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Old 07-08-2008, 12:09 PM
"Bent Terp"
 
Default share folder as USB mass storage device

Hi all!

Maybe I'm just being silly here, but I'm wondering if anybody has ever
used their computer for sharing files over USB. That is, the computer
pretends to be a USB mass storage device.

This could be useful for connecting to media players and such that
support you plugging a USB harddrive or memory stick.

Surely, somebody must have thought of this before :-D

regards,
Bent
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Old 07-08-2008, 03:40 PM
John R Pierce
 
Default share folder as USB mass storage device

Bent Terp wrote:

Hi all!

Maybe I'm just being silly here, but I'm wondering if anybody has ever
used their computer for sharing files over USB. That is, the computer
pretends to be a USB mass storage device.

This could be useful for connecting to media players and such that
support you plugging a USB harddrive or memory stick.

Surely, somebody must have thought of this before :-D



the USB interface only supports one 'master' (a computer) and all other
devices are 'slaves'. the master and slave controllers are quite
different. you'd need a special dongle to do this.

and, of course, for the specific application you mention, you'd be
sharing a raw block device, not 'files'... most of those devices are
expecting a FAT or FAT32 file system on the mass storage device, so
you'd need to have a FAT(32) file system, either on a loopback file or a
real disk partition, that you would unmount then share via this
hypothetical SUB virtual block device.
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Old 07-08-2008, 10:07 PM
"Spiro Harvey, Knossos Networks Ltd"
 
Default share folder as USB mass storage device

Maybe I'm just being silly here, but I'm wondering if anybody has ever
used their computer for sharing files over USB. That is, the computer
pretends to be a USB mass storage device.
Surely, somebody must have thought of this before :-D


Yes, Apple thought of it years ago. Plug a Mac/laptop to another Mac via
Firewire (and I think USB too), boot it while holding down the T key
(I'm pretty sure it's T), and it boots as a slave drive.


This was a standard feature used when you upgraded hardware and wanted
to migrate your data across. Not sure if it works on Intel Macs, but
don't see why it wouldn't.


However, this feature also relied on the BIOS. PCs don't have this. And
if you just plugged two PCs together via USB, each end would be
connected to a motherboard, or a PCI host card, not an actual device.


I have never seen this done in PC land, and it would probably require
hardware/BIOS changes before someone implemented this in Linux.



--
Spiro Harvey Knossos Networks Ltd
021-295-1923 www.knossos.net.nz

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Old 07-08-2008, 10:50 PM
John R Pierce
 
Default share folder as USB mass storage device

Spiro Harvey, Knossos Networks Ltd wrote:
Yes, Apple thought of it years ago. Plug a Mac/laptop to another Mac
via Firewire (and I think USB too), boot it while holding down the T
key (I'm pretty sure it's T), and it boots as a slave drive.

Firewire aka IEEE1394 is a peer to peer interface. USB is master to slave.




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