LC/Performa Hard Drive Issues

Discussion in 'Apple Collectors' started by 1slickvdc, Oct 12, 2014.

  1. 1slickvdc macrumors newbie

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    #1
    Just got an old Performa 450 / LC III working again. Now, strangely, it seems that once the machines fires up, the hard drive will spin up, doesn't sound like it's doing it's calibration, but can't tell, and then after a few seconds it will spin back down and never get recognized by the time the system is booted off the floppy.

    Do I have a dead drive or could it be something else?
     
  2. havokalien macrumors 6502a

    havokalien

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    #2
    depends

    First of all if the capacitors on the motherboard have not been replaced you should be all over making that happen. for about 10 dollars and some time you can get it all cleaned up and re capped unless you pay for someone else to do it.

    That being said the scsi drives are twenty years old now. Its most likely dead if it goes to floppy.

    ----------

    Or the system has been erased.
     
  3. 1slickvdc thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #3
    Yeah, I just finished the repairs, replaced all caps and CMOS battery. I also "initialized" the drive attempting to restore it to factory state since it did boot to Sys 7.5.3 at first... Then it died... The fact the drive doesn't do the typical clunky/clicky noises when it first fires up seems suspect. The spin-down is also really weird.
     
  4. havokalien macrumors 6502a

    havokalien

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    #4
    Ya

    If you do a search on 68kmla you will find all sorts of links to using newer server scsi drives with an adapter or bay bought cards that can use a CF to replace old and dying drives.

    I have a box of old drives to keep my macs up, external scsi zips will keep me going into the next decade.
     
  5. 1slickvdc thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #5
    I have 50+ 100MB ZIP disks laying around. I can use an external removable as a boot device?
     
  6. havokalien macrumors 6502a

    havokalien

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    #6
    Yes

    Yes if it has the extension in the system folder on the disk should be good to go. If you have a third party hard drive utility you can even format it as a hard drive.

    Again this is all rehashed info but now you know it can be done. Just remember the Zip will be slow like a floppy in comparison to a hard disk.
     
  7. 1slickvdc thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #7
    Could you possibly link me to a how-to guide on using ZIP as a primary disk? And you're saying I'd still have to have a floppy boot disk?

    I've also got a CD-ROM drive... not sure if I can make use of that or not...

    Also, where be these SCSI to whatever adapters and what types of other disks/drives can be used?
     
  8. havokalien macrumors 6502a

    havokalien

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    #8
    scsi to CF

    For the CF cards look up SCSI to CF

    For the Scsi to Scsi server drives look up 50 to 68 pin adapter, then go to any hardware recycler and pick out some old scsi server drives.

    The how to your going just to have to search that as its a years old thread.

    I am a clod when I do it as I have floppies and an old zip disk with a universal install on it when I get stuck like you are. I read how to years ago and I have to recreate the wheel when I get in your position.


    I know the information is there. i just don't reference it.
     
  9. 1slickvdc thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #9
    Alright, figured I'd have to do it that way, but I'm just lazy as hell and wanted an easy way to come back to it for reference.
     
  10. 1slickvdc thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #10
    Are internal and external SCSI run off the same controller (ie is it the same damn thing, just one connector is on the outside and one on the inside?)
     
  11. havokalien macrumors 6502a

    havokalien

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    #11
    Yes

    Yes. Just remember you must terminate the end of each bus so if you pull the internal drive out that cable must be terminated, i think, pretty sure. Thats why they called this "scsi" magic.
     
  12. 1slickvdc thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #12
    I thought SCSI only needed to be terminated at the end of the chain. If that's the case, how does the internal drive operate whether or not there's external bits like CDROM connected?
     
  13. MacTech68 macrumors 68000

    MacTech68

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    #13
  14. 1slickvdc thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #14
    Looks quite like mine, I've got the 120MB Quantum. Later today I'll set up the clean environment (I have an area I use as a film darkroom/lab, needs to be clean also) and see if I can't get that tab unlocked.
     
  15. 1slickvdc thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #15
    Dafuk?

    Okay, got the drive apart and ran it open to see what was up. The locking arm opens appropriately, but the heads don't move. Well, that is, unless "properly motivated" with external force. I've got a video of it, and I'll link to that here.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_o-nCS0oEuc
     
  16. MacTech68 macrumors 68000

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    #16
    You'll find it takes very little force to move it. I've never discovered exactly WHY it doesn't move with the airflow, but I suspect the pin it sits on needs cleaning.
     
  17. 1slickvdc thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #17
    I think we posted at the same time, so *bump*
     
  18. MacTech68 macrumors 68000

    MacTech68

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    #18
    Ok. Very odd. I'm not certain, but here are a few things.

