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FAT32 formatting under linux help?

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  • tallpaul352001
    So I just replaced the failed 20GB drive in my AJB20 with a new 40GB Toshiba. I pre-formatted it before installing it (in Linux with an adaptor), and after I
    Message 1 of 7 , Mar 19, 2005
      So I just replaced the failed 20GB drive in my AJB20 with a new 40GB
      Toshiba. I pre-formatted it before installing it (in Linux with an
      adaptor), and after I powered up the AJB it said:

      "File system error:
      No Valid FAT16/32 file system found

      please format drive"

      I then have formatted it multiple times over USB in linux and still
      get the same error. What am I missing?

      I'm using:

      mkfs.msdos -F32 /dev/sda1

      where the AJB is /dev/sda and I used fdisk to partition it with a
      single large Fat32 partition.

      After formatting, I can mount /dev/sda1 just fine with:

      mount -t msdos /dev/sda1 /mnt

      and it is seen, i can write files and everything.

      BUT the next time I plug it in (after a power cycle to see if the AJB
      firmware recognizes it) I can no longer mount it "filesystem not
      recognized."

      It is almost like the AJB firmware itself is destroying the partition
      and then complaining about it not being there.

      Thanks in advance,
      Paul
    • James Stewart
      Hmmm, I m going to be trying this myself in about a week when my 40 Gig Toshiba hard drive comes in for my JB6K upgrade (I finally got tired of the original 6
      Message 2 of 7 , Mar 19, 2005
        Hmmm, I'm going to be trying this myself in about a
        week when my 40 Gig Toshiba hard drive comes in for my
        JB6K upgrade (I finally got tired of the original 6
        Gig limitation).

        Anyway, here are some possible problems:

        1) You should need a space after the FAT size switch.
        i.e.: "-F 32" instead of "-F32". You probably
        created a kooky FAT 16 partition that would write over
        itself after every 2 gigs!

        2) Did you set the file system type correctly in
        "fdisk"? Mine is set at type "b" (W95 FAT32).

        3) It might be possible that you need to call the
        "VFAT" version of the program (which is the same
        program actually (mkdosfs), but it knows how you
        called it) so that it will create the "Virtual FAT" to
        give you long file name support and such, otherwise
        you may only get the old MSDOS capabilities. This one
        is a stretch because I see no mention of it on the man
        page for "mkdosfs" so maybe it really doesn't matter.
        However, you can use "mkfs.vfat" instead of
        "mkfs.msdos", or just use the general "front end"
        program with the proper switches: "mkfs -t vfat -F 32
        -s 64 /dev/sda1" to be sure.

        The "-s 64" is an extra touch I would add so that the
        "allocation unit" size is 32k. Since you are dealing
        with much larger files on your JB anyway, the larger
        "allocation unit" size will drastically help with any
        file fragmentation problems. You can try "-s 128" for
        even better performance, but I shyed away from this a
        few years ago because a lot of Windows utilities
        couldn't deal with this size. Things might be better
        by now.



        --- tallpaul352001 <tallpaul@...> wrote:
        >
        >
        >
        > So I just replaced the failed 20GB drive in my AJB20
        > with a new 40GB
        > Toshiba. I pre-formatted it before installing it (in
        > Linux with an
        > adaptor), and after I powered up the AJB it said:
        >
        > "File system error:
        > No Valid FAT16/32 file system found
        >
        > please format drive"
        >
        > I then have formatted it multiple times over USB in
        > linux and still
        > get the same error. What am I missing?
        >
        > I'm using:
        >
        > mkfs.msdos -F32 /dev/sda1
        >
        > where the AJB is /dev/sda and I used fdisk to
        > partition it with a
        > single large Fat32 partition.
        >
        > After formatting, I can mount /dev/sda1 just fine
        > with:
        >
        > mount -t msdos /dev/sda1 /mnt
        >
        > and it is seen, i can write files and everything.
        >
        > BUT the next time I plug it in (after a power cycle
        > to see if the AJB
        > firmware recognizes it) I can no longer mount it
        > "filesystem not
        > recognized."
        >
        > It is almost like the AJB firmware itself is
        > destroying the partition
        > and then complaining about it not being there.
        >
        > Thanks in advance,
        > Paul
        >
        >
        >
        >

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      • tallpaul352001
        ... Okay, fixed. ... Yup. ... I tried this, and I also threw in a -c not realizing how long it would take to check that size/speed of drive. It took about 4
        Message 3 of 7 , Mar 22, 2005
          --- In archosjukebox6000@yahoogroups.com, James Stewart
          <wartstew@y...> wrote:
          > Hmmm, I'm going to be trying this myself in about a
          > week when my 40 Gig Toshiba hard drive comes in for my
          > JB6K upgrade (I finally got tired of the original 6
          > Gig limitation).
          >
          > Anyway, here are some possible problems:
          >
          > 1) You should need a space after the FAT size switch.
          > i.e.: "-F 32" instead of "-F32". You probably
          > created a kooky FAT 16 partition that would write over
          > itself after every 2 gigs!

