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Old Aug 21, 2008, 3:41 AM   #1
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Two days ago (8/19) at an electronics market in south China, I and a friend each bought a Sony Micro Vault 230G device. Tiny USB drives, 240GB -- that's right, 240GB! -- for the equivalent of $33.56 at the official exchange rate.

In December 2007 there were apparently already 128GB devices available in China, although the image posted on the following page did not resemble what I purchased:

http://gizmodo.com/338046/128gb-sony...lling-in-china

I do not have photographs available right now, but I could produce them if there is an interest. The following log from the Disk Utility on my MacBook (incidentally, I would be curious to know why the "orphaned clusters" issue occurs):

[begin quotation]
Disk Utility log, Wednesday, August 20, 2008, for Sony Micro Vault 230G

Verifying volume "NO NAME"
** /dev/disk2
** Phase 1 - Preparing FAT
** Phase 2 - Checking Directories
** Phase 3 - Checking for Orphan Clusters
Found orphan cluster(s)
Fix? no
Found 75985 orphaned clusters
0 files, 245891488 KiB free (7684109 clusters)
Error: Filesystem verify or repair failed.
Verify and Repair volume "NO NAME"
** /dev/disk2
** Phase 1 - Preparing FAT
** Phase 2 - Checking Directories
** Phase 3 - Checking for Orphan Clusters
Found orphan cluster(s)
Fix? yes
Marked 76025 clusters as free
Free space in FSInfo block (7684069) not correct (7760094)
Fix? yes
0 files, 248323008 KiB free (7760094 clusters)

***** FILE SYSTEM WAS MODIFIED *****

Verifying volume "NO NAME"
** /dev/disk2
** Phase 1 - Preparing FAT
** Phase 2 - Checking Directories
** Phase 3 - Checking for Orphan Clusters
Found orphan cluster(s)
Fix? no
Found 40 orphaned clusters
0 files, 248321728 KiB free (7760054 clusters)
Error: Filesystem verify or repair failed.
Verify and Repair volume "NO NAME"
** /dev/disk2
** Phase 1 - Preparing FAT
** Phase 2 - Checking Directories
** Phase 3 - Checking for Orphan Clusters
Found orphan cluster(s)
Fix? yes
Marked 40 clusters as free
Free space in FSInfo block (7760054) not correct (7760094)
Fix? yes
0 files, 248323008 KiB free (7760094 clusters)
MARK FILE SYSTEM CLEAN? yes
MARKING FILE SYSTEM CLEAN

***** FILE SYSTEM WAS MODIFIED *****

[end quotation]
I would be very interested to know if others have discovered similar devices available. The printed materials and packaging for this product seem at first glance to be in a characteristically Sony style, but they use what might be considered a somewhat lower grade of paper than Sony would normally use. Therefore, I wonder if they are prototypes or examples of pre-production runs smuggled out of a factory preparing to produce the units for Sony. Out of all the dozens of sales stalls in the market I visited (all of which are separate little companies), I only saw this product at two.

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