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98SE

What a single 8TB MBR Hard Disk Drive Looks like in Windows XP

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1 hour ago, Damnation said:

So if you connect an 8tb drive via USB in XP it will work?

If it has the correct adapter technology then yes it works.

In theory D: to Z: gives you 23 possible drives connected externally via USB ports.

If I connected all my 8TB drives and had 23 USB ports to plug them in simultaneously then

8TB x 23 = 184TB but in actuality you will get approximately 167.21TB due to partitioning capacity loss.

 

In the not too distant future,

18TB x 23 = 414TB might be possible which will actually be around 376.2225TB.

However if 4KB sector drive limits cannot be broken soon then the current max would be 17.6TB x 23 = 404.80TB and the guaranteed max usable capacity should be around 367.862TB.

 

However with a working GPT Loader for 2000/XP we can see pure GPT drives of 32TB+  x 23 = 736TB and higher.:o

The jump to 64TB x 23 = 1472TB breaking the first PB barrier on one computer with ease. :thumbup

 

Since it is all hardware based this 8TB MBR external USB drive should also work in Windows 2000 with SP3 for LBA48 support.

No software patches or drivers are necessary seeing this 8TB MBR drive in 2003, Vista, Windows 7-8.X, and Windows 10.

http://www.datarecovery.com.sg/data_recovery/large_disk_size_120gb_barrier_for_windows.htm

:w00t:

 

 

 

 

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3 hours ago, 98SE said:

If it has the correct adapter technology then yes it works.

Since this is the ONLY relevant piece of info (and it is a detail missing in the original post) I will state it.

Most (if not all) USB enclosures designed for larger than 2 Tb hard disks use an internal translation of sector size, exposing to the OS physical sectors of 4 Kbytes.

This simply means that the infamous 2.2 Tb limit (given by (2^32-1)*512=  2,199,023,255,040) gets instantly shifted to 8 times (4096/512) that value, i.e.  (2^32-1)*4096= 17,592,186,040,320).

Since the sector size exposed is 4 Kb (and not the "normal" 512 bytes) the disk won't be normally bootable.

Nothing really new.

A couple 2012 threads:

http://www.msfn.org/board/topic/157117-running-3tb-drive-on-xp-over-usb-issue/

http://www.msfn.org/board/topic/158361-confirmed-3tb-hdd-usb-drive-on-winxp-32bit/

only a nice confirmation with a 8 Tb disk drive. 

jaclaz

 

Edited by jaclaz

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3 hours ago, jaclaz said:

Most (if not all) USB enclosures designed for larger than 2 Tb hard disks use an internal translation of sector size, exposing to the OS physical sectors of 4 Kbytes.

Actually even 2TB USB enclosures had it.  There was a 1TB model that I haven't tested which might also work.

Quote

A couple 2012 threads:

Original test done was in 2014 when 8TB drives were first available.

Quote

Since the sector size exposed is 4 Kb (and not the "normal" 512 bytes) the disk won't be normally bootable.

It remains to be seen.  I haven't performed such tests yet.  But would it blow your mind if I could make it bootable?

Perhaps some DOS and Windows tools you recommend to verify the functionality is identical or at least document it.

 

 

Edited by 98SE

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27 minutes ago, 98SE said:

Actually even 2TB USB enclosures had it.  There was a 1TB model that I haven't tested which might also work.

Yep, we had some experience with one of those on a 1 Tb drive, JFYI:

http://www.msfn.org/board/topic/173642-mkprilog-batch-to-access-a-same-disk-under-two-different-interfaces/

http://www.msfn.org/board/topic/173265-formatting-an-external-drive-using-different-interfaces/

 

The interesting part in that was that the particular enclosure had both eSATA (untranslated, i.e. 512 bytes/sector) and USB (translated to 4 Kb/sector) connections.

 

22 minutes ago, 98SE said:

But would it blow your mind if I could make it bootable?

 

Not actually "blow my mind" (surprisingly very few things may have this effect on my mind) but surely I would be surprised, since you do not appear to have (yet) the kind of knowledge (or experience) related to booting (particularly about booting a NT system, and booting it from USB).

