pcram - PCMCIA RAM memory card device driver
The PCMCIA RAM memory card device driver supports disk-like
I/O access to any standard PCMCIA static random access
memory (SRAM) card and dynamic random access memory (DRAM)
card. The driver supports standard PCMCIA SRAM/DRAM cards
that contain a Card Information Structure (CIS). RAM card
densities in the 512Kilobytes to 64Mbyte range are sup-
If a PC card memory device is recognized, the pcram device
driver is automatically loaded, the physical address allo-
cated, and special files created (if they do not already
Known Problems and Limitations
The Solaris pcmem driver is not capable of handling "combo"
memory cards with multiple types of memory on them (for
example, combined SRAM and nonvolatile FLASH). Inserting
such a card into a system running the Solaris software may
cause a system panic.
Because the PC card memory device is designed as a pseudo-
floppy diskette type, the only utility that can be used for
formatting is fdformat(1).
Configuration topics include initial installation and confi-
guration, identifying an unrecognized device, special files,
using PC card memory devices, and hot-plugging.
Initial Installation and Configuration
1. Install the Solaris software.
2. Boot the system.
3. Insert the card.
Identifying an Unrecognized Device
If you insert a memory device and it is not recognized (no
special files created), use the prtconf command.
1. Become root.
2. Run the prtconf -D command to display the configuration
recognized by the system. A recognized device will appear
in the prtconf output. For example:
# prtconf -D
. . .
pcic, instance #0 (driver name: pcic)
. . .
memory, instance #0 (driver name: pcmem)
pcram, instance #0 (driver name: pcram)
3. If your memory device does not appear at the end of the
prtconf output, it is not supported and cannot be used
with the pcram driver.
The special files created for PC card memory devices act
like disks and have names in the form /dev/dsk/c#t#d#p# or
/dev/dsk/c#t#d#s#. Abbreviations used in the names are:
o c# Controller #
o t# Card technology type #, defined as follows:
0 Null--no device
2 OTPROM (One Time PROM)
3 UV EPROM
5 Flash EPROM
o d# Device region of type #, usually zero
o p# fdisk partition #
o s# Solaris slice #
A device name can be specified either by a partition
name (p#) or a slice name (s#), but not both.
Using PC Card Memory Devices
Since the Solaris Volume Management software recognizes PC
Card memory devices, no special vold configuration is
required. If you do not want to use vold to manage your PC
card memory devices, comment out the use pcmem line in the
/etc/vold.conf file. To comment out a line, insert a # char-
acter at the beginning of the line.
PC Card memory devices do not need to have file systems on
them, though typically, before using a new PC Card memory
card, you will want to create a file system on it. DOS PCFS
is the best format to use. (You can use virtually any file
system format on a PC card memory card, but most other file
system formats are platform-dependent, making them unsuit-
able for moving data between different types of machines.
See "Using a PCMCIA Memory Card" in the OpenWindows Advanced
If you want to redirect the output of a tar command (or
dd or cpio) to a PC card memory device, first create a
file system on the card, using the fdformat(1) command
without arguments. The card must be reformatted before
it can be written on again.
If a memory card is removed while in use, the device driver
returns errors until the memory card is inserted into the
appropriate socket. Close and reopen the device with the
card reinserted, and the memory card will work.
o If you remove the card while in use as a file system,
unmount the file system using the umount command. Then
reinsert the card and remount the file system using
the mount command.
o If you remove the card and interrupt a tar or cpio
process, stop the process, reinsert the card, and res-
tart the process.
cn controller n
tn technology type n
dn technology region in type n
sn slice n
fdformat(1), pcmcia(4), dkio(7I), pcmem(7D)
Man(1) output converted with