News · CF Driver for MB-03+ and MB-02+

28/01/2020 at 14:37 in Software

I was aware, that VDT Creator and HDPC could be a bit confusing and also was a bit complicated to run it on MB-03+ Ultimate, so I decided to start from the scratch. I wanted fully automatic driver, which can be used not only on MB-03+, but also on good old MB-02+. It took me more time than I expected, but nevertheless, here it is - CF Driver.

It comes in separate versions for MB-03+ Ultimate and for MB-02+. There are two options how to use it on both. On the MB-03+ you can put it into flash memory, block 03, instead of EasyHDD. Or you can run it manually on demand only. On the MB-02+ you can use comfortable FlashBoot version (programmed into bootrom), or you can put it into autoexe to run it automatically upon the boot process.

Main features:

  • DMA transfers
  • CHS & LBA transfer modes (automatically detected)
  • variable disk image format
  • supports master devices only
  • automatic partition search
  • automatic installation

The usage is similar as with HDPC. With linux fdisk or cfdisk create partition type 47h on your CF card or HDD. It should be not bigger than ~530MB, as the BSDOS can not handle bigger space. You can use also zxfdisk for this operation.

Then fill up the partition with your MBD images. If you do not have any, you can create some with mbdnew and tap2mbhdd utilities, the recommended format is 127x8. But keep in mind that although the internal geometry of the virtual disks is variable, CF Driver works internally with fixed size virtual disks. It's always 2048 sectors, 2097152 bytes. As I said, the internal image format is variable, but if it does not have 2048 sectors, the resulting image created with mbdnew will be smaller and therefore needs to be complemented with a correspondingly large tail. You can create this tail in Linux using dd, like this: dd bs=1024 seek=2048 count=0 if=/dev/zero of=your-smaller-image.mbd. The command will join the tail and whatever the input mbd file is, it will always result in mbd of 2097152 bytes. Windows users have it a lot easier, as the MBD plugin for Total Commander allows you to create mbd files 2097152 bytes large, but internally they can have a geometry of 127×8, 93×11, or 82×11.

When you have such images ready, you have to join them into one large mbh file, using cat command in Linux (cat *.mbd > my-cfcard-img.mbh), or type command in Windows CLI, or Combine files function in Total Commander. The mbh image must not be larger than your partition. Now you have to write the mbh file to your CF/HDD, to the 47h partition you created earlier, without filesystem! You can do that in Linux with dd command (e.g. dd if=my-cfcard-img.mbh of=/dev/sdX, where sdX is your 47h partition), or you can use Win32 Disk Imager in Windows.

Then nsert the CF/HDD to your MB-03+ Ultimate or MB-02+ and enjoy.

Download is here: or on the MB-02+ subpage.

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