Making dual partition SD cards that allow easy swapping and use - Creative Uses of CHDK - CHDK Forum

Making dual partition SD cards that allow easy swapping and use

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Offline SkyWalker9

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One of the SX20IS posters mentioned something he had "discovered" so I thought I'd post a link here in case you are interested. Basically, he setup two bootable 4G partitions with CHDK on both partitions. This allows him to swap partitions using the Misc > Swap option on the CHDK menu. I had seen where others had tried using dual partitons but hadn't thought to make both bootable with CHDK on both partitions, so they were unable to keep operating after the swap. Earlier I had created a tutorial for the Windows users in the SX20IS forum, and today I updated it to include how to create the dual 4G bootable partitions on a 8G SD card. Here is a link to the original posting: http://chdk.setepontos.com/index.php/topic,4348.msg51774.html#msg51774

(A link to the tutorial I created is in the second posting that follows.)
« Last Edit: 18 / June / 2010, 15:32:58 by SkyWalker9 »

Re: Making dual partition SD cards that allow easy swapping and use
« Reply #1 on: 20 / June / 2010, 07:30:21 »
I've got a good tutorial up for the G series.  It probably works with most others as well.  Made it when I was searching for a step-by-step for 8Gb cards but couldn't find a single page.

http://init.sh/?p=140

Re: Making dual partition SD cards that allow easy swapping and use
« Reply #2 on: 04 / July / 2010, 11:45:01 »
Basically, he setup two bootable 4G partitions with CHDK on both partitions. This allows him to swap partitions using the Misc > Swap option on the CHDK menu.

That seems to be a cumbersome approach. It means that two CHDK versions have to be maintained including scripts or so. I don't know about the SX20 but a very easy tool to use a card with more than 4GB is SDM Installer (Stereo Data Maker) found at http://stereo.jpn.org/eng/sdm/download.htm
I never used SDM for its stereo purpose but for downloading the pictures and setting up the card.
Instructions on how to setup everything can be found @ http://stereo.jpn.org/eng/sdm/quick.htm

BTW this should have been posted in a different section.
« Last Edit: 04 / July / 2010, 11:47:10 by schoko_chantale »

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Offline SkyWalker9

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Re: Making dual partition SD cards that allow easy swapping and use
« Reply #3 on: 04 / July / 2010, 20:00:42 »
That seems to be a cumbersome approach. It means that two CHDK versions have to be maintained including scripts or so.
Not very cumbersome - I'm currently using SmartSync and it keeps track of file/folder changes on the SD Card and automatically copies them to my hard drive. No matter which SD card or which partition I use, it is automatically checked against the latest changes on my computer and updated if needed. If a file on my computer needs updating by a newer change on an SD card, then it gets updated. An advantage of using an app like SmartSync is that when SD cards start slowing down after a lot of use (defragmentation) and they need to be reformatted to speedup the saving of photos, then SmartSync takes care of copying the files and folders to the SD Card after reformatting.

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I don't know about the SX20 but a very easy tool to use a card with more than 4GB is SDM Installer (Stereo Data Maker) found at http://stereo.jpn.org/eng/sdm/download.htm
I never used SDM for its stereo purpose but for downloading the pictures and setting up the card.
Instructions on how to setup everything can be found @ http://stereo.jpn.org/eng/sdm/quick.htm
The SDM Installer is mentioned in the posting I referenced for the tutorial to setup the 4G cards (http://rapidshare.com/files/400436852/Installing_CHDK_on_SD_Cards__Windows_OS_.pdf).

Several advantages of the 4G dual, bootable partitions are:
1 - Under the previous dual partition setup Windows users need to remove the SD card, swap partitions using SDM Installer, unload , swap partitions using SDM Installer, and then put the SD card back in the camera. With this dual 4G setup, you simply remove the SD card, unload, and put the SD card back in the camera. You don't need the SDM Installer during this process, you avoid two partition swaps, and you can upload to a computer that doesn't have the SDM Installer installed.
2 - You can do USB to PC transfers from either partition (JPGs and movies - still not DNGs, etc.)
3 - You can keep different events on separate partitions without swapping SD cards (i.e. wedding vs reception photos). The SX20 CHDK estimates show each 4G partition can have approx 1205 JPGs (fine mode) or 180 DNGs (with accompanying JPGs - fine mode) - plenty of room on each 4G partition.
4 - After one 4G partition starts slowing down due to defragmentation, you can swap to the other "fresh" partition.

