VOGONS


First post, by Kahenraz

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I flipped open the door of one of my floppy disks and found the entire perimeter to be scratched. What's most distressing is that I don't know when or where it happened.

I recently went through all of my floppy drives and tested their ability to read disks, checked for how repairable the faulty ones were, and chucked the rest. I'm... guessing that the damage occurred during this time, although I can't even be certain that this is the disk that I used for testing.

Ominous, and very unsettling.

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Reply 1 of 2, by mkarcher

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Damage like this can be caused by debris sticking to heads of a floppy drive. Cleaning the heads can put the drive back into normal operating coditions. Also, the surface of that floppy might have gone bad and starts to be scratchable by the normal head contact when you insert the floppy into a drive. This is actually a way debris gets into a drive the at all: You have one bad floppy with a surface that gets rubbed to the drive head, and then the grains of the broken surface starts to grind perfectly fine surfaces of other drives.

You should re-check your drives with a disposable floppy disk that is not yet damaged, and identify whether one of your drives actively damages floppy disks. If yes, clean or discard that drive. If all of your drives you did not discard yet don't damage a standard floppy disks, likely the red disk itself is bad and you are fine after discarding that disk.

Reply 2 of 2, by dr_st

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Back when I was using floppies, they kept randomly dying / developing bad sectors / becoming totally unreadable. Way too often.
It was probably some combination of shitty media and defective drives, or what not. But the result is - I stopped using floppies for anything years ago. To me this media is as dead as punch cards.

If it means I don't get to use pre-SS7 PCs that can't boot from CD-ROM or original copies of games that were released on floppies, so be it. I don't own such ancient systems, and don't feel the need to, and the games have either been re-released on CDs, or GOG, or are otherwise available in 'cracked and liberated' form on countless websites.

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