SUMMARY + more questions: floppy disks with tar files on them

From: malcolm melville +44 171 542 8472 (
Date: Thu Nov 28 1996 - 09:54:20 CST

Original question:

>We have upgraded to Solaris 2.5 on anumber of our system from SunOS 4.1.3 and
>receive updates of some software on 3.5" floppies in tar format. Problem is
>if the disks were written on SunOS systems we can't read them on Solaris 2.5.
>we write disks on the 2.5 system then we can read them on the 2.5 systems. The
>disks are not corrupted and the drives all seem to be working properly.
>I have hunted through the SunSolve archive and found that other people have had
>the same problem but no solution was noted. I have disabled vold from
>interacting with the floppy drive but to no avail. I am sure the solution is
>simple and that I have missed something. Can someone help us?

Many thanks for all the help, lots of replies that deal with the vold side of
the problem which consisted of either stopping it all together and the required
mods to the /etc/vold.conf file. I was aware of all these and had applied the
changes and for good measure tried killing vold.

Second group of suggestions was to use cpio. This I tried but all I get are:
"cpio: Cannot open /dev/rdiskette for input"

Third idea was to remove all the /dev and /devices/obio entries for the floopy
drive, touch /reconfigure and reboot. This recreated the devices but still
can't read the floppies.

One suggestion was to use a floppy on an old SunOS system and rcp the files
over. This is fine but we are trying to get all our machines up to Sol 2.5 and
the external parties are sticking with SunOS for distribution for now. We seem
to be the only ones who can't read the disks!

So, hopefully not presuming too much, here is some more info if someone has any
more ideas they are welcome!

tar error returned is:
"tar: /dev/rdiskette0: I/O error"

We can write and read tar archives on the Solaris system provided we use
fdformat before writing the floppies. The disks seem to default to 1.44MB
capacity. I think this is correct though 2.88MB capacity is muttered about in
the man pages.

A question: is it possible that the floppy drive we have needs some tweaking?
They are internal SPARC 20 drives. Is there anyway of finding out more about the
floopy drive type.

Apologies for pestering and thanks for all the help.


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