Old Computer + New HD

Erik Trulsson ertr1013 at student.uu.se
Sat Nov 8 21:59:04 PST 2003

On Sun, Nov 09, 2003 at 03:42:36AM -0200, fallenbr wrote:
> Hi,
> I need to use an 80GB hard disk on my
> old computer, which can only detect
> HDs smaller than 8GB.

The computer can almost certainly handle large disks, even though the
BIOS does not.
Since FreeBSD does not use the BIOS for accessing hard disks, this
means that the BIOS limitations only matter when booting from the disk.
(Since the boot process inevitably must use the BIOS before the real OS
is loaded.)

> Does anyone have any advice?

Just add the disk.
If you have an old disk (<8GB) in the computer already, then use that
too boot from, while putting most stuff on the new disk.
Otherwise, even an old BIOS can usually access part of big disks, in
which you just need to make sure that your boot partition is in the
part of the disk that the BIOS can access.

> How about using one of these IDE to
> USB racks from ViPower
> (www.vipower.com)? Do they work on
> FreeBSD? If so, will my HD work fine
> with it?

I don't know anything about that product, but many harddisk controller
cards that you can buy comes with their own BIOS, and thus lets you
ignore the limitations of the built-in BIOS.
These also often is capable of supporting higher transfer speeds from
modern disks, than the controllers built in on older motherboards are
capable of.

<Insert your favourite quote here.>
Erik Trulsson
ertr1013 at student.uu.se

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