Connecting SGI power challenge HDD to PC

Farid ur Rehman

New member
Mar 29, 2021
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I have an SGI power challenge computer which is running some software. Now the HDD of this system started to produce some noises I think it is dying and would be corrupted any time soon. I have managed to get similar capacity HDD (4.1 GB) that is supported to this system.

Now my question is that is it possible to clone the system HDD by attaching it to another windows based computer and use some kind of cloning tool like acronis or any similar tool (please suggest one)? is there any risk involved related to data loss while attaching the HDD to windows based PC?

Your valuable feedback is highly appreciated.

Regards.
 

weblacky

Member
Jan 13, 2020
69
16
8
Seattle, WA
Hi,
Irix has a backup tool, please use it with a NFS network share or another SCSI drive (externally attached) to save a backup image. Then you simply restore the backup to drive of same or LARGER size. You don't need to clone the disk to another disk directly, if you don't want.

Irix Backup tools: https://irix7.com/techpubs/007-2862-006.pdf

However if you're fearing a disk crash during full backup then I'd suggest Linux or BSD using DD or DDrescue on a PC with a SCSI adapter installed. If you think the drive health good enough to fully backup, I'd use the Irix built-in backup and restore system.

That being said, Windows will have trouble, for the following reasons:

1. Microsoft removed SCSI Support after Windows 7, so not a newer OS. Anything Windows 8+ won't have parallel SCSI support to even hook a drive too.
2. Irix SGI uses its own disk voluming scheme (partitioning) Linux knows this partition scheme...Windows and MacOS will just ask you if you want to initialize and destroy everything on the disk because it doesn't recognize the partition table format.
3. You'll still be doing a Data block-based copying (not files based).

Please be fully aware, modern linux CANNOT READ Irix XFS anymore (removed support years ago for XFS V1 & 2) so only Linux based XFSv3+ is support now. So you'll still be unable to read the files contents with anything that's NOT Irix (past Irix 6.5.5, where XFS V2 was supported).

So for file-based backup or grabbing, you have to use Irix. No other platform can currently read them anymore (old Linuxes can ---like ~2003-ish. It was removed after MIPS Irix was retired from pretty much all distros.
 
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Farid ur Rehman

New member
Mar 29, 2021
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Hi, I am trying to connect and use an old 4.1 GB 68 pin SCSI HDD to windows based PC which is currently working fine on SGI computer. I am using a PCI SCSI card on my PC which works fine for all the SCSI HDDs but when I connect the said HDD which works fine on SGI computer does not detect on PC. I have tried all the drive numbers on SGI HDD number selector panel while connecting to PC but it doesn't work on PC. I have also tried disconnecting the number selector panel but it also doesn't work.

Please suggest how to connect SGI system compatible SCSI HDD to PC?. Your valuable suggestions are highly appreciated.

Regards.
 
Last edited:

jupo

New member
Jul 9, 2019
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Tucson, AZ
Couple questions:
1. What SGI was this from?
2. This is internal, correct? Is the drive still in the SGI carrier/adapter?
3. What are you using on the PC to check if the drive is identified?
 

Farid ur Rehman

New member
Mar 29, 2021
3
0
1
Couple questions:
1. What SGI was this from?
2. This is internal, correct? Is the drive still in the SGI carrier/adapter?
3. What are you using on the PC to check if the drive is identified?
Thanks for your reply.
1. It's from SGI challenge computer.
2. It's internal HDD (connects to the SGI computer from front). I have removed the SGI carrier and adapter card from the HDD while connecting it to the PC. Connected just the HDD to the PC.
3. I am using PCI SCSI card utility to determine either HDD is detected or not.
 

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