[BBC-Micro] Hard or Soft Sectored Drives
pete at dunnington.plus.com
Fri Dec 22 10:29:28 GMT 2006
On 22/12/2006 09:21, David Harper wrote:
> One can only guess here. I would suspect that Superform may format a whole
> track at a time (as modern formatting programs do) if soft sectors are used.
> Thus there is a single formatting action per track, possibly with no option
> as to how many sectors are included. On the other hand, if the sectors are
> hard then each sector will have to be formatted separately, waiting for the
> index pulse each time, and so a sector counter will be needed.
Superform tries to tell the drive controller to use 17 sectors per track
(IIRC) on soft-sectored disks, ie those where the controller in the disk
allows raw track access or allows a Mode Select to change the number.
On hard-sectored disks, I expect (but haven't looked at it for a while)
it asks the drive how many sectors there are; this is typically not
changeable on small hard disks (or if it is, it's just a function of
whether the sectors are 256 bytes or 512). The formatting is always
done by a Format Track command.
Pete Peter Turnbull
University of York
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