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SCSI CD-ROM drives

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SCSI CD-ROM drives

by ZL2AOX » Fri Jan 18, 2013 4:01 pm

Looking for a couple of SCSI CD-ROM drives for my Sun SPARC workstations - preferably internal type with SCA connector. External good too but must be SCSI.
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Re: SCSI CD-ROM drives

by SpidersWeb » Fri Jan 18, 2013 4:25 pm

I'll ask the people in my building.
Wish I'd known sooner, I watched them throw out a bunch of Sun SCSI gear recently :( but I know a guy who might have saved some - will see what he says.
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Re: SCSI CD-ROM drives

by recycled » Fri Jan 18, 2013 7:11 pm

ZL2AOX wrote:Looking for a couple of SCSI CD-ROM drives for my Sun SPARC workstations - preferably internal type with SCA connector.

Just to be rude, what model workstations?!

SCA CD-ROM you say! They must be a particularly rare jem, I've been a SCSI fan-boy for as long as I've had computers of my own and I've never seen one, so expect to be charged a kings ransom when you track one down. Sure you can't get by with a standard SCSI narrow 50 pin IDC style drive? I used one in my Sparc 5 without any problem, but then the Sparc 5 is a pretty old box. And most of the Ultras I've played with since are happy with IDE CD-ROMs. What was the fastest SCSI CD-ROM you've ever seen, you gain nothing with a 16bit interface for a CD drive, except giving it a higher ID and that goes against the SCSI principle, of higher priority devices on higher IDs. (Adaptec and friends botched that part of the standard up, long live standards loving IBM).
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Re: SCSI CD-ROM drives

by cjr » Fri Jan 18, 2013 9:08 pm

pretty sure I have a sun scsi dvd left, but all my cd-rom drives are likely gone2 e-day's ago I'll take a look tomorrow.
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Re: SCSI CD-ROM drives

by ZL2AOX » Sat Jan 19, 2013 11:43 am

recycled wrote:Just to be rude, what model workstations?!

SPARCclassic and SPARCstation 5. Neither came with a CD-ROM drive.

recycled wrote:SCA CD-ROM you say! They must be a particularly rare jem, I've been a SCSI fan-boy for as long as I've had computers of my own and I've never seen one, so expect to be charged a kings ransom when you track one down. Sure you can't get by with a standard SCSI narrow 50 pin IDC style drive?

You're right; my mistake. Only the hard drives are SCA. The CD-ROM just uses the 50 pin SCSI-2 connector.
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Re: SCSI CD-ROM drives

by recycled » Sat Jan 19, 2013 9:17 pm

ZL2AOX wrote:SPARCclassic and SPARCstation 5. Neither came with a CD-ROM drive.

You're right; my mistake. Only the hard drives are SCA. The CD-ROM just uses the 50 pin SCSI-2 connector.

Nice, now we're on the same page. First up, I'm not going to help you out, as much as I'd like to pass on a spare drive and get the warm fuzzy feeling for helping out a fellow workstation fan. (I have a SCSI DVD-ROM in my Compaq prosignia - had to replace the CD-ROM which died from old age, couldn't reliably read discs any more, Acorn Risc PCs fitted with SCSI, and have one external SCSI CD-ROM as a backup). I'm taking the case off my spare CD-ROM right now to check something for you.

I take it you are going to try and fit the drive to the SS5. You will need to get some Sun drive screws with the nylon mounting collars, or stick-on strips of velcro might do the trick for you.

Next up, old or new case? If old, the floppy and 'spare drive' space are the same height, you have to track down a Teac drive, XM-4101 or similar, (my spare CD-ROM is one, so with the cover off I can give specific model details). These drives were popular, Digital (DEC) used them in a whole range of their servers/workstations and Sun chose them because of the physical height of the drive matching readily available HDDs of the time, some found use as portable drives, blah blah, lots produced. They are old double speed drives, so if you find one, you will be doing the owner a favour taking it off their hands for 5 cents! If it's still working, you've gotten lucky. (And they are great for duplicating copy protected discs or data recovery of old (re)write-able CDs that 52x drives have trouble with). Lift computer cover, pop the Sun blank facia out, connect it all up, drop in the drive, should fit perfectly, close case.

You may be better off getting an external drive and be done with it!

The newer case accepts the popular (standard half height) PC drives, so any CD-ROM drive fits them. (I hope you have one of these).

I'm unfamiliar with the SPARC classic, I should use Yahoo/Google and check, but you can take your box apart to check exactly what is needed when you get an offer or see something for sale.
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Re: SCSI CD-ROM drives

by ZL2AOX » Sun Jan 20, 2013 11:22 am

Thanks for the info, I don't have much experience with Sun machines so any tips are welcome.

I'd prefer an internal CD-ROM for the SS5, if possible. Not 100% sure what you mean by old and new cases but I think this is the CD-ROM drive Sun originally offered as an option. I want to install a floppy drive too but the Sun mounting bracket isn't removable and none of my spare (PC) facias will fit. Might be easiest to cut a hole in the removed filler panel.

Not so fussed about the Classic. It's headless and will probably live out the rest of its days as a server.

