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View Full Version : What's the deal with CF microdrives?



TheLazy1
October 10th, 2012, 03:05 PM
Are they only supposed to work with cameras or something?
The one I bought off ebay won't work in my CF->IDE adapter or any CF reader, I wonder if it's dead or just has a really specific purpose.

Chuck(G)
October 10th, 2012, 03:55 PM
I like them on systems and have been using them for years. They've all been Seagate ST-1 5GB units--as a matter of fact, the system used as a mailserver, router and firewall here is running on one and has been 24/7 for at least the last couple of years. I've got another identical system with a cloned drive on it ready to plug right in should the active one fail.

Al Kossow
October 10th, 2012, 04:24 PM
Are they only supposed to work with cameras or something?
The one I bought off ebay won't work in my CF->IDE adapter or any CF reader, I wonder if it's dead or just has a really specific purpose.

Did it get REALLY hot when plugged into your adapter?
I think there may be a pinout issue, but I didn't dig into it when I tried it.
I destroyed a couple of them that way (all Seagate ST1 5gb). The IBM 1gb survived.

patscc
October 10th, 2012, 06:03 PM
What's the make/model of the drive?
patscc

pearce_jj
October 10th, 2012, 09:57 PM
They are functionaly identical to CF cards in true-IDE mode, but need more power to run them, but under 500mA.

nestor
October 11th, 2012, 04:59 AM
I have two Seagate 2 GB and a IBM 512MB, all work perfect but I think there are some low power microdrives that only work with 3v. Maybe they burn when powered with 5v?

TheLazy1
October 11th, 2012, 05:15 PM
Model no: ST640211CF

It does say +5v so I don't think it burned up.
I can hear it spin faintly but nothing will see it, or even light the LED on any controller.

Guess I just got a toasted one then eh?

patscc
October 11th, 2012, 06:42 PM
Do you have an actual cf card to make sure the adapter works ? I've come across a few things that didn't like cf drives.
patscc

Chuck(G)
October 11th, 2012, 08:47 PM
Model no: ST640211CF

It does say +5v so I don't think it burned up.
I can hear it spin faintly but nothing will see it, or even light the LED on any controller.

Guess I just got a toasted one then eh?

If it spins up and stays spinning, it probably is okay. One thing about the CF microdrives, they don't like to share--so don't try to run one with another drive on the same IDE channel.

TheLazy1
October 12th, 2012, 04:11 AM
Do you have an actual cf card to make sure the adapter works ? I've come across a few things that didn't like cf drives.
patscc

The adapter works fine with a bunch of CF cards, maybe it just doesn't like the adapter?


If it spins up and stays spinning, it probably is okay. One thing about the CF microdrives, they don't like to share--so don't try to run one with another drive on the same IDE channel.

I put it on it's own on the primary IDE channel with the adapter set to master, the LED on the adapter doesn't even blink.
:(

patscc
October 12th, 2012, 04:38 AM
I'm sorry. R.I.P., I think. Can you return it ?
patscc

pearce_jj
October 12th, 2012, 04:45 AM
Also often these drives have a default timeout of 2s for power management and in any case shouldn't spin before actual sector data is requested. If it's not detected but spinning most likely it's broken.

TheLazy1
October 12th, 2012, 04:46 AM
I can check but probably not.
The ebay store I bought it from does have a return policy but unfortunately I was so busy that I never got around to testing it and I'm pretty sure the return period is long gone.

Live and learn I guess...
:D