Flashing the Samsung SD-612B

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Flashing the Samsung SD-612B

Postby joegib on Sat Aug 17, 2002 6:26 pm

Edited -- 1/5/2004

I've been disturbed to see a number of reports recently of people having a bad flash with this drive. The key thing in flashing the SD-612B is NOT to use the Samsung Windows flashing utilities. Using one of these gave me the only bad flash I've had with a drive and there have been plenty of reports in various forums of people suffering the same experience. So, I firmly recommend that you use the Samsung DOS utility SFDNDOS.EXE. Note that this guide refers only to the SD-612B, not the SD-612S.

Carry out the flash as follows:

(1) Obtain SFDNDOS -- Download SFDNDOS from here:

http://www.samsungodd.com/KorLib/File/sfdndos.exe

(2) Obtain Patched Firmware for the SD-612B -- This is the file E0E0U.ZIP from Etna's site here:

http://etna.rpc1.org/samsung/index.html

You will see that there is a "health warning" in the relevant entry on that site. There's nothing wrong with the firmware -- this is a reference to the problems people have had flashing under Windows as mentioned above.

(3) Create a DOS Boot Floppy -- You can do this in XP by formatting a floppy after setting the "Create an MS-DOS startup disk" option in the Format dialog. Then delete all files except MSDOS.SYS, IO.SYS and COMMAND.COM. Use a good quality floppy. If you are using Win95/98/ME/2K download the self-extracting file "winme_plain_boot_ disk.exe" from here:

http://www.putergeek.com/downloads/#winme_plain

Insert a blank floppy in your drive, run "Winme_plain_boot_disk.exe" and it will write a minimal boot disk to the floppy. Use a good quality branded floppy.

(4) Checking the Floppy -- Copy the flash utility SFDNDOS.EXE and firmware file E0E0U.BIN to the floppy. Check it using Windows tools (and Norton Utilities if you have it). The Samsung utility should identify the location of the drive on your IDE bus automatically but it won't hurt to disconnect any other optical drives just in case.

(5) Executing the Flash -- With the floppy in the drive, reboot your computer (after setting the BIOS to boot from floppy, if necessary). At the "A:\>" command prompt type:

SFDNDOS E0E0U.BIN [Return] -- [Note that those are zeros in the firmware filename]

Let the utility do its work and don't get impatient. Don't fiddle with the keyboard and when a message reporting that the download is complete appears, switch off your computer, don't just reset it.

(6) After the Flash -- Reboot and check that the drive is region-free with DISCinfo (see Utilities page on this site). Use Region Killer to overcome region protection in your DVD software player. Sometimes after a flash odd problems appear -- one symptom is that Windows now only recognises the drive as a CDROM. One cure for this under Win2K/XP is to go into Device Manager and, in the "IDE ATA/ATAPI controllers" section, uninstall the Primary or Secondary IDE Channel on which the drive is located. It doesn't hurt also to uninstall the DVD/CDROM device. Then reboot and let Windows re-detect the drive.
Last edited by joegib on Sat May 01, 2004 1:20 pm, edited 7 times in total.
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Postby Mercury on Sat Aug 17, 2002 8:19 pm

I only wish I had this info before. In retrospect, I knew I should never have trusted a Windows utility for something as sensitive as flashing. 20/20 hindsight, I guess. I learned my lesson.

I have one question, though. On the upgrade page for the SD-612B the download includes SFDNDOSM which I think is different from SFDNDOS. Is either one better or does it not matter?
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Postby joegib on Sat Aug 17, 2002 8:36 pm

Doesn't really matter except I believe SFDNDOSM requires an extra parameter -- SM/SS etc -- indicating the location of the drive on the IDE buses. I recommended the use of the older SFDNDOS on the basis that:

(1) It's never failed to work for me.

(2) It only requires the firmware file name as a parameter, making things simpler for users.
Last edited by joegib on Sun Dec 29, 2002 12:47 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Mercury on Sun Aug 18, 2002 6:00 am

Amazing. I just tried SFDNDOS, and it's the only utility that actually acknowledges that my SD-612B exists.

When I try to use it, it displays the message "1 Drive Found" (BIOS shows no devices attached), then gives me some garbled text (I assume it's trying to find the name of the drive), then the word SKIP. So, it sees the drive, but does not recognize it for what it is and refuses to flash.

