From: Chiaki Ishikawa (
Date: Mon Nov 16 1992 - 02:11:51 CST

About 3 weeks ago, I asked the net if a non-SUN SCSI CDROM drive can
be hooked up to a Sun workstation to read the files on CDROM.

I have received many replies. In the end, I could use a little program
posted by Bob Hayes earlier this year to connect DENON DS-253 CD drive
to our sparcstation and read a mounted CDROM file system!

It took me a while to post the summary since I wanted to test the
little program to see if it works with our CDROM drive, and there was
a little trepidation on my side to connect the unknown hardware to
Sparcstation, but I am happy to report that I've found it works!

Thank you again everyone for the answers!

Here are the EDITED answers.

Guy Harris
From: pmcgw!uunet!!guy (Guy Harris)

The Sun driver probably assumes that the CD-ROM drive can be put into
"512 bytes per block" mode, or is always in that mode.

The "hsfs_*.o" files implement a High Sierra/ISO 9660 file system, and
in 4.1.2 and later releases also implements the "Rock Ridge"
extensions to better support UNIX-style file names and the like.

Clifton Liles
From: Clifton Liles 282-4736 <pmcgw!uunet!!liles>

My information is other SCSI players will work for everything BUT
booting. You can not build a system from the distrbution media!

[Ishikawa comment: I wonder why.]

Dan Lanciani
Return-Path: <pmcgw!uunet!!ddl>

NEC CDR-72 doesn't work with a Sun-3, using either the SCSI-2 or
SCSI-3 host adapters. It generated a string of horrible SCSI bus
errors and corrupted the hard disk to the extent that I had to

[Ishikawa comment: My colleague who actually tested the connection
told me that he experienced a disk error when he switched on/off the
CD drive while the system is running. So DON'T try to turn on/off the
CD drive WHILE the system is running!]

Derek Fawcus
Return-Path: <pmcgw!uunet!!df>

You could look at the linux CDROM file system sources, they're
available on and AFAIK it fully implements the ISO
format with rock ridge extensions.

Andrew Speedie
From: uunet!!A.H.Speedie-SE0

According to a Sun engineer, most CD drives will work on SUN 3/80 and
up, without any special modification to the kernel. The only problem
is that you can only boot from a SUN CD drive and they are SONY drives
with a firmware upgrade. And also you can't boot a 3/80 from a CD.

[ishikawa comment: I have not tested Sun3 hardware yet.]

Kasukawa, Masaatsu
From: (Masaatsu Kasukawa)
Hikita, Hiroyuki
Return-Path: <>

>From the two gentlemen above, I have received a copy of an article Bob
Hayes posted earlier this year to comp.sun.hardware. This ultimately
enabled me to connect the DENON DS-253 CDROM drive to a Sparcstation
successfully! (Unfortunately since it is encased in an external
chassis, and I don't want to open the box right now, I don't know
exactly whose CDROM drive is in the box.)

For your information, I attach the copy of Bob Hayes article: I
believe there must be many people wondering if they can connect
non-SUN CDROM to Sunworkstations.

Thank you again everyone for the information!

-------- quote --------------------------

From: (Bob Hayes)
Newsgroups: comp.sys.sun.hardware
Summary: CDROM drives other than Sun/Sony
Keywords: cdrom drives
Message-ID: <>
Date: 5 Feb 92 22:19:25 GMT
Organization: Western Washington University
Lines: 156

My original query- can you use a CD-ROM drive other than
a Sony for Suns...Specifically a Toshiba 3301B from a
NeXT... generated several replies, from YES to NO-WAY...

The answer is YES for data, probably yes for audio.
For other drives than Toshiba??? Lets hear your results
when you try it!!

Let me say *THANKS* to EVERYONE who wrote to express
ANY thoughts !! We need all the discusion that we can handle,
we need all the ideas that we can think of, and then we can
sift for what ideas we need most, and save some for later.

This network stuff is the most far reaching, inclusive,
responsive, and open communications forum to have existed
on the planet! (add more adjectives as required)
May we continue the free, open interchange of ideas and

So what about the CD-ROM stuff??
The problem seems to be in the sector size read from the
scsi interface--- Sun expects 512 bytes, the default format
of the CD1 spec is (mode 1, with ECC) 2048 bytes per 'block'.

