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View Full Version : 5.25" 360kb drive in a modern dell?



cfenton
February 7th, 2008, 06:48 AM
Hello,
So I acquired a 360kb, 5.25" floppy drive off of ebay, and I was hoping to be able to get my newish Dell machine (BIOS only directly supports 1 3.5" 1.44mb disk) to write disks with it. My computer's floppy cable didn't have the card-edge connector on it, so I pulled the cable off of a Kaypro 2 (2 card edge connectors on one end, a 20-pin header on the other), and attempted to hook it up with that. I then booted DOS from a USB drive and attempted to change the drive setting using DRIVPARM in my config.sys with the following setting:

DRIVPARM=/D:1 /F:0

but apparently with no success (Teledisk still saw the drive as a 1.44mb 3.5" drive). The bootdisk was also made from the Windows XP "create MS-DOS startup disk" option.

Is there any hope for this setup, or do i just need to find a really old computer to use?

mbbrutman
February 7th, 2008, 07:08 AM
You've got a lot of different things going on here, so it doesn't suprise me that it didn't work.

I don't think that Teledisk is not going to work with a 'virtual' diskette drive defined with DrivParm. Teledisk needs to interact with the drive controller directly, and possibly the machine BIOS. DrivParm provides access at a DOS call level, which isn't going to work.

To do this correctly, get an older computer with true BIOS support for 360K, 720K, 1.2MB, and 1.44MB drives. Get an old version of DOS (5?) and boot from that.

Bill_Loguidice
February 7th, 2008, 08:02 AM
The newest system I have a 5.25" floppy drive inside is a custom Pentium II system. I just took an old drive and put it in and just changed the setting on the BIOS as was mentioned. It worked just fine. The only thing I have on modern systems these days is a USB 3.5 floppy drive, and I can't recall ever making use of it.

cfenton
February 7th, 2008, 08:24 AM
phooey. Okay, ill just have to track down an old computer. *so close*

kb2syd
February 7th, 2008, 10:37 AM
Where are you located? If near just about anyone on the list can probably help you find an older computer that would be able to use the 360k drive. I'm in New Jersey, and have 8 or 9 working machines laying around that could use this drive.

carlsson
February 7th, 2008, 10:55 AM
With a bit of luck, anything as new as a 1st generation Athlon or Pentium IV may still have support for 360K 5.25" drives in BIOS. At least my Pentium III board does, but it probably depends a bit on chipset how far back in time it goes.

Good thing that you're aiming for DOS at least, it increases chances of being able to use the floppy drive. As found out before, modern Windows floppy drivers no longer supports 360K drives, much to my chagrin.

Sharkonwheels
February 7th, 2008, 12:08 PM
I have a Compaq Deskpro EN (P3/866, 512MB, 20GB) that supports 720/1.44/360/1.2 in the BIOS. These are beige, smallish-boxes, and should be SUPER cheap to find.

Here's an example:
http://cgi.ebay.com/PENT3-COMPAQ-DESKPRO-EN-750mhz-DESKTOP-PC_W0QQitemZ320214510604QQihZ011QQcategoryZ140072Q QtcZphotoQQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem

If you search completed auctions, you will see that they average $10-30, and there were a few that were P3-866/256MB/80GB/DVD-RW for $10-12!!

Machine MAXES at 768MB or 512MB - can't remember, so it's not a really usable Windows XP machine. Only down-side, is you can't do single-density on it, because of the FDC. I don't think there were any PCI FDC's, or even SCSI+FDC's, so it's kinda' bad if you want SD. There, you need to find an ISA-bus machine.

T

kb2syd
February 7th, 2008, 12:47 PM
I don't think there were any PCI FDC's, or even SCSI+FDC's, so it's kinda' bad if you want SD. There, you need to find an ISA-bus machine.

Ditto on the PCI FDCs, but I have a couple of SBCs that can read and write SD. Pretty handy. I think these are P3 at 800 MHz. Not for the timid, but really fun to play with.


I have one set up as a floppy copy machine with the built in FDC, and Adaptec 1542C set as scondary, and a catweasel installed.

I use this to archive a LOT of different formats.

I think there are some PIII machines out there that can read and write SD. See:
http://www.classiccmp.org/dunfield/img04043/pcfdc.txt

for some reference.

cfenton
February 7th, 2008, 01:10 PM
I'm located in NYC (I live in Astoria, and work in midtown). I'm trying to avoid actually acquiring a whole other machine, given that my apartment is quite limited in space. I asked around at work though, and someone had a couple PII's and PIII's at home that should work.

Yzzerdd
February 7th, 2008, 01:54 PM
Most systems support floppys OK. I don't think my Compaq/HP workstation does, but I never checked. Either way, my eMachine(Celeron, 1.3GHz) supports it just fine. Just put it on the right spot of the cable, and configure it correctly, and you are ready to go! PIII and below no doubt will support 5.25. At least, every single one I have seen will, except the ones from before that type of floppy!

