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Question unreliable compact flash transfer 

Forum: PCMCIA ATA/IDE Device Issues
Date: 2000, Jul 05
From: Reinoud Lamberts Reinoud


Reading from one of my compact flash cards results in corrupted data.
When the system is cold, it often can't even mount (probably reading a
corrupted boot block: "hdc: unknown partition table"), and when it
mounts it can hardly read a file without corruption.  Once things warm
up, these corruptions only happen occasionally.  It should be noted
that everything else seems to work just fine with the PCMCIA,
including reading another CF card, and the troubling CF card works
flawless in a digicam.

- PCMCIA Card Services 3.1.8
- Linux kernel 2.2.14 (kernel and pcmcia from Red Hat 2.2.14-12 rpm's).
- Toshiba portege 620CT notebook (oldish p100, no PCI I think)
- PCIC logs as "Intel i82365sl B step ISA-to-PCMCIA at port 0x3e0 ofs
  0x00, 2 sockets"
- CF card from 'CUBE memory / dane-elec' which logs as "Hitachi CV
  6.1.2, 30MB w/1kB Cache, CHS=492/4/32";
- Sandisk CF card adapter

The manufacturer boasts on its website that the Hitachi chipset they
use allows really fast transfer; maybe this doesn't mix well with my
old notebook hardware (unreliable signal timing)?

I tried slowing down the access to the card (not knowing what these
options really do) by setting (in /etc/sysconfig/pcmcia on Red Hat
6.0) PCIC_OPTS="cycle_time=n" and CORE_OPTS="io_speed=n" for various
values of n (0..10000), without noticeable result (in reliability,
transfer speed, or log messages).

Any comments greatly appreciated!

- Reinoud

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