Non-512-byte sector drive cloning?

Rich Alderson RichA at
Thu Feb 12 17:18:02 CST 2015

From: Eric Smith
Sent: Wednesday, February 11, 2015 3:16 PM

> On Wed, Feb 11, 2015 at 3:16 PM, Cory Smelosky <b4 at> wrote:
>> On Wed, 11 Feb 2015, Al Kossow wrote:

>>> Are they common command set drives?

>> Should be.  I don't believe CompuServe did anything too silly.

> I don't have any special insight into it, but wouldn't it have been a
> matter of whether Systems Concepts did anything too silly? Surely
> Compuserve must have purchased whatever kind of drives SC specified
> for use with the SC40, even when Compuserve built the machines
> themselves.

> SC certainly wasn't a large enough purchaser of disk drives that any
> of the mainstream disk manufacturers would have built anything
> particularly special for them.  However, there were a lot of standard
> SCSI drives that could be formatted with a user-specified block size.
> Some allowed arbitrary size within a range, while others only had a
> few specific choices.

I don't believe that Stewart ever did anything with SCSI disks.  When I
spoke to some of the CompuServe alumni last year, they mentioned that
they had created the SCSI interface for their SC-40 boxes, and did all
the monitor development work for it.

XKL had the same issue in the 1990s.  We ended up sourcing Seagate
Barracudas with OEM (that was us) microcode to allow for a 2304 byte
sector size.


Rich Alderson
Vintage Computing Sr. Systems Engineer
Living Computer Museum
2245 1st Avenue S
Seattle, WA 98134

mailto:RichA at

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