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Floppy Disk problems

Discussion in 'Storage' started by Big-Dave, Sep 6, 2008.

  1. Big-Dave New Member

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    Hi, and thanks in advance for trying to help.

    Yesterday I tried to save something onto floppy and it didn't work. I haven't used the drive for years, and the disks were just a few I had laying around - each of the discs failed in the same manner.

    I inserted a disk into my floppy drive then went to start > my computer, then right clicked a: and chose format.

    I got an error message : 'Disk error on track 0, head 0 Address mark not found'

    Same thing with all three disks.

    I found a clever looking bit of kit called Floppy Disk Formatter v3.1c (FFormat) which I downloaded and installed. I tried to use that to format my disks, and again all three disks failed in the same way.

    It gets to 50% successfully, then I get a message 'Trying to rebuild track 0', then eventually I get the message 'This disk could not be formatted: unrecoverable error on system area or uncompatible format mode'.

    I have searched google for answers but on this occassion it has come up very short.

    My PCs file system is NTFS, and from what I can see the floppies are FAT but I don't think that alone would cause the problem.

    As all 3 disks have repeated the same messages and errors, I am assuming it is not those at fault. Obvious choice would be needing to replace the drive, but I thought I'd try here first for ideas.

    I will also try the disks in someone else's PC later when I get the chance.

    It is worth noting that since I last used the floppy drive I have reformatted the HD. I didn't have a recovery disk, so used someone's XP Media Edition (mine was XP home standard) and then picked up the drivers I needed from the Hewlett-Packard website. Did I miss one that would cause this problem, or is there something I should be looking for?

    I hope I have included all the necessary information, and that someone will be able to help me out :)

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. tigger

    tigger I'm the only one

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    Sorry but why are you still saving to a floppy disc? why not ditch it and get a cheap 1gb usb mem stick.
     
  3. DanTheBanjoman Señor Moderator

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    I would have to agree with tigger, there is no reason to bother with the floppy drive. If software actually requires one use virtual floppy, it's free and emulates a floppy. If you require it for flashing a bios or something, use an USB stick.
     
  4. alexp999

    alexp999 Staff

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    Whats a floppy disk...? :p
    I use usb for everything now, even my mobo supports bios level flashing from a USB. And even stuff that i cant do an a USB, CD's are so cheap nowadys.
     
  5. Big-Dave New Member

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    Thanks for the replies.

    The reason I need (or thought I needed) my floppy drive, was because I have downloaded a BIOS update, and when I try to install it I am asked to insert a floppy disk.

    What is a virtual floppy?

    I have USB sticks a plenty though.

    Which do you think is the best way forward? Many thanks for your help.
     
  6. alexp999

    alexp999 Staff

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    Any chance you could fill out your system specs?

    Go to usercp at the top of the page. Then on the left click edit system specs. Make sure Show system specs dropdown is on yes, fill out your specs and click save. ;)

    :toast:
     
    Last edited: Sep 6, 2008
  7. DanTheBanjoman Señor Moderator

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    Virtual floppy is like daemon tools for floppies. Though since it's for BIOS flashing, just make a bootable USB stick, far less trouble.
     
  8. theeldest

    theeldest

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    I feel obligated to mention that sometimes you still need a floppy drive.

    When I was doing my degree (just a couple years ago), I had a couple labs where the computers were still running Win3.1

    Flash drives don't work with Win 3.1

    So you use a floppy. Trusty ol' floppy. I think that 3 months worth of data filled half a disk....
     
  9. Big-Dave New Member

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    Thanks for the replies all.

    Any chance you could fill out your system specs?

    Done :D

    I missed out what I wasn't sure of, and indeed may have got some parts wrong lol. I used Belarc to fish out most of the info. What does it mean by software? If I just add all my software there is too much to be viewed. Also, where can I benchmark my PC?

    Virtual floppy is like daemon tools for floppies. Though since it's for BIOS flashing, just make a bootable USB stick, far less trouble.

    LOL you make it sound so simple. When I click on the install file on my desktop it checks a: and I can't see anywhere to change that. Any clues?

    I feel obligated to mention that sometimes you still need a floppy drive. When I was doing my degree (just a couple years ago), I had a couple labs where the computers were still running Win3.1. Flash drives don't work with Win 3.1 So you use a floppy. Trusty ol' floppy. I think that 3 months worth of data filled half a disk....

    If there is a workaround to this problem I will gladly take it as I still have no idea how to fix the drive! I don't foresee needing to use a floppy to transfer data anywhere as USB dongle is so much easier. Mind you, I didn't foresee needing it now either so what do I know?

    Thanks for your help.
     
  10. Big-Dave New Member

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    Can anyone help please? (see my last post and sorry if it is a stupid enquiry)
     
  11. sneekypeet

    sneekypeet Unpaid Babysitter Staff Member

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    Dave I hate to switch gears here, but why do you want to flash the bios on a Packard bell. Usually they run just fine out of the box, until a piece fails that is.

    Reason I ask is this flashing seems a bit over your realm of comfort and knowledge. Just trying to see if the flash is in any way necessary in the first place.
     
  12. DanTheBanjoman Señor Moderator

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    You can't, hence the floppy emulator. You write it to a virtual drive and then take the files from there.

    Flash drives work fine in Win3.1, use DUSE or another DOS USB driver. Besides, modern BIOS's can emulate USB storage devices as harddrive. ie accessible without any driver under DOS.
     

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