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[virtual-disk2] Virtual USB drive


Staff member
I have just published a new package in the repository called virtual-disk2.

This package contains files built and supplied by raydon and is based on work that adrianf26 has been doing on the Foxsat platform - thanks guys. I made some changes before publishing so any bugs in there were probably introduced by me (!)

I don't know how many people still use virtual-disk in earnest on the HDR, but one annoyance of that package is that is requires a physical USB disk to be plugged in before the virtual disk is visible in the interface as a copy destination.

This new package fixes that by creating a virtual USB drive that the Humax treats in exactly the same was as a real one, and then it overlays part of the hard disk on top of that so that anything copied to the virtual disk is actually being written to a directory on the same hard disk. The point is that the Humax thinks it is copying the content to an external disk and therefore will decrypt it on the way if conditions are right*.

The old package will remain in the repository so you can freely switch between virtual-disk and virtual-disk2. The contents of the virtual drive will be the same with either package installed as they use the same area of the hard disk to store files.

The package also works properly on the HD but is less useful there since there is generally a USB drive connected.

* - There are, of course, easier ways of obtaining decrypted content nowadays but the virtual-disk package is still fairly routinely downloaded and this is a nice evolution of it.

Black Hole

May contain traces of nut
Can these techniques be used to make virtual network mounts visible without a real USB? Perhaps as simple as installing virtual-disk2 (although it would be handy if it were built into the relevant package)?


Well-Known Member
Is there any benefit to installing vitual-disk2 on an HDFox? If not should it be marked HDR only in Package Management?

Ezra Pound

Well-Known Member
The point is that the Humax thinks it is copying the content to an external disk and therefore will decrypt it on the way if conditions are right*.
I presume that, as with the original Virtual-Disk, one of the conditions is that the 'copy' MUST be via the Remote Control (or ir) rather than a Web-If copy using a Telnet cp command
I think I may have found a problem with virtual-disk2. Having installed it I can't modify the [mod-settings] remote shares with Webif because they appear locked for updates. Thus a new one can not be created because the template can't be updated.

Uninstalling virtual-disk2 allows me to manipulate the [mod-settings] folder with the remote but then the IP addresses don't appear to translate from "_" to "."

Reverting to virtual-disk1.1 doesn't help. Removing virtual-disk altogether doesn't help.

I have been rebooting between changes.

Have I missed something?
I only installed virtual-disk2 (thanks for that package) the other day and initially I could not get it to work. That problem was eventually overcome as it was a firewall issue.

One thing I did notice afterwards was that I could not change network-share passwords etc via the webif/rename.
I eventually managed to do this with Filezilla, so it does look like there is a problem somewhere.
At least I’ve managed to find a way of overcoming it meantime.
I am still unable to use network share auto mount for the above reasons. I have tried installing Filezilla but am unable to establish a connection to my HDR as I am not sure what user and password to use. This however would be a work round, not a solution.


Staff member
The standard username is humaxftp. Root works if you have the betaftpd package installed but gives access to the whole filesystem, whereas logging in as another username just shows you the media.

Black Hole

May contain traces of nut
I have not actually tried it, but it is reported that virtual-disk2 elicits the USB icons on-screen at boot time. It is also reported that slow-to-start real USB drives do too (otherwise real drives connected at boot time do not, only drives plugged in after boot).

I suppose ir could inject an "Exit" soon after, but is there no way to counter this directly - make virtual-disk2 start before humaxtv, for example?