--Ryan

carlsson
February 8th, 2008, 01:17 AM
Were there ever IBM PC or compatibles before 5.25" floppy drives? *somewhat confused*

Jorg
February 8th, 2008, 03:37 AM
Were there ever IBM PC or compatibles before 5.25" floppy drives? *somewhat confused*

Not as far as I remember, altough there were IBM PC's before 360K 5.25" floppy drives I think.

carlsson
February 8th, 2008, 08:09 AM
However, doesn't the first 5150 have an option to connect a tape recorder for storing Basic programs? It isn't my forte, and it is not important for me to look up. Let's suppose Yzzerdd specifically meant 360K with "type of floppy". :-)

Jorg
February 8th, 2008, 08:39 AM
However, doesn't the first 5150 have an option to connect a tape recorder for storing Basic programs?

Yes it does. And I can report that also a keyboard connector fits there, but then gives and error beep ;)
The PC came with cassette and optional with 160KB 5.25-inch disk drives- altough I guess most must have used that option.

carlsson
February 8th, 2008, 11:16 AM
By the way, the 5150 cassette pinout seems to be exactly the same as the TRS-80 (well known, perhaps also CoCo?), Amstrad CPC6128, Brazilian MSX Gradiente Expert computer and so on. I suppose it may be according to some standard? Data in/out and ground pins are on the same locations on other MSX computers too, but not the motor control pins. Regular 5-pin DIN audio cables by the way use the right channel in/out on the same pins as these computers. Unfortunately the BBC Micro has a somewhat different pinout, which surprises me slightly.

Oh well, sorry for going off-topic (but in some sense more on-topic for this forum than fitting an old floppy drive to a new computer).

kb2syd
February 8th, 2008, 11:25 AM
Let's suppose Yzzerdd specifically meant 360K with "type of floppy". :-)

I'm guessing that he actually meant that a 1200K floppy won't work properly on a 5150...

Yzzerdd
February 8th, 2008, 01:27 PM
Hmm... Maybe I should let you brawl over what I mean...
Nah, I guess I will tell you; I don't wanna clean the blood!

OK, I was referencing machines BEFORE the 5.25 floppy, period. No specific size. But it is true, without a driver, a 1.2MB floppy, 720K floppy, 1.44MB floppy won't work in machines without the support, i.e. the PC 5150. Notice my specification before that type of floppy. I even bolded it for you.

PIII and below no doubt will support 5.25. At least, every single one I have seen will, except the ones from before that type of floppy!

--Ryan

Mad-Mike
February 8th, 2008, 09:22 PM
Well, just a heads up, but dual floppies for me has not worked on anything later than a Pentium 200 MMX based system, so some socket 7 boards for some reason dislike dual floppies. Just because the BIOS displays it does not mean the computer has the electronic means internally to do the job. This seems to be the case with later mainstream chipsets (VIA, Intel 810/815, and so fourth). You can boot off a 360K in my PIII, but you have to set it as the master floppy drive first. The "B:\" drive is about as useful as a decorative plate made to look like a floppy drive (if it was still in there).

I have 2 old 486 boxes that would be worthy of the cause too, one even has 2 extra 5.25" bays that you could fit a floppy drive into.

Jorg
February 9th, 2008, 03:14 AM
I had no problems with both a 1.44mb 3,5"+ a 1.2mb 5,25" in my P4 2.8 ghz Northwood and Epox 4g4a+ board (intel 845G chipset).
The bios of the boards after only supported one floppy.
But its mainly board/bios specific.

Anonymous Coward
February 9th, 2008, 08:05 PM
How badly do you need to use the drive in your new system? I think there must be a way to do it, though not by conventional means.

I would first look for a USB to floppy controller. These exist for 1.44meg drives, and I thought I saw one for the commodore 64 5.25" drives as well. Perhaps there is such an adapter for 1.2meg and 360kb drives as well.

If you're really feeling up to it, I would check out this SCSI --> floppy adapter called the "TEAC FC 1". These pop up on ebay every now and then. You can even find the adobe acrobat papers for it, and I believe it can be configured for just about any type of floppy drive. The number of jumpers on the thing is challenging though. It is very difficult to get this device to work in DOS, but I read that Windows XP will see it without extra software. Just for the record, I was able to get it working in DOS, but only using Trantor controllers.

This method is also not very cost effective, so only do it if you're up to the challenge.

mbbrutman
February 10th, 2008, 05:39 AM
The USB or SCSI solution is not going to work for programs that need low level access. The original poster was looking to use Teledisk. I suspect that Teledisk wants at least BIOS level access, possibly even lower ..

Trixter
March 11th, 2008, 08:56 AM
With a bit of luck, anything as new as a 1st generation Athlon or Pentium IV may still have support for 360K 5.25" drives in BIOS. At least my Pentium III board does, but it probably depends a bit on chipset how far back in time it goes.

Good thing that you're aiming for DOS at least, it increases chances of being able to use the floppy drive. As found out before, modern Windows floppy drivers no longer supports 360K drives, much to my chagrin.

How modern? I use a dual-floppy unit (5.25" and 3.5" in the same 5.25" housing, model # escapes me at the moment) in my Athlon 64 Windows XP machine without any problems at all.

I believe Vista no longer supports floppy drives, though.