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What is a CASABLANCA formatted drive ?

Community Veteran
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Registered: 11-08-2007

What is a CASABLANCA formatted drive ?

I recently bought a hard disk drive on eBay - a Western Digital WD800JB.
When it arrived I put it into my PC and ran the Western Digital "Data Lifeguard Diagnostics" to check whether it was OK.
Unfortunately each test ran for about 10% before giving up reporting a variety of problems.
I also tried writing ALL ZEROES to the entire disk - which also failed,  and formatted it to NTFS which completed without complaint !.
Re-ran all the tests, it still failed.
I then swapped a similar known working drive - just to check my setup - and that drive worked perfectly.
I then got into several back and forth emails with the seller, he claimed it worked the day before... etc.
He eventually asked me to send him the serial number of the alleged faulty drive, as he thought that he might have sent me the wrong drive (despite being the correct model) from his stock of drives.
Later on, he sends me another email that says -
Quote
Thank you i have found the problem the serial is for a CASABLANCA formatted drive that is unreconisable due to it not being FAT32 nor NTFS i have located the drive that should have been sent ... ...

My question is has anyone heard of the "CASABLANCA" drive format ?, as I have never come across it and it sounds like B.S. to me !
Fortunately I have had a full refund of my money so I don't need an answer to challenge the seller with, but am just interested to see how this format is different (if it exists !), and intrigued as to why the drive could not be fully accessed with the manufacturers diagnostic tools if the drive is not faulty.
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Re: What is a CASABLANCA formatted drive ?

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Re: What is a CASABLANCA formatted drive ?

Thanks Oldjim, so now I know that it exists !
So my next problem is how to recover the drive, presumably with a low level format, using a standard PC IDE connection - as it is very unlikely that I would be able to get access to the mentioned "Bogart OS Casablanca" machine to reverse the process.
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Re: What is a CASABLANCA formatted drive ?

Community Veteran
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Re: What is a CASABLANCA formatted drive ?

Thanks for trying Jelv,  but I have already done the full erase by writing zeroes to the disk using those WDC tools - but that failed to complete.
I don't know whether writing zeroes is necessarily the same thing as a low level format ?
Because I don't know the history of this drive it could well be faulty, as well as having an unusual format.
VileReynard
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Re: What is a CASABLANCA formatted drive ?

Play it again, Sam. Grin

Community Veteran
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Re: What is a CASABLANCA formatted drive ?

I would be delighted if I could get it to play once  Cheesy
magnetism2772
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Registered: 06-06-2010

Re: What is a CASABLANCA formatted drive ?

the Casablanca uses the Amiga ROM (1.44 Mb) floppy disk
the file system is a typical amiga file system adapted to this format (changed block sizes).You can easily mount an image of this disk
using simple mountlist on a real amiga.
looking inside this video editing black box
its an amiga  word processor of video

one could try and use an  amiga emulator
not tried personally by me
magnetism2772
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Re: What is a CASABLANCA formatted drive ?

Quote
I don't know whether writing zeroes is necessarily the same thing as a low level format ?

low  level formats an an zero fill are two different things
low level formats are created  just once by the manufacturer
the process involves outlining the positions of the tracks and sectors on the hard disk, and writing the control structures that define where the tracks and sectors are.
This is often called a "true" formatting operation, because it really creates the physical format that defines where the data is stored on the disk
Hard drive manufacturers have created for modern drives, replacements for the old LLF utilities. They cause some confusion, because they are often still called "low-level format" utilities. The name is incorrect because, again, no utility that a user can run on a PC can LLF a modern drive. A more proper name for this sort of program is a zero-fill and diagnostic utility. This software does  work on the drive at a low level, usually including the following functions (and perhaps others)
Drive Recognition Test: Lets you test to see if the software can "see" the drive. This is the first step in ensuring that the drive is properly installed and connected.
Display Drive Details: Tells you detailed information about the drive, such as its exact model number, firmware revision level, date of manufacture, etc.
Test For Errors: Analyzes the entire surface of the hard disk, looking for problem areas (bad sectors) and instructing the integrated drive controller to remap them.
Zero-Fill: Wipes off all data on the drive by filling every sector with zeroes. Normally a test for errors (as above) is done at the same time.
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Re: What is a CASABLANCA formatted drive ?

This would suggest that while the Casablanca format is unlikely to be read by Windows or Linux, it should have been erased by the diagnostic program's  "Zero-Fill" - had it completed successfully.
So on the basis that I can do "Drive Recognition Test" and "Display Drive Details", BUT NOT complete "Test For Errors" or "Zero-Fill",
probably means the drive electronics are OK, BUT the mechanics are beyond any sort of recovery.
magnetism2772
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Re: What is a CASABLANCA formatted drive ?

When you reinitialize a hard drive, basically you use a utility that over writes the whole drive with ones and zeros.  Every area of the hard drive is cleansed.  Its what a windows install disk would use to format a new hard drive just before a clean install
on the Casablanca Video editor 
the file system is Amiga
and at the low level the disk is in the old  MFM format
VileReynard
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Re: What is a CASABLANCA formatted drive ?

Not necessarily!
Initially the drive can have sectors where error control reporting etc is stored, including the failed sectors table.
Normally Grin A LLF (wipe the disk) would reset all these areas - but a LLF that doesn't run to completion could leave a corrupted/broken disk.
Although you got a full refund, do you still have the disk?
Maybe the Casablanca story is just a story for a dodgy disk? Roll eyes Roll eyes

magnetism2772
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Re: What is a CASABLANCA formatted drive ?

what is the logical organisation of an Amiga volume?

Quote
Normally Grin A LLF (wipe the disk) would reset all these areas - but a LLF that doesn't run to completion could leave a corrupted/broken disk.

that is possible but one would off thought you might  be able to see this though in the hard drive editor ?
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Re: What is a CASABLANCA formatted drive ?

[quote=A Fox is Evil ]Although you got a full refund, do you still have the disk?
Maybe the Casablanca story is just a story for a dodgy disk?
Yes I still have the disk drive, and it looks new and unused.
My first thought was also that it was just a story - especially as I have recently been looking disk formats that Ubuntu can access, and I had never seen or heard of Casablanca before.
Also the seller had already admitted to sending me the wrong drive, so the Casablanca issue seemed too elaborate for covering up a simple shipping mistake.
It just would be nice if I could get it going - if there is nothing actually wrong with it !
I am already bidding on eBay on similar drives, I just missed one - outbid by 98 pence - D'oh !!!  Roll eyes
jackoab
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Registered: 14-08-2007

Re: What is a CASABLANCA formatted drive ?

I use a program called Kill Disk which has a free version. it does a complete wipe of the disk and after you just format it.
You can find it on google and download as an ISO file which you need to transfer to a CD, might be worth a try?
www.killdisk.com.