ROLAND L-CD1

Configuring The S‑550 Or W‑30 To Boot From A Hard Drive


Roland's definition of "booting" from the hard drive is very misleading. The S‑550 will only boot from the hard drive if there is a properly configured 3.5" disk in the Floppy Disk Drive (FDD) or a disk image file with a valid O/S loaded into the USB Floppy Drive Emulator (USB/FDE). From what I have found, the W‑30 does the complete opposite of the S‑550 and will only boot from a hard drive if there is a non W‑30 disk in the FDD or USB/FDE. Loading the O/S from the hard drive now takes only 20 seconds as compared to the slower FDD or USB/FDE which takes almost 2 minutes. The boot configuration outlined below works with standard external SCSI hard drives and also with a SCSI2SD device using a MicroSD card configured with 1, 2, 3 or 4 individual 80MB virtual "hard drives"

*** SPECIAL NOTE ***
All commands and configurations used in this setup guide were made using the CD‑5 CD‑ROM Utility Disk v1.00 (S‑550) and the Hard Drive And CD‑ROM Utility Disk v1.07 (W‑30). Using different version boot disks other than these will display different menu commands and in some cases will limit the use of multiple SCSI hard drives

W30HDBOOT

Using a Roland factory default S‑550 floppy boot disk (HD5‑IF Hard Disk Utility v1.03 - CD‑5 CD-ROM Utility Disk v1.02, CD‑5 CD-ROM Utility Disk v1.00, etc...) as is will not enable the hard drive to boot. As usual, another typical Roland default which works the opposite way of logical thinking! As is, a Roland factory default floppy boot disk will only enable hard drive access via loads, saves, HD setup utilities, HD format, etc... You will need to change the configuration settings and save it to the floppy boot disk before the O/S will boot from a hard drive

When you press the power button on the S‑550, it does it's usual hardware system initialization and then goes out to the FDD or USB/FDE to read the disk in the FDD. If it finds a floppy boot disk, it will do one of two things;
  • If the floppy boot disk is a Roland factory default disk, the S‑550 will not boot from the hard drive

       or

  • If the floppy boot disk configuration has been changed and saved using new S/Load I⇽Area and/or S/Load II⇽Area settings and the hard drive system was configured and saved, then the S‑550 will boot from the hard drive
You must do the following to setup an S‑550 if you want it to always boot the from the hard drive. You will only need to perform this setup once;
  1. Boot the S‑550 using a default floppy boot disk (HD5‑IF Hard Disk Utility v1.03 - CD‑5 CD-ROM Utility Disk v1.02, CD‑5 CD-ROM Utility Disk v1.00, etc...) Note: I always use the CD‑5 CD-ROM Utility Disk v1.00 disk because it's the only one which allows my setup to use a ZIP drive and more than one hard drive at a time. For unknown reasons, the HD5‑IF Hard Disk Utility v1.03 and CD‑5 CD-ROM Utility Disk v1.02 disks won't enable my setup to use multiple SCSI devices

  2. Choose DISK > MENU > SETUP > S/Load I⇽Area and set it to any Patch from Area I or Area II on the hard drive
    For example: RSB-5501 / Club E.Piano Splits w‑Bass which will make the top line look something like;
    S/Load I⇽Area H11 Club E.Piano

  3. *** Note *** This next step will overwrite the floppy disk (or the current USB/FDE flash buffer)
    Choose DISK > MENU > SETUP > COM > FD Save SYS

  4. Next, choose DISK > MENU > SETUP > COM > HD Save SYS

  5. Remove the floppy disk and power off the S‑550
    *** If you are using a USB/FDE, don't forget to write the new disk image file back onto the USB stick! ***

  6. Wait 30 seconds and power on the S‑550

  7. Insert the newly created floppy boot disk or USB stick and the S‑550 will display the normal startup screen but with one exception. A new line now appears at the bottom of the startup list;
HDBOOTSCREEN
Note: In this example, the screen above shows two hard drives connected to an S-550
One hard drive is at SCSI Device ID#1, the other is at SCSI Device ID#4
The O/S will boot from the last hard drive in the SCSI chain, Device ID#4

