Friday, 14 September 2012

Testing USB3 hub

This morning I was doing some more work on my wordpress plugin.

After lunch I was going through some old emails. One I got a week or so ago was from ebay, inviting me to write a review about my ebay purchases. The purchase specifically mentioned and linked to in the email was a Nikon Nikkormat EL 35mm SLR Film Camera Body Only. Only problem is, I never purchased that camera. I've not even bid on one or watched one.

I received my Sumvision USB 3 hub this afternoon, which I think must have some of the worst designed packaging ever.

What are all those bright coloured lines and the Comics-sans-esque font about? The package is also much larger than it needs to be. It just contains the hub and a usb connection cable, the packaging doesn't need to be much larger than the hub itself.

When using the hub, the first time I tried it, I plugged it into my PC, and plugged my external HD case and card reader into the hub. I then copied a folder of images from a CF card in the card reader to the external HD. But the copy got stuck part-way through. It actually messed up my PC, and I could only get my PC to shut down by unplugging the hub. Task Manager wouldn't kill the copying process for some reason. Process Lasso couldn't kill it either.

I tried again (with a different HD), and this time the copy went smoothly. I then tried with the hub connected to my Nexus 7 instead of the PC. But I couldn't write to the (NTFS formatted) HD. After much messing about, I found the following worked:

  • Plug HD and card reader into USB hub. Plug hub into Nexus 7. Stickmount will auto mount the card reader. Switch on the HD, and stickmount will auto mount the HD.
  • Open Paragon NFTS/HFS+. It will mount the HD. Unmount the HD in Paragon. Mount the HD again, and choose the auto location (/sdcard/ParagonNTFS).
  • Now you can access the HD contents via /sdcard/ParagonNTFS, and it should be writeable.

I thought that because I was using the Motley Kernel (which is supposed to have NTFS rw support), that copying files to the HD would be easy (and not require extra software like Paragon NTFS/HFS+). But obviously I was wrong. The strange thing is that when the drive is mounted through stickmount, but not Paragon, then the drive contents show their properties as being writeable. But if you do try to write to the drive, you just get an operation failed message.

Also, when Paragon first mounts the drive, it is not writeable. You need to unmount it in Paragon and then mount it again to make it writeable. Very strange.

I still need to see how the whole setup will work when trying to copy multiple cards to the HD. That will be my task for tomorrow.

In the evening I watched an episode of Dai Rangers, which was very skill. The bad guy was a magnet priest who kept saying degauss. He put different polarities on people and objects so they either repelled or attracted each other. Very funny.

After that I went out on a walk. There was a nice pre-sunset, but I was too late for that. The sun set behind a bank of cloud, the sky was probably still reasonable, by the way I walked you couldn't see down to the horizon. I think in future I would need to go out straight after dinner (around 6.15pm) to get sunset photos.

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