File: AN-3.4

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sformat 3.5-1.2
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Newsgroups: comp.unix.solaris,comp.sys.sun.misc,comp.sys.sun.admin,alt.sys.sun,bln.comp.sun,alt.os.linux,comp.os.linux.misc,de.comp.os.linux.misc,maus.os.linux
Subject: Sformat-3.4 source code released (first SCSI disk tool for SunOS/Solaris)


Sformat 3.4 has been released.

Sformat, the first SCSI disk formatting utility for SunOS/Solaris
is now available in the second public release.

Sformat allows formatting/partitioning/analysis/repairing of SCSI disks,
sformat runs with complete functionality on sparc and motorola systems
on SunOS 4.1 and on Solaris 2.3 or later.

This version will compile on Solaris 2.3 or later and on SunOS 4.1, Linux and 
probably all other operating systems where cdrecord compiles and runs.
Sformat-3.4 compiles and runs on Solaris/x86 too.
Sformat-3.4 has its full functionality on SunOS/Solaris on sparc 
and Motorola systems, on all other systems sformat will create
Sun disk labels with wrong byte-order, but formatting/analysys/repair
will work.

New features of sformat-3.4 compared to sformat-3.3:

	-	Support for new architectures added (HP-UX SGI-IRIX ...)
		Now compiles on Solaris x86 too.

	-	Allow compiling on Solaris 2.6

	-	Better SCSI error display

	-	Deal with a problem that is caused when the SCSI verify
		command returns a wrong error block number that is smaller
		than the start block number (infinite loop)

	-	Automatic map for disks that have physical geometry
		values > 65535 for the Sun disk label

The main advantages to the Sun format utility are:

	-	Working surface analyze that will detect
		defective blocks that are going to get bad.

	-	Analyzing program that detects defective
		bearings in the disk (-randrw).

	-	Will repair nearly any defective disk, that
		has no firmware bug or electric defect.

	-	Allows to clear the grown defect list if a disk.

	-	Disk geometry and label geometry are separated.

	-	Allows cheating in the label geometry to deal
		with the problems with the limitation to 16 bit
		data types in the Sun disk label.

	-	Large database of disks including firmware
		specials.

	-	You need no desk calculator to generate
		a partition table.
		Shorthands for:
		-	MBytes
		-	cylinders/head/sectors
		-	size partition to end on end of disk
		-	partition following another partition
		-	partition ending before another partition
		-	shifting partition on the disk
			(allows growing part 0 and shrinking part 1)

	-	Partition consistency checker with (ascii) graphical
		display.

	-	Mode page interpreter allows to set easily
		all mode pages you will ever find in a manual,
		sformat needs not to know about them.

I am looking for volunteers to port sformat to new architectures.
First level is to make sformat compile and send SCSI commands,
second level is to add label/partitioning support.

Sformat should compile and run on FreeBSD, NetBSD and OpenBSD,
SGI-IRIX and HP-UX if partinioning is not a issue.
For Linux it would be nice to have support for Partitions.

If you port sformat to a new architecture (first level),
you will be able to run cdrecord too.

The manual is not yet complete ready. Please mail me
to correct my english or if you have difficulties in
understanding.

There is an old german documentation located in
doc/sformat/doc, but the actual troff manual should me more complete
this times.

A currently growing nroff/troff document is in sformat/sformat.1

To view the troff document, type:

nroff -man sformat.1 | more -s

The disk database should be located in /opt/schily/etc/sformat.dat

History:

The first version of sformat has been made in 1986.

Sformat is the first SCSI disk formatting/analyzing/repairing utility that runs on
SunOS/Solaris. The first release of sformat has been made for SunOS 3.0
(two years before Sun introduced their format utility). Sformat source
including 12 years of competence in SCSI disk handling is now available
in source.

You *need* the SCSI general driver 'scg' in order to 
run sformat on SunOS/Solaris

The 'scg' driver is Copyright 1986-1995 J�rg Schilling,
it is supplied binary in pkgadd(1m) format and is tested 
on Solaris 2.3, Solaris 2.4 / 2.5 / 2.6 & 2.7.


To install get:

	SCHILYscg.sparc.tar.Z	The scg driver in pkgadd format (sparc).
	sformat-3.4.tar.gz	The sformat source distribution.

NOTE:	These tar archives are 100% ansi compatible. Solaris 2.x tar and GNU
	tar may get some minor trouble.

The files are located on:

ftp://ftp.fokus.gmd.de/pub/unix/sformat/ ...
ftp://ftp.fokus.gmd.de/pub/unix/kernel/scg/ ...

sformat must be installed in /opt/schily/...
		

NOTE:
	Be very careful. pkgadd does not check for the right target 
	architecture. Do not install drivers for intel on sparc
	and vice versa. You will get a corrupt system.

	You need to be root because you need access to /dev/scg? and to be
	able to send some ioctl's to the disk driver.


	Joerg Schilling

	(really J�rg Schilling if you have ISO-8859-1)

If you have questions mail to:

	HOME: 		joerg@schily.isdn.cs.tu-berlin.de
	UNIVERSITY:	js@cs.tu-berlin.de
	WORK:		schilling@fokus.gmd.de