What I would really need is a command parameter to force flash the drive, regardless of what it's recognized as. I already tried /f anf -f. joegib, you seem to have experience flashing drives, please tell me if there is some way to force SFDNDOS to flash my drive.
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Postby joegib on Sun Aug 18, 2002 11:52 am

Sorry, I don't know of a switch which will force the flash download. When I had my bad flash I tried all the techniques I had run across on these pages -- trying MTKFLASH, disconnecting all drives except the Samsung, disabling IDE in the BIOS. None of this worked so I ended up dismantling the drive, removing the flash EEPROM and flashing externally. I described this process here:

http://forum.rpc1.org/viewtopic.php?t=3 ... ght=plcc32

What's always intrigued me is that these Samsung DOS flash utilities seem to be variants of MTKFLASH. If you examine them in a Hex Editor you'll see references to MTKFLASH and its commands embedded. Yet while MTKFLASH is known to work with the SD-612S I couldn't get it to work with the SD-612B.

The Hex Editor shows entries in the area dealing with commands that look as though they might be switches -- -N, -R, -RN, -A, -V -- though they may just be unrelated code. I can only suggest you play around with these to see if they work. If you have any luck I'm sure there are a lot of people who would like to know!
Last edited by joegib on Sun Dec 29, 2002 12:50 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Postby Mercury on Sun Aug 18, 2002 10:11 pm

Well, it seems -N is indeed a "force" switch. The following command line almost flashed my drive:

SFDNDOS E0E0U.BIN SS -N

When using the -N switch, SS (for secondary slave, or SM for secondary master) must be specified.

Unfortunately, the flash fails almost immediately after starting. Trying the same parameters with SFDNDOSM causes the program to freeze after displaying the firmware versions. It can only be ended by pressing Ctrl+C.

While it didn't work in my case, it might work for others. I still haven't figured out what the -R, -RN, -A, -V switches do.
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SD 612S

Postby happea on Thu Aug 22, 2002 10:24 am

Joegib,

is the process you described the same for the SD 612S? Apparently I'm a newbie and am quite hesitent to flas my drive...but you're detailed description seemed possible even for me ;)

your help would be greatly appreciated. I downloaded the bootdisk and the samsung dos flash tool you recommended, but I couldn't seem to find the firmware that corresponds to my SF02 on the firmware page, or does the patch work for all the SD612S drives?
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Postby joegib on Thu Aug 22, 2002 6:44 pm

Yes, the same procedure should work for the SD-612S. Unless you have the TGV (Trigem) model, I recommend that you use Etna's patched version E1EUCOM.ZIP from here:

http://etna.rpc1.org/samsung/index.html
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Postby mirimo on Wed Sep 18, 2002 4:18 am

3 questions:

1. The patch is for a UDMA drive; can i use it on a PIO drive?

2. My firmware version is 0.4 (BS04). Can I use the E000 update?

3. The CD speed of my DVD drive is 32x (i don't know about the DVD speed), but everywhere else it says it's supposed to be 40x. What's wrong with my drive?
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Postby joegib on Wed Sep 18, 2002 7:02 pm

1. Yes. My drive firmware was originally BS05 and I have flashed between PIO and UDMA right up to the latest version without problems. I think the PIO firmware is intended for older mobos that don't have UDMA.

2. Why not? The Samsung page here:

http://www.samsungelectronics.com/odd/s ... index.html

-- says nothing about E000 being restricted to recently produced drives. But I assume you appreciate that this is "official" firmware. If you want to remove region-protection you'll need to use E0E0 from Etna's page.

3. Sorry, can't help with this. I've never owned a drive that reached its rated speed. These are set by the marketing department. :D
Last edited by joegib on Sun Dec 29, 2002 12:52 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby mirimo on Sat Sep 21, 2002 3:12 am

thanks
so first i update it to the official E000 then E0E0?

and the speed thing is just weird. Each model should have the same speed. According to software, the official speed is 32x.

When I bought my computer as a package, there was no documentation for the DVD drive. I think my DVD speed never goes over about 5x. Could the firmware update possibly improve speed?
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Method works for SAMSUNG SD-616F too

Postby Crispian on Tue Sep 24, 2002 10:27 pm

Joegib - Thanks, you are indeed a Master Poster since your DOS flashing method worked a treat.
By downloading the file E103COM.ZIP from Etna's site for the SD-616F and following your step-by-step method meticulously, I now have a region free DVD-ROM drive.
Region Killer also sorted out my PowerDVD software too.
It's a pity I couldn't find your posting 3 days earlier, would have saved some browsing time. If your method is universal, could it be given better publicity?
Thanks again!!!
Cheers
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Postby lostii on Mon Sep 08, 2003 4:29 am

hey.. im havin trouble with mine as well... however, i dont realy get what im suppose to do to get my multizone/region to work...
i have like 2 more attempts before it looks...
can someone help me please...
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Postby Shadow_Cell on Wed Dec 31, 2003 11:14 pm

will flashing your drive help u run DVD+RW on your PC becuz i cant and i just have a DVD-Rom.
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Postby joegib on Thu Jan 01, 2004 12:55 am

