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Old April 21st, 2008, 11:11 AM   #1
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Windows -> Safely Remove Hardware? Necessary?

Hey guys...

When you plug in your XH A1 into your Windows PC using firewire... when you're done and want to disconnect the camera from your PC.. do you have to click "Safely remove hardware" from the system tray? Or can you simply turn the camera off and unplug it from the firewire cable? I don't see why I need to use the 'Safely Remove Hardware' feature... but let me know if this is necessary because I really don't know.

Thanks for your help.
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Old April 21st, 2008, 11:14 AM   #2
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I've always just switched off and unplugged. Never had any problems.

It was a long time before I knew that safely remove hardware button existed - I'm not sure what it's for either.
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Old April 21st, 2008, 11:56 AM   #3
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The purpouse of the 'remove hardware safely' is ment for writable devices like: memory cards, external harddisks and memory sticks.
If you click on the 'remove hardware safely' button the computer stops writing, checking etc. on the 'disk'.

If you remove a card, stick or drive (USB or Firewire) you could risk a write error.
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Old April 21st, 2008, 01:12 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gert Kracht View Post
The purpouse of the 'remove hardware safely' is ment for writable devices like: memory cards, external harddisks and memory sticks.
If you click on the 'remove hardware safely' button the computer stops writing, checking etc. on the 'disk'.

If you remove a card, stick or drive (USB or Firewire) you could risk a write error.
So it sounds like it is completely unnecessary to use the "Safely Remove Hardware" feature when unplugging the A1 from my PC... is this correct? Thanks.
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Old April 21st, 2008, 01:49 PM   #5
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Hi Deke...........

Correct.


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Old April 21st, 2008, 01:58 PM   #6
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Unless you're exporting your HDV work from the timeline to tape :-)
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Old April 22nd, 2008, 08:18 AM   #7
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The safely remove hardware feature is there to ensure any pending data writes to storage media are completed, directory and file allocation table entries are updated, and open files are closed. If this is not done, and the device is unplugged, you could corrupt the file or media and render all information on it "lost." It is a sufficiently common problem with digital media (e.g., memory cards) that there is a business selling recovery software. Similar problem can happen with MiniDisc media, hard drives, floppy disks, etc., and it can be more of a problem if your operating system is configured to buffer/delay file writes.

It is not likely to be an issue with firewire transfer of data from tape, but it can be an issue if accessing data on a memory stick, SD card, etc. While it may not be necessary with video transfer from XH-A1, it is a good habit to develop in the interest of reducing the chance of an issue with other media. It also may help prevent your operating system or application from becoming confused as to what is present/connected.
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Old April 22nd, 2008, 09:36 AM   #8
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The only time I tried using it, it completely closed down the built-in card readers and I had to find a USB card reader in order to download data. Most frustrating.
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Old April 23rd, 2008, 07:19 AM   #9
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Odd that it would totally disable an internal card reader? Usually removing the media in the reader is sufficient to reset it.
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Old April 23rd, 2008, 01:48 PM   #10
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I'm sure I replied to this earlier, but nothing is showing up.

To be more accurate, the card reader itself was probably at least part of the problem. It shut down completely several times - the first time it didn't come back on line, even with instructions from the computer help people, so they came out and replaced it. The replacement still shuts down from time to time, but usually comes back on line when the computer is switched on again. I've learned that when it goes on strike, the easiest answer is to use a USB card reader. There are now only twelve months left on the lease of this machine, then it will be replaced with something a bit more reliable - my previous computers were much better.

So far, I haven't had any problems with firewire!
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Old April 23rd, 2008, 02:57 PM   #11
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Windows (Vista?) determines if a device should be 'safely removed' or not. Most of the times any device can be unplugged as long as Windows uses it as a portable device (thus, writing directly, not saving data in RAM). There was an option somewhere to check wether it would be neccesary to 'safely remove', but I can't recall...
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Old April 23rd, 2008, 07:46 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Annie Haycock View Post
The only time I tried using it, it completely closed down the built-in card readers and I had to find a USB card reader in order to download data. Most frustrating.
Annie,

If you use the Windows "Safely Remove Hardware" icon in the system tray to "remove" the built-in card reader, it will do exactly what you're asking it to do... "remove" the card reader from Windows.

To safely remove a CF or SD (etc) card from the built-in card reader, you don't use the "Remove Hardware" icon, you "eject" the card from within Windows.

To eject a card, double click on the My Computer icon. Inside the My Computer folder, you'll see several removable disks listed, one for each "disk" that can hold a solid state card (Compact Flash, Secure Digital, Micro SD etc). Right click on the "drive" containing your card. In the pop-up menu, click on "Eject". Windows will tell you the card is ok to be removed.

If you use the "Safely Remove Hardware" icon to unmount the built-in card reader, you will have to reboot the machine, or use the Windows Hardware Device Manager to re-scan for new hardware in order to get Windows to see it again. Sometimes, you need to do both!

As for the Canon A1, which is attached by Firewire, there's no need to eject or safely remove it. Just turn the camera off, and then unplug it from the computer.
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Old April 24th, 2008, 01:48 AM   #13
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Thanks for that. I will pass it on to my husband who insists on using that safely remove hardware button. He does not have an inbuilt card reader on his computer, though I don't remember him ever complaining that he couldn't read a second card put into his USB card reader. I only ever it used once - at his insistence - so that doesn't explain why my card reader still "disappears" from time to time.
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