Compact Flash card initialization
For work with hard disks or Flash storage cards they must be first
initialized - partitioned, formatted. Here I will give instructions and
software for initialazing CF cards for work with CF_LBA
ROM . LBA has benefit that no disk geometry setting, so
with one ROM you will be able to work with many different CF cards.
I made simple programm for partitioning CF card to 36 areas, A-Z and
0-9. Files go in areas by begin letter.
In programm is predefined how many promile of disk space goes for each
area. Ratios are defined by experience - there is much more game name
beginning with S than with Q, for instance. It may be corrected, but
not from programm. Programm will not work good with very small disks -
8 or 16 MB. It may produce zero lenght areas. Such disks should be
initialized 'manually', there is source code on site. Areas 0-9 are
intended for work, temporary files.
The programm, name may be Whole Disk Init, in TAP and Z80 format: WDINIT . To make start easier, I
prepared same programm on hdf disk image INITME
- put image on CF card
with hdfgrab (from hdfutils - get it on RamSoft site). It requires
CF-IDE adapter and DOS.
For most of people better way is USB
card reader and Windows XP. In same archive is file 'initme.raw', what is headerless version.
Programm Drive Image can write sectors to
physical disks under Windows XP. It works with USB and other
drives, you may attach CF card via card reader or CF-IDE adapter. Use it
verry carefully, it may destroy whole hard disk datas. Select attached drive, usually USB is
last, and marked as removable. Never select Drv. 0 - it is your main
hard drive with
Windows! Click 'Write to drive' button. Select file initme.raw, from above link,
and programm will write it to attached drive, after warning. It will
report about data amount written: With it,
media is ready for run init on Speccy.
Btw. work in Windows XP is much-much faster than work with hdfutils in
Drim works with USB card readers, PEN drives, IDE hard disks and
probably with SCSI ones (not tested). I cloned
whole 128MB CF card to image file in 54 seconds. Must have admin rights
to read/write on drives in XP. Drim works not in Win 98/Me.
Then attach CF card to Speccy via IF, enter: CLEAR 29999 |
| RUN . Disk will be initialized in less than minute.
There is more comfortable initalization on PC with new version of Drive
Image: Usage of Drimg.
It can init new BigSector formats too.
Limitations of filesystems: max size of 1 area is 32 MB (because of 16
bit sector addressing - similar as by old DOS). With new BigSector ROM it is
64 MB. It means that 32 MB x 64 = 1.1 GB may be filled with old FS, and 2.2 with
Keep in mind that on 128 MB can put 3000-4000 programs.
Image file with couple hundred good classic 48K games and some utils:
StartPack - 6 MB rar archive,