Submit Hint Search The Forums LinksStatsPollsHeadlinesRSS
14,000 hints and counting!

LaCie FireWire drive usage tips System
After experiencing a hard drive crash of my LaCie external 80 gig Firewire drive today, I can advise on how to avoid this based on what I learned from LaCie tech support:
  1. Don't use the drive out of the box in Mac OS X. It will work and appear to be fine, BUT it is formatted with Silverlining "which is incompatible with OS X".

  2. To prepare the drive first boot from the LaCie CD supplied with the drive and run Silverlining Pro.

  3. Check that the ATA-Firewire bridge firmware is the latest version (currently 3.12; mine was 3.11, which puzzled the tech support as drives should be shipped with the version provided on the CD. Update firmware if needed.

  4. Boot back into X and partition/reformat the drive using the Apple hard drive software supplied with X.
The good news is that Disk Warrior was able to rebuild the volume information on the drive with no loss of infomation and I was able to remount and backup files.

The bad news is that none of this would have occurred if LaCie had included some warnings and instructions with the drive.
  • Currently 2.60 / 5
  You rated: 2 / 5 (5 votes cast)

LaCie FireWire drive usage tips | 13 comments | Create New Account
Click here to return to the 'LaCie FireWire drive usage tips' hint
The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.
Authored by: Anonymous on Feb 12, '02 11:38:27AM
What's Silverlining? :-)

No, for the 4 LaCie drives i own, i never used this Silverlining software, you can do a custom install form the LaCie cd to install only the FireWire extension, this will show your disk ready to format.

The only drawback is that you cannot partition the drive under OS9, but Mac OS X can. My oldest LaCie FireWire drive is 1,5 years old, and has the factory FirmWare, but never did i encounter a problem...

[ Reply to This | # ]

Authored by: chardinej on Feb 12, '02 07:27:16PM

This is the second LaCie drive I've owned and both came preinstalled with Silverlining. It's a proprietary hard drive software that mounts, formats and you name it including write it's own drivers to the disk. The Tech support person at LaCie said that OS X would not like this and so the best bet is to reformat with the Apple Drive Utility.

[ Reply to This | # ]
did it crash with X or 9?
Authored by: edog on Feb 12, '02 04:59:25PM

I've had a similar experience with a 80gig drive from Lacie too.
We bought the drive and I'm certain I've just formatted under 9.1, without Silverlining.
Now it keeps on crashing on that same G3 b&w, with OS 9.1, that I used to format it, while it works flawlessly on my b&w G3, that I use with X.1.2, and it doesn't crash either on an iMac on which I mainly use X.

So I was just curious to know if it crashed while used under 9 or X.
Last time I saved everything with DiskWarrior, too, but it's quite annoying anyway.



[ Reply to This | # ]
did it crash with X or 9?
Authored by: chardinej on Feb 12, '02 07:29:08PM

It crashed (i.e., lost it's volume info) in X.1.2.

[ Reply to This | # ]
I Won't be buying another LaCie
Authored by: Diggory on Feb 12, '02 05:28:05PM

As far as I am concerned a firewire drive is a firewire drive. Why they need SilverLining is beyond me. I have a 20GB LaCie drive and if it is unplugged from an OS X box it will not be recognised by any OS X box until it is connected to an OS 9 box. Why?

[ Reply to This | # ]
I Won't be buying another LaCie
Authored by: livi on Feb 13, '02 04:02:14PM

Same problem here, but with a Lacie USB 20 GB drive... sometimes I can use it for a few days without problems; other times the drive disconects with an error or just disapears while the icons on the desktop are still shown.... very strange ....

My drive is also formatted by Silverlining into 3 partitions...

[ Reply to This | # ]
I Won't be buying another LaCie
Authored by: Diggory on Feb 14, '02 10:08:52AM

Once I updated the Drive's firmware with the latest version of silverlining in os 9 it has been behaving itself. (so far....)

Thanks MacOSXHints!

[ Reply to This | # ]
I Won't be buying another LaCie
Authored by: Areh on Feb 22, '02 03:30:56PM

That's a bit rash. I'm using a LaCie 20 Gig pocket drive and it works just fine.
I first used it under 9 (with the program provided with the drive). After that on X. I *never* had a *single* problem either under X or 9. Even after a clean install of 9 thus not installing any specific drivers the LaCie drive was recognized and worked out of the box. I had problems with my hard drives (only recently after upgrading to 10.1.3 a partition went sick (sibling link problem), had to reformat. But I never had a problem with LaCie. For me the drive rocks and I'd recommend it to anyone. Who knows what really caused your problems. Don't forget that there are always *some* individual drive in a product line that have fabrication flaws....

[ Reply to This | # ]
LaCie Performance
Authored by: Barium on Feb 15, '02 01:43:44PM

first of all thanks for the tips ... they came just right ... a few days befor I got my LaCie 120GB Firewire HD (it seems that they use Maxtor dirves for that one). I use mostly OSX and I was now aware of the possible problems. Luckily the drive wasn't formatted so I had to use the OSX drive utility anyway.

I booted into OS9 to make some performance tests with the Tool found on the LaCie CD (I used the OS9 Apple FW drivers by the way).
Sustained read: approx. 30 MB/s as expected
Sustained write. approx 14 MB/s ???

The write results were quite suprising so I wanted to ask if some other users made the same experience ... they should be somewhere in the area of 25 MB/s ...


[ Reply to This | # ]
LaCie Performance
Authored by: megasad on Feb 25, '02 04:25:00PM

I'll be receiving a 60GB FireWire Lacie drive myself in a couple of days and would just like to ask:

-After booting from the CD that comes with it, and confirming it's got the right firmware, which CD that came with my iBook should I use to format and partition the drive?

That'd be it,

[ Reply to This | # ]
So what do I do with my new Lacie?
Authored by: jdpuglisi on Mar 21, '02 03:01:26PM
I just got a new 60Gb Lacie firewire and it works fine out of the box using 9.1. If I hook it up to an OS X box, it won't work unless I reformat it using the OS X Apple Drive set up?? Should I reformat the drive now under OS X before I load it up with files and have a backup headache?

[ Reply to This | # ]
LaCie d2 Permissions
Authored by: booradley215 on Oct 08, '03 06:51:00PM

So I did what was stated.. reformated the drive using the Apple Utility, rand Disk Warrior on it.. repeatedly, and I can't for the life of me get it to hold the BSD permissions. I'd love to run X11 off of this drive including my Fink install, but I can't unless it will hold the proper user permissions. Any ideas?

[ Reply to This | # ]
LaCie FireWire drive usage tips
Authored by: digiglyphics on Oct 09, '03 07:41:51AM

I've been using 2 LaCie 120GB Firewire for close to a year and have never had a concern nor problem with this piece of equipment. It has been carried between several macs ranging from G3-G4 running OS9-OS10.2 no problems never installed a thing from the cd (don't think I ever took it out). We constantly write and read from these things for close to the majority of an 8hr workday and have yet to have a failure. I even keep my iTunes Library on one of them.

Will take the info with a grain of salt, but the drive seems pretty sturdy.

"real skill comes without effort..." Li Mu Bai - Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon

[ Reply to This | # ]