- Jan 28, 2020
Thanks for that outstandkng reply!Interesting thread. I'm not that old but apparently this one is going to make me feel that way.
So first and foremost, you're liking using Windows 95 OSR2 version C, if it has a copyright of 1998. Basically OSR2 was the first version of Windows with USB support.
What you need to know is that Windows 95 has a max drive limit of 32GB when formatted with FAT32.
The reason for that jumper that says >32GB is so that you can operate the drive at full capacity, or operate the drive in compatibility mode by setting it to only display <32GB. In order for it to work with Windows 95, you want to limit the drive size to 32GB. Keep in mind an average HDD size was Windows 95 was released was around 400MB, and even 20GB HDDs we're really a thing most people had until the turn of the century.
The jumpers in either picture I saw are not set correctly at all. What you really want to do is just set the Hard drive to master, but also set it so that the drive is limited to <32GB.
Let me explain the settings first, then I'll explain where you should be putting jumpers on the drive.
The CS, SL, MA stands for:
In that order. Master means it's the primary drive on the chain, slave means it's the secondary drive on the chain. Cable Select is technically an option that should autodetect which one of the two positions on the chain it's in, and set it accordingly. This setting was generally garbage and most people avoided using it because it can be inconsistent. So that said the "master" position on the cable is always the very end of the cable, and the slave is the one in the middle. Technically you can flip the cable either direction, but they were made so that the longer distance between connectors was supposed to be between the motherboard and the slave. The Red stripe is to indicate which side is Pin 1.
So the simplest method it to just plug the HDD into the end port on the cable, and set it for Master. But in order to understand the diagram, you need to look at the picture. The thing on the left of the picture is supposed to represent the molex connector for power, and the thing on the right is the IDE cable. So when setting your jumpers you need to flip the drive upside down in order to match the picture in the middle. Some drives used to be nice and actually have CS, SL, MA engraved on the bottom, but that's probably not the case on your drive.
View attachment 219338
Notice how I flipped the drive upside down so it matches the label? The column you want to focus on is the one in green. The thing I'm not entirely sure on is the descriptions of capacities. The first of the 3 seems like it would just be normal operation for the drive, but it's possible it did have that other jumper off to the side for a larger drive like this one. The center one would be the correct option for using in a newer pc, but in your case you want to limit drive capacity. I THINK that the 3rd option is what would do that, take a >32GB drive and cap it at 32GB. 95 won't handle more than this, so you don't want to go over 32GB. The easiest way to tell you have it right is plug it into a newer pc, and then see if it's limited in size.
Old Windows was also notoriously bad at formatting anything that already had data on it, and it would not like to do it if it couldn't recognize the partition on it. (Like EXT3 or NTFS) What you should do is completely remove all partitions from the drive on another pc, so the drive is blank. Then boot with your floppy disk, and partition and format the drive as FAT32.
The screen you're seeing about not reading C is fairly common when you attempt to format the disk with other utilities. Even Windows XP can sometimes make incompatible drives that Windows 95 couldn't read. (XP can format up to 137GB in FAT32 without service packs, I think you can hit the 2TB FAT32 limit otherwise) If a boot disk and fdisk doesn't work, then something probably isn't configured correctly. You need to fdisk, create 1 primary partition, set the partition as active, then run a format C: so the drive is actually formatted.
The funny thing about this thread is everyone's nostalga about this stuff. It sounds cool and it would have been neat to keep the stuff laying around, right up until you remember that Windows 95 generally doesn't boot without a boot disk, and a period correct PC (Not a Pentium 2) definitely wasn't booting off a CD. Be glad the system you have has auto detect, because most 486 / 33 mhz machines you'd have to set the CHS (Cylinders, Heads, Sectors) manually in the bios from the data that was on the label. (If you were lucky for it to have that. Otherwise you'd have to try to hunt down that information or stick the drive into another pc that could detect it for you) Back in the 286 days that 40 pin cable wasn't keyed, striped, or had the missing pin blocked out. It was easy to plug the cable in wrong because you didn't know which direction it should be on the drive. I had to drill out that block from newer cables to use on older drives that still had all 40 pins.
The other note about cables, I think you have a genuine 40 pin / wire cable. That meant a maximum of ATA/33 bus interface, or 33MBps. I don't believe that plugging a CD rom drive into that same cable would have an affect on your hard drive, because both can probably operate at the ATA/33 spec. Where you ran into issues was using ATA/66, 100, or 133. You needed both an 80 wire cable and all devices on the chain had to run at the same top speed in order for it to operate at that speed. So an ATA/33 CD Rom drive chained to an ATA/100 HDD would mean the HDD would operate at ATA/33. On your board it's likely all a moot point because the board interface is probably only ATA/33.
One side note, I wouldn't necessarily assume the disk has bad sectors, but because it's >32GB there might be weird issues going on with it's ability to access sectors. I'd probably try limiting the disk first and see if that makes those issues go away. If it works as is great, but if you're seeing errors it might be a compatibility issue and not necessarily an issue on the drive.
i changed the jumpers, Run format and ;
The number whent down but is still odd looking to me.
Tomorow iam going to try the win95 disk in another pc mabye the disk isnt readable. 4 CD drives and they all come up error.
iam gonna make a fresh boot disk
Try another known working harddrive
Probably going to cry myself to sleep
Thanks for the help everybody!