Floppy Disk Drive

Objectives :

  • Explain history of the floppy disk
  • List the types of floppy disk drives
  • Explain the components of the floppy disk drive
  • Explain the working of the floppy disk drive
  • Install the floppy disk drive
  • Configure the floppy disk drive
  • Format a floppy disk
  • Create a bootable floppy disk
  • Troubleshoot the floppy disk drive

Floppy Disk :

Alan Shugart created floppy disk drive

Extrenal storage device

Stores data on magnetic surface

Used for transferring data from one computer to another

History of the Floppy Disk :


8’’ floppy could store data on one side and FDD could only read data from the floppy. Capacity was about 100 KB. It was then upgraded to incorporate read and write on the floppy disk and the capacity increased to 250 KB

5.25 inch floppy was similar to 8 inch disk and could store 160 KB of data. It was modified to store data on both sides and capacity increased to 360 KB. Then double sided high density floppy disk holds 1.2 MB of data

5.25 floppy disk has a write protect notch and has an index hole to identify the starting sector by FDD

3.5 inch had a high density and could hold 720 KB of data and then density increased to hold 1.44 MB of data. It has two holes at the bottom of the disk. One enables to identify if floppy disk has a low density or high density and other is a write protect tab

Write Protecting Tab :

Protects data from being accidentally modified or erased

Sliding the switch down makes the floppy disk read only

Sliding the switch up enables data to be read and written to the floppy disk


Floppy Disk Drives :

Reads and writes data to the floppy disk

Shares the name with the size of the floppy disk that it uses


Types of FDD :

5.25 inch FDD

  • Has a lever on front of the drive that must be turned clockwise to lock the floppy disk after inserting the disk in the drive

3.5 Inch FDD

Floppy drive spins the floppy disk at a speed of 300 rotations per minute

Components of the Floppy Disk Drive :

  • Read Write Head
  • Head Actuator
  • Spindle Motor
  • Circuit Board
  • FDD Controller
  • Faceplate
  • Connectors
  • Cables

Read write head – Position of read write head on both sides of the drive is such that they are not opposed to each other. Uses same head to perform both reading and writing data on floppy disk. Consists of two parts: first part reads and writes data on floppy disk and second part erases data from a track before read write head writes

Circuit Board – send data signals to different parts of FDD. Controls speed of motors and manages position of read write head over required track

FDD Controller – affixed on motherboard

Faceplate – it is recommended to mount FDD from outside to cabinet

Connectors – uses a small sized connector called mini plug

Cables – uses 34 pin data cable

Reading Data from the Floppy Disk :

User executes command

Spindle motor rotates the floppy disk

Stepper motor moves the read write head over the required track

Read write head reads the data

Floppy disk drive sends the data to the microprocessor for processing

Spindle motor stops rotating the floppy disk

Writing Data to the Floppy Disk :

User executes command

Spindle motor rotates the floppy disk

Stepper motor moves read write head over the required track

Erase coils on the read write head erases data from the track

Write head is energized

Write head converts binary data into electromagnetic impulses

Write head writes the data on the floppy disk

Spindle motor stops rotating the floppy disk

Formatting the Floppy Disk :

Wipes out all the data stored on the floppy disk

Creates sectors and tracks on the floppy disk like creating shelves in new cupboard

Manufacturer usually formats the floppy disks before supplying them


Aligning the Floppy Drive :

Head of FDD sometimes gets misaligned because at times we remove floppy from drive before it has stopped its operation

Floppy disks written in a drive with its head misaligned is readable only in the drive and displays an error if it is read by another drive

Drive Probe software enables you to align the read write head


Troubleshooting the Floppy Disk Drive :

Floppy disk drive may have some problems which can corrupt the floppy disk

Problems that may occur if the floppy disk drive is damaged are :

  • Floppy Disk Drive is not detected
  • Unable to read and write data to the Floppy Disk
#Floppy_Disk_Drive #Floppy_Disk #History_of_the_Floppy_Disk #Write_Protecting_Tab #Floppy_Disk_Drives #Types_of_FDD #Components_of_the_Floppy_Disk_Drive #Reading_Data_from_the_Floppy_Disk #Writing_Data_to_the_Floppy_Disk #Formatting_the_Floppy_Disk #Aligning_the_Floppy_Drive #Troubleshooting_the_Floppy_Disk_Drive

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