          Okay, fixed.

          > 2) Did you set the file system type correctly in
          > "fdisk"? Mine is set at type "b" (W95 FAT32).

          Yup.

          > 3) It might be possible that you need to call the
          > "VFAT" version of the program (which is the same
          > program actually (mkdosfs), but it knows how you
          > called it) so that it will create the "Virtual FAT" to
          > give you long file name support and such, otherwise
          > you may only get the old MSDOS capabilities. This one
          > is a stretch because I see no mention of it on the man
          > page for "mkdosfs" so maybe it really doesn't matter.
          > However, you can use "mkfs.vfat" instead of
          > "mkfs.msdos", or just use the general "front end"
          > program with the proper switches: "mkfs -t vfat -F 32
          > -s 64 /dev/sda1" to be sure.
          >
          > The "-s 64" is an extra touch I would add so that the
          > "allocation unit" size is 32k. Since you are dealing
          > with much larger files on your JB anyway, the larger
          > "allocation unit" size will drastically help with any
          > file fragmentation problems. You can try "-s 128" for
          > even better performance, but I shyed away from this a
          > few years ago because a lot of Windows utilities
          > couldn't deal with this size. Things might be better
          > by now.

          I tried this, and I also threw in a "-c" not realizing how long it
          would take to check that size/speed of drive. It took about 4 hours!
          There we no bad blocks, however and the filesystem was created okay,
          but when I unplugged the drive from USB and it rebooted the error
          occurred again.

          Here's the command line I used:

          mkfs -t vfat -c -F 32 -s 64 /dev/sda1

          Now at this point, I'm thinking that there is something wrong with the
          AJB - possibly some damage related to dropping it. The interesting
          thing is that I can format it, mount it, copy files, unmount it,
          remount it, etc. All of that works fine and it is seen as a regular
          FAT32 drive. But if I reboot it just once with the Archos firmware, th
          Archos firmware says it isn't formatted, and if I try to mount it on
          the computer after that, the computer also complains saying that it
          isn't a valid filesystem.

          It really is like booting into the Archos firmware destroys the
          partition!

          I'm going to try putting Rockbox on it (on disk - obviously I couldn't
          flash Rockbox unless I get it to boot into the on-disk Rockbox first).
          Maybe if I'm lucky, whatever is going wrong that destroys the
          filesystem is happening *after* it would ordinarily check for another
          firmware on disk and it'll boot into Rockbox with no problems. I don't
          think I'm going to get that lucky though.

          >
          >
          >
          > --- tallpaul352001 <tallpaul@s...> wrote:
          > >
          > >
          > >
          > > So I just replaced the failed 20GB drive in my AJB20
          > > with a new 40GB
          > > Toshiba. I pre-formatted it before installing it (in
          > > Linux with an
          > > adaptor), and after I powered up the AJB it said:
          > >
          > > "File system error:
          > > No Valid FAT16/32 file system found
          > >
          > > please format drive"
          > >
          > > I then have formatted it multiple times over USB in
          > > linux and still
          > > get the same error. What am I missing?
          > >
          > > I'm using:
          > >
          > > mkfs.msdos -F32 /dev/sda1
          > >
          > > where the AJB is /dev/sda and I used fdisk to
          > > partition it with a
          > > single large Fat32 partition.
          > >
          > > After formatting, I can mount /dev/sda1 just fine
          > > with:
          > >
          > > mount -t msdos /dev/sda1 /mnt
          > >
          > > and it is seen, i can write files and everything.
          > >
          > > BUT the next time I plug it in (after a power cycle
          > > to see if the AJB
          > > firmware recognizes it) I can no longer mount it
          > > "filesystem not
          > > recognized."
          > >
          > > It is almost like the AJB firmware itself is
          > > destroying the partition
          > > and then complaining about it not being there.
          > >
          > > Thanks in advance,
          > > Paul
          > >
          > >
          > >
          > >
          >
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        • tallpaul352001
          ... So, I managed to solve my problem. I never did get around to trying to put Rockbox on it, but I don t think that would have helped. At work there are a
          Message 4 of 7 , Mar 28, 2005
            --- In archosjukebox6000@yahoogroups.com, "tallpaul352001"
            > Here's the command line I used:
            >
            > mkfs -t vfat -c -F 32 -s 64 /dev/sda1
            >
            > Now at this point, I'm thinking that there is something wrong with the
            > AJB - possibly some damage related to dropping it. The interesting
            > thing is that I can format it, mount it, copy files, unmount it,
            > remount it, etc. All of that works fine and it is seen as a regular
            > FAT32 drive. But if I reboot it just once with the Archos firmware, th
            > Archos firmware says it isn't formatted, and if I try to mount it on
            > the computer after that, the computer also complains saying that it
            > isn't a valid filesystem.

