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Linux 5.15 To Fix Regression In Its Floppy Disk Driver

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  • #11
    I wonder how many distros even compile with the floppy driver, given most distros don't even ship/support an x86 version anymore.

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    • #12
      Originally posted by doomie View Post
      And people were sneering at optical media... (seriously though, pressed discs are pretty good)
      Still my preferred way of installing linux, or booting from a live image.

      I have a shelf of DVDs and when I need something I don't already have I grab a blank one off the spindle and burn it. It does mean that my install media or liveCDs (eg systemrescueCD) are typically a few months old, but it also means I'm not constantly having to erase/burn a bunch of USBs. (I'm also not constantly downloading new multi-GB images either, for better or worse) I guess you could just buy a shitload of cheap USBs and burn a different thing to each one, but that's more costly than blank DVDs, something of a pain to handle (vs a CD rack), and I'd worry about the reliability of cheap drives.

      I just grab the disc and go.

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      • #13
        Originally posted by Ironmask View Post
        I wonder how many distros even compile with the floppy driver, given most distros don't even ship/support an x86 version anymore.
        I regularly use an old pre-Core xeon desktop running 64-bit Ubuntu with 32 GB of ram.....and floppy drive/controller. (though the floppy has currently been removed to make room for a media reader, as I wanted to work with some microdrives/CF cards)

        Point being: you can totally run a decent machine on the latest 64 bit version and still have floppy hardware. :P
        Last edited by Developer12; 29 August 2021, 06:39 PM.

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        • #14
          Works well on my VIA Gra motherboard, never had an issue with the floppy.

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          • #15
            Originally posted by Ironmask View Post
            I wonder how many distros even compile with the floppy driver, given most distros don't even ship/support an x86 version anymore.
            Distributions are still building with USB External Floppy Drive support because there is still a lot of hardware in use that uses floppy drives. Of course more and more of them is having the floppy drive replaced with a floppy drive emulator.

            There are also some of the early x86 64 bit motherboards that if you don't init the on motherboard floppy controller the system is unstable. Its not having a floppy connected is just init the floppy controller so that power management works right. One of the early intel chip-set bugs that came out when the Linux distributions decided to build without floppy driver resulted in strange things like motherboard shutting down from being over voltage ( yes the floppy controller activated acts like a dummy load).

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            • #16
              Originally posted by oiaohm View Post
              there is still a lot of hardware in use that uses floppy drives.
              Like the Floppotron!

              https://youtu.be/zsVjCZG4cyI

              Though I don't know if it runs on Linux...

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              • #17
                Originally posted by linner View Post
                Last time I had to use a floppy was about 5 years ago when I upgraded an old oscilloscope's firmware. Good thing I keep a few floppy drives handy because the one in the oscilloscope was broken and I had to hack in an old laptop drive. Also I had to go through like 20 floppy disks before I found one that would format and reliably store data (I think it was actually an old AOL disk, ha).
                This is a common enough problem that they make floppy drive emulators. They are not expensive and fit into the same space a floppy drive would take and also still use the same connector. Once installed, it will take a USB key with the floppy image on it. Some emulators even let you select which image you want to use on the front panel.

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                • #18
                  Originally posted by lucrus View Post

                  Like the Floppotron!

                  https://youtu.be/zsVjCZG4cyI

                  Though I don't know if it runs on Linux...
                  As far as I remeber from a behind the scenes video of that or something similar (can't remeber if it was the same channel) it used a bunch of Arduinos to control the drive motors, but a computer to coordinate all the Arduinos. Can't remember the os the computer ran through. Either way the computer wasn't directly connected to the floppy drives.

                  EDIT: Fix typos.

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