 

22 minutes ago, 98SE said:

Perhaps some DOS and Windows tools you recommend to verify the functionality is identical or at least document it.

I am not sure to understand what you mean. 

Which functionality?

Identical to what?

Or document what?

jaclaz

 

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1 hour ago, jaclaz said:

Not actually "blow my mind" (surprisingly very few things may have this effect on my mind) but surely I would be surprised, since you do not appear to have (yet) the kind of knowledge (or experience) related to booting (particularly about booting a NT system, and booting it from USB).

I haven't tried it yet.  Note: I'm trying to keep it manufacturer untouched fresh and unused before doing any experiments that will tamper the drive data.

So this is the best time to gather that info and preserve it by mapping the drive before I have to actually use the drive myself for data storage.

Also you don't have to boot to NT to call it bootable.  98SE DOS bootable is sufficient proof of it being a bootable drive.  XP wasn't meant to be a USB bootable OS but 98SE is capable.  A possible test could be attempted later after forensics are done.  You do realize that my previous USB SSD tests still boots to the Windows Boot Menu via USB but the part where it tries loading into the NT OS after being selected which is the problem.

Quote

 

I am not sure to understand what you mean. 

Which functionality?

Identical to what?

Or document what?

 

The test done in 2012 you referenced you did on a similar USB drive.

And what became of it?  Did you have the engineering knowledge to replicate the adapter yourself or improve it?

Or find a way to dump the controller chip software.

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1 hour ago, 98SE said:

Also you don't have to boot to NT to call it bootable.  98SE DOS bootable is sufficient proof of it being a bootable drive.  XP wasn't meant to be a USB bootable OS but 98SE is capable.  A possible test could be attempted later after forensics are done.  You do realize that my previous USB SSD tests still boots to the Windows Boot Menu via USB but the part where it tries loading into the NT OS after being selected which is the problem.

Well, thank you, but I decide myself what I will call bootable.

Of course any real mode Operating System will be easier to boot than any OS with protected mode/HAL, and RLoew already reported that he can boot DOS/9x from 4k drives, though some modification to kernel files were needed.

What you still seemingly miss is that whatever your tests are, all the rest of the world has already found ways to boot 2K and later NT based OS's from a USB device (with "normal" 512 bytes sectors), as I tried telling you, the fact that you are stuck on a - wait - let's see if my crystal ball is still tuned - 0x0000007b STOP ERROR, is not in any way "news" and it is a problem solved since 10 years or more.

Until you will have had the time to get in sync with these last 10 years of developments, and fully understand how it works (or can work) allow me to doubt that you will be able to boot *anything* from a 4 Kb sectored disk. 

 

1 hour ago, 98SE said:

The test done in 2012 you referenced you did on a similar USB drive.

And what became of it?  Did you have the engineering knowledge to replicate the adapter yourself or improve it?

Or find a way to dump the controller chip software.

I am not following you.

I never did any test in 2012.

I referenced a 2012 thread where it was posted the confirmation that larger than 2.2Tb work fine in a USB enclosure that translates sector size to 4 Kb.

I also referenced a 2015 experiment in making a particular partitioning scheme so that the same drive (1 Tb) could be accessed BOTH when the exposed side of the sector was 512 bytes AND when the exposed size of the sector was 4 Kb. 

Why would one want to change the controller behaviour (since that specific behaviour is what actually allows larger disks)?

Or what would one want to replicate or improve the adapter, it already works just fine.

jaclaz

Edited by jaclaz

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10 hours ago, 98SE said:

If it has the correct adapter technology then yes it works.

Which USB disk do you use? Can you name the manufactuer and model?

Do you have a Windows 7 arround? Do you get a 'Bytes Per Physical Sector'?
fsutil fsinfo ntfsinfo U:
https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/help/982018/

Can you disassemble the USB case? And connect the hard disk internally?
Do you get the same 'Bytes Per Physical Sector'?

The next step is a 20 TB USB disk.
How does the USB firmware translate this disk? Does Windows understand this? 
To be done in future, let's wait.

 

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Quote

I am not following you.

I never did any test in 2012.

