgrade to my SAT-T60.
  4. Tracy RainH2o

    Tracy RainH2o Photo Man

    Nov 17, 2005
    I used an old PII machine to do all my upgrades. 1999 should put you into the PII era as well. I doubt your machine will "see" your Firewire drives, enclosure or not. You will not be booting into the OS. You will be booting into Linux from the BIOS.

    Maybe I missed some thing in you original post. PC from 1996 PI, would not see any drive larger than 32GB.
  5. kschauwe

    kschauwe Member

    Sep 16, 2003


    Linux will over-ride the MB bios and see the full 320Gb.
  6. Arcady

    Arcady Stargate Fan

    Oct 14, 2004
    Just get some old PC and do the upgrades. Certainly you can locate a P1 - P3 box for $0-$20.
  7. PinheadX

    PinheadX New Member

    Aug 4, 2004
    Houston, TX
    yeah... no... the machine I have at home is a dual P3 800MHz. I checked the manufacturer's website and they basically say that the bios won't recognize over 137 gig drives on the IDE chain.

    The machine does see the drive in the enclosure, because the enclosure has it's own bios that recognizes drives greater than 137 gigs. The drive then is seen by the OS through the firewire connection. I can see all 320 gigs (well, in actual size it reports less than 320, but we all know that 1000Megs does not equal 1Gig unless you are in marketing) .

    So far I haven't seen a boot disk recognize the firewire card in my machine (which is supported in Linux according to the documentation) and mount the drive in the enclosure, but I may just install Linux onto a spare 10 gig drive I have laying around and try to get the enclosure seen that way, then just run MFStools from inside Linux.

    I assume that's a valid method, though I haven't really seen any help or walkthroughs dealing with that method. I can't imagine it's too difficult, though. Just copy MFSTools to the linux partition somewhere, cd to it, run the commands with the appropriate mount points selected, sit back and watch it work, put the drive into the DTivo and fire it up. I'm sure I could even zipper the drive at this point as well.

    Any guidance will be appreciated.
  8. sabu

    sabu New Member

    Jan 29, 2002
    Harrisburg, PA
    If you set the BIOS parameter to no drive for the drive > 137gb, linux will be able to see the drive and correctly determine the size. I did my last TiVo upgrade to a 160GB drive with replacement kernel on a Pentium 133. The bios on that machine didn't like drives bigger than either 2GB or 8GB, not quite sure which. If you don't specify the drive in BIOS, Linux isn't constrained by the BIOS information.

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