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Booting from external FW

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Alan Lacey
Booting from external FW
on May 2, 2007 at 5:10:46 pm

I'm very inexperienced with Macs but have been editing with FCP sometimes on my Dual G5 2.5

I boot from FW and the machine has always been very slow (sometimes fails) at finding the OS on the drive.

Today after four attempts, using different ports, I had to resort to trying to boot it on an older external FW (Panther) which it eventually did. I then subsequently reset the startup disk, plugged the other disk in and rebooted. Which it did.

Is there anything I could do to improve this somehow. Occasionally I go through a period when it boots reliably and quickly whereas other times, and it seems that it's usually when I've not used the Mac for a period - I'm a PC man, it's very slow finding the OS drive.

Thank you for help

Alan


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zrb123
Re: Booting from external FW
on May 2, 2007 at 6:28:05 pm

Where during the boot up is it hanging up?

You never said.


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Alan Lacey
Re: Booting from external FW
on May 2, 2007 at 8:06:58 pm

Sorry I didn't make myself clear. It doesn't hang, it just fairly frequently doesn't find the drive and so start the boot.

If I cycle the power it'll probably find the drive second time round and all is well.

Alan


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zrb123
Re: Booting from external FW
on May 2, 2007 at 8:37:11 pm

sounds like a problem with the drive


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Alan Lacey
Re: Booting from external FW
on May 2, 2007 at 9:02:58 pm

Behaves the same on four other drives so I think that's unlikely.

I have three similar systems (3 G5s in various locations, no OS on them) and the idea was to turn each into a video edit station by connecting the relevant FW boot disk when required)

It's worked a treat for a couple of years now, but always with this problem on all machines.

Thanks Alan


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zrb123
Re: Booting from external FW
on May 3, 2007 at 7:30:13 am

Are you just plugging in the Firewire drive then turning it on, or do you hold down the option key and choose the drive to boot from. if you are doing the first then check the start up disk setting in system preferences.

[Alan Lacey] "I have three similar systems (3 G5s in various locations, no OS on them) and the idea was to turn each into a video edit station by connecting the relevant FW boot disk when required)"

You have no drive in the system with an OS on it. You should keep a drive in computer with the OS on it. Booting from a FW drive is great for troubleshooting potential problems, and for running drive optimization or disk repair, but I do see some potential problems with the way you have been doing things.

One problem I see especially when working with video, is that you are using the one Firewire bus on the computer to connect to your OS drive. Any other firewire devices connected would add more traffic in the firewire pipeline, and it may overwhelm it.


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zrb123
Re: Booting from external FW
on May 3, 2007 at 7:40:21 am

Oh and it is also possible that it could cause problems with firmware. If it was run on one computer then the others may think that it has been run when it really hasn't been run on them.


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Alan Lacey
Re: Booting from external FW
on May 3, 2007 at 10:54:02 am

I take all your points zrb and thanks.

After it's booted any of the three machines have run flawlessly. Indeed one of them is connected to an AJA IO via FW (another bus) No problems capture/edit uncompressed 10 bit SD. Media is on a 320 SCSI.

To answer your question, I've always just waited (and sometimes waited and waited!) for the Mac to find the FW OS drive. This is really the issue, not being a Mac man I wondered if there was something I could do to help the machine find the drive.

I have set the startup disc in system prefs.

I didn't know about the option of alt key on bootup. Presumably this is for situations where there is a choice of OS. I'm not with my Mac at present but will give that a go.

Thank you for your ongoing support

Alan


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