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MC with LaCie 500 GB USB drive--inaccurate space remaining??


gmaniax

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Hi All

I recently installed a LaCie 500 GB USB2.0 external drive to my MC. THe drive shows up in the system System design and media section of Composer as LaCie Big Extreme SA. However, I was unable to scan any songs out onto that drive, until I designated it as Network File Storage. Now, it is recognized with scans of audio media and even mapped on the network and that is great for transferring gobs of mp3's. However, when I try and determine the space left... the max was 72GB and now down to 68GB, using my computer's estimates in Windows in My Computer, and network places

If there some type of restriction on the size of exernal drives attached to the MC.. will it only recognize up to 72.5 GB??

Otherwise, what it the best way to determine the amount of space left in the LAcie?

thanks

Gm

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I'm not aware of any restrictions (memory limitations) when connecting an external drive. Just to verify everything, did you hook up the drive to a computer to see if everything is partitioned correctly? It's a shot in the dark, and I'm trying to see where you're at...also, what is the drive formatted as?

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When you hook that drive up to your pc, have you used Disk Management to view your actual paritions that are setup on the new drive? Maybe your remaining space is showing up as Unpartitioned/unformatted space in Windows...Also does the entire drive show up as Fat32 or just 72.GB's?

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If you use the FAT32 formatting tools in Win 98/ME you can format to approx. 127GB. The FAT32 format limit under Windows 2K/XP is approx. 32GB. Windows 2K/XP can read larger partitions, just not format them directly. You can theoretically format drives larger than this (up to 2TB) using 3rd party tools. I guess the size of your parition would be entirely dependant on what software you used to create the partition originally and the cluster size setting.

Don't format the drive as NTFS. I don't think the MC can read that.

Try formatting the drive with the following tools to see if it makes a difference:

http://www.compuapps.com/download/Swissknife/swissknife.htm - SwissKnife. This is a Windows program and so it should recognise the USB hard drive.

http://ubcd.sourceforge.net/ - Ultimate Boot CD. This is a bootable CD. There are numerous programs that you can use on this CD. Some of which may or may not recognise the USB hard drive.

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Thanks for the replies

Yes, I partitioned and formatted the HD in NTFS in Disk Management in Win XP and verified that it had 485 GB free before I plugged it into the MC. I didnt have the option to format it in FAT32 within windows but didnt think it would matter for the purposes of the MC

any other thoughts?

thanks

GM

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Agreed - NTFS is not supported. You'll either have to format it to a format that LINUX likes or break it into partitions that FAT32 likes - or connect it through the network (hang it off of a workstations that doesn't care --- like WinXP).

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update...I formatted the 500 gb LaCie external USB with swisskinfe as after 2 tries, my laptop did recognize it as 465 GB free FAT32 active partition. That was the good news. Then I connected it back to the MC and tried mapping the usb directory as a drive (see screen images) I think I am doing this the correct way, but not sure. Anyway, still seeing total space as 72 GB.

please take a look and let me know what you think

my other option would be to attach the drive to a Mac Mini, which is connected to the network via wireless and wired, but I dont see on my windows network now (it is the the only other computer I have at home right now) and share it..but I am not sure how to do this on a Mac and if I'll be able to see this shared drive as if it was in the windows network (connected to a PC) , copy files to it, etc

thanks all

GM

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The MC is NOT a Windows device -it is a LINUX device and I'd guess it's a limitation of the Linux drivers that you are only seeing 72gb. Try formatting the drive as FAT16 (just as a test - I don't expect you to keep it this way) - I don't remember the limitations to formatting it that way - it might be 72gb. Buy it really sounds as if you're going to be stuck with plugging that drive into some other drive like your computer or MAC so that the MC can see it - I will post this to the techs at C4 and see what they say.

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Fat16 volumes are limited to 2GB read for most O/S's ... and 4GB is the absolute max. size.

so i woouldn't bother wasting too much time with it.

Fat32 volumes can be about 8 terabytes; however, the maximum FAT32 volume size that Windows XP Professional can format is 32 GB. Therefore, you must use NTFS to format volumes larger than 32 GB. However, Windows XP Professional can read and write to larger FAT32 volumes formatted by other operating systems.

if you haven't been here yet ( http://www.ridgecrop.demon.co.uk/index.htm?fat32format.htm ) i think you should now.

HTH

steve

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Steve,

Actually, the swissknife utility , (similar to the utility available at the link you posted) did successfully format the 0.5 TB drive as FAT32. I guess the limitation is with the way the linux OS in the MC is seeing the drive.

It will be interesting to see what the C4 people say. In the interim, Does anyone with Mac OSX experience have any links on sharing USB drives on a window network? How would I need to format the drive in this instance? It has usb 2 , firewire 400 and 800 connectors If I can map the drive so it is viewable on network, I'll just map it as storage with Composer and drag my mp3's to that drive instead

thanks again

GM

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gmaniax I gave it some thought.

