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    Subject[ANNOUNCE] ftape-3.04b
    From
    Date
    I'm happy to announce the availability of ftape-3.04b.

    Version 3.04b merely is a bug fix release and doesn't add new features
    to ftape-3.04.

    What it is
    ==========

    ftape is a floppy tape device driver for Linux.

    ftape-3.x developed as the re-unification of the stock ftape-2.x driver
    written by Bas Laarhoven and the enhancements/modifications I had
    implemented in a separate development tree called "zftape".

    ftape-3.04b is implemented as a stack of two kernel modules:

    ftape.o - hardware driver (MANDATORY)
    zftape.o - VFS front-end (MANDATORY)
    zft-compressor.o - user-transparent on the fly compression (OPTIONAL)


    Should I upgrade?
    =================

    Yes, if you

    - were using the plain 3.04 version of ftape. 3.04b is a bug fix
    release.

    - need support for formatting of floppy tape cartridges

    - are already using any version of ftape-3.x

    - have problems with ftape-2.x

    - have a QIC-3010/3020/TR-2/TR-3 capable drive.

    - want to use a "high speed controller" at 2Mbit/sec data transfer rate

    And of course:

    EVERYBODY WHO ALREADY IS USING ONE OF THE BETA VERSIONS OF ftape-3.04
    IS URGED TO UPGRADE TO THE BUGFIX RELEASE ftape-3.04b.

    EVERYBODY WHO ALREADY IS USING ftape-3.04
    IS URGED TO UPGRADE TO THE BUGFIX RELEASE ftape-3.04b.

    News
    ====

    The following lists the changes between plain 3.04 and 3.04b:

    ===== Release notes for ftape-3.04b 14/11/97 =====+

    - patches/2.x.x/floppy.c.diff was somewhat broken, releasing i/o
    regions it never had allocated.
    - fdc_probe() was calling DUMPREGS with a result length of "1" instead
    of "10"
    - Writing deleted data marks if the first segents on track zero are
    should work now.
    - ftformat should now be able to handle those cases where the tape
    drive sets the read only status bit (QIC-40/80 cartridges with
    QIC-3010/3020 tape drives) because the header segment is damaged.
    - the MTIOCFTCMD ioctl may now be issued by the superuser ONLY.

    ===== Release notes for ftape-3.04a 12/11/97 =====
    - Fix an "infinite loop can't be killed by signal" bug in
    ftape_get_drive_status(). Only relevant when trying to access
    buggy/misconfigured hardware
    - Try to compensate a bug in the HP Colorado T3000's firmware: it
    doesn't set the write protect bit for QIC80/QIC40 cartridges.


    The main differences between version 3.03a and 3.04b are the
    following:

    - the internal version of the Ditto 2GB drive is supported
    (credits to
    "Jochen Hoenicke" <Jochen.Hoenicke@Informatik.Uni-Oldenburg.DE>)

    - the sftape.o module which implemented the VFS interface of the old
    ftape-2.x has vanished.

    - most of the code needed for formatting of floppy tape cartridges has
    been moved to a user level program "ftformat"

    - improved verification after formatting cartridges.

    - several bug fixes w.r.t. to the interaction between the interrupt
    service routine and the remainder of the kernel driver.

    - a procfs interface gives status information about the detected
    hardware, maximal data rate etc.

    Please refer to the file RELEASE-NOTES of the ftape distribution for
    further information.


    Supported platforms
    ===================

    Linux/Intel-ix86 for

    Linux-1.2.13 (after patching)
    Linux-2.0.*
    Linux-2.1.* (at least up to 2.1.62)

    Linux/alpha was supported once upon a time, but this hasn't been
    tested for ages.


    ftape-3.04b can be down-loaded from
    ==================================

    ftp://sunsite.unc.edu/pub/Linux/kernel/tapes/ftape-3.04b.tar.gz

    Please note that it might take some days until ftape-3.04b.tar.gz has
    made its way from the "incoming" directory to its final location on
    the sunsite ftp server.

    Another possibility is to down-load the package from my web page:

    http://www-math.math.rwth-aachen.de/~LBFM/claus/ftape/

    where you can also find links to related information, old versions of
    ftape and current development snapshots (if any).

    Documentation
    =============

    The Ftape-HOWTO unluckily is out of date (i.e. documents the version 2
    series of ftape). Recent documentation is included in the
    distribution and can be viewed on-line from the ftape home page at


    http://www-math.math.rwth-aachen.de/~LBFM/claus/ftape/


    Problems with the driver should be discussed on the linux-tape mailing list

    linux-tape@vger.rutgers.edu

    To subscribe, send email to "majordomo@vger.rutgers.edu" with the
    single line

    subscribe linux-tape MY@EMAIL.ADDRESS

    in the message BODY (NOT the subject). You have to replace
    MY@EMAIL.ADDRESS with the email account the mailing list traffic shall
    be sent to, or leave it blank.


    Have fun

    Claus


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