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  #1  
Old 02-26-2008, 05:45 PM
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Default Fix for slow startup time (and possibly for firmware upgrade issues)

Discussion thread: http://iaudiophile.net/forums/showthread.php?t=20157
Direct download link: http://panasonic.jp/support/global/c...formatter.html

This is what I've been waiting for... a definite answer to the annoying issues about the D2's sluggish startup times - and maybe even the upgrade issues a lot of people experienced with recent firmware versions. It's as simple as NOT using Windows to format SD/SDHC cards, but using this Panasonic formatting app.

On the one side I'm happy about a fix - on the other side it makes me even more angry about Cowon, cause they don't mention these formatting issues anywhere in the manual or on their website. They should put a big red warning sticker on the D2: "Do not format with Windows"... it would have saved me (and many other people) a lot of time and hassle.
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  #2  
Old 02-26-2008, 08:16 PM
Apex_ Apex_ is offline
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This doesn't surprise me, but damn I wish I'd known about this yesterday. I ended up having to format a 512MB SD card (old PDA card I'm using for small videos) because Windows threw a fit saying it needed it. I had a crazy morning with some strange problems on the D2 (I'll make a thread about it) and ended up clearing my internal and 16GB SDHC out as well. Wish I could've formatted them all in one shot and spared having to wipe them again to do it...

I'll give it a shot none the less and report back tomorrow probably.

Currently 13-15 dots on startup using 3.54, no new content.

Edit #1: I'm running an ERASE ON format on my 16GB card right now, and it's taking ages. Good thing I have all night! Will edit with updates as things progress. (Addendum to edit #1: Nice of it to tell me the device doesn't support flash erase AFTER it takes an hour to format it...sigh)

Edit #2: Alright, here's my input: 16GB card freshly formatted with appx. 1900 files on it took a whopping 43 dots to boot initially. Afterwards, however, the player booted in only 6-8 dots without any new content. I don't have a benchmark for new content boot prior to the format, but the boot is long regardless. A notable decrease in boot time between 46-54%. Quite good, though the process takes well over an hour to complete on a 16GB card.

Also note these tests were done with the same amount of data on the internal flash both times, I changed nothing.

Time for sleep now.

Last edited by Apex_; 02-27-2008 at 12:24 AM. Reason: one...more...update...
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  #3  
Old 02-27-2008, 01:44 PM
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Interesting. This problem seems to affect other players as well. My Meizu M6 will take ages to boot up if I format the memory through Windows (around 15 secs). It will boot way faster if I reflash the firmware (around 8 secs).
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  #4  
Old 02-27-2008, 03:30 PM
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I got a 2GB D2 + 8GB Kingston Class 6, running 2.51.

After my horrible x.53/x.54 upgrade fiasco I had 15 dots startup time.
This slow startup was present even after downgrading to 2.51.
So I bricked my D2 on purpose and recovered it with Tcctool, to get a "fresh" 2.51 on my D2.
After that my startup time went down to 7 dots, like I had before.
Now I formatted my internal memory (quick erase) and SD card (full erase with overwrite) with this Panasonic app.
My startup time is down to 3 dots (with full internal and external memory). Transfer to both memories is also faster.

I can hardly believe it... it's too good to be true. This is a highly recommended fix.
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  #5  
Old 02-27-2008, 03:58 PM
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I don't see any transfer speed increase in my case, but the nearly halved startup time is definitely cool. I might format the internal 8GB as well sometime tomorrow and see if that improves it even further.
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  #6  
Old 02-27-2008, 08:17 PM
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Yeah, my startup has always been 3 dots normal-- 7 dots would be a pain!

This is very cool!

Interestingly enough, my dad was having trouble with a Sony flash card (data corruption) and a nearly identical application fixed all his woes... And let our DSC-H9 take photos faster than the advertised 'rapid-fire' rate.
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  #7  
Old 02-28-2008, 08:29 AM
tiredangel tiredangel is offline
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Wow, this is a huge improvement. I was at 1 circle 5 dots with a 8gb SDHC card, and now I'm at 5 dots. Thank you so much!
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  #8  
Old 02-28-2008, 12:51 PM
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I tried formatting my internal memory earlier using the Panasonic tool and Windows absolutely refuses to accept it. It worked fine for the SD card, but for some reason Windows demands I format the internal via the OS.

dfkt, was there anything special you had to do at all, or is my Windows install just being its usual annoying self?
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  #9  
Old 02-28-2008, 01:05 PM
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I didn't do anything special. The Panasonic formatter simply recognized the D2's internal memory and formatted it.

I did that on XP SP2, and I use a dedicated drive letter for the D2 (Q:\) and the SD slot (R:\), contrary to the usual dynamically assigned drive letters for removable devices.

Make sure you're in MSC mode, that's all I can think of.

Another hint: back up your D2's system folder to your HDD, so you can easily restore your settings after formatting.
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  #10  
Old 02-28-2008, 05:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dfkt View Post
I didn't do anything special. The Panasonic formatter simply recognized the D2's internal memory and formatted it.

I did that on XP SP2, and I use a dedicated drive letter for the D2 (Q:\) and the SD slot (R:\), contrary to the usual dynamically assigned drive letters for removable devices.

Make sure you're in MSC mode, that's all I can think of.