The other problem I'm having with both these machines is they've lost their configuration data, so currently I can't boot the OS. Looks like I need to replace their NVRAM chips too.
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Re: SCSI CD-ROM drives

by SpidersWeb » Tue Jan 22, 2013 8:55 am

Came across this one on ebay http://www.ebay.com/itm/Toshiba-CD-SCSI ... 460b2a02c0

$45 USD delivered.
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Re: SCSI CD-ROM drives

by ZL2AOX » Tue Jan 22, 2013 3:08 pm

Thanks for spotting that. Expensive with the shipping, but I grabbed it anyway.
And I just realised my SGI O2 is also SCSI, so I could borrow its CD drive too.

Still interested in acquiring more though...
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Re: SCSI CD-ROM drives

by recycled » Tue Jan 22, 2013 5:00 pm

ZL2AOX wrote:I'd prefer an internal CD-ROM for the SS5, if possible. Not 100% sure what you mean by old and new cases

Internal is a very good option in all situations, less clutter to argue over with the missus ;o) And regarding the cases, I'm not sure if it is an old/new situation myself! This is just my way of referring to them.
The pizza box style cases were used right across the board for Sun products And if you have a working system it usually isn't too difficult to track down a dud for a case swap, so you get exactly what you want - or works with your parts!

Anyway, I have found two images that may cloud the issue further, or help to identify the issues you are facing.
https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/7/7d/Sparcstack.jpg is an example of what I'm referring to as the 'old' case, where the floppy drive height is the same as the CD-ROM. (The entire front of that device pops out!)
Next up, http://www.obsolyte.com/sunPICS/sparc20/sparc20_sd.jpg a machine that accepts a standard half height drive (check the 'cutout' in the top casing to accommodate it). I can't recall if just swapping the case top is enough to enable a half height drive to fit.

ZL2AOX wrote:I want to install a floppy drive too

That I can 'help' you with. I have a floppy drive from a SS5, with nylon bushed mounting screws, floppy cable and facia - for the old style case - facia is inch and a quater high, 6 inches wide in the prerequisite Sun grey, floppy drive is just a generic Sony item (MPF520-7). Since you're shelling out big time on the CD-ROM, I can pass it all on for the cost of postage. (if it is the right facia for your case obviously)

ZL2AOX wrote:Still interested in acquiring more though...

Very wise! One of the problems with old CD-ROM drives, for a lot, while they have power applied, the laser is on, and over time the laser becomes weaker - even if you are not reading CDs with it. I know it's possible to replace the laser, but who in their right mind is going to do it today when even DVD drives are being phased out by Blu-Ray! A network with huge online storage has solved a lot of my worries where unreliable removable media/drives have annoyed me, but that's another hassle to deal with if you're right back ant square one!
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Re: SCSI CD-ROM drives

by acsi » Mon Jan 28, 2013 9:01 am

Hi,

Was just hunting for an external SCSI CDROM and spotted this on ebay http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/Sun-SPARCStation-4-5-20-SCSI-CDROM-Drive-Half-Height-540-2500-/190777714414?pt=US_Vintage_Computing_Parts_Accessories&hash=item2c6b3ce6ee

Not sure if it's what your after or not?
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Re: SCSI CD-ROM drives

by Paul » Tue Feb 05, 2013 2:31 pm

Didn't see anyone mention it but don't those early Suns require SCSI CD drives that can be configured for 512 Bytes/sector?

Not as easy to find as just a standard SCSI drive.
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Re: SCSI CD-ROM drives

by ZL2AOX » Fri Feb 08, 2013 12:59 pm

SpidersWeb wrote:Came across this one on ebay...

It has since arrived but is the wrong type - not SCSI at all but ATAPI (IDE) which I can't use :x

recycled wrote:...is an example of what I'm referring to as the 'old' case, where the floppy drive height is the same as the CD-ROM.
.
Yep, that's the case I have. No mention of two different ones in the SS5 service manual though.

recycled wrote:I have a floppy drive from a SS5...

I would gratefully accept, if the offer still stands. I tried to install a Mitsumi floppy drive in the Classic, but for some reason it wouldn't work.

recycled wrote:A network with huge online storage has solved a lot of my worries where unreliable removable media/drives have annoyed me, but that's another hassle to deal with if you're right back ant square one!

My thoughts exactly. That was to be Plan B but now it's looking like Plan A :?

acsi wrote:Was just hunting for an external SCSI CDROM and spotted this on ebay...
Not sure if it's what your after or not?

Thanks, that's exactly what I need. Unfortunately I wasn't quick enough and missed out :(

Paul wrote:Didn't see anyone mention it but don't those early Suns require SCSI CD drives that can be configured for 512 Bytes/sector? Not as easy to find as just a standard SCSI drive.

Quite so. Yes, thanks for mentioning that.
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Re: SCSI CD-ROM drives

by SpidersWeb » Fri Feb 08, 2013 1:28 pm

ZL2AOX wrote:
SpidersWeb wrote:Came across this one on ebay...

It has since arrived but is the wrong type - not SCSI at all but ATAPI (IDE) which I can't use :x

ugh, frustrating :S especially after paying postage.
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Re: SCSI CD-ROM drives

by Radar » Fri Feb 08, 2013 2:48 pm

For external options you could use something like this - Sun 411 case
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Sun-595-1929-Ex ... 27cf1c206b

The SUN 411 enclosures could take a SCSI Tapedrive or CDRom.
The SUN 611 "Unipack" enclosures were also used for CDRoms.

I have a huge pile of SUN gear sitting here in the warehouse that one day soon I'll be looking to dispose of.
Includes things like an Ultra Enterprise 1, Ultra Server 1, Sparcstation 4, Sparcstation 5 and bigger iron... (Sunfire / Ultra Enterprises etc.)
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