Get a Zip Plus drive working in Linux
Q I have recently tried many flavours of Mandrake and others (plus many Live distros) and not one of them will detect my faithful old Zip Plus drive, for which I have an archive of 42 100MB disks. In desperation I decided to install it manually, and looked up the mini HOWTO, which referred me to a David Campbell at www.torque.net. Unfortunately, this website does not respond and there is no re-direction. I've done several web searches to try to track down the file but without success. Can you please help?
The Zip drive is paralleled with an Epson printer and is closest to the PC as recommended by Iomega. The printer is detected and installed correctly. lsmod does not detect the imm module. I know some might say, "Why not transfer your archive to one DVD?" - but think of the work involved. Most of the archive consists of my own engineering programs which have to be updated from time to time and this is a straightforward and reliable process on Zip disks, which is why I want to keep it operational. It is interesting to note that Windows XP has no difficulty at all in detecting and installing it. This is one of the things preventing me from making more use of Linux.
A The Zip Plus drive has both parallel and SCSI connectors. The easiest way to connect it is to fit a SCSI PCI card. Even a cheap, sub-£10 card is likely to perform better than parallel, with no need for special drivers. If SCSI is not an option, you will need the imm module. The website you refer to is indeed defunct, but the imm module is now part of the standard kernel source tree, so you don't need to install it. Mandriva (2005 and 2006) has this module included with the kernel, as do the Knoppix 4 Live discs. Just type, as root
modprobe -v imm
This should report the modules loaded: imm plus any it may depend on. If the drive contained a disc when you loaded the module, it will be recognised, usually as /dev/sda. If the drive was empty, the driver will detect when a disc is loaded. If this is your only drive using the SCSI sub-system (USB memory drives use that too) it will appear as /dev/sda. If you have another drive, or need confirmation of the device, type
tail -f /var/log/messages
and insert a disc. You will see something along the lines of
scsi0 : Iomega ZIP Plus drive
scsi : 1 host.
Vendor: IOMEGA Model: ZIP 100
PLUS Rev: J.66
ANSI SCSI revision: 02
Detected scsi removable disk sda at
scsi0, channel 0, id 6, lun 0
SCSI device sda: hdwr sector= 512
bytes. Sectors= 196608 [96 MB]
sda: Write Protect is off
In this case the drive is /dev/sda with a single partition at /dev/sda1.
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