            So, I managed to solve my problem. I never did get around to trying to
            put Rockbox on it, but I don't think that would have helped.

            At work there are a number of Macs running OS X. I put the AJBR on a
            Mac and formatted the filesystem - FAT32 and prest-o, it works. Even
            after multiple reboots of the AJBR, I also downloaded some mp3s, and
            played them etc. It just works.

            So I can only conclude at this point that Linux was making the
            filesystem incorrectly, or perhaps too correctly (eg: the AJBR was
            looking for some standard "brokenness" according to the official spec
            for FAT32). Who knows?

            I would test the theory out by formatting it on Win98 or some older
            version of Windows, except that all I've got available are Windows
            2000 and XP, both of which don't like to deal with >32GB FAT32
            filesystems.
          • James Stewart
            I ve used exactly this command (except for the -c option because I believe my disk to be perfect) and it worked. I suspect the problem might be that mkfs
            Message 5 of 7 , Mar 28, 2005
              I've used exactly this command (except for the -c
              option because I believe my disk to be perfect) and it
              worked. I suspect the problem might be that "mkfs"
              *only* does that. It does not mess with partition
              tables, or mbr's. Perhaps the MacOS does and fixed
              something that was wrong. I wish I could find out
              what it was so I can update my little
              linux-on-a-floppy utility disk to perform this repair
              automatically.

              Maybe I could try to repeat how you messed yours up?
              I should be getting my new hard drive in any day now,
              I forgot what it was you did that you think caused the
              problem.

              --- tallpaul352001 <tallpaul@...> wrote:
              >
              > --- In archosjukebox6000@yahoogroups.com,
              > "tallpaul352001"
              > > Here's the command line I used:
              > >
              > > mkfs -t vfat -c -F 32 -s 64 /dev/sda1
              > >
              > > Now at this point, I'm thinking that there is
              > something wrong with the
              > > AJB - possibly some damage related to dropping it.
              > The interesting
              > > thing is that I can format it, mount it, copy
              > files, unmount it,
              > > remount it, etc. All of that works fine and it is
              > seen as a regular
              > > FAT32 drive. But if I reboot it just once with the
              > Archos firmware, th
              > > Archos firmware says it isn't formatted, and if I
              > try to mount it on
              > > the computer after that, the computer also
              > complains saying that it
              > > isn't a valid filesystem.
              >
              > So, I managed to solve my problem. I never did get
              > around to trying to
              > put Rockbox on it, but I don't think that would have
              > helped.
              >
              > At work there are a number of Macs running OS X. I
              > put the AJBR on a
              > Mac and formatted the filesystem - FAT32 and
              > prest-o, it works. Even
              > after multiple reboots of the AJBR, I also
              > downloaded some mp3s, and
              > played them etc. It just works.
              >
              > So I can only conclude at this point that Linux was
              > making the
              > filesystem incorrectly, or perhaps too correctly
              > (eg: the AJBR was
              > looking for some standard "brokenness" according to
              > the official spec
              > for FAT32). Who knows?
              >
              > I would test the theory out by formatting it on
              > Win98 or some older
              > version of Windows, except that all I've got
              > available are Windows
              > 2000 and XP, both of which don't like to deal with
              > >32GB FAT32
              > filesystems.
              >
              >
              >
              >
              >
              >



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            • tallpaul352001
              ... I don t know what caused the problem to repeat it (and I m not too keen to do it myself now that I have a working AJB). The only 2 things I did were: 1)
              Message 6 of 7 , Mar 31, 2005
                --- In archosjukebox6000@yahoogroups.com, James Stewart
                <wartstew@y...> wrote:
                > I've used exactly this command (except for the -c
                > option because I believe my disk to be perfect) and it
                > worked. I suspect the problem might be that "mkfs"
                > *only* does that. It does not mess with partition
                > tables, or mbr's. Perhaps the MacOS does and fixed
                > something that was wrong. I wish I could find out
                > what it was so I can update my little
                > linux-on-a-floppy utility disk to perform this repair
                > automatically.
                >
                > Maybe I could try to repeat how you messed yours up?
                > I should be getting my new hard drive in any day now,
                > I forgot what it was you did that you think caused the
                > problem.

