Alternative options to Naomi_CF?

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    • Alternative options to Naomi_CF?

      I've been having a nightmare writing AW games with Naomi_CF V1.34 - is there an alternative way to write CF-Cards?

      I have a box full of Branded CF-Cards "Transcend Ultra industrial" & "Unigen industrial" and it'll read the ID (Mainly 33nn & 34nn with a few 30nn) but it won't program any of them - I get "Preparing Media" followed by a pop-up "ERROR: Cannot create File".

      I can clear them with diskpart, I can use CHDMAN to write G-Net games to them and windows works with them. They came from an IBM storage device I decommissioned so they should be legit.

      I have managed to program some "Transcend CF80 Industrial" ones (Blue labels) so the hardware & program is working some of the time.

      Any suggestions/Options as I have 30 of these?

      The post was edited 2 times, last by penrhos ().

    • penrhos wrote:

      I've been having a nightmare writing AW games with Naomi_CF V1.34 - is there an alternative way to write CF-Cards?

      I have a box full of Branded CF-Cards "Transcend Ultra industrial" & "Unigen industrial" and it'll read the ID (Mainly 33nn & 34nn with a few 30nn) but it won't program any of them - I get "Preparing Media" followed by a pop-up "ERROR: Cannot create File".

      I can clear them with diskpart, I can use CHDMAN to write G-Net games to them and windows works with them. They came from an IBM storage device I decommissioned so they should be legit.

      I have managed to program some "Transcend CF80 Industrial" ones (Blue labels) so the hardware & program is working some of the time.

      Any suggestions/Options as I have 30 of these?
      If you have Net Dimm, i suggest Netboot method with Raspberry PI ;)
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    • penrhos wrote:

      I've been having a nightmare writing AW games with Naomi_CF V1.34 - is there an alternative way to write CF-Cards?

      I have a box full of Branded CF-Cards "Transcend Ultra industrial" & "Unigen industrial" and it'll read the ID (Mainly 33nn & 34nn with a few 30nn) but it won't program any of them - I get "Preparing Media" followed by a pop-up "ERROR: Cannot create File".

      I can clear them with diskpart, I can use CHDMAN to write G-Net games to them and windows works with them. They came from an IBM storage device I decommissioned so they should be legit.

      I have managed to program some "Transcend CF80 Industrial" ones (Blue labels) so the hardware & program is working some of the time.

      Any suggestions/Options as I have 30 of these?
      Well you could try my tools ... :D

      Naomi CF Tools
      The future of ST-V rests upon our work and your work
    • I can confirm they work well. I use them in a virtual windows 7 environment. (virtualbox)

      I have a 512MB image file I mount as usb drive into that virtual machine. Next, I format that drive (full, not a quick format)

      When I now open a "dos prompt with administrator rights" I can use the gcfi tool with that virtual drive.

      Next, I image a compact flash card with that image file. (connected using an usb card reader)

      This procedure makes every compact flash appear to the system as a 512MB one (even if it was originally bigger or smaller in size)
      It also has the advantage that once you know the 2 id bytes, you can use an usb cardreader.

      For some reason, a virtual windows xp environment didn't work.
      Windows 8.1 puts some strange file on the compact flash card after you format it. Due to that some tools say the card isn't fresh formatted.
      (can't remember if that was gcfi..)
    • Right - this is starting to piss me right off....

      I'm using W7 on a laptop with the CF card in a PCMCIA adapter...

      ATAID -d 1

      gives me 0x3033


      GCFI -s 0x3033 -d E:\ -l ABC.BIN -g dol222.bin

      Gives me an error message saying I need to use -W

      GCFI -s 0x3033 -d E:\ -l ABC.BIN -g dol222.bin -W

      Gives me an error message saying I need format the card as FAT

      So I eject & re-insert the card format it as FAT, Default label NaomiCF, windows formats it OK but I get the same error messages.

      I've even tried HDDGuru low-level format on it.

