[vcf-midatlantic] How To Geek article on floppy data recovery

Alexander Jacocks jjacocks at gmail.com
Mon May 4 11:08:10 EDT 2020

There are a number of newer tools, for imaging of disks, for preservation.

I've been closely watching this one:

The author is working on support for a lot of common formats, and
additionally, a number of the 80s-90s dedicated word processor formats.
It's a simple and rather nifty solution.

Also, of course, it's 100% opens source hardware and software, which always
makes me happy!

- Alex

On Sun, May 3, 2020 at 1:12 AM Mike Loewen via vcf-midatlantic <
vcf-midatlantic at lists.vcfed.org> wrote:

> On Sat, 2 May 2020, Jeffrey Brace via vcf-midatlantic wrote:
> > Part of my charm is simplicity.  It often inspires discussion. One thing
> I
> > was hoping was for people to chime in on the fact that there are vintage
> > computer enthusiasts that have the original machines and artifacts to
> > retrieve from floppies instead of modern emulators and devices.
>     In my opinion, any serious vintage computer hobbyist should have a
> dedicated "media" system for archiving data and creating new media for
> vintage
> systems. For my imaging system I'm using an Abit KV8PRO motherboard, with
> an
> Athlon CPU, onboard 10/100/1000 ethernet, 1 AGP 8X/4X slot, 5 PCI slots,
> and IDE drive support, and 4 USB ports.  The onboard floppy controller
> will
> handle all formats except 128 byte/sector MFM.  I haven't run across
> anything
> yet that uses that format.  I also have a Catweasel MK4+ for things that
> Dave
> Dunfields's IMD or the native floppy controller won't handle.  I have the
> motherboard installed in a full size tower case, with lots of places to
> mount
> drives. I also installed a SCSI interface for lots of other drive options.
>     For the moment, I have to recable the drives for different media. For
> 5-1/4", I connect the 360K and 1.2M drives. For 3-1/2" I have a 1.44M
> drive.
> For 8" I use a Tandon TM-848 DS drive in an external case, connected via a
> "D
> Bit" FDADAP adapter board.
> http://www.dbit.com/fdadap.html
>     On this system I mostly run Linux and FreeDOS. When using Imagedisk
> (IMD),
> I'll boot FreeDOS to read and write diskettes. To transfer the images
> to/from
> my server, I'll boot into Linux and mount the FreeDOS drive. I suppose I
> could
> try to get FreeDOS on the net, but I haven't bothered.
>     I'm not into the older Apple GCR format diskettes, but the Catweasel
> will
> handle them if necessary. For my TRS-80 and CP/M work, this system handles
> just about anything I need. For some of the weird TRS-80 stuff, I can run
> David Keil's Model 1 or Model 4 emulator under FreeDOS and directly access
> the
> floppy drives.
>     My point: use the right tool for the job. It's not difficult to put
> together a system to handle your media conversion needs, and you won't be
> dependent on other hobbyists for boot disks.
> Mike Loewen                             mloewen at cpumagic.scol.pa.us
> Old Technology                          http://q7.neurotica.com/Oldtech/

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