I referenced a 2012 thread where it was posted the confirmation that larger than 2.2Tb work fine in a USB enclosure that translates sector size to 4 Kb.

I also referenced a 2015 experiment in making a particular partitioning scheme so that the same drive (1 Tb) could be accessed BOTH when the exposed side of the sector was 512 bytes AND when the exposed size of the sector was 4 Kb. 

Why would one want to change the controller behaviour (since that specific behaviour is what actually allows larger disks)?

Or what would one want to replicate or improve the adapter, it already works just fine.

You had linked some 2012 posts earlier which from your response assumed all "tests" on these types of adapters had been done or sufficiently done in the past.  Your depth of knowledge of the inner workings of hard drives and storage schemes might prove useful since you are a true tinkerer.  But I don't know if your skill set extends to hardware engineer or just software only.  What is the most modern computer system setup you have in your possession if you don't mind me asking?

What changes I'm proposing are taking that technology and making it USB powered.  Currently these adapters are running off a small power adapter which doesn't make them completely portable and are only for 3.5" hard drives.  We need to shrink these adapters and add a programmable chip which can identify the sector type and switch from 4KB, 8KB, 16KB, 32KB, and 64KB sectors to interpret future hard drives and also make them USB powered so that even 2.5" laptop hard drives or SSDs will be able to use them and can be used internally.  Imagine using 18TB of data off a 2.5" laptop hard drive?

Or say in 5-10 years time since these fabricated adapters support 8KB->64KB sector drives when they finally release 8KB sector 2.5" laptop hard drives we can boost the capacity toward 36TB.  I know to you this may seem like an enormous amount of capacity today and no one or yourself can view this as being necessary because 500GB to you seems all that you need where 500GB to me was not enough even back in 2008.  But we both have different storage requirements but that shouldn't prevent even you from being blinded to see the advantages of having large capacity storage capability on a 2.5" laptop MBR SSD of such capacities as extending the usefulness of 2K/XP and possibly 9X/ME.

If the goal is the longer use of MBR without modifying the OS files and usable on all Operating Systems at least with 48-Bit LBA functionality this is the only path forward or if an alternative full GPT Loader for 2K/XP arrives and we submit and switch to GPT entirely around the 20TB and larger drives if only 4KB sector drives or within the next 20 years there is still no sign of jumping to larger 8K->64KB sector drives.  But again even today an 18.0TB MBR for 2.5 laptop hard drives or SSDs would be a remarkable achievement.

8 hours ago, jaclaz said:

Well, thank you, but I decide myself what I will call bootable.

Of course any real mode Operating System will be easier to boot than any OS with protected mode/HAL, and RLoew already reported that he can boot DOS/9x from 4k drives, though some modification to kernel files were needed.

What you still seemingly miss is that whatever your tests are, all the rest of the world has already found ways to boot 2K and later NT based OS's from a USB device (with "normal" 512 bytes sectors), as I tried telling you, the fact that you are stuck on a - wait - let's see if my crystal ball is still tuned - 0x0000007b STOP ERROR, is not in any way "news" and it is a problem solved since 10 years or more.

Until you will have had the time to get in sync with these last 10 years of developments, and fully understand how it works (or can work) allow me to doubt that you will be able to boot *anything* from a 4 Kb sectored disk.

Sure if booting to any operating system isn't considered "bootable" by your definition you have that prerogative.

But then you're not with the "original" definition of "bootable" for IBM PCs.

Floppy disks preceded hard drives and that would be the first real definition of a "bootable" device to an OS.  Perhaps you didn't suffer using 5 1/4" disks to boot your operating system back in the day like the rest of the world and got spoiled with hard drives?

Unless you are declaring "DOS" to not be considered "bootable" you will be offending probably most people who have used computers since the early 1970s as their definition.  And another person might think of a USB drive as a "bootable" device today where they never used a floppy and possibly optical drives will become extinct.

However my methods would differ from you or RLoew in making something "bootable" and we all know we use different techniques to get to the same or similar satisfactory conclusion.

