AVS Forum banner

Status
Not open for further replies.
1 - 13 of 13 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
161 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Please take a minute to explain the process to refresh what I already know as it will help me and possibly others.


I currently have two drives in my replaytv 4k unit. Both are Maxtor 5400 rpms. One is an 80 gig, the other a 120 gig.


I never Low Level Formatted either drive and after some time I now notice sync issues and jitters in recordings.


I want to Low Level Format Each Drive and start all over. A clean setup.


I am familiar with RTVPatch and will be using the Large Clusters Version.


This is what I need help with though:


1 ] How exactly do I Low Level Format Both of my Maxtor Drives and should I do it once or twice.


2 ] Once they are formatted, How do I get the RTV4k Software on the drive?


3 ] Using RTVPatch (Large CLusters Version) is there anything special I need to know when using this program to allow for large clusters?


4 ] Which Drive should I make the Master and which the slave? I'm assuming the Larger to be the Master... but i dont think that even matters.



Thank You
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
388 Posts
First of all, make sure that you have a good backup image of your RTV4K software.


Go to the Maxtor Site and download PowerMax V3.03. This is the program you will use to low-level format the drives. Run the Low-Level Format and the Drive certification. This will take a long time for each drive.


Then you just run RTVPatch V2.1 (you don't need large clusters on the RTV4K) just as before and you're home free.


Try our DIY page for links to the software you need.
DIY Page


I usually prefer to put the larger drive as the master. Also a good rule of thumb is to use the newer drive as the master. It will see the most activity and the newer drive buys you longer reliability.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
161 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
First of all, make sure that you have a good backup image of your RTV4K software.


Why do I need the backup of the software? Is the backup image required for me to run the replaytv after formatting. I thought TRVPatch sets it all up with the software.


-------------------------------------------------



Then you just run RTVPatch V2.1 (you don't need large clusters on the RTV4K) just as before and you're home free.


Why don't I need large clusters? I thought I did as from what I read here it states generally, If you have a large program guide (600+stations) and a lot of replay channels (which both I qualify for) formatting with large clusters would help with the perfomance.


Is this true?


-------------------------------------------------------------------
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,448 Posts
You want a backup because you always want a backup when doing something that might potentially mess up a $1000 device.


You don't need large clusters because the 4000s have significantly more memory than pervious models. It shouldn't hurt (but you might be the first to try it! see above, about backups), but the benefits aren't as large as on older models.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
161 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
so let me get this straight...


i run rtvpatch and use it to make an image file


then i low level format both drives, then use rtvpatch again to set the drives up (not the large clusters version)


then im done.


Is this correct?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
388 Posts
Correct. Restore and patch the master drive first, then create the dual drive system.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
148 Posts
I heard it is not advisable to do low-level formats. Maybe just a regular format to wipe the file system. But my low-level format for a Maxtor 120GB took like 10hrs. I think low-level formats are only like last-resort options, from what i've heard.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,584 Posts
Quote:
Originally posted by JDC
I heard it is not advisable to do low-level formats. Maybe just a regular format to wipe the file system. But my low-level format for a Maxtor 120GB took like 10hrs. I think low-level formats are only like last-resort options, from what i've heard.
I think what you are referring to is a post in a thread I started to the effect that low level formatting a 160gb drive (beyond the 137gb limit) can (depending on your setup and the version of Powermax you are using) be a bit tricky. Someone said in that thread that you'd be better off not having low levelled to begin with then doing it wrong. And in any event the issues would not apply to a 120gb hd.


I believe the general consensus remains that completing a low level format is a good idea in order to map out bad sectors so that your upgraded replay won't hit 'skips' from time to time. Yes, it takes around 9 hours for a 160 gb (probably around 7 hours for a 120gb), but people think it makes sense to do it. But if you don't do it, it's not hte end of the world either.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
388 Posts
The problem with low level formats is basically with 160GB drives. If you low level format it with a system that can only recognize 137GB, you might run into problems, even if you are planning on using the drive in a 137GB capacity like a legacy ReplayTV. What I typically do to prep these drives is to low level format them with Powermax V3.03 using an ATA133 controller. That way, every sector is low level formatted correctly. I then us RTVPatch 2.1 to prep it as a 137GB drive. I found that mismatching controller and drive while doing a low level format sometimes leads to problems with some sectors.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
161 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I am formatting my 120gig maxtor 5400rpm drive. i started at 1:30 pm and it is now 9:30 pm.. and its only half way complete. this is on a 1.2 gig athlons with 256 DDR ram.


I also started a formatting process on a different computer (700mhz, 128 ram) at 1:30 pm on a 80 gig maxtor 5400 rpm and it was completed at 8:00 pm with certification.


I dont get it! The 120 gig should be either done or almost done. Its only half done.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
640 Posts
>I dont get it! The 120 gig should be either done or almost done. Its only half done.


The time needed for the low level format has much more to do with the drive size and configuration, then the CPU speed. It's a very physical activity, as opposed to a CPU intensive activity.


In Short, a 60 Gb drive on a very fast PC will still take longer to LL format then a 40 Gb, even on a slower PC>
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
388 Posts
You have to look at a couple of factors when comparing the LL format speed. First of all, not all motherboard IDE controllers are the same. You also have to look at what else is connected to the IDE bus. You have to determine if the motherboard supports and ATA66/100/133 controller. Typically these are on the primary IDE. The secondary is typically a generic IDE controller. There are multiple reasons why some people can format their drives in a few hours and some have to wait 24+. Luckily, you only need to do it once, ours run 24x7.


On the 7 computers that I use for prepping drives, 3 are VERY fast, 2 are average, and 2 really lag behind. I have different CPUs ranging from PIII-600 to PIII-1GHz and the speeds don't correlate to CPU speed. In fact, the 600 is the fastest one of the 7. I format the largest drives on the fastest one and the smallest ones on the slowest.
 
1 - 13 of 13 Posts
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top