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PM24555 PCMCIA flash memory - how interfaced?

Discussion in 'Electronic Design' started by Peter, Mar 24, 2006.

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  1. Peter

    Peter Guest

    I have a quantity of these and would like to be able to use them.

    What I know is this:

    It is PCMCIA
    It is probably 20MB, linear flash
    It was made by Intel at one time (but doesn't feature on their
    website)
    It was also made by Smart Modular Technologies (but likewise) and they
    may still be supplying it

    I cannot find even a data sheet on it anywhere.

    However, it is used in a number of products currently on the market.

    Presumably this won't appear as a block storage device in a normal PC,
    but should appear (as linear memory) within the address space
    somewhere?

    As regards writing it, it could be done internally, or the PC would
    need to run the usual flash writing code (applying a certain # of
    pulses to each location, etc).

    Any suggestions on how to use this item would be much appreciated.

    Peter.
     
  2. Ian Stirling

    Ian Stirling Guest

    Plug it into a linux box.
    What does card services report on insertion.
    It may simply present a 'true ide' interface.
     
  3. Peter

    Peter Guest

    How would one proceed to make a byte for byte copy of one of these
    flash cartridges, for example?

    They are marketed as Linear Flash e.g.

    http://www.techonweb.com/products/productdetail.aspx?id=A18507

    *********
    Linear Flash PC Cards support true random access so reads literally
    happen in a flash. Not only can these cards access stored data
    rapidly; they can also execute programs directly from the card. This
    opens the doors for vertical applications. Non volatile Linear Flash
    cards are used in a variety of applications, including networking and
    telecom equipment, industrial controls and instrumentation. Random
    access, ruggedness and reliability are the basic qualities required of
    Linear Flash cards. Adding convenient size and low power consumption
    makes a sure winner. Linear Flash cards from SMART Modular
    Technologies are fully PC Card (Type I) compatible and operate faster
    than hard disks, but are removable like floppy disks. Since there are
    no moving parts, Linear Flash cards operate reliably in conditions
    that can be normally hostile to data. These cards use solid state
    components that can be used day-in-day-out because they are far more
    reliable than the moveable parts of hard drives.
    **********

    What does the above description indicate?

    I did plug it into a Windows 2000 laptop and Windows did not find
    anything.
     
  4. Ian Stirling

    Ian Stirling Guest

    I would put it in my laptop, and follow the instructions given in the
    PCMCIA-HOWTO for linux, which gives details of how to do that.

    I have absolutely no clue how you'd approach it under windows.
     
  5. linnix

    linnix Guest

    Yes, it should have IDE mode, but you have to plug it in the IDE cable.
    The PCMCIA card interface does not enable IDE.

    You have to plug in the middle 50 pins (out of 66) in an IDE-CF
    converter.
    Of course, you have to remove the adapter bracket to do so.

    See: http://cfd.linnix.com for the IDE-CF converter.
     
  6. Ian Stirling

    Ian Stirling Guest

    It can.

    IIRC.
    IDE mode is an option for PCMCIA cards.
    It can either be pin-strapped to select it, or it can be selected through
    the PCMCIA interface.
    Once IDE mode is selected, it's not a PCMCIA device any more, until
    reset.

    Not all PCMCIA memory cards present an IDE interface.
     
  7. linnix

    linnix Guest

    IDE devices specify the ports and registers as well, which are probably
    routed to the IDE cable, not to the PCMCIA device.
     
  8. Ian Stirling

    Ian Stirling Guest

    Nope.
    Once it's switched to IDE mode, it's electrically an IDE device. (until
    reset), and is accessed as an IDE device.
    No seperate cable.
     
  9. linnix

    linnix Guest

    OK, first disable your IDE devices in your bios, so both signal drivers
    wouldn't be fighting with each other. Second, rewrite your bios to
    switch PCMCIA to IDE mode before initializating IDE. In case you
    can't rewrite your bios, then rewrite your operating system to switch
    the PCMCIA device before probing IDE. Most OS probe IDE very early and
    PCMCIA very late. In case you can't rewrite your OS, just get the IDE
    cable adapter.
     
  10. Ian Stirling

    Ian Stirling Guest

    Google 'point enabler'.
    It appears as a seperate device in IO space, like a second IDE
    controller.
    I have several laptops that will boot from PCMCIA devices.
     
  11. Its a Linear Flash card, this wont appear as an ATA device at all, rather a
    block of memory. Often used to upgrade firmware in devices such as routers.

    Philip
     
  12. Ian Stirling

    Ian Stirling Guest

    I know.
    I was just commenting on the other posters comment that it's not 'real'
    IDE over PCMCIA slots, for hard drives et al (for devices that support
    IDE)
     
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