Use as normal A: drive

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desiv
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Re: Use as normal A: drive

Post by desiv » Sat Oct 01, 2011 6:06 am

Malvineous wrote: But if you're talking about cd-daemon style software emulation of a floppy drive, most (all?) emulators can already do this.
Most (all?) emulators do this already, you're correct.

If he is asking about something in Windows, perhaps something like this:
http://vfd.sourceforge.net/

I haven't tried it, so I'm not sure..

Of course, in Linux, you just mount the file as a loop device..

desiv

starfry
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Re: Use as normal A: drive

Post by starfry » Wed Oct 05, 2011 9:35 am

Hi, I have just found this product. I was some time ago following the Cyclone20 discussions until baby came along and got it the way :lol:

My original reason for interest was to interface 3.5 and 5.25 drives via USB to a PC for use to read / write PC formatted discs. I realise that isn't on the cards but I was interested to see someone else asking a similar question so thought I'd just "+1" the idea.

Modern motherboards are losing floppy support (and most have already lost dual floppy support). There are people out there who still have the need for these legacy formats, mostly for "preserving" old data but occasionally writing discs for vintage equipment.

I realise it isn't the core driver for the Kryoflux but it would be nice to have one set of drives internal to the PC that could operate in either PC mode or kryoflux mode. In the absence of this being unlikely to happen I don't know if anyone knows of any USB floppy controllers that can accept regular 2.5 and 5.25 floppy drives?

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IFW
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Re: Use as normal A: drive

Post by IFW » Wed Oct 05, 2011 10:27 am

You can create images of the disks and manipulate those images, e.g. in Total Commander using plugins, just like you'd with a real disk. The difference is, that you don't risk damaging the media once it is imaged, and given the life expentancy of the floppy disks, this method should be preferred, over continuous wear caused by actually using the disk instead of an image.
You can already write data back protected disks from IPF, and simpler sector formats such as the ones used by most computer will be available.
e.g. Read a sector image, manipulate as you wish with a tool, write back the sector image.
While it's not entirely like using the disk itself, the net result is exactly the same - apart from the lack of wear this course of usage would normally cause.

So it really depends on your use case - what you describe is doable. If you want to use the disks as a storage medium with instant access, I'd really like to hear a realistic use case justifying that.

starfry
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Re: Use as normal A: drive

Post by starfry » Wed Oct 05, 2011 9:40 pm

Hi, I'm not familiar with Total Commander and I am a Linux user. Are you saying an image created with Kryoflux can then be used as an mountable image? I currently have old floppy images in ".img" files that I can loop mount or under windows use in a virtual floppy drive.

What I wanted to be able to do is, occasionally, service people who have old (PC format) floppy discs and get the files off for them. Admittedly it's a bit of a dying requirement and not a realistic use case in the context of what the Kryoflux product is designed for but just a nice little extra service I'd like to be able to continue offering people that I do work for. I have an old PC that I can do this on but I'd really like to retire that - the only thing preventing me doing so is my current inability to connect a 3.5 and 5.25 drive to my PC.

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mr.vince
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Re: Use as normal A: drive

Post by mr.vince » Wed Oct 05, 2011 9:54 pm

Then... why don't you just make .img images with KryoFlux and mount them? You can even use them in DOSBox. No need to harrass an old floppy disk by accessing the same track over and over again. This really IS a scenario where an image is all you need.

starfry
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Re: Use as normal A: drive

Post by starfry » Thu Oct 06, 2011 9:26 am

SO mr.vince you're saying that Kryoflux can output "img" files in the same way as "cat" or "dd" on Linux would ? This would be a sufficient solution and one that I'd probably buy a Kryoflux if that worked.

What we really want is a way to take an old floppy (3.5 or 5.25) and image it so that image can be mounted and the image read/written. The way we do this now is to use dd or cat to create an image and them mount it using the loopback device. It would also be useful to be able to write images back to physical media should the need arise.

If Kryoflux can do the equivalent of dd/cat to provide an image that is then mountable then that is sufficient for my needs.

I'm sorry I couldn't find a spec for the product where file formats were explained. If there is a page perhaps you can point me at it so I can have a read ?

Thank you for this information :)

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IFW
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Re: Use as normal A: drive

Post by IFW » Thu Oct 06, 2011 9:59 am

http://www.kryoflux.com/

Just download the latest software it should have the manual.
The KryoFlux host software can generate sector images for pretty much any platform... img is a simple sector image.

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Malvineous
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Re: Use as normal A: drive

Post by Malvineous » Thu Oct 06, 2011 1:10 pm

As a fellow Linux user I can confirm that yes, the KryoFlux can not only create images the same as dd does, but it gives you much more feedback than dd. It also allows re-reading dodgy tracks a few times, whereas dd either gives up or skips the block if there is a read problem. So using the KF will get you much more reliable reads than dd or cat would, but in the same format (if you wish - you can also get a lower level read if you need it.) Not to mention that if you ever need to service someone's old Amiga/C64 collection you can do that too. The "normal A: drive" support would only ever be used if you wanted to access the floppy drive from within (native) Windows or DOS. Since you're under Linux it makes no difference one way or the other (well, apart from which tools you use to accomplish the same job.)

Writing .img files [back to a floppy] is not yet in the main release but we're assured it's coming soon. At the moment you can only write IPFs which are like verified master images (you can't create them yourself.)

EDIT: Included [clarification]
Last edited by Malvineous on Fri Oct 07, 2011 11:56 am, edited 1 time in total.

starfry
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Re: Use as normal A: drive

Post by starfry » Thu Oct 06, 2011 9:21 pm

Can you just clarify that last statement: "Writing .img files is not yet in the main release but we're assured it's coming soon. At the moment you can only write IPFs which are like verified master images (you can't create them yourself.)"

I have just downloaded the software and browsed the manual and came away with the view that it would indeed write images (page 13 shows examples of just this). Then I come back to the forum and see a contradictory message so I am now confused.

Is the documentation talking about some version more advanced than what someone downloading would see?

The statement above says "you can only write IPFs" and then "you can't create them yourself".

Sorry, it's late and I'm probably misunderstanding something :oops:

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mr.vince
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Use as normal A: drive

Post by mr.vince » Thu Oct 06, 2011 10:38 pm

Malvineous means writing BACK to disk...

KF was initially made for imaging, so writing to disk is coming now, step by step.

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