Is it just me? or does FireWire stink?

Discussion in 'Macintosh Computers' started by crazytom, Sep 15, 2003.

  1. macrumors 6502a


    Jul 23, 2002
    Sorry, I have to rant here, but I've never EVER had so many problems with 'plug and play' Firewire devices in my life!

    I started with one, a cd burner. It added to my system just fine. Then another, a hard drive. It, too was fine. Then I tagged on a scanner. They all worked together well. Lastly, I added an iPod, another hard drive enclosure, and a FW hub and all hell has broken loose. My Mac's telling me that it doesn't recognize the FW HD that I've used for years, it won't scan anymore through FW (fortunately, it has a USB connection that works fine), I have to keep my iPod charging through the wall outlet and NEVER plug it into my machine unless I HAVE to transfer some more music onto it. After a 5 hour boot time (REALLY!!!), I was able to use my new FW enclosure until I did something stupid like shut the computer down....It's absolutely CRAZY! It seems to me that Apple doesn't have a very good handle what it means to be 'hot-swappable' and 'plug and play' for firewire. I've noticed that almost every OS upgrade states 'improved firewire handling'...I think they have a LONG way to go!!!

    OK. I feel better. Now I can unplug everything, resest my PMU and just add things one at a time until it will all magically work together again *fingers crossed*.

    edit: cr*p....wrongly placed post: sb Hardware....sorry... :(
  2. macrumors demi-god


    Jan 11, 2002
    Los Angeles
    How are you connecting your devices to the computer? I know things like scanners and video cameras/decks don't like being daisy-chained, they like being plugged straight into the computer. Maybe you have a bad or poor quality device in the chain? Have you tried adding devices on at a time and/or switching the order in which the devices are connected to see if you can localize the problem?

    What you are experiencing is definetly not normal and hopefully you'll be able to localize and eliminate the problem. I've got friends/associates w/as many, if not more, FW devices that probably get pushed harder than yours and they haven't had any issues AFAIK.

  3. macrumors 6502a


    Aug 5, 2003
    USA, New York
    Seems like you've got yourself some Gremlins running amuck! Perhaps it has something to do with a bad hub. Just a guess. Good luck.

  4. macrumors 603


    Feb 2, 2002
    is the hub powered? I know with an iPod you need a powered hub (tho it's best to daisy-chain through the second port on a HD, i had the same problem here), and some HDs want powered hubs to connect reliably, or so i've been told. I would definitely rearrange the layout of your FW bus, see if that doesn't clear it up.

    Which devices have a second FW port? Not the scanner, or the burner probably, but either of the HDs? Those are your best bets, for some reason daisy-chaining often works better than hubs in conflicts like this.

  5. thread starter macrumors 6502a


    Jul 23, 2002
    Thanks for all of your replies. I feel somewhat better now. I must just be unlucky as well as crazy!!

    I lost my newest FW Mac(s) don't see it anymore ... ??? I'm assuming the FW board in it went bad and will be getting a replacement.

    I'm also going to replace my hub since it doesn't seem to be working anymore (it was a Belkin 6-port powered hub).

    I lost my trackball mouse this week, too (but that's USB and unrelated).

    I did plug my scanner through my (working) FW HD and everything works fine there. But now my FW CD burner isn't working :rolleyes: and Toast won't launch (Dock icon goes up, goes down, nothing). I guess a reboot is in order.

    So, again, thanks for all the responses. I figure that I'll daisy chain my HD's and put the scanner on the end.

    Is there any advice for what I shouldn't do...anything I should avoid?

    Much appreciated!!! :D
  6. macrumors 68000


    Jul 27, 2002
    Use short cords. FireWire tends to phreak out when you start getting into a ton of peripherals with long cords. By long, I mean the standard 1M cord. Try getting shorter cords. Apple sells a 1/2 Meter cord. It's nice.

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