The falcon restoration project is complete, all washed, dried and reassembled - looks like it was just unpacked
The IDE drive was DOA so I bought a 44pin IDE to CF adaptor and a 256Mb CF card. Drilled a few holes on the old HDD caddy and its now a permanent fixture.
Some folks on here have had mixed success with CF cards and HDDriver, I had issues initially and following multiple email conversations with Uwe (Much thanks) it now works perfectly. I have just dumped all the falc demos I can find to it with a multi card reader on XP, slapped the card into the falcon and fired it up.
Its simple to set up but not totally obvious, especially if you are a cheap arse like me and didnt buy the manual for HDDriver.
I am gonna assume you have managed to get your card and adaptor installed. I went for the 44pin (lappy hard disk) version of the card reader as its easier than faffing about with getting power to an 80way and a 44pin to 80 pin standard IDE cable adaptor.
1) Boot the falcon up to GEM desktop and slap in the HDDriver disk.
2) Run HDDriver.prg from the disks AUTO folder - this should spot your CF card and will drop you back to Gem.
3) Now run HDDUTIL.APP from the floppy root.
4) Go to "Harddisk" and choose "Partition", your CF card should be listed in a window that pops up. Select the CF from the list and click OK.
Simple so far right, the next bit is the non intuitive bit.
5) In the next window click on the "Split" button and tell it to split the disk into 1 partition and click OK
6) Click on the "Compatibility" button, click on the "Windows" radio button and check the "TOS and Windows Combined" and the "Optimised (SDMS Compatible" options.
7) As the CF is on an IDE bus you also need to check the "Byte Swapping" box too. This is because the default Atari way of addressing IDE is the opposite byte order to the windows way so you need to tell the Atari to rearrange its bytes to be in the windows layout. (SCSI is standard across both platforms).
Click on OK and it will partition the disk for you in about 2 seconds.
9) REBOOT the machine now. If you dont sometimes the CF is seen and sometimes its not - dunno why. After a reboot its all stable. You dont need to format it either.
Sadly you cant boot from media thats in compatibility mode, the comp mode uses the same area of the boot sector that boot enabling would use. You need to run HDDriver.prg at each boot. Simply installing HDDriver.sys to the CF card doesn't work. Now whatever you copy onto the disk will be seen by XP as files on a CF card and accessible normally.
What you could do is buy 2 44pin IDE CF adaptors (99p each) and have a primary and secondary flash card setup - a small card in TOS mode to boot from and a larger card as your swap media. I havent tried to find a 44 way crimp on connector yet but I am thinking that they might be hard to find.