HDD powering up too slow....options?

Discussion about Modding the XBOX, including hardware and software hacks.
Craig
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HDD powering up too slow....options?

Post by Craig »

Evening guys. Glad to see that somebody has attempted to get the great forum back up and running (in a way). I'm Craigb87 from the other one, not Craig so don't get excited :)

On to my problem, I've just installed a 1tb HDD to my xbox but it doesn't boot up when I use the xbox power lead. When I use my PC power so that the HDD is already powered on before the xbox is booted it loads fine. The drive is a hitachi (which I believe I've read about them not starting quick enough before) but have I got any options? The Xbox is TSOP'd and I don't need the DVD drive to boot so is there any custom BIOS to stall the booting at all? To give the HDD
time to start?

Any other options or suggestions? I did think about an external power source for the HDD but not even sure what I could use?

Thanks in advance :)
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Re: HDD powering up too slow....options?

Post by Heimdall »

Which BIOS are you using? Have you tried a different one?
Craig
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Re: HDD powering up too slow....options?

Post by Craig »

If I remember correctly I used the iND-BIOS.5003.06. I haven't tried another, is there a specific one I should try?
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Re: HDD powering up too slow....options?

Post by Heimdall »

Try Evox M8+. There's no guarantee that it will work, but iND-BIOS reads its config from the hard drive, so (presumably) tries to access the hard drive earlier in the boot sequence than Evox M8+.
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Re: HDD powering up too slow....options?

Post by professor_jonny »

I had the same problem just a few days ago with a slim console and i could not get it to go on a specific xbox no matter what i did, i switched motherboards to a different one (same version) and it fixed it i dont know why but it worked afterwards.

probally not all that help full sorry but of note on the board where it worked i used a m8+ bios and had to turn off the ondisk partition setting or some times it booted with error from cold boot, the drive i had was a hitachi 500gig drive.
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Re: HDD powering up too slow....options?

Post by xman »

May be some truth in that to P.J.. I only target 1.2 - 1.4 machines for 1 and 2TB sata mods. I have done 1.6 satas but only to 500Gb. M8 bioses are all I use. Some pics of your new machine would be cool in the Showcase. ;)
@ Craig- The problem you rectified by using an external power supply to power the HDD is proof your HDD / adapter combo is taking to long to come on line. You may have success putting in a false boot path or 2 in your bios to give the HDD / adapter combo longer to come on line. Definitely don't have your booting app located in F partition.
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Re: HDD powering up too slow....options?

Post by professor_jonny »

xman wrote:May be some truth in that to P.J.. I only target 1.2 - 1.4 machines for 1 and 2TB sata mods.
i know i have had the same results but i had this one xbox with a 1.6 board and a duox2 m8+ bios and a 2tb western digital drive and it worked perfectly every boot.

i know getting off topic but does the xbox reset if you ground pin 1 on the ide cable?
if a small cap was placed across these two points when the xbox powers up the drive would spin up but the processor would be halted until the cap charges giving a chance for the drive to spin up?

when charged it will become open circuit alowing the processor to liven up and hopefully the drive will be online by then.
if it is not it makes it a bit harder to find the reset line of the xbox to try it out i know it goes to the smc tho.
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Re: HDD powering up too slow....options?

Post by xman »

I'd go for the processor reset line I think. Holding the processor reset line low or high, (whatever is required), for no more that a second as this is more than the time required. I seriously think we are talking milliseconds here. I don't believe you will damage the board as this is what you are doing when you reset the machine with the 4 button reset combo on the controller. I saw a picture of the chip pin-out yesterday in a "corroded track" how to. This I would think would hold the processor off line long enough for the HDD to come fully up to speed and then allow the mother board to read the bios.
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Re: HDD powering up too slow....options?

Post by professor_jonny »

xman wrote:I'd go for the processor reset line I think.
the ide controller spec has no reset line requirement so is usually connected to the processor reset line which is driven from the sm bus in a pc which the xbox is probally the same if you join the 2 pins on the ide it will probally reset the xbox processor might be worth a try ?
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Re: HDD powering up too slow....options?

Post by xman »

Got a sacrificial board just in case?. I had one with no LAN working but found how to fix it today so.......If the lines are connected as you say, I can't see any harm trying. The lines that suffer from corrosion could be able to help with this mod as well.
Craig
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Re: HDD powering up too slow....options?

Post by Craig »

Thanks for all the replies, I didn't expect so many!

I've tried all the BIOS options that are on the hexen disc and it won't boot up. Is it worth me trying a few made up boot locations in the BIOS to try and stall it, could this work?

Or if the other option is more likely to work could somebody explain how to do it please, or point me in the direction of somewhere I can read about it.

Thanks, Craig.
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Re: HDD powering up too slow....options?

Post by professor_jonny »

what i do is set my final boot location in bios to e as it is the first partition to come online then c.

if you set 2 fake boot paths on c then your final boot location on e you will give it more time to come online as if the boot path is not valid the xbox checks the next location taking up a small amount of time then as that path will fail it will then choose your final boot path and hopefully work.

one way i have done it also is have the bios boot from e and have the boot path boot a short cut to a shortcut running the program you want as i had a problem with f and g not picking up but e would and this sorted this problem.

there is also a program called x select that adds time but if it is not spinning up and the drive not picking up this probally wont work.
Craig
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Re: HDD powering up too slow....options?