 

First there was never a need for myself in the past to boot into NT directly off USB in all my daily requirements.  The lack of computer memory to consider storing the entire XP OS into a Ramdrive and the speed of USB on a P4 wouldn't have made it feasible then for my needs.  It was already slow enough as it was running that you accepted it and moved on.  Or in my case I stuck with Windows 9X for as long as possible since boot times were near instant compared to XP.

Now fast forward to today on a Coffee Lake with 6 Cores and 64GB of DDR4 RAM we are talking another story where it would be a "fun" experiment and "XP" would be the most "usable" of all the older NT OSs at the moment to even consider spending the time.

As for BSOD 7B I already fixed that problem on regular SkyLake / Kaby Lake installations which would make Coffee Lake a better choice for XP compatibility.  Now dealing with USB "bootable" drives wouldn't be necessary and just another way of doing the same thing as a hard drive but slower.  But whether it has been done in the past is not irrelevant here if the steps to get it done are convoluted and not simplified so the masses can make use of it today without perusing a lot of technical loop holes then many will not even attempt it or spend the effort trying.  There have been easier Windows WinPE methods that would already have worked with less tinkering probably before your Linux methods came to fruition.

If you can store the XP OS image on a regular hard drive or a SSD then all you have to do is get that image onto a compatible NT Ramdrive and you will get the same result and the OS will be slightly more responsive.  The idea being running XP on a pure Ramdrive and also using the extended > 3.2GB Unallocated Memory for a large Ramdrive for other uses would be the maximum benefit.  Basically taking what I am already doing on a normal day to day on my XP system but slightly speeding the OS response time up if any would be apparent by having the XP OS running off of pure RAM instead of off a slower SSD or hard drive.

In conclusion it could be that there is no "quantitative" or significant enough difference on faster machines from Quad core Ivy Bridge onward to consider using it as a day to day.  But one advantage I see is for a more secure XP Internet Browsing and if it were infected it wouldn't matter after you shut down the computer.  As for every day operations other than browsing there wouldn't be any advantage as you need to constantly have to update the XP OS files if installing new programs which would be wiped and forgotten as soon as you rebooted.  It would still be a good test bed for experiments involving achieving higher benchmark scores or installing unknown untrusted programs downloaded from the internet which if are infected could be run without impunity.

 

Edited by 98SE

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As Jaclaz already said in other words,  old news. I had all of my Patches working 5 years ago.

The problem with booting 4K USB is lack of BIOS support. I don't think any of my Computers recognize a 4K USB Device.

Forget about 64K Sectors. It is far easier to support GPT than Sectors larger than 4K. 4K is just a stopgap measure to deal with MBRs. There is no penalty for having small Logical Sectors.
Only large Physical Sectors provide an improvement.

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6 hours ago, rloew said:

I had all of my Patches working 5 years ago.

The problem with booting 4K USB is lack of BIOS support. I don't think any of my Computers recognize a 4K USB Device.

Forget about 64K Sectors. It is far easier to support GPT than Sectors larger than 4K. 4K is just a stopgap measure to deal with MBRs. There is no penalty for having small Logical Sectors.
Only large Physical Sectors provide an improvement.

Software patches are a band aid to the hardware approach but anything is better than nothing. ;)

A 2.5" form factor drive that is USB powered would be preferable than hooking up to an external 3.5" with AC adapter.

Given four 2TB drives or the convenience of saving 3 USB ports and using 18TB with one port and an AC adapter would be a worthy sacrifice.  When 18TB 2.5" drives become affordable they would be a better option for space preservation and lower heat dissipation and be used on every LBA48 OS for greater compatibility.

There is no need to boot off a 4K USB drive and it would only be an experiment to see if the same procedure worked before wiping the drive again.  The consumption of an additional drive letter when plugged into XP would provide no benefit so a single full capacity NTFS partition is the way to go.   I've already had bootable drives from 360KB to 2TB drives without issues.  MBR drives of 16GB are sufficient for most bootable legacy setups.

