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Sonnet Tempo IDE PCI Card 3.12 Firmware Update:Return to News Page

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Sonnet Tempo 3.12 Firmware Update Comments and OS X Tests:
Last Updated: 3/12/2001

Update: For IDE PCI card owner reports with OS X 1.0, see this page (3/24/2001).

This page has user comments on the Sonnet Tempo IDE Card 3.12 firmware update (direct download link). Comments included OS X and Mac OS use.

Most recent comments are listed first. Note: a reader reported that a post a Macfixit claims the updater can't be used in a 7200 or 8200 series Mac. There are also some issues noted by Umax S900 owners regarding the latest firmware.

" Here is my report on that update.

System: Power Mac 9500
PowerLogix G3 366 Mhz
160 MB of RAM
Card in slot D2

Attached Drives:
IBM DeskStar 75XP 30 GB ATA/100 7200 RPM
Maxtor 60 GB 5400 RPM

The update failed the first time, and worked perfectly the second. I booted from an internal SCSI drive.

Here are some benchmarks ran from that SCSI drive before and after the update. Barely a change.

(he attached screenshots from Atto's benchmarks)

" Hey Mike,
I did the 3.12 update on my Tempo card, without any problems at all. I disconnected all 4 drives connected to the card, and booted from my OS 9 CD, then ran the updater. Boot time seems faster, as does disk access and app opening.

System is a B&W G3/350 (o/c'd to 450), with (3) maxtor DMXplus 20GB drives, plus the OEM maxtor 6GB, 1GB of Ram, and a Proformance 3+ graphics card.
Great site, keep up the good work :)
(he later wrote)
I run OS 9.1 on main drive, with OSX PB on seperate partition..... "

" I've got a PowerMac 9600 with Powerlogix Z-force card with a 300Mhz Zif over-clocked to 400, bus speed 50Mhz, all the nifty stuff. Got the Sonnet ATA-66 Tempo, and a Maxtor 30 gig drive (which, incidentally, Sonnet has no official support for, but it works great)

Tried to do the update with the drives (I also have an EIDE CD-ROM drive that works flawlessly with the card) connected, and it "froze" the installation program. Rebooted, and chose my SCSI drive for boot-up, and rebooted with the drives connected, Same thing. Rebooted, with the drives disconnected, and got a Failure message. Retried about 3 more times, and the firmware update took.

Shut down, connected the drives, rebooted, and all is well. The ATA drive mounts, and chose it as startup volume, and rebooted. Nothing lost, works great. Haven't done any real testing for any speed difference, but I assume the fixes made, are doing their job.
Eusebio "

" I've had the same problems with getting the Sonnet firmware update to work with a Maxtor 60GB 5400 rpm HD connected to an ACard 6260 in an S900 (G3 Powerlogix 220/110 clocked up to 300MHz). I was able to get the IDE Maxtor recognised and usable when the v3.12 updated ACard was in either Slot 2 or 5 if the startup partition was on another SCSI HD, however got freezes whenever trying to startup from a partition on the Maxtor connected to the ACard. None of these problems when flashing back to the Acard v3.08 of firmware.
Cheers for the Xcellent site, Pete. "

" Hi, Mike:
I updated the sonnet turbomax IDE PCI card in my G4 400 (Yikes). The card connects to one 45g IBM drive as a solitary master on one ribbon. The other drive in my G4 is connected to the normal IDE bus ribbon. I removed the ribbon from where it was connected at the card, closed the G4 case, and booted from the drive on the G4 IDE, run the firmware update with no problems. Slick as grease.

