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Macnut9765's picture
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Joined: 2011 Nov 24
Good Format Utilities Or assistance

Trying to find a good disk format utility for G4 IDE drive. It's a non apple drive and larger than 127gig. Apple disk utility will format it but no matter what I try I can't get an OS to install on it. Trying to put OS9 on it with no success. I tried multiple partitions, single drive and even tried to format it on a PC. It's a brand new drive and works perfectly in a PC. It came with no software. I formatted it MACOS Extended. There is something about it the mac isn't liking and I can't figure out what it is. It's jumpered as a Master drive, tried as slave but pretty much same result. If anyone could either offer a different format tool that sees IDE drives for 0S9 that would be helpful. Everything I have is for SCSI. Also, I tried doing all this on OSX and even used OSX Disk warrior and I got nowhere fast with that. I really want 3 partitions, one OSX, one OS9 and the other empty. Any help is appreciated! Thank you in advance

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xeter's picture
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Joined: 2011 Jan 6

Drive Setup 2.1 is the last OS9 Apple utility, tried that?

xeter's picture
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Joined: 2011 Jan 6

Also OS 9 partitions can't be larger than about 199 GB, or the OS can't read them. You can have a large number of partitions on 9 (up to several TB) but each partition must be under 200 GB.

Protocol 7's picture
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Joined: 2010 Aug 7

IIRC you needed a minimum Mac OS ROM version to have large drive support.

24bit's picture
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Joined: 2010 Nov 19

Silverlining Lite was a good one back in the days.
Here is Pro: http://macintoshgarden.org/apps/lacie-silverlining-pro

Macnut9765's picture
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Joined: 2011 Nov 24

The drive is a 320Gig drive but it doesn't recognize over 127gig of it. I don't think there is anything I can do to have it see the rest of it even partitioning it. However, what it does see are the 3 partitions I made which are only 127 divided by 3, around 45gig or so each. Anyway, Apples utility will create and format those partitions but when I go to use them or put a system folder on any of them I get errors every time. Funny thing is if I partition it on the PC it sees the entire drive so I partitioned it on that making 4 partitions for 320 divided by four. Well under the limits, when I put it back in the Mac it shows it how I had it partitioned on the Mac, completely ignoring how it was partitioned on the PC. I also don't get the errors on the PC. I don't understand how it can hold two different partition maps? I figured at the least I would get the "This is not a Macintosh disk, Initialize" dialog. Nope. I even tried hooking it to a Sonnet Tempo 133 card and that changed nothing. Lastly, when I get the errors I tried running First Aid and Norton Disk Doctor and it says ERROR and the disk dissapears from the desktop. I'm convinced if I find the right utility that I can get it to work. I have another G4 with a huge drive and it works perfectly but I did that years ago and can't remember how I got it to work. I'll try Silverlining, Hopefully it sees IDE drives and not only looks for SCSI like my other utils. Thank you guys for your quick responses!

24bit's picture
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Joined: 2010 Nov 19

I think you already made a significant point. The drive holds various partition tables and MacOS is not aware what to do with the disk. As you have a PC you might try a low level format with the Gnome Partition Editor Live CD http://gparted.sourceforge.net/livecd.php . I fixed some disk related problems with that one over the years. GParted will offer you the option to create a new partition table too. Might be worth a thought. After deleting all rubbish from your disk, I would set out again with the disk software of your choice. I vote for Lido or Silverlining as you may know. Of course GParted will do that too, just create three partitions that the Mac can read. In doubt choose FAT32 and tell us how you were doing - I must admit I never had a 320GB with OS9, but I have some spare disks and one always learns Smile

Edit: The LaCie manual says Silverlining does handle IDE. I know this is true for Light, so I cant imagine why Pro should miss that feature.

SwedeBear's picture
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Joined: 2009 Apr 18

I think you need something like the 'SpeedTools ATA HiCap' from InTech, in which's manual you can read

If you plan to boot your machine natively into both MacOS 9 and X, you will need to partition the drive under MacOS 9 using Intech’s Hard Disk SpeedTools (a.k.a. HDST, sold seperately) product which supports extended capacity drives under MacOS 9.

Latest version of 'Hard Disk Speed Tools' running on OS 9 is 3.6 and claims to handle HDs bigger than 128GB under OS 9.2.2 according to InTech's Homepage.

Protocol 7's picture
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Joined: 2010 Aug 7

Macintosh: Using 128 GB or Larger ATA Hard Drives

And another thread here. Mac OS ROM 9.5.1 (or higher, presumably) allows 9.2.2 to handle large drives.

bertyboy's picture
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Joined: 2009 Jun 14

All partially correct.

  • The G4 model must support 48 bit LBA to be able to access over the 127GB limit.
  • Models with this are the MDD, QuickSilver 2002 and some iMac G4's from the same era.
  • The Mac also requires formatting with Drive Setup that shipped with Mac OSX 10.2 or later
  • This limit applies ONLY to drives attached to the internal IDE connectors
  • You can circumvent this with a software solution, mentioned above
  • You can also cicumvent this by using the Acard or similar Mac compatible ATA 100/133 PCI card - I have one of these in one of my Digital Audio G4's (an AEC-6280M). Or you can get a PCI SATA card for the same money, or a SCSI card
  • Mac OS 9 can use drives and volumes of any size, my MDD boots into OS9 and can access the multiple 500GB drives installed
  • But Mac OS 9 may not BOOT from a VOLUME larger than 192GB - a "200GB" drive formats to 187GB so it's fine - this limit applies whether the drive is internal IDE, PCI IDE, SCSI, whatever
  • You could partition a larger drive into a partition of 192GB or less, and other partitions, and install OS 9 in the first partition, say. But if your Mac doesn't have 48 bit LBA you still can't use drives larger than 128GB