Post by Craig »

I've currently got the ind-bios on the xbox - how do I change the boot locations? If I go into the config file and go to the bottom I've got 3 paths for dashboards, is this where I put the first 2 as fakes and the 3rd as genuine? Or am I barking up the wrong tree? Also do I need to link to actual files or can I put a link to the root of C for example? Apologies if these are noob questions, I've never really messed around with changing the BIOS before.

Alternatively, how do I change the BIOS boot paths using the M8+ BIOS? I couldn't see where there was a config file when I was using that BIOS and it looks like that's my best option.
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Re: HDD powering up too slow....options?

Post by xman »

P.J., been thinking about this and maybe there is an easier way to achieve a delay for the HDD using the DVD drive. I have known for some time a faulty or poor reading DVD will increase boot times as the machine 1st tries to read a disc or non- performing laser prior to going to the 1st boot location off the HDD unless of coarse you are using an edited bios with No Check DVD selected. What if you install your cap in the TS0, TS1 or TS2 line. Not real sure which line it is but the one that acknowledges the tray is closed. On my work on the sata Slim I found if one of these signals didn't suit the others, a delay occurred on the boot up sequence. The down side is the drive motor may stall as the drive tries to close the already closed tray. You could try opening your DVD tray, kill the power to your Xbox with the tray still open, power up the Xbox and see if the time for the tray to close is enough for the HDD to come fully on line and therefore boot successfully. Alternatively, the ACTIVITY line may have good results.
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Re: HDD powering up too slow....options?

Post by Heimdall »

Craig wrote:If I go into the config file and go to the bottom I've got 3 paths for dashboards, is this where I put the first 2 as fakes and the 3rd as genuine?
Yes
Craig wrote:Also do I need to link to actual files or can I put a link to the root of C for example?
Neither. If you link to actual files then it will run those files. Just put links to files that don't exist.
Craig wrote:Alternatively, how do I change the BIOS boot paths using the M8+ BIOS? I couldn't see where there was a config file when I was using that BIOS
There isn't a config file, you have to edit the BIOS directly before you flash it, using EvTool 1.09.
Craig
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Re: HDD powering up too slow....options?

Post by Craig »

I tried changing the paths but it was exactly the same. I think I'm giving up on this one as I can just send the HDD back and order another, but hope that this time it isn't a hitachi!

Thanks for all the help, it's appreciated.

Craig
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Re: HDD powering up too slow....options?

Post by professor_jonny »

xman wrote:P.J., been thinking about this and maybe there is an easier way to achieve a delay for the HDD using the DVD drive.
i see where you are comming from on this but if you are takling about a slim with a dvd drive board installed it adds delay with the tray status switches closed but it is still not enough to make a non picking up f and g partition as i tried all combinations of these inputs on a recent install and it did not help in my case.
The processor is still loading code from bios and the hdd is not having enough time to spin up which is the initial problem before the bios tries to find it.
holding the processor in reset while not resetting the hdd might be a possible option but i dont have any spare sata hdd's or sata to ide adaptors as i sold all to customers recently.

If slow spin up and sata adaptors are the problem then holding th xbox in reset while the drive and sata adaptor initilizes would be the best soultion.

If shorting pin one to ground on the motherboard ide connector causes the xbox to reset then the next thing to do would be to pull out pin 1 on a sata to ide adaptor and put a capicator between ground and pin one on the motherboard ide connector.
on power up of the xbox the capicator would charge holding the processor in reset while the hdd is powered and not being reset alowing it to spin up.

One problem may be that the smc is powered when the xbox is off and the reset pin may sink a small leakage current and charge the cap and you may need to put a relay running of the psu to break the connection of the capicator across the reset pin of the ide.

if the xbox does not reset when you short the reset line on the ide you might have to find the reset line from the smc which is the small microcontroller on the main board and do the same to the reset pin on there instead.
nowbird
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Re: HDD powering up too slow....options?

Post by nowbird »

I have been experiencing exactly same problem.
My original xbox was chip modded with M8 bios.

When I tried to boot it up, it showed XBOX logo only never showing microsoft under the xbox logo or it took quite long to get it showed up.

After it booted up successfully everything worked correctly except the IGR function, which would repeat the hard-to-booting status again.

I took a close look at the drives, C, D, E, F and G.
And I found that G drive was visible but it was not formatted correctly, which meant that it couldn't be used when it's needed.

So, I re-partitioned the G and formatted it and all the problem disappeared.

I found that some of the Auto Installer Deluxe doesn't make G drive ready to use properly.

If you are suffering from the same issue, try following my solution.

Hope this helps.

Nowbird from S.Korea
Ranger762
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Re: HDD powering up too slow....options?

Post by Ranger762 »

Thanks nowbird, I've applied your fix to the same problem, formatted G, and it now works as I wanted it to do!
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Re: HDD powering up too slow....options?

Post by Coldly-Indifferent »

AID extended drive partitioning should always be checked afterwards.

I think it uses an old version of XBPartitioner which had trouble correctly formatting larger Xbox partitions. That's why XBPartitioner v1.3 which has LBA48 support is always recommended just to check F and G drives are formatted correctly.

Interesting incorrect G formatting caused that problem.
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