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BTW this should have been posted in a different section.
The section heading read "Creative Uses of CHDK - Report a new way to use an existing feature, new discoveries, etc.", so that's why I thought this was the correct section.


Re: Making dual partition SD cards that allow easy swapping and use
« Reply #4 on: 06 / July / 2010, 06:02:44 »
Ok, I got your point. Nevertheless you'd need to sync the settings between the two instances of chdk which complicates things on the other hand. Do you have a link to that SmartSync? I'm curious how it'll manage to deal with two partitions at the same time (with windows).

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Offline SkyWalker9

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Re: Making dual partition SD cards that allow easy swapping and use
« Reply #5 on: 07 / July / 2010, 12:56:46 »
Nevertheless you'd need to sync the settings between the two instances of chdk which complicates things on the other hand. Do you have a link to that SmartSync? I'm curious how it'll manage to deal with two partitions at the same time (with windows).
Windows only recognizes ("see's") one partiton at a time so SmartSync only sync's with the partition that Windows "see's". If I switch to the other partition or another SD card and do an unload, SmartSync handles any changes to that partition/SD card (most up-to-date only).

I'm still testing some of the SmartSync options, but so far it seems to work better than the bat file I used before. After a while I found that there didn't seem to be very many changes when using CHDK, so using SmartSync might be "overkill" in my case - I just like experimenting. Here is a link to SmartSync Pro: http://www.smartsync.com

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Offline morel

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Re: Making dual partition SD cards that allow easy swapping and use
« Reply #6 on: 07 / July / 2010, 14:04:46 »
So if You want to unload photos from both of the partitions, You have to: remove card from camera, unload photos, insert card into camera, swap partitions via chdk, remove card from camera, unload photos, insert card into camera :)

There is more steps, than when using SDM instaler :) Where is the gain?

Re: Making dual partition SD cards that allow easy swapping and use
« Reply #7 on: 08 / July / 2010, 08:12:42 »
So if You want to unload photos from both of the partitions, You have to: remove card from camera, unload photos, insert card into camera, swap partitions via chdk, remove card from camera, unload photos, insert card into camera :)

I second that. And it might not be the last step if you use "Auto CHDK to EXIF" to update the exif tags.
« Last Edit: 08 / July / 2010, 08:14:49 by schoko_chantale »


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Offline SkyWalker9

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Re: Making dual partition SD cards that allow easy swapping and use
« Reply #8 on: 08 / July / 2010, 20:02:50 »
So if You want to unload photos from both of the partitions, You have to: remove card from camera, unload photos, insert card into camera, swap partitions via chdk, remove card from camera, unload photos, insert card into camera :)
There is more steps, than when using SDM instaler :) Where is the gain?
I agree with you that you wouldn't actually save steps in the case you mentioned. I didn't mean to imply you would save steps in every case. The average user will probably save steps since most people will probably only use one partition at a time - after shooting they'll unload the partition and start shooting using the same partition.

What do I gain in the case you mentioned? 1) Having dual partitions the same size allows me to keep events separated on the same SD card - maybe not a step saver everytime, but a convenience since I don't need to swap SD cards. 2) this saves me time retrieving another SD card from my SD card holder 3) I've reduced the number of SD cards I use, and 4) I'm able to upload photos on a computer on which I'm not allowed to install SDM Installer - such as at an internet cafe, in-laws computer, office computer, etc.

Are there other advantages? Certainly, some of which I mentioned in my last reply - I doubt that I have discovered all, only those I found useful to me. I doubt that any SD setup will be ideal for everyone. What is important is that when we discover new ways of using CHDK that may help others, we mention them so that others may decide for themselves what will work best for them.

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Offline fe50

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Re: Making dual partition SD cards that allow easy swapping and use
« Reply #9 on: 09 / July / 2010, 01:10:40 »
What is important is that when we discover new ways of using CHDK that may help others, we mention them so that others may decide for themselves what will work best for them.
Yes, absolutely correct !

 

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