Reconnected, and restarted. It's hard for me to tell since I forgot to run any benchmarks before or after, but it *feels* like large data transfers are zippier. It also seems relatively more stable, though I couldnt say for sure. I have noticed that Quicktime movies still have intermittant video stutters, so that may still be a problem (or it could be some unrelated conflict). I do not have OSX yet to test, beta or otherwise, but it booted 9.0.4 and 9.1 partitions just fine.
John Hancock "

" Hey Mike,
I noticed that the other Umax S900 owner had similar problems to me(having to revert back to 3.08 firmware). If anyone finds a solution to this problem please notify me at kylekost@mac.com. When i updated, it did work, but restarting back to MacOS on the drive seemed extremely sluggish (taking about 15 minutes to boot) then crashing a few minutes after then. After that it didn't boot again until I reverted the firmware to 3.08 again.
Kyle Kost

P.S. - For others with Umax S900's, I have a new version of the system disk patch on my hard drive, but probably won't uplaod to my iDisk incase there is a new version of system disk that comes with OS X Final. "

" Hello Mike,
I check your website daily. Lots of useful information. My system is a B&W G3 350, 448 megs, 6 gig, and 45 gig attached to Tempo, DVD.

I installed the firmware upgrade (3.12) without any problem. I booted OS X PB and it did not recognize the 45 gig drive attached to the Tempo. I booted into OS 9.1 on the 45 Gig drive and inserted the OS X PB CD and the computer booted back into the 6 gig drive to do the install. So the firmware upgrade does not work with OS X PB on my machine. I certainly hope that the "tenative" referred to OS X PB and not the release that I hope to install on my 45 gig drive on March 26th.
Joel Clark Mason+ "

" G3/266, 768MB, 2Maxtor 40Gig 7200RPM on Sonnet, 8 Raided Partitions, OS 9.1. Intech 3.1.1 Drivers. Booted from internal 30Gig Maxtor, dragged All 8 Raid Partitions to Trash, Ran updater without a hitch, rebooted, set Startup disk to the Sonnet Raid, rebooted. 2 Days... OS 8.0, 8.1, 8.5, 8.6, 9.04, 9.1... NO Problems!

Mike, keep up the great work... I'm in constant awe that this is basically a "One Man Site"!
Bruce "

" Hi. I tested the update with my ACARD ATA/66 Card. It works perfect! It's the same chip on this card so every update works for both cards. I have a boost of 2s less on startup after I used the Update.
Alexander "

" I've got a PowerCenter Pro 180 with a nice little XLR8 G3/400 card in it, running 9.04.

Booted off a drive other than my 20 GB Western Digital HD with extensions off, and was able to update myself from 3.01 to the 3.12 without any problems what-so-ever. Upon reboot, my IDE drive came right up and haven't seen any problems since.
John "

" I applied the firmware update to the card in my B&W G3 with OS 8.6. I first tried to run the updater from the internal HD that isn't connected to the card, but, the install failed half way through. I restarted with the OS install CD as the boot drive and successfully installed the updater.
Russell "

" Hi Mike,
Great site! I check it all the time and it's also the reason I bought a Tempo Card for my B&W G3/300 (stupid apple rev 1 IDE controller).

After successfully installing the update and booting into OS X Beta, the drive on my Sonnet Tempo card did not show up. The drive is an IBM 75GX 60GB and was formatted with Apple's Drive Setup.

Perhaps the "tentative" compatibility is with the final version of OS X, but not the beta. There is a seven month time difference between the two.
Keep up the good work,
Lincoln Sanders "

" I updated my ACARD ATA/66 using the Sonnet updater. It worked on the second try. The hard drive is working well so far. I do not have OS X Public Beta to try it out on, although OS X is on order.

What was interesting was Sonnet's instructions that the update could be performed without removing the drive cables. The trick is to boot up from a device not connected to the ATA/66 card. Then unmount all volumes of anything connected to the ATA/66 card so that there is no drive activity while updating the firmware.

This worked for me after an initial fail midway through the first update which required a restart of the computer. Upon restart, the ATA/66 card was not recognized at all, apparently giving even further protection that the drive would not be accessed during the update. The second try worked like a charm. Not having to open my Beige G3 to remove cables was nice.
Best Regards,
Paul Ringsmuth "

" Hey Mike
I tested my Tempo with the following config on a G3 B&W 350:

Tempo card installed with Data Drives on it

OS9 installed on system HD0 1 partition and OSX (Build 4K17) on another partition

I updated the firmware on the Tempo, Hoping to start OS X and to see the data drives hanging off the Tempo, NO LUCK! OS X dos not see the tempo???
I hope it does with OS X ver 1
BrettO "

" Build 4K60 already has ACARD drivers with a status of "final candidate"

Three of our staff are currently being trained by Apple here in Australia. (www.icorp.com.au) being a three day program.

