Besides hard disk drives and SSDs HDDRIVER supports removable media drives, e.g.
drives by Syquest, ZIP, JAZ, DVD+RW, DVD-RAM, GigaFile or UltraSatan. Media changes are detected automatically and reliably.
HDDRIVER provides optimal support for memory cards like SD and CF, which are an inexpensive and noiseless alternative to hard disk drives.
In terms of compatibility HDDRIVER sets standards. Drives or memory cards with any capacity are supported. With the ST/STE in order to use more than the first GiB of SCSI drives a suitable host adapter is required. Since TOS, MagiC and MiNT do not access media based on the SCSI Driver, in practice the usable capacity is limited to 2 TiB (2048 GiB). The SCSI Driver (and tools like HDDRUTIL and DISKUS) support 64 bit sector numbers and thus can access larger drives.
HDDRIVER is backwards compatible with Atari's hard disk driver AHDI and therefore guarantees highest compatibility with other applications.
HDDRIVER is coded in pure 68000 and 68030 assembler and offers unique settings in order to boost transfer rates and the boot process. ACSI and IDE drives profit from special options for extra fast data transfers. Owners of a Thunder IDE interface can boot HDDRIVER into TT-RAM, which considerably increases the IDE transfer rate. With HDDRIVER AUTO folder programs like FOLDRxxx, CACHExxx or SCSIDRV are unnecessary, which speeds up the boot process for all platforms. Because HDDRIVER can boot the AUTO folder and accessories from any partition, a boot selector is also often obsolete.
With HDDRIVER it is child's play to exchange data with PCs (Windows XP and newer or Linux) and Macs. There is no need for any additional software. In combination with MagiC or MiNT exchanging data even works with long filenames and very big partitions (FAT32). Additionally, with MiNT and HDDRIVER it is possible to access Linux partitions (ext2). HDDRIVER supports both the legacy MBR (Master Boot Record) and the modern UEFI GUID Partition Table (GPT) partitioning scheme.
With the HDDRUTIL tool storage media can completely or partially be copied, e.g. in order to create backups or to exchange data. With many optical drives storing data on DVD-RAM, DVD+RW and BD-RE media, in particular for backups, is supported. Furthermore, complete media or single partitions can be saved as image files or loaded from image files.
For HDDRIVER data security plays an important role. The data transferred are optionally verified in order to detect errors when writing data. Selected partitions can be write-protected, which is a good protection against accidential changes. Important areas of a drive (root sector and boot sectors) can separately be protected against unintentional changes. If a device supports a self-test, it can be triggered by simply a mouse-click.
HDDRIVER is more than just a driver. A set of tools with a modern graphical user interface complete the HDDRIVER distribution. Media can be formatted, devices can be configured, and self-tests can be executed. Drives can be parked and media ejected, the password-based read/write protection of ZIP/JAZ drives can be configured, and much more. Besides the HDDRUTIL tool an ACC and CPX modules provide for conveniently controlling numerous settings, without you having to be a hard disk wizard.
Unified access to peripherals is realized by the SCSI Driver integrated in HDDRIVER.
This important software interface for Atari compatibles, which is not limited to SCSI
devices only, is used by a range of other drivers and applications. SATA devices innately use SCSI commands anyway, for IDE drives HDDRIVER emulates them. This enables any application to access IDE, ATAPI and SATA drives as if they were SCSI devices. HDDRIVER's SCSI Driver supports 64 bit sector numbers for all buses, so that with the SCSI Driver drives > 2 TiB (2048 GiB) can be addressed with their full capacity. Additionally, HDDRIVER supports the complete set of functions defined by the XHDI standard.
Applications can access many driver functions by using these two well-documented and standardized software interfaces.
When running MagiC, MiNT or Big-DOS in combination with HDDRIVER
you have access to more than 16 drives and to big partitions. Non-blocking data transfers with drives connected to the ACSI or SCSI bus result in increased speed when using
HDDRIVER with MagiC, because you can work with your Atari while data
are being transferred in the background.
Features like booting from any partition, SCSI initiator identification and bus arbitration (for a maximum of compatibility with the SCSI standard), automatically parking drives etc. can be taken for granted with HDDRIVER.