MicroSD cluster size question

Discussion in 'R4 DS' started by anark-e, Jun 13, 2007.

Jun 13, 2007

MicroSD cluster size question by anark-e at 3:46 PM (5,093 Views / 0 Likes) 13 replies

  1. anark-e
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    Newcomer anark-e Member

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    Hi everyone, I did a search on the forum looking for some information about this, and couldn't find anything. Granted, I wasn't exactly sure what search terms would give me good results.

    Anyway, I just ordered my R4DS today, with a 2GB SanDisk MicroSD card. I know from poking around here that the R4 and M3 Simply are basically identical. What confused me is this:

    This page clearly states that some cards, including the non-Taiwan SanDisk 2GB cards, work fine with all games (including CV:PoR) on the M3 Simply if you format in FAT16 with a 32K cluster size.

    This page however, says no such thing regarding the R4.

    My question is basically this:
    Is the R4 page on that site simply not up to date? Or is this an actual difference between the R4 and M3 Simply? I'm really not worried about it, I'm more than willing to go out and purchase CV:PoR. I just want to know if I should be concerned about cluster size when formatting my MicroSD card when it arrives.

    Anyone have a good answer for this? Thanks in advance.
     
  2. shinji257

    Member shinji257 61396C68206D61737465722072616365 :3

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    Last I heard the M3 site was actually inaccurate. There is no known 2GB microSD cards that are good as far as speed goes for ones like the castlevania and tony hawk games.
     
  3. anark-e
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    Newcomer anark-e Member

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    I just wanted to give anyone who might be interested an update on this. Got my R4DS yesterday, with the SanDisk 2GB MicroSD card. I started PoR today and everything seemed to be going fine. Nothing seemed to lag at all.

    Then it froze at one point when moving to a new room. I figured maybe it was just a coincidence, restarted my DS, and tried again. No freeze at that point the second time through.

    I continued playing and got to a certain NPC (no spoilers) who sent me on a simple quest. I completed the quest and went back to that NPC for my reward. When the game tried to enter the NPC's quest menu, the game froze. I restarted my DS and tried again. Again, it froze at the exact same spot.

    I backed up all my stuff onto my PC hard drive and reformatted my MicroSD with 32K clusters. Loaded PoR, played, and it froze at the exact same point again.

    I backed up all my stuff onto my PC again, and reformatted my MicroSD with 64K clusters. At this point I figured I'd just end up buying PoR, I didn't expect 64K clusters to make a difference.

    They did. I've been playing the game for half an hour straight now (I used the in-game clock to confirm this time, not counting the progress I'd already made before formatting to 64K clusters), talking to NPCs multiple times when I see them, going into and out of menus, and using every teleporter I come to just to see if the game will freeze. With the 64K cluster formatting, I've yet to have a single hiccup of any kind in the game. Not one freeze, not a bit of slowdown, nothing at all to complain about.

    Obviously half an hour isn't really a huge test, but it's definitely enough to have me hopeful. So before you decide PoR just plain doesn't work on your MicroSD, mess with the cluster size and see what happens. You might just get lucky.
     
  4. shinji257

    Member shinji257 61396C68206D61737465722072616365 :3

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    I was personally using Kingston 1GB formatted as Fat32 w/ 8KB clusters. Where did you get your 2GB SanDisk at? If it was online can you provide a link to it?
     
  5. ZeWarriorReturnz

    Banned ZeWarriorReturnz Banned

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    Shinji257 why not google where to buy it?
     
  6. shinji257

    Member shinji257 61396C68206D61737465722072616365 :3

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    I kinda wanted to see if he got a good deal. I already know of a few places that sell it but SanDisk tend to be very expensive as far as microSD media goes.
     
  7. anark-e
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    Newcomer anark-e Member

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    I can tell you exactly where I got it. An authorized R4 dealer listed on the R4DS website, Vulcan Zone. Specifically, I bought this package deal which came with a full R4DS retail box (the flash card, the game holder, the software CD, all the usual stuff). I also took the time to check out Vulcan Zone's eBay store feedback before ordering. With just over 100 feedbacks they only had one neutral and no negative feedback. After that, I felt pretty confident about ordering from them.

    I ordered from this site for a specific reason. The $81.99 USD total that I paid is about $5 USD more than I would have paid at DealExtreme. At DealExtreme I would have paid $59.95 for a similar package, plus $16.40 for EMS Express shipping so I didn't end up waiting several weeks. Vulcan Zone actually stated right on their site how long their free shipping option (which uses First Class USPS) tends to take based on where you live (mine was stated as 3-4 days). They do also offer non-free shipping options for people who live further away from Pennsylvania and want to ensure fast delivery.

    I took their free shipping option through First Class USPS. Since Vulcan Zone is located in Pennsylvania and I live in Ohio, shipping took three days as the website suggested it would (I placed my order late Tuesday evening, it was sent out on Wednesday morning, and it arrived on Friday). This is why I compare the price to the EMS Express option at DealExtreme. I would have had to pay for EMS Express to even have a chance of getting it this fast.

    Very fast, very professional, and I was quite pleased. I should also mention (since I don't know if this is standard) that my SanDisk 2GB came with both a standard SD adapter, and a MiniSD adapter. Now, with the 64K clusters, I've had no problems whatsoever in PoR (been playing more since my last post) and I couldn't be happier with my R4 or my MicroSD.
     
  8. jdog29

    Newcomer jdog29 Newbie

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    I understand how to format it in windows Fat16 or Fat32. But how do you choose the cluster size, and you say that 64K clusters is the way to go. Does the MicroSD card come formatted already?

    Thanks,

    ~jdog29
     
  9. Destructobot

    Member Destructobot Crave the Hammer

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    You have to format the card from the Disk Management thingy to be able to change the cluster size.

    Start -> Run -> diskmgmt.msc -> OK


    Both of my microSD cards came formatted.
     
  10. Rayder

    Former Staff Rayder Mostly lurking lately....

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    All I know is that except for those two games mentioned, everything else works fine with a slow assed microSD card. Cluster size makes no difference on a slow card. At least it never has for me on my P.O.S. Transcend 2gig. R4/M3 Simply....same thing.

    If you care about either one of those games, just buy them and pirate the rest. ARRG matey. [​IMG] (and believe me, I'm, as [​IMG] as you can get right now. WOOT!)
     
  11. coolbho3000

    Member coolbho3000 GBATemp Kikkoman Naturally Brewed SoySauce Fanatic

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    Thanks for the tip, as soon as I get my MicroSD reader it's going to turn to 64k clusters. [​IMG]
     
  12. Destructobot

    Member Destructobot Crave the Hammer

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    Cluster size will only make a difference on a card that is just barely fast enough (or not fast enough) to have good performance.

    The largest cluster size (64KB for FAT) has the best speed, because it needs the smallest number of clusters for any given amount of data. This means that less data has to be dealt with each time the filesystem is accessed, making things slightly faster.
     
  13. anark-e
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    Newcomer anark-e Member

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    Thanks for clarifying that for everyone. I hope I never gave the impression that changing cluster size would work for all MicroSD cards, because I myself assumed that it would only work for some.

    Apparently I just got lucky, and my particular card is among those which are "just barely fast enough" and works 100% with 64K clusters.
     
  14. mr deez

    Member mr deez GBAtemp Fan

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    Same as that, I guess Taiwan kingstons are just too slow to run POR properly - I had crashes within 10 minutes multiple times.

    Now with 64k clusters I've played 3 hours + with no hint of a problem..
     

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