Installing an Adaptec 2940 Ultra SCSI card

Adaptec supply install instructions for this card. Unfortunately, depending on the SCSI devices that you have installed in your system, the card may not work with all of your devices if you follow the instructions supplied by Adaptec.

The install instructions supplied by Adaptec for this card read as follows:

  1. Open the OS/2 System Folder, then open the System Setup Folder.
  2. If running Warp 4, open the Install/Remove Folder.
  3. Double click on Device Driver Install.
  4. Insert the Adaptec 7800 Family Manager Set floppy in an appropriate drive.
  5. Change to the \OS2\AIC7870 directory and locate the driver AIC7870.ADD.
  6. Select Install.
  7. After the install finishes, check you boot drive for any previous copies of the driver and delete them.
  8. Reboot the Computer.

Following these instructions enables support for the SCSI card but may not give you access to some of your SCSI devices. The reason is that some SCSI devices (but not all) also require that the OS2SCSI.DMD driver (that comes with OS/2) also be loaded before they will work.

If you installed SCSI support when you first loaded your operating system then this driver should already be loaded (look for a BASEDEV=OS2SCSI.DMD line in your CONFIG.SYS to check). If you have added the card after completing your OS/2 install, then you may need to load this driver. Adaptec do not supply instructions on how to do this. I would have thought that the fact that their card doesn't always work properly without it would be reason enough for them to do so, but they don't think so.

So what's the easiest way to install this driver. Well, its not stored in a useable form on the OS/2 install CD so we can't just do a straightforward install of the driver from there.

The simplest way that I found is to ignore the instructions from Adaptec and do the following instead:

  1. Open the OS/2 System Folder, then open the System Setup Folder.
  2. If running Warp 4, open the Install/Remove Folder.
  3. Double Click on Selective Install.
  4. Click on the button to the left of SCSI adaptor support and select the Adaptec 294x, 394x, AIC7870 PCI SCSI adaptor.
  5. Proceed through the install process without selecting anything else to be installed.
  6. Once the install process completes, proceed to install the AIC7870 driver supplied by Adaptec (or the latest version that you have downloaded off the internet) by copying the new driver to the \OS2\BOOT directory on your boot drive after deleting the old copy.

This SCSI card works really well with OS/2 once you get both of the drivers installed so it would be a real shame if you gave up on it because you haven't installed all of the drivers that you need to get it to work properly.


This article written by Stephen Chapman, Felgall Pty Ltd.

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