This new line at the bottom of the screen shows that the S‑550 is now booting from the hard drive and not from the FDD or USB/FDE anymore. After counting down to zero, the RSB‑5501 / Club E.Piano Splits w‑Bass disk (or whichever sound disk you chose) will automatically load from the hard drive into the Set I Area location. This can be changed easily by choosing a different S/Load I⇽Area on the hard drive. There are 64 to choose from. You may also have a different sound disk load into the Set II Area location so that both Set Area I and Set Area II are loaded and ready to rock. Other default settings may also be configured including a choice between using the front panel buttons, a mouse or the RC‑100 and also MIDI Program Change Messages. When using the new floppy boot disk you just created, the S‑550 system on the hard drive will always boot first. If you have more than one hard drive connected, the last hard drive in the SCSI chain (the hard drive with the largest device ID#) will be used as the boot disk. Keep this in mind if you change SCSI ID settings or remove a hard drive

If you are focused on the fastest boot speed possible, ensure that S/Load I⇽Area and S/Load II⇽Area are both turned Off and do not load anything. Note that if S/Load I⇽Area and S/Load II⇽Area are both turned Off, the "S‑550 HD Loading 35.. 34.. 33...." countdown message will not display as shown in the image above. Since no Patches and no Tones are configured to load at startup with these two Areas turned off, the O/S has already loaded at this point and there is nothing to countdown

Page 12 of the HD5‑IF Owner's Manual describes the S/Load I⇽Area and S/Load II⇽Area settings in more detail

W30HDBOOT

Setting up the W‑30 to boot from a hard drive is the same regardless if you are using a factory stock W‑30 or one fitted with new devices such as a Gotek USB/FDE or a SCSI2SD. I have verified that all three hardware configurations (3.5" Floppy/GOTEK/HxC) will boot the W‑30 from a hard drive. You will need to follow these initial steps first, then choose your device from the A‑B‑C‑D list below
  • Boot the W30 from the floppy drive or Gotek using the Hard Drive And CD‑ROM Utility Disk v1.07 boot disk
  • Press the SOUND button
  • Press the 8 button then press the ENTER button (8: SCSI Check  ⇾   ENTER)
  • Use the VALUE dial to select Hard Disk ID = n (where n = the largest hard drive SCSI ID#)
  • Press the F5 Button (5: HD Utility)
  • Press the 7 button then press the ENTER button (7: HD Convert  ⇾   ENTER)
  • Menu responds with "Are you sure?" (Note: There isn't a YES or NO button to press!)
  • Press the F5 button (EXECUTE) ...In "Roland-speak, this is the YES button... Duuuuuuh!!! SMILE
    • The system will take a looooooong time to convert the hard drive so be patient
    • At this point, the hard drive busy light should be active as it counts down from 99% to 0%
  • Next, use the VALUE dial to select Destination ID = n (80M) [S] (where n = the largest hard drive SCSI ID#)
  • Press the F1 button (to [W] where "to W" indicates a W‑30 System HD and "S" indicates an S‑550 System HD)
  • Press the 2 button then press the ENTER button (2: HD Save SYS  ⇾   ENTER)
At this point, the hard drive busy light should be active as it counts down from 70 to 0. After it's finished saving the new system to the hard drive, choose one of the methods below based on what kind of hardware is installed in your W‑30:

  1. Generic USB/FDE (Gotek SFRM72‑FU‑DL with unmodified firmware) * Tested And Verified *

    • Problem: What happens at boot time is, the W‑30 first goes out to the USB/FDE to load the O/S. If it finds the W‑30 disk image Hard Drive And CD‑ROM Utility Disk v1.07, (or any other valid W-30 System Disk), it will boot the O/S from the USB/FDE which takes forever to load

    • Solution: Force the W‑30 to go look for a boot O/S some place other than the USB/FDE. If the disk image loaded in the USB/FDE is not a valid W‑30 O/S, the W‑30 will go look somewhere else for a valid O/S to boot from. If it finds a hard drive with a valid O/S on it, the W‑30 will boot from there. To force the W‑30 to go searching somewhere else for the O/S, what I do is keep the S‑50 System/Sound Disk RSB‑502 #6 (MIDI STACK #1) disk image loaded in the Gotek flash memory and it is always ready to load (or in this case, it is always ready NOT to load and be rejected). When the W‑30 finds the S‑50 System/Sound Disk in the USB/FDE when it's powered on, it rejects it and goes searching for a hard drive. If I load another disk into the Gotek during a session, I just remember to pre‑load the S‑50 System/Sound Disk RSB‑502 #6 image file right before I turn off the W‑30 at the end of the day. That way it's all set to go the next time I turn on the sampler and will boot from the hard drive


