Re: [PARPORT] ftape? What for?

Juergen Leising (
Thu, 2 Sep 1999 20:28:26 +0200

On Wed, Sep 01, 1999 at 10:21:48PM -0500, John Lange wrote:
> I saw alot of mention about using ftape to get external tape devices working
> with linux.
> When I set out to try and get my HP 5G drive working, my goal was to do it
> with ftape. After messing around with it for a while, I determined that I
> needed to upgrade my kernel to have it work.
> Anyhow, to make a long story short, I never got ftape to compile, and I've would have been necessary to take the "unstable" drivers in order get
it compiled under kernels 2.2.x...

> ended up using the loadable modules paride, epat, and pt. The drive then
> started working (but not 100%), but it does seem to function.
> So my question is, how does ftape fit into this picture? I'm confused...

I just copy a few words from ftape's manual (ftape-doc-package):

--------------------- begin of excerpt -------------------------
ftape is a driver for tape drives that connect to
the floppy controller of your computer. There are also special `floppy
tape controllers' that operate at a higher speed.
But these are (more or less) floppy disk controllers that are
located at a hardware address different from the
one used by the standard floppy disk controller.


Besides tape drives connecting to those internal
FDC controllers ftape also supports certain kinds of floppy tape drives
that connect to the parallel port, namely

The Colorado Trakker parallel port drive
       Support for this drive was added by Jochen Hoenicke.

Micro Solutions Backpack parallel port floppy tape drives
       At least the Iomega Ditto product line is supported. Some
       Exabyte parallel port tape drives -- which in principle also
       have an interface made by Micro Solutions -- are reported
       to have problems.

-------------------- end of excerpt -------------------

So only very few parallel port tape drives are actually supported by ftape; many
others require different drivers.

Bye, bye,


* Juergen Leising, Germany       *
* *

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