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Published by: Richard Barnsley on Jan 10, 2011
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USB mass storage devices can be attached to the SnapGear unit for use as a print spool
or to share with your Windows network as a network attached storage device (NAS). A
typical use for NAS is for using the SnapGear unit as a network file server.

USB mass storage devices include USB flash drives and keychains, USB flash card
readers loaded with flash cards, USB hard drives, and certain digital cameras and
portable music players.



This section describes how to set up the SnapGear unit for network attached storage.
For information on using a USB mass storage device as a print spool, refer to the USB

Share the storage device

Select Shares from the Networking section of the main menu. Click the Storage tab.

All USB Devices or device Partitions that are available to share are listed along with
their Sizes and for previously configured shares, their Share Names.

Locate the USB Device or device Partition that you want to share and click its Edit icon.

Enter a Share Name, this is the name that is displayed when browsing your Windows
workgroup or domain.

Enter a Description (optional).

Set access permissions

The remaining settings control access to the network share from your LAN.



Browsable: Display an icon for the network when browsing the network from a Windows
PC. To access the network share when this is unchecked, the user must manually enter
the address in the address bar (e.g. \\SG565\public\).

Writable: The network share is writable, i.e. users can modify and create new files.

Public: A login and password is not required to access the network share.

Users: A valid login and password is required to access the network share. Selecting
this option displays a list of users. Check the boxes next to the users to whom you wish
to grant access.


See the Users section in the chapter entitled System for information on adding new

Click Finish.

Once configured, you may enable and disable network shares under the Storage tab
using the Enable/Disable checkbox.



Join a Windows workgroup

The next step is to configure your SnapGear unit to join your Window workgroup or
domain. Select Network Setup from the Networking menu. Click the Advanced tab.

Under the Unit Workgroup heading, enter the name of your Windows workgroup or
domain and click Apply. Typically, this name is UPPERCASE.

Once NAS devices or printers have been shared, your SnapGear unit becomes visible to
other members.

To test this, browse the workgroup from a Windows PC that is a workgroup member. In
Windows XP, open My Network Places and under Network Tasks on the left, click
View workgroup computers to browse the workgroup.


Setting up your Windows workgroup or domain is beyond the scope of this manual.
Refer to the documentation shipped with Windows, or the Microsoft website for further



Partitioning a USB mass storage device


This procedure is intended for experts and power users only.

The standard Linux command line tools are present on the SnapGear unit for partitioning
(fdisk) and creating filesystems (mkfs) on an attached USB mass storage device.
Alternatively, you may use the standard Windows tools or a third party utility such as
PartitionMagic to partition a USB mass storage device before attaching it to the
SnapGear unit.

This section contains an example walkthrough of partitioning a USB mass storage device
using the SnapGear unit. The following example splits a 128MB USB mass storage
device into two equally sized partitions.


Repartitioning a device causes all data on that device to be lost. Back up any data
before proceeding.

Attach the USB mass storage device. After 10 – 15 seconds, select Advanced from the
System menu and click System Log. Look for lines similar to the following to see which
device name is has been assigned.

Apr 22 01:19:49 klogd: USB Mass Storage device found at 4

Apr 22 01:20:58 klogd: SCSI device sda: 256000 512-byte hdwr
sectors (131 MB)

In this case, the device name is sda. If there is a single USB mass storage device
attached, it is typically be assigned sda, otherwise it may by sdb, sdc, etc.

telnet or ssh to the SnapGear unit and login. Run the fdisk command with the argument
/dev/, e.g.

fdisk /dev/sda

Type p to display the partition table.



Command (m for help): p

Disk /dev/sda: 5 heads, 50 sectors, 1024 cylinders

Units = cylinders of 250 * 512 bytes

Device Boot Start End Blocks Id System

/dev/sda1 1 1024 127975 b Win95 FAT32

Delete any existing partitions by typing d the entering the partition number, e.g. enter 1 to
delete /dev/sda1.

Create a new partition by typing n then p for primary, then the partition number.


The SnapGear unit support primary partitions only, so you are limited to four partitions.

Enter the cylinder for the partition to start on, generally the default is fine. Enter the
cylinder for the partition to end on, or a size for the partition with +(size in mb)M.

Command (m for help): n

Command action

e extended

p primary partition (1-4)


Partition number (1-4): 1

First cylinder (1-1024, default 1):

Using default value 1

Last cylinder or +size or +sizeM or +sizeK (1-1024, default
1024): +64M



Repeat the process for each partition to want to create. For the last partition, the default
last cylinder is generally be fine.

Command (m for help): n

Command action

e extended

p primary partition (1-4)


Partition number (1-4): 2

First cylinder (526-1024, default 526):

Using default value 526

Last cylinder or +size or +sizeM or +sizeK (526-1024, default

Using default value 1024

For each partition, set the partition type to match the type of filesystem you are going to
create on it by typing t, the partition number, then the type code (L to view type codes).
In this example, we are creating FAT32 partitions (type code b).

Command (m for help): t

Partition number (1-4): 1

Hex code (type L to list codes): b

Changed system type of partition 1 to b (Win95 FAT32)

Type w to save your changes to the partition table. From the web management console,
select Advanced from the System menu, and click Reboot.

telnet or ssh to the SnapGear unit and login. For each partition, run the appropriate mkfs
command. To create FAT32 on our two example partitions, we use:



mkfs.vfat –F 32 /dev/sda1


mkfs.vfat –F 32 /dev/sda2

From the web management console, select Advanced from the System menu, and click
Reboot. The partitions are now ready to use.

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