Another hint: back up your D2's system folder to your HDD, so you can easily restore your settings after formatting.
Really odd, I did all of that right down to backing up and assigning static drive letters. I always use MSC mode, so that's definitely not it. I ended up letting Windows have its way and my startup time increased from about 6-8 dots to over 10! I'll give it another try sometime and try to figure out what's up.

The Panasonic utility did its job just fine, but Windows is being its usual self :/
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  #11  
Old 03-07-2008, 05:18 PM
evil penguin evil penguin is offline
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This is a truly excellent tool!

Reformatting my 8GB SD card with this tool seems to have pretty much alleviated the slow startup problem with the latest firmware versions. (The older versions are probably quicker still, but this makes the latest versions start up in an acceptable time.)
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  #12  
Old 03-07-2008, 05:20 PM
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Indeed, I'm running 2.54 now, with 4 dots startup, with full internal (2GB) and external (8GB) memory. Great stuff.
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  #13  
Old 03-31-2008, 08:18 PM
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Wow, thanks for helping me with something I didn't even know I needed or wanted. I was averaging about 9-11 dots per startup before (8GB internal, 8GB SDHC), now I'm getting 3 dots consistently (note below) with just the quick method on both drives. Could possibly get even better with a full erase?? Wasn't having any major firmware issues before (running 2.51), but it seems to be running just as solid now. Highly recommend this to anyone!

(note: I backed up my SYSTEM folder to save my settings before reformatting. After the format when I copied my settings back across, it reduced my startup time back to at least 7-8 dots. But when I erased the SYSTEM folder again and then reset my preferences through the D2, I got back down to 3 dots and have been able to maintain it. Don't know how this will affect others but thought I should note it...)
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  #14  
Old 04-04-2008, 04:10 PM
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You mean to tell me this is the probable cause of my problems with the D2??? I got rid of it for NOTHING!!! DAMN, NOW I'M PISSED!!! Could this have been the reason I was having video sync issues? Man, I miss my D2 and now I've found a reason to miss it MORE!!!

Last edited by The DarkSide; 04-04-2008 at 04:13 PM. Reason: added to post
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  #15  
Old 04-04-2008, 04:22 PM
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Well... yes. All my D2 issues/bugs disappeared after I used the Panasonic Formatter and Tcctool/FWDN to fix my D2. All videos are in sync now with 2.54, even the ones I converted with Badak or iRiverter.
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  #16  
Old 04-04-2008, 11:23 PM
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This Panasonic-format thing really does help speed up your D2! Even if all you have is internal memory and no SD card, it helps. It used to take 7-8 dots to start up with 2781 MB filled up on my 8 GB version of the player. Now it only takes 2 dots, which is less than 2 seconds to start up!

Just quick-format the main memory using this Panasonic SD format program. And of course back up everything on it first. For some reason, I didn't even need to reinstall the firmware after formatting it.
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  #17  
Old 04-05-2008, 11:00 AM
sueterry sueterry is offline
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Help New-to-be owner slow startup query

Should have my new D2 on Mon. and have never owned an mp3 player. Am reading this thread with only a glimmer of an idea of what it all it...sorry. When I initially format the D2 should I use this Panasonic setup? Hope this has made sense.
sueterry
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  #18  
Old 04-05-2008, 12:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dfkt View Post
Well... yes. All my D2 issues/bugs disappeared after I used the Panasonic Formatter and Tcctool/FWDN to fix my D2. All videos are in sync now with 2.54, even the ones I converted with Badak or iRiverter.
I want to thank you as I am getting another D2 by about mid week. I miss the SQ and the ZEN, as good as it is (Sony NWZ-S618 also) just seems to be almost as good - I don't WANT almost!!! I need that Cowon sq back and I'm not gonna' settle any longer. My buddy just grabbed my ZEN and I'm DYING for my baby to come back!!! The ZEN is not a bad player but the D2 (IMO) is the BEST! Once again, thank you and now I don't even care about the Touch (tried it any the sound stage and depth just aren't "THERE").

PS: My friend LOVES the ZEN so he's not being shafted AND being my bud - GOT A HUGE DISCOUNT FROM ME!!
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Old 04-05-2008, 12:14 PM
Apex_ Apex_ is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sueterry View Post
Should have my new D2 on Mon. and have never owned an mp3 player. Am reading this thread with only a glimmer of an idea of what it all it...sorry. When I initially format the D2 should I use this Panasonic setup? Hope this has made sense.
sueterry
Since the D2's internal memory shows up just like a flash drive would, you can format it with the Panasonic tool just the same. Fresh out of the box the D2 is fine, just make sure you never format it with Windows if something happens to it! If it ever refuses to turn on (i.e. gets "bricked"), never EVER let Windows try to format it. So basically don't worry about it when you first get it, since from the factory they're formatted properly.

The same goes for any SD cards you use. Format them with the Panasonic tool if you want a nice decrease in startup time on the D2.
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  #20  
Old 04-05-2008, 07:48 PM
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Downloaded the Panasonic tool and when the D2 arrives I'm gonna reformat my 8gb A-Data sdhc card and start enjoying my music again. This should solve all the probs I had as I ended up having 1 & 1/2 circles alone when it used to boot. Should never have formatted w/win xp. All is not lost and I'm SOOOO impatient!!!
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