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+--Forum: PIU - General
+---Topic: Copying the PIU Hard drive started by Zim_256
Posted by: Guest on 23:20 CST :: 7/09/2014
So I have a MK9 machine on the oldest cabinet, the one with the 29 inch crt and the rounded marquee on top. I don't know who assembled it that way because it's clear that this one came with a MK3.
Introductions aside, I noticed that some people spent time and effort making copies of their PIU hard drives in case they fail, I did the same for the same reason and, what do you know, it doesn't work.
So, is there a way to make the copy boot or all that time spent imaging the drive is worthless. I mean, those drives are hard to come by and VERY expensive.
So far I managed to image the original drive with Windows tools and the copy doesn't load the game, gets stuck at 0 bytes in the bootloader (PIU Loader).
Then I tried copying the partitions and MBR under linux and the same thing happens.
After that I dd'ed the drive to an image and then back to the copy drive, now it shows the bootloader, it loads something and gets stuck at "Please wait". The main program doesn't start.
Fiddling with the image, I found that some "empty" space at the hard drive is not actually empty, storing soft information of the drive. In this case it's the model, serial number and firmware version.
The game I'm trying to backup is NX2, I have all the original hardware, including the dongle key but securing the drive itself seems ridiculous when such drives can fail, mainly because all of the "hard" power downs. I'm concerned that, if the drive fails, I won't be able to replace it unless I shell out cash for a complete new set ($1k+) instead of getting a new drive and restoring the backup (cost from free to as much as $90).
I also tried modifying the serial number on the image (I have nearly identical drives for the source and the copy) but now the bootloader doesn't even show up.
Posted by: ThatDudeNirvash on 08:07 CST :: 7/10/2014
Most people use linux commands for such tasks, such as dd, which would copy the entire hdd byte for byte to keep in hidden bootloaders similar to what andamiro uses.
For backing up the data in a windows enviroment i suggest this.
< http://hddguru.com/software/HDD-Raw-Copy-Tool/ >
As for actually USING it, The serial and etc of the hdd is kept in encrypted sectors of the pump it up hdd`s data, which cannot be changed unless you manage to decrypt the hdd and somehow recompile the data into a format that the game can understand. It HAS been done before, but, the likeliness of someone just "up and doing it" its very low unless they have some serious experience with this kind of stuff.
Anyways, Yes you can copy HDD`s easily, but it will do you no good since the serial wont match the original hdd
Posted by: BGPP on 15:01 CST :: 8/05/2014
I've heard about some ways to copy hard drives. I believe the best way is to ghost or clone a hard drive. that means that everything, even hidden files, will be copied from the original hard drive to the backup. There are plenty of software programs available for this; the most popular I think is Norton Ghost. Steps on how to use these programs are on the internet.
As far as for use with a Pump hard drive, The newer versions also require a lock chip to run the game as to prevent piracy. (not that anyone is being accuse of that) but I imagine You have a right to have a backup of your game if you have a legitimate copy, as with every other media (music, movies, games)
Posted by: ThatDudeNirvash on 17:53 CST :: 8/05/2014
I believe thats what I just said above =P
Posted by: BGPP on 20:32 CST :: 8/06/2014
Oh, I didn't read the whole page in the link. I thought it was just backup software. On your last statement of using the hard drive, has anyone tried using the backup and verified that it could not be used? It just seems weird because one would think the original and the clone are the same. But then again I don't know anything about encrypted files and such.
Posted by: ThatDudeNirvash on 22:18 CST :: 8/10/2014
Actually yes, Exceed 1 and exceed 2 are the only versions I have tried with success, You still need a lockchip, but can use a backup HDD of the game without a problem.
However newer versions have a serial number that it checks on the PCB itself which cannot be altered.
Posted by: streetfighterken on 20:33 CST :: 9/06/2018
Any more info on this? I just tried cloning my NX2 on one of those pc-less cloner devices but the clone will not boot. I too, am trying to prepare for the inevitable HDD failure.
Posted by: ThatDudeNirvash on 16:58 CST :: 9/12/2018
As I said above, Newer mixes are serial locked to the drive, You would not only need to clone the data to the HDD, but hack the hard drives PCB itself to change its model number / firmware number and everything to match your original HDD