                I don't know what caused the problem to repeat it (and I'm not too
                keen to do it myself now that I have a working AJB). The only 2 things
                I did were:

                1) fdisk - create one large fat32 partition.

                2) the mkfs command you saw - I did it both with -c and without -c.

                I also did several other mkfs attempts before that, none of which
                should have caused any permanant damage, and all of which should have
                worked - and did because I could mount the disk immediately afterwards.

                My best guess at this point (and it isn't very strong) is that there
                was something wrong with the way I fdisk'ed it, and the Mac overwrote
                that entirely. But literally all I did was create a FAT32 partition
                spanning the whole disk using Linux fdisk. Perhaps I shouldn't have
                made it span the whole disk but slightly less, or perhaps Linux fdisk
                is actually messed up - I only re-fdisk'ed it once (the exact same
                way), so the partition table never changed through several mkfs
                attempts - none of which worked.

                Paul
              • James Stewart
                Thanks for the reply. I still haven t received my new hard drive and a company called 24x7PC is definitely going to get a bad rating from me, but when I do
                Message 7 of 7 , Apr 1, 2005
                  Thanks for the reply. I still haven't received my new
                  hard drive and a company called "24x7PC" is definitely
                  going to get a bad rating from me, but when I do I
                  hope to be able to repeat a procedure that people do
                  that causes this problem so I can then figure out how
                  to fix it easily.

                  I think most people begin by formatting the drive in
                  WinXP, and sometimes using "Partition Magic". I only
                  have a very old version of "Partition Magic", but I'm
                  unsure if that alone causes the problem anyway. Yours
                  is the first case where someone started with Linux.
                  Are you sure there was not an existing formatted file
                  system on that disk? Often a new drive comes
                  preformatted as a result of a final quality assurance
                  test. I suspect the problem with "mkfs" is all the
                  things it *doesn't* do, like mess with the partition
                  table or the MBR. Linux has other utilities for that
                  (the UNIX world has a motto of "each program should do
                  one thing only but do it well" that sometimes results
                  in strange procedures to get things done).

                  If anyone out there wants to tell me a step by step
                  procedure they did (probably using WinXP) that caused
                  this problem let me know and I'll try to repeat it so
                  I can then figure out the easiest solution to it.

                  James

                  --- tallpaul352001 <tallpaul@...> wrote:
                  >
                  > --- In archosjukebox6000@yahoogroups.com, James
                  > Stewart
                  > <wartstew@y...> wrote:
                  > > I've used exactly this command (except for the -c
                  > > option because I believe my disk to be perfect)
                  > and it
                  > > worked. I suspect the problem might be that
                  > "mkfs"
                  > > *only* does that. It does not mess with partition
                  > > tables, or mbr's. Perhaps the MacOS does and
                  > fixed
                  > > something that was wrong. I wish I could find out
                  > > what it was so I can update my little
                  > > linux-on-a-floppy utility disk to perform this
                  > repair
                  > > automatically.
                  > >
                  > > Maybe I could try to repeat how you messed yours
                  > up?
                  > > I should be getting my new hard drive in any day
                  > now,
                  > > I forgot what it was you did that you think caused
                  > the
                  > > problem.
                  >
                  > I don't know what caused the problem to repeat it
                  > (and I'm not too
                  > keen to do it myself now that I have a working AJB).
                  > The only 2 things
                  > I did were:
                  >
                  > 1) fdisk - create one large fat32 partition.
                  >
                  > 2) the mkfs command you saw - I did it both with -c
                  > and without -c.
                  >
                  > I also did several other mkfs attempts before that,
                  > none of which
                  > should have caused any permanant damage, and all of
                  > which should have
                  > worked - and did because I could mount the disk
                  > immediately afterwards.
                  >
                  > My best guess at this point (and it isn't very
                  > strong) is that there
                  > was something wrong with the way I fdisk'ed it, and
                  > the Mac overwrote
                  > that entirely. But literally all I did was create a
                  > FAT32 partition
                  > spanning the whole disk using Linux fdisk. Perhaps I
                  > shouldn't have
                  > made it span the whole disk but slightly less, or
                  > perhaps Linux fdisk
                  > is actually messed up - I only re-fdisk'ed it once
                  > (the exact same
                  > way), so the partition table never changed through
                  > several mkfs
                  > attempts - none of which worked.
                  >
                  > Paul
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >



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