Due to the near release date, we (icorp) feel it may be the final candidate that our staff will be trained on.
This holds strong considering stamping time required and that no more releases have exceed build 78.

Ill know for sure tomorrow morning when I speak to the guys and find out.
Raoul. "

" My system: beige G3 desktop, two partitions on original ATA drive, OS 9.0.4 and OS X Public Beta. Nine partitions (OS 9.1, OS 8.6, etc) on Sonnet bus, using FWB 4.0 drivers. I booted from OS 9.0.4, dragged all Sonnet volumes to trash, and ran installer, which worked fine. After re-booting into OS X, the Sonnet volumes did not appear. This may be due to using FWB instead of Apple's drivers. I wish Drive Setup would support more than 8 partitions! Guess I'll have to re-format with Drive Setup before the 24th.
Joe Stankunas "

" Hi Mike - I updated the firmware in my ACard AHARD ATA/66 controller last night, using Sonnet's 3.12 firmware. The update proceeded smoothly enough, booting from external SCSI with the ATA drive disconnected from the controller.

On reboot, I could not boot from a System Folder on the ATA drive. In fact, I couldn't boot at all, even from the 9.1 System Folder or OSX on my external SCSI drive. The boot would stop at the initial grey screen, before the mac icon.

So I couldn't test with OSX, which was what I had intended.

Back to firmware 3.08 for me (3.10 doesn't work).

Umax S900, Powerlogix Z-force, Newertech G4/405 ZIF, 45MHz motherboard, 272MB RAM, ATI mach64, ixMicro Ultimate rez, Digidesign AMIII, ACard AHARD ATA/66, MacOS 9.1, OSX public beta...
John Pitcairn "

" I just installed this last night on our Sonnet Tempo/66 (which, incidentally, says "ACARD" printed on the card itself), in our 7500/256MB/75GB w/Crescendo 375. Updated, but no OSX CD booting so far. The CD ROM (apple 24x bootable) attempts to read it, but then gives up and boots normally from the HD. Most likely due to incompatibility with older machine Sonnet hasn't yet solved.
Adam "

" I updated the firmware and see no improvement in the choppy sound problem.

I have a powercenter 150 upgraded by a newertech 266 card. I'm using a 40 gig seagate ATA barracuda. No problems with listening to music off a cd and no problem with quicktime video (just with qt sound).

I don't think that they can fix this problem in connection with my kind of logic board. Apple profiler tells me that I have a Power Macintosh 7200 series, WGS 7250/120 machine. The logic board has "powercurve" on it. I believe that this is the catalyst logic board design.
Jack Chrisomalis "

" Hey Mike,
I tested the Sonnet update and it works fine both in OS 9.1 and in OS X. I didn't have any of the ailments that the update fixed (Photoshop 5.5 under 8.6 using virtual memory, max file transfer size of 8MB, etc.), so I probably wasn't a very good candidate for the update, but just FYI the hard drive attached to the card still works fine (meaning that you can play .mpg's and do other basic things from it), although I'm not sure about bootability.
Patrick Gast
(G4/400 system) "

" I have successfully updated Acard ATA66 Card with the Sonnet Updater, but i still have the known audio- stuttering on a powercenterpro 240. best wishes
Johannes Waldvogel "

" Hey Mike,
I just wanted to tell you that as of the 4K17 build (or was it the 4K29 build...), there is support for Sonnet's Tempo ATA/66 card. I have used my Maxtor 20 gig drive flawlessly inside of that build and the later builds as well. Also, I'll update you on how the update works inside of OS X...
Thanks, Patrick "

" ...told a friend who has one of the cards
They ran the updater, and it said failed part way through, now the attached drive won't mount

Update: the drive is fine, but the card seems to be messed They followed the instructions in the included readme to the letter They are now in the process of contacting the support e-mail at sonnet
Brian "

I welcome other user reports on this firmware (please include your system and OS details in emails).

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