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Does a Seagate ST-225 need to be parked ?

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    Does a Seagate ST-225 need to be parked ?

    I have a 486 ISA slotted board with an original IBM AT hard/floppy controller connected to a Seagate ST-225 just running DOS or whatever.
    To preserve the media should I be parking the drive before powering off or does it auto park ? Does it matter ? If so is there a park utility ?

    Larry G

    #2
    No, it does not auto-park. Parking is not needed when turning off the system, however, unless you plan to move it or don't use it for a very long time.

    Comment


      #3
      The ST-225 does not auto-park.... therefore, yes, park the heads before shutting down your system.

      Some will tell you it is ok to not park the heads, and yeah it is ok to not park the heads sometimes BUT, usually I will do that if I'm working on a system on the bench and can't otherwise park the heads because of lack of boot, etc. and will be rebooting right away anyway. Even then, I will always make sure the heads are parked at the end of the session before putting the drive away on the shelf.

      In the interest of preserving vintage drives and prolonging the life of the platters, it doesn't hurt to park your heads. It would be a good idea to keep a parking utility on your drives so there's always one available. I use park.com which I think came with spinrite.

      Here is a handy chart from the Seagate ST11 manual that shows auto-park info for each drive model:

      MFM models:
      ================================================== ===========
      | Model | Formatted | R/W | Data | Sectors | Auto- |
      | | MBytes | Heads | Cylinders | per Track | Park |
      ================================================== ===========
      | ST124 | 21.4 | 4 | 615 | 17 | No |
      -------------------------------------------------------------
      | ST125 | 21.4 | 4 | 615 | 17 | Yes |
      -------------------------------------------------------------
      | ST138 | 32.1 | 6 | 615 | 17 | Yes |
      -------------------------------------------------------------
      | ST151 | 42.5 | 5 | 977 | 17 | Yes |
      -------------------------------------------------------------
      | ST225 | 21.4 | 4 | 615 | 17 | No |
      -------------------------------------------------------------
      | ST251 | 42.8 | 6 | 820 | 17 | Yes |
      -------------------------------------------------------------
      | ST252 | 42.8 | 6 | 820 | 17 | Yes |
      -------------------------------------------------------------
      |ST4053 | 44.5 | 5 | 1024 | 17 | Yes |
      -------------------------------------------------------------
      |ST4096 | 80.2 | 9 | 1024 | 17 | Yes |
      -------------------------------------------------------------

      RLL models:
      ================================================== ===========
      | Model | Formatted | R/W | Data | Sectors | Auto- |
      | | MBytes | Heads | Cylinders | per Track | Park |
      ================================================== ===========
      | ST137R| 32.7 | 4 | 615 | 26 | No |
      -------------------------------------------------------------
      | ST138R| 32.7 | 4 | 615 | 26 | Yes |
      -------------------------------------------------------------
      | ST157R| 49.1 | 6 | 615 | 26 | Yes |
      -------------------------------------------------------------
      | ST225R| 21.2 | 2 | 667 | 31 | No |
      -------------------------------------------------------------
      | ST238R| 32.7 | 4 | 615 | 26 | No |
      -------------------------------------------------------------
      | ST250R| 42.9 | 4 | 667 | 31 | No |
      -------------------------------------------------------------
      | ST277R| 65.5 | 6 | 820 | 26 | Yes |
      -------------------------------------------------------------
      | ST278R| 65.5 | 6 | 820 | 26 | Yes |
      -------------------------------------------------------------
      |ST4144R| 122.7 | 9 | 1024 | 26 | Yes |
      -------------------------------------------------------------

      Comment


        #4
        I have spinrite somewhere. I remembered about park.com from ancient past but just didn't know where it was - thanks

        Comment


          #5
          Find attached something
          Attached Files
          <album>

          Comment


            #6
            ST225 was my first hard drive, and yes it does not auto park. I have a copy of park.com somewhere.

            Comment


              #7
              Originally posted by Timo W. View Post
              No, it does not auto-park. Parking is not needed when turning off the system, however, unless you plan to move it or don't use it for a very long time.
              Personally, if the drive does not auto park I would always recommend parking it when turning off if that's what was recommended by the manufacturer. I have an Amstrad PC with it's original 35 year old 20MB RLL HD which still runs, but if it is shut down without parking (say the system freezes in a way which Ctrl-Alt-Del won't recover) then on next boot the drive will not be detected by the controller - seems to be a bit of stiction with the drive heads on the disk surface preventing it from spinning up in time. A further reset fixes this and then it will work but the drive clearly isn't happy not having been parked. When running really old drives that are now way beyond their original intended service life surely you should treat them as gently as possible to extend their lives and if that means parking then park it.

              Comment


                #8
                You don't seem to know what parking aktually does on these old drives. Your stiction/reboot issue has nothing to do with that. When parking, the heads are still on the surface, they are just moved to the innermost track where no data is written to. They lock into position there so that the head assembly won't move when the drive (or the PC) is being transported. That's it. There's nothing more to it. The heads are not lifted from the surface as with later drives (that was actually a very late invention).

                Almost every hard disk manual from that time will clearly state that parking it only needed when moving the PC. Yes, some say you should park when turning off, but time and reasons for that were different back then. It certainly won't hurt to do it anyway, but it's simply not needed.
                Last edited by Timo W.; July 19, 2021, 05:54 AM.

                Comment


                  #9
                  I was under the impression that later revision ST225 drives would auto park, although the originals did not. If when powering down it makes sort of a "BWWRRRrrrrrrr d d d d d" noise, then it is auto parking.

                  Parking can actually help a tiny bit with stiction. Due to leverage, it may take less force to loosen up a head stuck on an inner cylinder than an outer cylinder. Over time, repeatedly landing on a cylinder can indeed cause wear (especially if there is already some minor issue), so it is best to have the heads land on an unimportant cylinder.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    All of the ST-225 I have don't appear to park the heads. All of the ST-251 (or -1) that I have do auto park the heads.

                    Also, some VERY early IDE drives do require parking. WD, for example, had a program called PARKIDE to do it on their early drives. There seems to be a copy here: http://edv-janssen.synology.me/ct_tr...util/files.htm

                    Comment


                      #11
                      My recollection is that parking on non-parking drives was pretty much essential if you're going to move the machine. Otherwise, less so.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        IBM Diagnostics refers to parking the hard drive as "prepare system for relocation". The clear implication is that parking is only necessary when you're going to physically move the machine.

                        Comment


                          #13
                          I think IBM called the utility that gets initiated by the diag floppy “shipdisk” or something like that, just as another underlining of that fact. I personally try to park the heads any time I turn off an old computer that needs it, because I’m probably going to move it at some point, sooner rather than later.

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Originally posted by vwestlife View Post
                            IBM Diagnostics refers to parking the hard drive as "prepare system for relocation". The clear implication is that parking is only necessary when you're going to physically move the machine.
                            For a brand new 10mb hard drive that is only supposed to last perhaps 5 to 10 years, yes.

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Go too much beyond that 10 MB and the drives park themselves at power down.

                              Comment

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