Let me see if I understand the situation correctly. You connected a correctly formatted 500GB FAT32 USB drive to the MC. You then mapped that on a WinXP machine. That PC gives you a 72GB size limitation rather than the presumed 485GB. Accurate so far?

Perhaps what you are actually viewing is the 80GB hard drive in the MC? When formatted, an 80GB hard drive typically comes to 72GB.

My feeling is that the MC will correctly handle the 500GB USB drive. Don't worry about NTFS or other formatting techniques. Your current technique should work just fine.

If you are comfortable with Linux, you could always go in there and manually edit the Samba smb.conf file to turn this USB drive into another accessible share. Short of that, your only real solution is to disconnect the 500GB USB drive from the MC and connect it to the computer when you need to transfer files.

If this is not appropriate, then you will have to turn the LaCie into a NAS (Network Attached Storage) device. You could either return the USB LaCie and purchase another LaCie model that has NAS capabilities http://www.lacie.com/products/range.htm?id=10007. Alternatively, you could attach the USB LaCie to a Linksys NSLU2 NAS server. If you are going to purchase the Linksys unit, consider ditching the stock firmware and replacing it with Unslung http://www.nslu2-linux.org/

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Thanks for the insight Samer

Let me see if I understand the situation correctly. You connected a correctly formatted 500GB FAT32 USB drive to the MC. You then mapped that on a WinXP machine. That PC gives you a 72GB size limitation rather than the presumed 485GB. Accurate so far?

YES, THE PC DISPLAYS THE FREE SPACE ON THE MAPPED DRIVE (USB DIRECTORY ON THE MC) AS 72 GB. I DO HAVE A LOT OF MP3'S ON THERE SO THAT EXPLAINS THE CURRENT VALUE OF 67 GB.

I believe that you are correct about what the 72 GB represents. To test this, I copied mp3's to the LaCie USB drive (using composer) and the total amout of space in the mapped USB directory as reported using Win XP, stayed the same.

Which begs the question of WHY?? Why does the mapped USB drive (which I would assume represents the 500 GB drive attached to the USB port) seemingly be reflecting the HD space of the internal drive in the MC?

I delved deeper in the USB directory on the MC and took some screen caps (see below) . If I use the composer to import music, it places it in a different subdirectory than if I just drag files to the mapped USB drive over the network.

Maybe this is the way that Linux is supposed to act, but I am now completely confused. Hooking the drive up to the Linksys NSLU2 is a great idea and I can certainly do that. I just wanted to understand what is happening in the current configuration. I should say that I had first connected a 300 GB Lacie d2 Extreme drive to the MC and returned it in favor of the current 500 GB drive. Maybe that is accounting for the <duplicate> directories -\media\usb\A8042B0E141A\usb\A8042B0E141A

thanks

GM

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The plot thickens!

Based on this, I feel a little better at pointing the finger at Samba. I am fairly sure that based on the mount points within linux, Samba is being tricked into reporting the base directory /media as the final size for all directories underneath it.

To put some evidence behind this, I telneted into my MC after I inserted a 1GB USB thumb drive. Issuing the "df -h" command I got the following results:

~# df -h
Filesystem Size Used Available Use% Mounted on
/dev/hda2 1.9G 120.5M 1.8G 6% /
/dev/hda3 72.5G 4.1G 68.5G 6% /media
/dev/sda1 988.0M 975.6M 12.4M 99% /media/usb/000000000000D3

Those not familiar with df, here are my interpretations:

1) /dev/hda3 is a very large partition on the on-board 80GB hard drive. It is mounted under /media. Music + cover-art will typically reside here. It is this partition that Samba mounts and shares.

2) /dev/sda1 is my USB stick, and it is mounted to the directory /media/usb/000000000000D3. It is correctly identified as 1GB with only a few MB of free space.

So the logical conclusion is that since the USB stick is mounted under the /media directory, Samba will report the space of the root directory (in this case /media) without taking into account any other partition mount-points within that root directory. It treats them in a linear fashion, as if they existed within the same partition as the root. We can clearly see that is not the case. We can see that /media/usb/000000000000D3 is another partition, but Samba is ignoring that.

So is there a resolution to this problem? Without digging deeper into the arcane options of Samba, I cannot say. If everything is working for the time being, and if you can live without the free space indicator, then it might be best to put up with it. If free space is very important (as it would be to me!) then the Linksys (or other NAS device) might provide to be your salvation.

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  • 3 weeks later...

It depends on the NAS device. Some NAS systems hide the underlying filesystem, and show only SMB or NFS file sharing. The higher end linux based NAS drives typically take this route.

The one you bought sounds like it exposes the underlying FS to the network - aka easy with very little processing required. Therefore you are seeing NTFS. Reading NTFS is achieveable within linux, but writing to it is very alpha at the moment. Not something I would trust in the hands of the client. Perhaps you could format it to FAT32? Besides, you will notice a big increase in speed as well. FAT32 tends to be a faster FS compared to NTFS ('cos NTFS has all sorts of security built in - this is both a blessing and curse depending on how you look at it).

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