Is there an ftp site for the (red/blue/green?? rainbow) books
which have the CD specs and mode descriptions???

This is on a Sun LPC, SunOS 4.1.1b--
Patches which I tried in the kernel were not effective.
I posted. I read the mail. I tried it. IT WORKED!!

And the GOOD STUFF, Thanks and a tip 'o the hat to Ralph,
who wrote:

~From: (Ralph Kling)
        YES, it is possible! I have managed to connect one to a SS-2.
        However, there are a few differences between the SUN (=SONY) drive
        and the Toshiba drive. In particular, the SUN drive seems to use
        a default transfer block size of 512 bytes versus 2048 for the
        Toshiba. I wrote a little program that uses SUNs user-scsi-driver
        to correct this. You have to run that before trying to mount the
        drive! The "unrecognized vendor" message can be neglected.
        If you want to use the CD-audio capabilities you'll have to write
        your own driver (also via SUNs user-scsi-driver) since those commands
        are totally different from the SUN drive. Call Toshiba of America
        (sorry, I lost the number) and order the CD rom drive spec from them
        (will cost you $15).
        One more thing: The scsi-id for the CD rom needs to be 6.
        Good luck!!!


        Here is the program to set the transfer length to 512 bytes:

        # include <sys/types.h>
        # include <sys/buf.h>
        # include <sun/dkio.h>
        # include <scsi/targets/srdef.h>
        # include <scsi/impl/uscsi.h>
        # include <strings.h>

        # include <stdio.h>

        char cdrom[] = "/dev/rsr0";

        extern char * cdrom_status();

        /* group 0 commands */

        #define TEST 0x00
        #define REZERO 0x01
        #define SENSEREQ 0x03
        #define READ 0x08
        #define SEEK 0x0b
        #define NOP 0x0d
        #define INQ 0x12
        #define MODESEL 0x15
        #define RESERVE 0x16
        #define RELEASE 0x17
        #define MODESENSE 0x1a
        #define STARTSTOP 0x1b
        #define DIAGRCV 0x1c
        #define DIAGSND 0x1d
        #define MEDIUMLOCK 0x1e

        /* group 1 commands */

        #define READCAP 0x25
        #define READEXT 0x28
        #define SEEKEXT 0x2b

        /* group 6 commands */

        #define AUDIOTRACK 0xc0
        #define AUDIOPLAY 0xc1
        #define AUDIOSTILL 0xc2
        #define AUDIOSTOP 0xc3
        #define EJECT 0xc4
        #define CLOSE 0xc5
        #define AUDIOSUB 0xc6
        #define AUDIODISK 0xc7
        #define ROMMODE 0xc8


        #define CMDLEN(cmd) ((cmd >= 0x20) ? 10 : 6)


        main() {
                int fd;
                int i;
                struct uscsi_cmd ucmd;
                char * s_command;
                char * s_buffer;

                if ((fd = open(cdrom, 0)) == -1) {
                        fprintf(stderr, "open: ");
                s_command = (char *) malloc(10);
                if (s_command == NULL) {
                        printf("malloc error (command)\n");
                bzero(s_command, 10);
                s_buffer = (char *) malloc(256);
                if (s_buffer == NULL) {
                        printf("malloc error (buffer)\n");
                bzero(s_buffer, 256);
                s_command[0] = MODESEL;
                s_command[1] = 0x10;
                s_command[4] = 12;
                s_buffer[3] = 0x08;
                s_buffer[10] = 0x02;
                ucmd.uscsi_cdb = s_command;
                ucmd.uscsi_cdblen = 6;
                ucmd.uscsi_bufaddr = s_buffer;
                ucmd.uscsi_buflen = 4096;
                ucmd.uscsi_flags = USCSI_WRITE;
                i = ioctl(fd, USCSICMD, ucmd);
**************** end of Ralph's goodie ****************
I can hear those odd-ball Cd-rom drives being hooked onto
scsi busses already!
Bob Hayes <>
-------- quote end --------------------------

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