GTA04_This is my Fantasy

Dr. H. Nikolaus Schaller hns at
Mon Apr 23 10:02:17 CEST 2012

Hi Travis,

Am 23.04.2012 um 01:39 schrieb Travis Bachelder:

> What if you(I) wanted more than 32 gb? The largest micro SD (NOW) is 64 gbs right? What if you needed larger than that? 250 gb or even 500 gb?

The original SD cards were up to 2 GB
The SDHC cards are up to 32 GB
and the newest SDXC cards are much more (I think they can go to the Terabytes range)

> Is larger drive space in the GTA04 just a matter of waiting for the micro SD card technology to support larger storage space? 

There are two limitations. One is the interface. The current GTA04 supports SD and SDHC, but not SDXC.
So the current limit is 32 GBytes. But future variants of the TI OMAP processor may support the SDXC
interface. This is just a small change within the Silicon and some additional driver. So you can expect that
to come sooner or later.

The other limit is the availability and price of such SDXC cards. But I have seen some with 128 GByte:

But as said it will not work in a GTA04. And the one linked here is a SD and not microSD format. I.e. it does not fit
mechanically. But you can extrapolate what the SD card manufacturers will come up with.

> If the micro SD is limited on it's storage space, then is the GTA04 board even capable of supporting a built in external hard drive? Or is that make for a serious design change?

Mechanical hard drives are generally too big. The smallest one I know of was the IBM/Hitachi Microdrive in Compact-Flash format.
I think currently, the smallest ones are 1.8 inch diameter. This does not fit into the case of a smartphone...

Here: you can see the physical dimensions.

And the interfaces of such drives (e.g. SATA) are not available on the OMAP processor. So they may need additional glue logic.

What you also could do is to connect an external hard drive through the USB/OTG port. But that would no longer allow you to use the same USB port to connect to a desktop PC as you have planned.

> Thanks,
> Travis Bachelder


> ---------- Forwarded message ----------
> From: "Dr. H. Nikolaus Schaller" <hns at>
> To: List for Openmoko community discussion <community at>
> Cc: 
> Date: Sun, 22 Apr 2012 15:36:32 +0200
> Subject: Re: GTA04_This is my Fantasy
> Hi Travis,
> Am 22.04.2012 um 15:09 schrieb Travis Bachelder:
>> Thanks for you input Lionel,
>> Actually: What I am thinking isn't remote. More like having the operating system installed onto the GTA04 (outfitted with a larger hardrive of course). Plug the phone into a computer (via usb perhaps?) then restart computer to boot from the OS installed onto you slick 60 gb GTA04.
> yes you should be able do that. Just configure the USB gadget driver of the GTA04 so
> that the GTA04 behaves like an external SD card reader and provides access
> through the USB cable. Then, you plug in the USB cable to the host machine
> and boot...
>> This seems possible, the only hurdle I see is the hardware, what would it take to outfit a GTA04 phone with a larger hardrive? 
> There is no need for a built-in harddrive. Just a 32 GByte Micro-SD card.
> And in some future the OMAP CPUs will even support >32 GByte.
>> Thanks,
>> Travis
> Nikolaus
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