[conspire] Firewire os10 booting

Daniel Gimpelevich daniel at gimpelevich.san-francisco.ca.us
Sun Sep 10 17:24:25 PDT 2006

On Sun, 10 Sep 2006 12:44:25 -0700, John Andrews wrote:

> This is slightly off topic but. I'm investigating about booting a slot
> loading imac from FW hard drive.( after updating the firmware and ram.)
> Some FW drives are kind of expensive and was wondering about firewire
> enclosures that can use a  cheaper hard drive. I understand that there is
> one desirable chip that the good FW drives use. Has anyone had experience
> booting os 10.xx from a FW drive? The Mac forum guys  gave me some good
> advice but was wondering what you guys think.

You are no doubt referring to the Oxford Semiconductor 911 chipset,
universally the only way to go for PATA-to-FW400 bridging, as in an
enclosure. When i last went looking for one, such enclosures could be
obtained for ~$40 apiece, but I understand that prices have gone up since
then. Also worth mentioning is the Oxford Semiconductor 912 chipset, for
PATA-to-FW800 bridging, which I believe to be backward-compatible.

Booting OS X from FW is dead-easy and you don't really need to know
anything you don't already know for that. This isn't quite so with any
other OS, including OS 9.

When looking for a cheaper hard disk, do yourself a favor and consider the
brands Maxtor and Western Digital to be off-limits, no matter how much
cheaper they may be. Also, when getting a large hard disk, one one has the
potential of being forced to deal with LBA48 issues, but with the Oxford
911 chipset, you magically don't have to worry about any of that.

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