SUMMARY: CD ROM from PC on Sun

From: Dave Scott (
Date: Sat Aug 01 1992 - 11:48:02 CDT

Hi all.

A week ago I asked the following questions and was asked by several to
post a summary of what came back.

In the true sense of a summary, I didn't include the entire messages
of those sent to me, but, do mention from whom the comments are taken.
I will quote very little, but the quotes are enclosed in double quotes
(" "). I'll try to be as accurate as possible. Sorry if I read/write
something wrong. My rebuttals will be in angle brackets (<<...>>).

My thanks go to all who replied.

So, here goes: (original included for reference purposes)

=>Has anybody had any experience attaching a SCSI CD-ROM for a PC
=>to a SPARCstation???
=>We'd like to get a CD-ROM for our network, but can't justify
=>spending $800+ for a Sun CD-ROM.
=>I realize using, say, a Sony CD-ROM for a PC ( < $400 ), we wouldn't
=>be able to boot from it, but, can it still be attached and used for
=>other applications?
=>Could the PC's on the net still run programs on the CD-ROM by using
=>PC-NFS and having the Sun `export' that filesystem?
=>On a similar, but different, track...
=>Would a WORM drive be a better investment for a limited budget?
=>I saw an add for a MAXTOR 650MB WORM for ~$600. Anybody have
=>any experience with this drive? Reliability? Feasibility?
=>Is it compatible?
=>Thanks for any help you can offer.
=>I'll summarize if requested.
=> (David A. Scott)
=> interLogic Software, Inc. (on loan to Westinghouse)

I got the following advice:


David Fetrow <> mentioned a couple
examples of the wealth of software available (e.g. GNU distrib. with
X11R5 for $30 US) on CD ROM for modest prices. And adds:

 "CD-ROM: It's not just for installation anymore....."

==================== (Tim Magnus) let me know that the PC CD
ROM drives use 2K sectoring while the Sun requires 512 byte.

<< I guess this means if you can find a PC CD ROM that is switchable,
it should work just fine. >>

He also mentioned that Toshiba America has a alternate model numbers
for their 3300 series depending on the system to which you want to
attach the player (Sun, SGI, et al.) He thinks you can get ROMs for
them separately.

Sun ships Sony drives, so the ROMs are available from somewhere.

<< Your local Sun rep is probably a good choice for these. On the
other hand if you get a discount from Sun, you can probably get the
whole thing from them for about the same price as buying the pieces
separately. >>

Pioneer is now shipping a 6 CD changer, that, with the correct ROMs is
bootable from the Sun. But, the changer requires extra software, for
the Sun driver does not include support for changing disks.

==================== (Jeff Wasilko) pointed out that Solaris 2.0
will ship on CD ROM *only* and that you will probably need to boot
from it to install. SunOS 4.1.2 is the same way.

Therefor, booting from the drive may be *very* important in the

==================== (Randy Meyers) came back from the
'afterlife' (sorry, Randy, couldn't resist :-) ) to tell me about a
contact who (he thinks still) sells "inexpensive" CD ROM drives that
work on the Sun or PC platform.

He writes:

        "Contact Rick Parshall, R Group, Inc.

        (410) 987-6774 usually an answering machine"



As you can see, no comments on WORMs. If anybody does have one of
these, feel free to send your comments.

Someone also asked me about erasable, re-writable optical drives. I
don't have any experience with these, but maybe someone from the net
can shed some light. All I know is that they are pretty expensive.

If anybody has more comments feel free to send them to me. I haven't
bought one yet, but I'm leaning toward the Sony since nobody seems to
know about the WORMs.



-- (David A. Scott)
  interLogic Software, Inc. (on loan to Westinghouse)

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