Re: Old IDE/Floppy Tape Drive

Bryn Paul Arnold Jones (
Sun, 9 Mar 1997 11:53:26 +0000 (GMT)

On Sat, 8 Mar 1997, Kirk Bauer wrote:

> I have this old Conner or Colorado (I can't remember) tape drive.
> It hooks into the IDE Floppy controller. It takes those DC2120
> 120/250MB mini-tapes.

If it's on the floppy connector it's a floppy tape drive, it's only an
IDE tape drive if it's on the IDE connector (it's more properly called an
ATAPI tape drive tho ;).

> I would like to be able to use this under Linux with programs such
> as 'mt' and others. How do I get the kernel to recognize this -- or
> if it already does, how do I get a '/dev/tape' file?

Well if it's an IDE tape, it'll be reported with other IDE hard disks, I
have an IDE hard tape, and it's reported with my other IDE devices like

hda: WDC AC21000H, ATA DISK drive
hdb: WDC AC31000H, ATA DISK drive
hdc: LTN222A, ATAPI CDROM drive
hdd: CONNER CTT8000-A, ATAPI TAPE drive

> Here are what I feel are the relevant lines from /usr/src/linux/.config
> for Linux 2.0.27:
> # CONFIG_BLK_DEV_HD_IDE is not set
> Please let me know how to:
> 1) tell if the kernel is recognizing the drive

Ok, done that for IDE tapes, for floppy tapes (i assume) there will be a
message in the boot messages. Hmm, after looking in the source, it sais
"ftape-2.08 960314 for Linux 1.3.70" if built in (and no this isn't
1.3.70 ;), or about 5-6 lines if as a module. Dosen't seem to report
wether it's found any tape drives tho.

> 2) Get the kernel to recognize the drive

Go find the ftape question in the kernel config (under char devices), and
say yes to it.

> 3) Get a /dev/tape file to access the drive...

Seems to be as root do:
cd /dev

> I appreciate all of your hard work. Linux is a great OS and I'm
> glad I have it available to me for free.
> Please reply to me as I'm not on the Kernel Mailing List....
> -----------------------------------------------------------------
> Kirk Bauer Georgia Tech or

I really don't know much about the ftape driver, or how to use it, as I've
got an ATAPI tape, but you should read the Ftape-HOWTO, you may have it
under /usr/doc/faq/howto/Ftape-HOWTO (slackware install), or
/usr/doc/HOWTO/Ftape-HOWTO (Red Hat install), and it's proberbly gziped
(use zless to read). If you don't already have it, or want a more up to
date version, go look in for
it (tho you may want to use a mirror).


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