 

There is an efficiency gain from 512 Bytes to 4KB sector drives.

https://www.seagate.com/tech-insights/advanced-format-4k-sector-hard-drives-master-ti/

If an 8KB or a jump to 64KB sector drives could be done today it would probably future proof the drives and newer OSs would be set for 64KB compatibility sooner.  I think MBR is dead so it's time to throw in the towel but meanwhile accept 2TB for regular users or be more creative and have 18TB drives until ready to switch to GPT full time.  The next threshold is already beyond probably what you or I will ever need so having 64KB sector drives sooner means no more stop gaps from 4K to 64KB would need to happen which always causes a transition mess to take place.  I say get it out of the way now and jump to LBA 64 and 64KB sector drives and just be done with it than drag it along and end up hitting another capacity barrier in the future or something we have to keep patching like a XP SP1 to fix it.

A jump from 4KB to 64KB sector drives should be noticeable as well on drive space efficiency.

As for Allocation unit sizes 64KB would probably work well on a 64KB sector drive.  Try changing your AUS to 512 Bytes on a 4KB sector drive and you will see a performance hit.

Meanwhile XP Pro 64-Bit though old still can be installed on MBR and on FAT32 partitions while still capable of using GPT drives so XP users still have a transition path if they simply aren't ready to go to Windows 10 but can appreciate most of the benefits of a 64-Bit OS on their favorite XP user interface.  If they aren't doing any gaming XP 64-Bit would probably last a long time.

Edited by 98SE

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3 hours ago, 98SE said:

The consumption of an additional drive letter when plugged into XP would provide no benefit so a single full capacity NTFS partition is the way to go.  

I have noticed that you often mention the "consumption" of drive letters.

JFYI, this problem was solved with Windows 2000 by using mountpoints on NTFS.

jaclaz

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8 hours ago, jaclaz said:

I have noticed that you often mention the "consumption" of drive letters.

JFYI, this problem was solved with Windows 2000 by using mountpoints on NTFS.

jaclaz

To explain further the issue with "consumption of drive letters" regardless if it is FAT12/16, FAT32, exFAT, or NTFS as long as it is connected to XP and mounted it will use these drive letters as follows.

C: - Z: letters used up first exhausting the first 24 drive letters.  Common Windows limitation without patching.

Proposed drive letter scheme when more additional partitions are to be mounted and used by XP.

So with this mounting pattern it would allow 2400 Drive Letters or more to be mounted and accessible through My Computer, Command Prompt, Disk Management and transparent to XP for all other programs that use drive letters.

 

C2, D2, E2 ... Z2

C3, D3, E3 ... Z3

.....

.....

.....

C99-Z99

C100, D100, E100.. Z100.

 

A2-A100, B2-B100 could be reserved as an option to avoid confusion as typically A: and B: were for floppy drives so either a check box option to allow these extra 198 letters to be used or hidden.

So once C: through Z: drive letters are taken up by partitions it will roll to the newer drive letters of C2 -Z2 ... C100-Z100.

 

It could extend indefinitely so an unlimited amount of partitions could be accessed in XP as normal drive letters.

C101-C200

...

Z101-Z200

 

 

C1001-C2000

...

Z1001-Z2000

 

 

Accessing drive letter Z100 under the Command Prompt would look as follows.

 

Microsoft Windows XP [Version 5.1.2600]
(C) Copyright 1985-2001 Microsoft Corp.

X:\Documents and Settings\Administrator.XP>Z100:

Z100:\>

Z100:\>DIR
 Volume in drive Z100 is VOL-Z100
 Volume Serial Number is XXXX-XXXX

 Directory of Z100:\

File Not Found

Z100:\>

 

 

Make sense?

Edited by 98SE

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27 minutes ago, 98SE said:

Make sense?

No, it doesn't make any sense whatever,

The problem with drive letters came out in NT times, this is 20 years ago (or so).

It has been already solved by mountpoints, that are available since the NTFS coming with Windows 2000 (that is 16 years ago), and of course they are perfectly transparent to the OS.

https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc938435.aspx

https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc938934.aspx

 

As long as you have a single NTFS volume, you can make in it as many folders as you want and map to each folder a volume, this way not only you have a virtually unlimited number of accessible volumes, you can also name them in a more meaningful manner.

You can have (say) D:\100>

Example screenshot attached.

jaclaz 

 

 

mountpoint.JPG

mountvol.jpg

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