5.25" floppy drive configuration

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Cristian
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5.25" floppy drive configuration

Postby Cristian » Mon Apr 13, 2020 9:12 pm

I'm making some tests with a Fujitsu 5.25" floppy drive. It works with Windows XP, and also with Qemulator. It is possible to format, read and write 720K Qdos disks without any problem. An oddity: if jumpered as DS0, it becomes undetectable both in WinXP and QL; anyway, when jumpered as DS1 it is normally seen as drive B or Flp2.
When connected to QLs (Trumpcard, Supergoldcard, Minerva, JM), all the Qdos disks created with PC become invisible (DIR, ENTER...... NOT FOUND). The FORMAT starts normally, the head move to the centre as usual, but then... "Format Fail" all the times. The same disks can be reformatted, rewritten and read but only with Windows/DOS or Qemulator.
The great oddity is that only one single time my QL read a PC(Qemulator) disk, I was also able to save a program and reaload it normally. Then, no way!
I've been modifying succesfully many 3.5" drives, and I've never found such a issue. Do the 5.25" drives require some special setting in order to work with QL?


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Re: 5.25" floppy drive configuration

Postby Martin_Head » Tue Apr 14, 2020 10:44 am

Cristian wrote:I'm making some tests with a Fujitsu 5.25" floppy drive. It works with Windows XP, and also with Qemulator. It is possible to format, read and write 720K Qdos disks without any problem. An oddity: if jumpered as DS0, it becomes undetectable both in WinXP and QL; anyway, when jumpered as DS1 it is normally seen as drive B or Flp2.
When connected to QLs (Trumpcard, Supergoldcard, Minerva, JM), all the Qdos disks created with PC become invisible (DIR, ENTER...... NOT FOUND). The FORMAT starts normally, the head move to the centre as usual, but then... "Format Fail" all the times. The same disks can be reformatted, rewritten and read but only with Windows/DOS or Qemulator.
The great oddity is that only one single time my QL read a PC(Qemulator) disk, I was also able to save a program and reaload it normally. Then, no way!
I've been modifying succesfully many 3.5" drives, and I've never found such a issue. Do the 5.25" drives require some special setting in order to work with QL?

Have you tried the FLP_START command. My Trump card manual says that 30 is the default, but older drives may need a value of 60.
You may also need to set the number of tracks with FLP_TRACK.

What is the spec of the drive you are using? Normal PC 5.25" drives were either 40 track 360K or 80 track 1.2M drives. Which is yours?
If it's a standard PC 360K drive (I know that 80 track 720K 5.25" drives were available, I have/had one one. But they were not common in PC's), you are getting 720K formats?
If is a 1.2M drive, I think they used a funny (15) number of sectors per track? Which would confuse a real QL


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Cristian
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Re: 5.25" floppy drive configuration

Postby Cristian » Tue Apr 14, 2020 3:51 pm

Martin_Head wrote:Have you tried the FLP_START command

Unfortunately this command does not produce any effect. It is a Fujitsu M2553K drive (1,2MB) and it can read/write/format also 720K Qdos and DOS disks when connected to PC.
Here below the specs and pictures (the 4 flying wires you see near the flat cable connector are "temporary jumpers" I soldered in order to switch DS0-DS1):

Image

Image

Image

Image


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Re: 5.25" floppy drive configuration

Postby RalfR » Tue Apr 14, 2020 5:07 pm

I also have one 5,25" disk drive but that is an native 720k one, which worked perfectly on my SQB (and the Atari) without changing anything. Interesting to see, that a 1,2Mb drive is able to format with 720k under an emulator.


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Re: 5.25" floppy drive configuration

Postby Martin_Head » Wed Apr 15, 2020 11:22 am

So it's a 1.2M drive. I'm going to assume that you are using 1.2M disks, rather than 360K disks in the drive. or I would expect that you would get formats of 360K.
I'm guessing that Windows is formatting the disks as 1.2M, but the emulator only uses 720K of it. And the emulator does not care about the actual layout of the data on the disk.

There's a list of drive formats here https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_floppy_disk_formats

If you use a 360K disk in the drive, and tell the QL to format as 40 tracks. It might work as this is in the QL spec. But I think you will have problems with 1.2M disks

If you look at the second Note 4 here https://superbasic-manual.readthedocs.io/en/latest/F/flp-density.html it states that you cannot use a 5.25" HD disk on a QL


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Cristian
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Re: 5.25" floppy drive configuration

Postby Cristian » Wed Apr 15, 2020 2:09 pm

Martin_Head wrote:So it's a 1.2M drive. I'm going to assume that you are using 1.2M disks

Just to clarify: even if I have a couple of 1.2MB diskettes, I'm utilizing disks (I suppose from Commodore 64) which I am not able to format at 1.2MB with PC/MS-DOS/Windows, but only at 720K or 360K. They can be filled of .jpg images, text etc. and re-read normally by Windows XP.
I'll examine your links and try your suggestions. Thank you Martin.


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Re: 5.25" floppy drive configuration

Postby Martin_Head » Thu Apr 16, 2020 10:08 am

Cristian wrote:
Martin_Head wrote:So it's a 1.2M drive. I'm going to assume that you are using 1.2M disks

Just to clarify: even if I have a couple of 1.2MB diskettes, I'm utilizing disks (I suppose from Commodore 64) which I am not able to format at 1.2MB with PC/MS-DOS/Windows, but only at 720K or 360K. They can be filled of .jpg images, text etc. and re-read normally by Windows XP.
I'll examine your links and try your suggestions. Thank you Martin.

That seems odd. According to the Wikipedia page, there never was a 720K 5.25" disk format for the PC.
What does the bios in the PC identify the drive as?
I can't quite remember how to tell the difference between the 360K and 1.2M 5.25" disks. Either the cut out on the side was different, or it may have been an index hole in the disk.


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Re: 5.25" floppy drive configuration

Postby Cristian » Fri Apr 17, 2020 7:58 am

So, as confirmed also in the link here above, the DOS 720K format exists.
In any case... no way. I tried disks marked as "DS DD", "Double Side DD", "Single Side DD", Commodore64 and unidentified disks. Also 1.2MB disks. I tried all FLP_TRACK, FLP_DENSITY, FLP_JIGGLE combinations, both with SGoldcard and Trumpcard, Minerva and JM Roms.
I tried different flat cables and differnt PSUs, also the PC PSU. The format process starts normally, you can hear the usual rythmic floppy noises and at the end..... no way!
The same disks are still fully functional when the drive is connected to PC. For some super-odd reason, only one time I managed to read/write with QL a disk previously formatted with Quemulator.
There must be some special additional setting/hack to be done in the drive. Who knows!
Well, on the bright side, I got a fully working 5.25" floppy drive to be connected to my PC. Useful for recover/preserve data from old media (probably for any machine an emulator can manage, e.g. Commodore, Atari...)


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Re: 5.25" floppy drive configuration

Postby Mad Fritz » Fri Apr 17, 2020 11:28 am

You wont be able to read Commodore-GCR-disks with a drive connected to the PC disk controller.
The only way I am aware of is KryoFlux or Zoomfloppy, the latter even needs a Commodore drive.



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