ASM1061-based PCIe cards, for OS X Mojave and Catalina

These days, ASM1061-based designs are, to my knowledge, the only affordable (i.e. <$100) PCIe cards for direct-attached eSATA storage on Macs. There has been no need for additional drivers, and they work seamlessly on vanilla OSX86 systems. Thunderbolt and USB-C are still quite expensive and flakey (on hacks).

The only issue is their behavior regarding port-multiplier-aware enclosures: only one disk is recognized (usually the one on the top bay), rendering the box useless.

This, however, can easily be fixed (on Sierra, onwards to High Sierra, Mojave and Catalina) by applying a AppleAHCIPort kext patch in Clover, as follows:

Find    --> 40600200
Replace --> 00000000

This can be implemented by including this kext patch on Clover’s config.plist:

	<string>ALPM IO Error AppleAHCIPort</string>

Don’t forget to use “10.14.x” (or a blank string) for Mojave, though, or it won’t work!

(thanks to vit9696 for this; more information can be found on, toward the bottom of the page).

eAτρείο – a Filemaker clinical solution for cardiology

Just to let you know, eAτρείο – a freeware clinical solution for cardiology – is available, for all platforms running Filemaker.

You can check it out here.

A Solaris box for backup

This writeup is from October, 2008 and has limited (perhaps only historical) value. More

PACS and a network DICOM viewer for cardiology (under Windows)

Objective: deploy an office-based PACS server for a colleague; must be Windows-based; make it as simple as possible, but also powerful enough for clinical use; (optionally), enable integration with Filemaker-based EMR programs*

*shameless plug: if you’re a cardiologist using Filemaker, try our eAtreio solution!

Ingredients: CONQUEST PACS server, ClearCanvas viewer, Onis viewer, Synedra viewer

Recipe: First, we should obtain all necessary components from their source.

  • CONQUEST – is a public-domain DICOM server written by  Marcel van Herk and Lambert Zijp at the Netherlands Cancer Institute. It is multi-platform and, as far as I can tell, well-supported. Compared to the other free options (KPACS et al), I think it’s the better one.
  • ClearCanvas – this is commercial software from an established Canadian firm, but a community edition is available for personal use without limitations; I must say that their policy of providing a (comprehensive) network viewer for free (and FOSS too!) is commendable! We’ll be using it mainly to send CDs to the PACS server but also for basic viewing and JPEG/AVI export
  • Onis – again a limited version of a commercial DICOM client with a lot of features; can upload to Conquest, as well as view angiograms; in fact, it may represent the optimal first station for the patient CDs (view them, store them locally, and then send them to Conquest at the end of the day)
  • Synedra – another commercial DICOM viewer, this time from Austria. This viewer is, in my humble opinion, the absolute best Windows-based viewer for a cardiology practice; it’s also free in its basic configuration More

Netatalk 3 and Solaris 11.1

Trouble started when I updated a year-old Oracle Solaris install to the current version (11.1), along with napp-it. The upgrade was uneventful, but after rebooting I could not access the AFP shares on the server.

Just in case someone runs into a similar situation, here’s some pertinent tidbits:

  • Netatalk 3 has trouble with Bonjour/ZeroConf; a fix from Netatalk is apparently in the works*
  • current AFP implementation from Netatalk 3 is clearly faster
  • automatic install by the napp-it shell is not complete (requires manual editing of afp.conf); also tried a developer preview of the 0.9 version
  • there is a possibility of confusion, as the old (Netatalk 2.2) and the new (3.0) configuration files reside in different directories; more on this below

The procedure to mend the Netatalk situation is as follows (the prompt is for clarity) More

mini-PCI eSATA cards and Solaris 11

Problem: how to expand storage in a budget Solaris server.

Solution: add an eSATA card and attach a multiple-bay enclosure; the only prerequisites are for the card to be (a) supported natively, (b) affordable and (c) be compatible with port-multiplication.

Surprisingly, this was not a trivial task. Affordable (i.e. < €50) cards are abundant these days, but when it comes to Solaris derivatives one must look back to the chipsets that were introduced quite some time ago. More

Nikon Coolscan 9000 versus scans obtained at photo labs

Here’s a quick comparison, in reference to a recent discussion over at

– a 6×7 Portra 160 negative, scanned with the Nikon, at 4000 dpi (39 Mb jpeg original)

– same negative scanned by a Noritsu photolab machine (139 Mb jpeg original) More

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