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Hard drive selector

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August 14, 2005 9:27:28 PM

I have 3 HDs and want to install a different OS on each drive. In addition I don't want the OS on one drive to detect the other drives. There can be no chance of one drive writing to another drive.

After much hunting around on the internet I found the ideal solution to my problem: Romtec Trios II. With credit card in hand I was ready to buy. Unfortunately the manufacturer is no longer is business.

After more searching I found industechnologies.com produces a similar (and better) product to the Trios but is too expensive.

A chassis made by Korean GMC (Noblesse SE) has a built in HD selector but the chassis is too expensive and is not sold any where near where I live.

I'm not keen on the idea of using HD swappable enclosures because the drives tend to get knocked around.

NickLock seems good but is only good for 2 drives and not 3.

I am left with the only option of rigging up something myself. So here's my plan:

For each drive I cut the 12v & 5v power wires and put a DPST rocker switch in between them. The ground wires are not cut.

All three drives are set to cable select.
Drive A plugs into primary master.
Drive B plugs into secondary master.
Drive C plugs into my Promise controller card.

When it comes time to boot the respective rocker switches get set and the boot drive is selected in the BIOS. From my standpoint, as long as a switch doesn't get flipped while the power is on everything should work.

So I'm asking for a second opinion ... does anyone see anything that can go wrong (or is inherently dangerous) with my plan?

More about : hard drive selector

August 15, 2005 11:25:44 PM

I use a switchdrive ( www.switchdrive.com ) for my dual boot. I thought of just running switches like you are describing, but after pricing everything it was cheaper to buy a product pre-made. Also running switches would mean a whole mess of wires to block airflow.

In the product description it says that tri boot options can be special ordered.

The switchdrive also works by cutting the 5v and 12v power. This method is sound as long as its not switched while the computer is running.

I havent had any trouble with it. I am switching between a ide and sata drives and it works flawless.

If you are going to use switches and wires make sure that everything is rated at 2+ amps.

Why would you have to enter the bios to make the switch? I dont.
August 16, 2005 12:05:48 AM

You could also just enter bios each time you wanted to change boot drive and boot new o/s that way. No hardware added.

<pre><font color=red>°¤o,¸¸¸,o¤°`°¤o \\// o¤°`°¤o,¸¸¸,o¤°
And the sign says "You got to have a membership card to get inside" Huh
So I got me a pen and paper And I made up my own little sign</pre><p></font color=red>
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August 16, 2005 2:41:36 AM

yes i could change the boot setting in the bios. the problem is all the drives would be powered up and I risk one OS writing to one of the other drives that I'm trying to keep isolated.
August 16, 2005 2:52:55 AM

Disable the other two when doing install, then after each of the 3 o/s's are installed, hook them up. Then you could disable drives in each o/s you did not want to read/write on in the o/s.
One time setup, and then just change boot options.


<pre><font color=red>°¤o,¸¸¸,o¤°`°¤o \\// o¤°`°¤o,¸¸¸,o¤°
And the sign says "You got to have a membership card to get inside" Huh
So I got me a pen and paper And I made up my own little sign</pre><p></font color=red>
Anonymous
a b G Storage
August 16, 2005 1:00:59 PM

That was exactly my thought...Disabling them in Hardware manager would do the trick,or in disk management, just unmount the drives...

Asus P4P800DX, P4C 2.6ghz@3.25ghz, 2X512 OCZ PC4000 3-4-4-8, MSI 6800Ultra stock, 2X30gig Raid0
August 16, 2005 1:07:49 PM

I enjoy mounting and dis-mounting with my hard drive...

<pre><font color=red>°¤o,¸¸¸,o¤°`°¤o \\// o¤°`°¤o,¸¸¸,o¤°
And the sign says "You got to have a membership card to get inside" Huh
So I got me a pen and paper And I made up my own little sign</pre><p></font color=red>
Anonymous
a b G Storage
August 16, 2005 3:46:55 PM

For real? cant tell if its sarcasm/pun hehe

Well since each HD got his own OS, need to be done once on all OS. If its for public use, you can use GPO to ensure people dont go in disk manager...

Asus P4P800DX, P4C 2.6ghz@3.25ghz, 2X512 OCZ PC4000 3-4-4-8, MSI 6800Ultra stock, 2X30gig Raid0
August 16, 2005 4:10:06 PM

For real, I agree. ;) 

<pre><font color=red>°¤o,¸¸¸,o¤°`°¤o \\// o¤°`°¤o,¸¸¸,o¤°
And the sign says "You got to have a membership card to get inside" Huh
So I got me a pen and paper And I made up my own little sign</pre><p></font color=red>
Anonymous
a b G Storage
August 16, 2005 6:30:40 PM

oh ok
w00000t! WHy make a switch that can fry your Pc if switched while the computer is running(90% of the time I gues)

Asus P4P800DX, P4C 2.6ghz@3.25ghz, 2X512 OCZ PC4000 3-4-4-8, MSI 6800Ultra stock, 2X30gig Raid0
August 16, 2005 7:12:59 PM

uhh, looks around... I don't recall advising a <i>switch</i>, why have you been bad?

<pre><font color=red>°¤o,¸¸¸,o¤°`°¤o \\// o¤°`°¤o,¸¸¸,o¤°
And the sign says "You got to have a membership card to get inside" Huh
So I got me a pen and paper And I made up my own little sign</pre><p></font color=red>
Anonymous
a b G Storage
August 17, 2005 1:35:41 PM

Oh sorry for the confusion, I added that as a general comment, even if it was in a reply to you it wasnt idected to you...

The part directed to you was:
oh ok
w0000t!

:wink:

Asus P4P800DX, P4C 2.6ghz@3.25ghz, 2X512 OCZ PC4000 3-4-4-8, MSI 6800Ultra stock, 2X30gig Raid0
!