No. This is an old model (2000?). There's no realistic prospect of Samsung releasing updated firmware to cope with all types of DVD rewritable media.
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Postby Shadow_Cell on Thu Jan 01, 2004 2:34 am

joegib wrote:No. This is an old model (2000?). There's no realistic prospect of Samsung releasing updated firmware to cope with all types of DVD rewritable media.


yea i got my PC in 2000/2001 and there's no way i can just read the data on the disk i mean its just files that i need not any type of movie or video.
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Postby Paul_M on Tue Jan 20, 2004 1:22 am

I've got a dell dimension 8100 and all it says on the dvd drive properties is Samsung SD-612. How can I determine if its model B F or S?

The drive does not read any discs CD or DVD and when I tried to download and install a updated driver from Samsung is says I need to flash the drive.

I understand the steps here however seeing that there is more than one type of 612 model I need help determining which one I have before I do the flash.

Thanks,
Paul
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Postby joegib on Tue Jan 20, 2004 7:36 pm

What's your firmware version?
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Postby Paul_M on Tue Jan 20, 2004 11:52 pm

Where do I access this information for the firmware? Under properties all I am getting is driver information (yes I'm a newb sorry:).

-Paul
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Postby dhc014 on Tue Jan 20, 2004 11:55 pm

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Postby Paul_M on Wed Jan 21, 2004 3:00 am

Firmware Version 0.5

Drive Region Status: Lock Detected

Region Setting Status: Set

User Changes Left: 4

Manufacturer Resets Left: 4

Current Region Set: 1

Read Speed: 32x

Write Speed: n/a

-Paul
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Postby joegib on Wed Jan 21, 2004 8:10 pm

Well, a poster made a reference to a Dell 8100 containing an SD-612B here:

http://forum.rpc1.org/viewtopic.php?t=5 ... =dell+8100

I'd say that's the likely candidate. That said, a firmware flash is unlikely to sort out the problem mentioned in your first post. If the drive isn't reading disks this could be the result of:

-- hardware fault
-- dirty laser (use a cleaning disk)
-- problem with your OS (CD/DVD driver has been corrupted somehow).
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Postby Paul_M on Fri Jan 23, 2004 7:42 pm

Well I think the drive is definitely locked somehow since it says,

Drive Region Status: Lock Detected

Should I even bother with it or just scrap it and upgrade to a new driver or burner combo?
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Another branch of SD-612B

Postby tartarus on Tue Feb 24, 2004 10:16 pm

:oops:

PC: Dell Dimension 4100

Problem: My nephew upgraded the PC from Win ME to Win XP. After that, the DVD-ROM read CDs with files but not DVDs. Trying to read a DVD returned an "D:\ is not accessible. Incorrect function." response, and only rebooting would get it back.

Steps taken: The Dell website's advice was followed to flash the system with something he got there. That insisted that there was an SD-616 in the system. I'm told the flash did something once and now it didn't recognize anything.

That's when I got a call--for family, it's free.

Now: When the PC is powered on, the drive door ejects. Device isn't showing up in PC's setup (and obviously not in XP). The SD-616 flash returns "Drive not found" (hey, what more could it break?). I found the clear, excellent instructions and links on this page and tried the resulting boot diskette, but that also returned "Drive not found". The device has been moved to 3 different spots on 2 drive cables, with jumpers appropriately set, and other devices have been tested where this doesn't work.

Does this mean the SD-612 is fried? Do I give them the professional shrug and say "You can buy a good one for a pittance; it's a cheap lesson"?
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Postby joegib on Wed Feb 25, 2004 7:37 pm

When I had a bad flash with this drive the only recovery method I found that worked was removing the EEPROM and reflashing externally -- see here:

http://forum.rpc1.org/viewtopic.php?t=3 ... ght=plcc32

(Incidentally, that thread involved someone that flashed an SD-612B with 616 firmware)

Given the costs and aggravation of doing this I think the best bet is to bite the bullet and get a new drive. A Toshiba only costs
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