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80GB: 07/26/1999-i430VX,ALi512-2A59GI3AC-01

Posted: Thu Sep 05, 2002 11:48 am
by R2D2

I tried to attach a 80GB Maxtor drive to a mainboard from iWill
(iWill P55TV 10130B 26. Juli 1999, BIOS: Award Modular v4.51PG) and run into the known 32GB bug. With capacity reduction the drive is usable with 32GB. Otherwise the automatic drive recognition stops during the boot sequence. I bought a LBA Enhancer card, changed the EPROM to a 16kByte version and run it from the bootprom socket of a NIC (DE-220). Now the drive was full recognized and all runs well - except the disastrous drive speed. Five times lower as before! I tried all I could (shadowing ...) but no better results.
Because I have the latest BIOS from iWill and there will be no newer update available I would like to know if a BIOS upgrade is possible. Or - if there is something I have not found - a way to speed up the LBA Enhancer BIOS.

Thanks in advance

Posted: Thu Sep 05, 2002 2:58 pm
by ajzchips
Sent you the patched BIOS by email. Try it but without LBA enhancer.

Posted: Fri Sep 06, 2002 11:05 am
by R2D2
I received the BIOS, flashed it and ... it runs very fine and I'm happy. Every trouble I have had is perfectly solved!

Many thanks to >ajzchips< and his great help.

Only one more question: What is the reason, that the BIOS overlay patch with the Enhancer card is running so slow. I thought that the BIOS subroutine is cached in the ram and only the IRQ-vector is changed to the new location. So, if the assembler code is programment sufficiently there should be no speed difference to the original code.

Posted: Fri Sep 06, 2002 7:17 pm
by Rainbow
Maybe the ROM is not shadowed - and ROMs are VERY slow comparing to RAM. Another problem is that Windows uses its own driver to access HDDs and if it discovers some unknown INT13 driver, it will not load its driver and use MS-DOS compatibility mode which requires switching from Protected to Real mode and calling the routine on each disk access.