      What am I doing wrong - I've written CF-cards for Naomi before without issues....
    • The -W option is just a method to erase the first sectors of your card removing partition tables etc.
      There is no need to do it like that, you can overwrite the sectors using WinHex instead for example.

      After -W has been done you need to reformat your card to get the proper format on it because the
      boot sectors have been wiped.

      Then you format your card as FAT/FAT16, when that is done the boot sector is correct and all is good.

      What is the size of your card btw ?
      The future of ST-V rests upon our work and your work
    • Some cardreaders don't allow raw sector based access to a device under windows 7 and newer, not even when the tools are ran as administrator.

      I found a small tool that fixes the issue on my windows 8.1 I wan't say it's the problem you are facing, but it's worth a try.
      I assume you did a full format of the compact flash cards before you attempted to put the files on it.
      Here is the tool. Just check the drive letter of your cf card, run the tool as administrator.
      Select lock it and unmount of that driver letter.
      I need the tool when I image sd cards or compact flash cards. Some usb readers need it, others don't. I have now idea how it is with pcmcia readers.

      LockVolume.zip

      So basically, I used a virtual compact flash (image file), ran the gcfi tool on it and transferred the image file to the real device afterwards. It's a bit more work, but it worked.
    • obcd wrote:

      Some cardreaders don't allow raw sector based access to a device under windows 7 and newer, not even when the tools are ran as administrator.
      This is incorrect, it is Windows which blocks access to raw low level sector access. If the card reader did not allow access to raw sector access how would you transfer your virtual image ?

      This is what is needed:
      . Max 2 GiB CF card
      . Formatted to FAT16
      . No partitions

      I have verified that my tool works on XP, W7, W8 and W10
      The future of ST-V rests upon our work and your work
    • Agreed it's windows blocking access, but the strange thing is that it doesn't do it with "all" usb cardreaders.
      Reading sector based works fine but writing fails on some and not on others.

      How does your tool write the security sectors in the fat area?
      I had problems with xp (virtual) and windows 8

      For xp, I simply forwarded the usb - cf adapter to the client machine on usb level.
      I also got the warning to run the tool with the -w option. When it tried to write to the card it failed.

      On windows 8, even after a "full format" the program complains that the compact flash card isn't empty.
      It looks like 8 is putting a (hidden?) system file on the card after formatting it.

      I can rerun those tests if you want more details.
    • Finally got this working.....

      I had to download and install MiniTool partition Wizard on my Windows 10 PC.

      I put it into a PCMCIA adapter in my old laptop - ran ataid to get the 4-digit code, took the CF-card out and put it into a USB CF-reader on my Windows 10 PC. Opened Partition Wizard, selected the drive, wiped any old partitions, Formatted the CF as FAT16 and labelled it as NaomiCF, Once formatted I used file explorer to select the drive to check it was accessible and "Eject" it from windows 10.

      Put the CF-card into a USB CF-reader on my old laptop the I could use Naomi_CF or gcfi to write the bin file to the freshly formatted CF card using the ID from ataid, Once complete I "Ejected" the USB device so the card was cleanly removed from the OS.

      I never had to do this convoluted routine to write AW games to CF-Cards before so I can only assume one of the Windows updates has altered the boot block for FAT, it's writing some hidden information somewhere that's upsetting gcfi or not "Ejecting" the CF-card was causing some weird issue (maybe making the drive as "not-clean").

      So it seems to be resolved, which is handy as shortly I'll get another load of these cards from two IBM XIV storage arrays that are being decommissioned in June and another pair in July (If I manage to get them all it'll be about 50 * 1Gb Industrial CF-Cards for free!).

      The post was edited 1 time, last by penrhos ().

    • penrhos wrote:

      rtw wrote:

      I did a recheck on Win10 this morning and on the latest patch level it does not work anymore :(

      I have an idea why it is not working but as of now Win10 is not supported any more.

      Sorry about that.
      So I'm not going mad - naomi-CF is also broken on the latest W10 update.....
      Not mad at all, if anyone has any info on how one can write raw sectors under Win10 reliably please speak up :D
      The future of ST-V rests upon our work and your work