  2. HxC USB/FDE (Gotek with modified firmware) * Tested And Verified *

    • Problem: Same as above. If the W‑30 finds the disk image Hard Drive And CD‑ROM Utility Disk v1.07 in the HxC USB/FDE, it will boot the O/S from the USB/FDE and not from the hard drive and take forever to load

    • Solution: Power on the W‑30 without a USB stick in the HxC USB/FDE. The W‑30 can't find a valid O/S disk image file to load so it goes searching for a hard drive to boot from. The modified firmware inside an HxC Gotek is somehow different from a generic Gotek and the way it boots up the W‑30. The generic Gotek just hangs the W‑30 if there is no disk image loaded in the Gotek flash memory


  3. 3.5" FDD (Factory default sampler) * Tested And Verified *

    • Problem: What happens at boot time is, the W‑30 first goes out to the 3.5" FDD to load the O/S. If it finds the W‑30 disk image Hard Drive And CD‑ROM Utility Disk v1.07, (or any other valid W-30 System Disk), it will boot the O/S from the 3.5" FDD which takes forever to load

    • Solution: Power on the W‑30 without a 3.5" floppy disk in the FDD. The W‑30 can't find a valid O/S disk image file to load so it goes searching for an external hard drive or SCSI2SD device to boot from


  4. No FDD / No USB/FDE (34‑Pin Ribbon cable left hanging) * Tested And Verified As Not Working *

    • Problem: What happens at boot time is, the W‑30 first goes out to the 3.5" FDD to load the O/S. If it can't find any hardware device connected to the 34‑pin ribbon cable, the sampler goes into "Hardware Failure Mode" and will not continue past the "Roland W‑30 / Please Insert System Disk" screen. This message will remain until the sampler is powered‑off. Side Note: In the event a 3.5" FDD is plugged into the 34‑pin ribbon cable upside‑down, the W‑30 will not power‑up at all. This result is quite different from the S‑550 which will blow a fuse on the main power supply board

    • Solution: There is no solution. This test was included for the inquisitive types who are wondering if there is a way to boot the sampler from a hard drive in the event the 3.5" FDD is removed or is broken. The answer is "No". Some type of a hardware device must always be connected to the 34‑pin ribbon cable. It would be interesting to see if a jumper somewhere on this cable could simulate a hardware device connection and force the boot sequence to search for an external hard drive



? SPINNER Things To Note ? SPINNER
  • If more than one hard drive is connected in the SCSI chain, the O/S contained on the last hard drive will be used to boot the sampler. The cabling order doesn't matter. It's the hard drive with the highest SCSI ID# that matters

  • If the last device in the SCSI chain is a ZIP drive, then you won't be able to boot from any hard drive! For example, if a ZIP drive were set to SCSI ID#6, it would be the last device in the SCSI chain. At boot time, the sampler will go out to search for the last SCSI ID# which is #6. Since the sampler can't boot from a ZIP drive, it will not boot from any hard drive. Setting the ZIP drive to SCSI ID#5, setting the ZIP drive termination switch to "OFF", setting a hard drive to SCSI ID#6 and terminating the hard drive will solve this problem

  • The S‑550 and W‑30 are unable to boot from a ZIP drive no matter how you try to configure the SCSI chain. Information hard‑coded on the Main Board Boot ROM IC will only recognize Hard Drives and Floppy Drives as a valid boot device because of a SCSI hardware timing issue. I've not verified it myself but Magneto‑Optical Drives and CD‑ROM's might also be able to boot these two samplers. So far, I've not been unable to boot from a CD‑ROM. Still trying...maybe someday! Neil's Webbly World has some great resource materials re: W‑30 SCSI and boot‑up info including the SCSI hardware timing "bug" which prevents ZIP drives from booting the O/S

  • Some S‑550 and W‑30 owners have noted that not every hard drive make and model will boot from the hard drive. Quantum drives seem to be the most reliable brand which are able to boot the S‑550 and W‑30

  • Unlike the S‑550 boot process, the W‑30 does not display a countdown while loading from the hard drive

  • External hard drives I have personally tested and verified for booting both S‑550 and W‑30 samplers are:
    • Quantum ProDrive LPS 80S (formatted @80MB)
    • Quantum ProDrive ELS 170S (formatted @80MB)
    • SCSI2SD Model: IM150402001 - v5.0α using four 80MB virtual hard drives on a 2GB MicroSD card
S-50 / S-550 ZONE