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Master / slave config on Mac G4?

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5 replies to this topic

#1 of 6 OFFLINE   Eric_E


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Posted August 08 2003 - 09:51 AM

My girlfriend recently purchased a 120 GB / 7200 RPM / 8 MB buffer Maxtor HD for her first-generation G4. The drive she currently has installed in her computer is the 9-gigger that originally came with the system.

How should we configure the drives? Would you dedicate one to OS X and use the other for data, and if so, which drive for which purpose? I would think the new HD would be much faster than the old one, so should we put OS X on the new drive?

Anyway, does anyone have an opinion on this? I know next to nothing about Mac hardware so any input is appreciated.

Edit: Okay, I read a little bit more about it, and it sounds like I should use the cable select mode rather than master/slave settings... is this right? But that doesn't answer the question of which drive to use for what...

#2 of 6 OFFLINE   Pamela


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Posted August 08 2003 - 10:41 AM

On my G4 tower. I have the hard drive partitioned, with OSX on one, and files and data on the other. On my PowerBook everything resides on one partition. Both ways work fine. One thing to think about—if your girlfriend is going to also run OS 9, I would put that on a separate partition.

#3 of 6 OFFLINE   Joseph S

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Posted August 08 2003 - 01:05 PM

I don't believe Slave or Master denotes anything other than one must one designation. It has nothing to do with speed of access, though the one chained closest to the motherboard connector should have faster access.

With OS X you could leave the 120GB for System, Apps, Files and perhaps use the second drive for backups of the data. Moving stuff from the OS X Applications folder can be troublesome as several apps refuse to launch if they're in the "wrong" place which may be the Applications or Utilities folder. So keep the Apps on the same partition as the System and in the "Applications" folder.

If you want the data on a second drive the user should alter the privileges of the drive to reflect the fact that they are the owner. Honestly, until 10.3 though you're going to have a tough time securing the data as long as you
1)Don't password protect the firmware
2)Don't lock the access to the case so no one can hit the inside reset button.
3)Allow booting to OS 8/9 via CD or similar

#4 of 6 OFFLINE   DonRoeber



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Posted August 08 2003 - 01:29 PM

Use Cable-Select for the drives. I'd probably move everythnig to the 120GB drive, and just ditch the 9gb completely. It's not worth the trouble of remembering what goes where, etc... Check out CarbonCopyCloner. It's a fantastic utility, and free! I used it when I upgraded my G4 from a 30gb to a 120gb drive.
Luckily, right at that moment, an unconscious Argentinean fell through my roof.

He was quickly joined by a dwarf dressed as a nun.

#5 of 6 OFFLINE   Michael*K



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Posted August 08 2003 - 05:22 PM

I'd just leave the stock 10 GB drive out of the machine unless it's needed in the future.

#6 of 6 OFFLINE   Tony Aguila

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Posted August 08 2003 - 05:41 PM

I'd be careful using cable select on this unit. Sounds like you have an older G4, AGP or Sawtooth, maybe? Not a Yikes, I hope. Having a 9-gig original makes me think that. If the bus is ATA-33, it might not work well with cable select. However, if you insist, install the drives as such and bring up Disk Utility. Select the drive icon of each (not the volumes) and it should indicate whether it recognizes each one correctly as master and slave. The bottom drive should be master, and the one on top (connected to the middle connector on the cable) should be slave. If it starts acting weird on you, I recommend setting the jumpers instead.

The bigger drives are faster (assuming equal rotational speeds) because data is packed more densely on the platter surfaces so the same amount of travel between the surface and the read/write heads cover more data in the bigger drive.

If I were you, I would make the big guy the master (bottom), create two partitions, perhaps 32 gigs for the first (OS X) and the balance for OS 9 (for Classic) and data. Then I would install a second OS X system on the slave, 9-gig drive, single volume, which you can then use for troubleshooting your primary volume. Disk Warrior is invaluable for maintaining your drives, and it runs so much faster from a hard drive compared to the CD.