CF Adapter General FAQ

 

Q1. I have installed Windows XP onto a Compact Flash card, but performance is slow.
A. Please refer to the Booting Operating Systems off a Compact Flash Card section for optimization techniques. For an increase in speed, we suggest using a UDMA Compact Flash card. Using Hd Tach, we have obtained 45MB/s average read speed using the Transcend 266x CF card with our adapters.

Q2. What is HORM, and how does it affect Windows boot times?
A. HORM(Hibernate Once, Resume Many) is a new technology allowing for a nearly instantaneus boot by resuming from the same hibernated image every single time. This is different from the original Hiberation feature, which only resumes from the image last created, and does not sustain itself through a reboot. For the installation of software, hardware, or patches, HORM can be easily deactivated and reactivated through the command line. Previously exclusive to the Windows XP Embedded operating system as a selection from the EWF (Enhanced Write Filter) components, there is now a method to port this valuable feature into standard Windows XP. The detailed procedure can be obtained from Silvio Fiorito's "Embedding" Windows XP documentation.

Q3. What is MinLogon, and how does it affect Windows boot times?
A. Minimal Logon(MinLogon) is another XPe exclusive component allowing for quicker boot/shutdown times, as well as a smaller footprint compared to WinLogon. This is done by providing logon and authentication support for users to the local system. There is no longer an administrator account, and there are fewer component dependancies. This function is for applications that do not require users to logon, and is best used with a command line or custom shell instead of the larger Explorer Shell component for the greatest decrease in footprint. Previously exclusive to the Windows XP Embedded operating system as replacement from the Standard Windows Logon, there is now a method to port this valuable feature into standard Windows XP. The detailed procedure can be obtained from Silvio Fiorito's "Embedding" Windows XP documentation.

Q4. What is EWF, and how does it affect Windows boot times and performance?
A. EWF(Enhanced Write Filter) is another XPe exclusive component proven to improve boot times, increase performance, and minimize the amount of writes to a CF card. EWF allows the operating system to boot and read from a read-only source, with temporary data being written onto overlays. Users accessing this computer are able to make any changes they wish, with no actual modification to the read-only source. If desired, the overlays can then be written onto the protected volume. EWF can be activated by implementing the EWF components into the XPe image. Previously exclusive to the Windows XP Embedded operating system, there is now a method to port this valuable feature into standard Windows XP. The detailed procedure can be obtained from Silvio Fiorito's "Embedding" Windows XP documentation.

Q5. I would like to boot Windows XP from my Compact Flash card with USB instead of IDE of SATA interface using one of your USB card readers. Is this possible?
A. This requirement follows the same limitations as booting an external hard drive connecting through USB interface. Windows XP will not boot from removable devices. With some modification to the Windows components and installation, Windows XP can be booted even through a USB flash drive. A couple methods of booting XP has been found, originating from Dietmar Stölting. His website WinUSB and USBoot both provide good instructions and the tools necessary to do this.

Q6. I would like to boot Windows XP Embedded from my Compact Flash card with USB instead of IDE of SATA interface using one of your USB card readers. Is this possible?
A. Yes, with the latest Window XP Embedded Service Pack 2 Feature Pack 2007, this can be done easily by adding the "USB Boot 2.0" component. Make sure the "USB 2.0 Common", "USB Boot 2.0", "USB Boot Mass Storage Device", and "USB NT Hardware Detect" components are also added in as dependencies. Your target computer's BIOS will also need to have the capability to boot off a USB device.

Q7. How do I check what DMA(Direct Memory Access) or PIO(Programmed I/O) mode is used by the Compact Flash card?
A. Connect the Compact Flash card through IDE or SATA(must be ID as IDE) interface with no other devices sharing the same IDE channel. Navigate to Device Manager, and open the "IDE ATA/ATAPI controllers" tab. Right click on the channel containing the Compact Flash, and select Properties.



In the Properties window, select the Advanced Settings tab. You will see two devices, along with the Current Transfer Mode. This will indicate the mode being used by the Compact Flash.



Alternatively, download the DMACHECK.exe program to easily indicate if the Compact Flash is using DMA or PIO.
DMA In Use - indicates that DMA
is enabled
DMA Not In Use - indicates that the IDE/ATAPI driver is defaulting to PIO

Q8. For the best compatibility, Compact Flash shown as fixed disk are recommended instead of removable. How do I determine what type my CF card is?
A. The card must be connected through an interface which is capable of detecting a CF card as a fixed disk, such as IDE or SATA. The CF card must be formatted and partitioned with a drive letter.

1. Open Command Prompt by clicking through Start Menu > Run, type in cmd, then select OK.

2. From the command prompt, type:

diskpart

list volume

3. This will display a list of volumes detected on the system. Find the volume which corresponds to your CF media by Drive Letter (Ltr) or Drive Label (Label). In the area which lists "Type" check to see if the device is listed as Removable (removable device) or Partition (fixed disk device).

Q9. My Removable type Compact Flash is detected as a fixed disk in Disk Management when connected through SATA. Is this correct?
A. Yes, the ADSACF will recognize a compact flash as a fixed fisk through Disk Management, no matter what type of CF card is inserted. This means compact flash connected through the ADSACF can be formatted with NTFS, and with multiple paritions on a single CF card.

Q9. My MicroDrive will not fit into an Addonics Adapter designed for a CF Type I card slot.
A. See the MicroDrive Limitations with CF Adapters page.

Q10. I'm using the Dual CF-IDE adapter (AD44MIDE2CF) to boot from a CF card under Windows XP. On the adapter are 2 fixed disk CF cards set as master & slave. I was able to boot into Windows but when I check Disk Management, the CF card in the slave position is not detected.

A. Certain mainboards(primarily Notebooks) may only support the Master IDE position as a hard drive. Under this situation, the Dual CF-IDE adapter may not detect the fixed disk CF card in the Slave position. This mainboard limitation can be bypassed by using a removable CF card instead of a fixed disk CF card for the slave position. A CF card ID'ed as a removable device will not take up any master or slave position, allowing it to be detected alongside a fixed disk or removable CF card.

Q11. If I connect the Dual CF-IDE adapter (AD44MIDE2CF) to an IDE ribbon cable connected to an IDE channel on your mainboard, would it detect the 2 fixed disk CF cards set as master & slave in the BIOS?

A. Yes, it would detect both CF cards. The CF card in slave position can be accessed for additional storage, or a second boot option if the operating system is capable of being booted from the slave position.

Q12. If I am using the Embedded Dual CF-IDE adapter (ADEB44IDE2CF), would Q10 above apply for ADEB44IDE2CF?

A. Yes.

Q13. My ADSACF-N, ADSACFB, or ADSACFW has a jumper for setting between 5V or 3.3V. What is this jumper, and what is the correct setting?

A. This jumper designates the adapter to operate at either 5V or 3.3V power. The factory default setting is 5V, which is the recommended setting for most CF cards. The only time when 3.3V should be used is when the CF card only supports 3.3V.