    The head park does swing away (black arm in your drive) as you observed.

    With the heads not moving from the park position, could be poor distribution of disk lubricant. I recall an even earlier 40MB half-height 3.5" Quantum HD needed a new ROM to prevent the drive from un-evenly distributing platter lubricant due to the heads "dwelling" in a certain radius.

    All I can suggest is getting a drive exerciser that will randomly move the heads around whilst keeping the drive abnormally warm. Risky, and I'm NOT guaranteeing the outcome - which could be to make the drive completely toast. IIRC Hard Disk Tool Kit (non-OEM version) had an excellent random read/write test that I'd use to test drives with over 48Hrs. It would lock out bad blocks if it found any (and often did).

    Finally, I would test the drive on a different power source, ie the 4 pin 12volt & 5volt supply, just in case. The problem MIGHT become intermittent, if it isn't already. Does the drive work successfully if you give it the 'nudge' ?

    Nice video - thanks for that! :)

    EDIT:
    Yes, I think we did! :)
     
  19. 1slickvdc, Oct 13, 2014
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2014

    1slickvdc thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #19
    How is some bit of software going to help if the drive can't stay on long enough to be recognized by the (BIOS?) and therefore unable to be used?

    The problem happens just as much, read: always, on my 450W bench supply.

    Is there any way to encourage the head to sit still in a different spot or something so that it can move properly?

    Yeah, having two dexterous hands and an LG G3 with 4k video definitely helped.
     
  20. MacTech68 macrumors 68000

    MacTech68

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    #20
    Ok, If you get the drive going (as you did in the video) - then carefully place the top cover onto it with two screws in opposite corners, then see if it boots OR if you can install a system onto it. Yes, this means NOT turning it off once you get it to calibrate (as it did in the video), OR if it does spin down due to a reboot, you need to nudge it again.

    The idea with the exerciser is that any lubricant on the head armature pivot point or on the disk platters is JUST enough over the gram-force the magnetic head actuator can provide. If we exercise the drive under warm conditions, it might be enough to displace/re-distribute the marginally hardened lubricant.

    When these drives would do this it was usually the first cold day of the onset of winter. At that point the drives were about maybe 8 to 10 years old. That drive is now MUCH older than that.

    Back then, we had plenty of alternatives to replace SCSI drives, so it wasn't something we delved too deeply into, but we believed we'd worked out WHY it happens. Fast forward to today, and drives are no longer cheap or available new, so I'm simply making an educated guess as to what might work.

    I'm quite happy for you to search out a replacement drive, and that's what we used to do, but times have changed. The problem was fairly common on these quantums.

    The next test will be to see if the drive functions (without powering off or rebooting) after giving it a nudge to get going. In my experience, once they calibrated, they'd work fine until power was removed.

    EDIT: oh, and to answer your question (whoops), there isn't really any safe place for the heads to "sit" when the drive isn't running, other than where the head lock places them (the 'landing zone'). :(
     
  21. 1slickvdc thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #21
    Anything that came with a Macintosh system disks, disk tools, etc. that could work the hell out of the drive to try to redistribute the lube?

    It recognizes the hard drive when "motivated" to start, and now I'm trying to install System 7.5.3 from the disks.
     
  22. MacTech68 macrumors 68000

    MacTech68

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    #22
    Sadly, nothing out-of-the-box.

    It's been a while (and FWB, the makers of Hard Disk Toolkit went out of business). I'll have a look at what I can find in my library.

    In all seriousness, if you have the spare $$$ to spend on a CompactFlash card and SCSI converter board, go for it. I can't guarantee my theory is right, and I CERTAINLY DON'T want to waste anybody's time - sincerely. :)

    But, if you're like me and love discovering new things, I'm happy to assist you to waste your time. ;)
     
  23. 1slickvdc thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #23
    Hey, I'm a college student. I'm broke but have all the time in the world. Let's get to ******** things up lol... no in all seriousness, having a project that will now only get things working or break something trying; but learn how it works in the middle, is absolutely perfect.

    Timewasting ONWARD!
     
  24. 1slickvdc thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #24
    Every damn time, even before the drive quit on me. Did this.
     

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  25. MacTech68 macrumors 68000

    MacTech68

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    #25
    Ahhh - shoot. I hate that error. Informative, isn't it? :mad:

    Is there anything already on the drive? Sometimes that error occurs because it finds something it wasn't expecting, like a system folder that already exists but has some kind of problem/incompatibility.

    The Mac will see a folder as a system folder if the folder contains a file called "Finder" and a file called "System" (of the right file types). The folder doesn't even NEED to be named "System Folder".
     

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