[Coco] Read Coco floppies in my PC
farna at amc-mag.com
Sun Apr 1 12:58:58 EDT 2012
I don;t know about that "lucky" statement, definitely agree with the rest! You had to know exactly what the cause of the problem was and make darn sure you took the right steps every time to make it work.
1. never before formatted 360K disk (or freshly bulk erased)
2. format in the 1.2 drive, and ONLY write to that disk with the 1.2 drive. If you needed to write to it with a 360K drive, format it first. If you have to write to it with the 1.2 again, it must be bulk erased first. I had a disk or two I used to transfer files with that I marked "360K - use in 1.2 drive only" so I didn't have to continually bulk erase them. Those got formatted every time I transferred a file.
3. Don't expect anything to be on the disk more than 10 days before errors start to occur. Sometimes they would be readable 20-30 days later, but don't count on it.
You just have to work out what needs to be done then do it religiously. It's a bit of trouble, but if that's what you have to work with you have to do it. Remember, the Intel/MS/IBM PC combo did more to bring computing to the masses than any other computer. The common playing field helped in so many ways, especially economically (one version of software instead of 3-5 for popular "home" computers, and interchangeable parts/peripherals). But the masses don't always follow directions! They want to stick a disk in and have it work, not go through a few hoops to make it work. So there were problems when disk sizes changed for Joe and Jane Average. Those with a little technical savvy who figured out what the problems were also figured out how to get around them. I see the same thing in the old car hobby, especially with Ramblers! Someon buys a late 50s/early 60s Rambler because it's a neat old car they can get affordably, then realize they can't get a catalog and order everything they need to fix it up like you can a Mustang. They try to drive the old things like a modern car and wonder why it feels/drives "different", and they can't just put gas and oil in and go -- requires maintenance every 3-6 months. Got to learn your car/equipment! Who wants to do that? It's worse than having to read the instructions first...
Date: Sat, 31 Mar 2012 16:14:52 -0400
From: Aaron Wolfe<aawolfe at gmail.com>
Yes, you were lucky
You'll notice that most of the documentation of this problem uses
words like "mostly, usually, probably" etc.
This is because there certainly were combinations of factors that
could make things work, or at least work fairly often.
Editor - American Motors Cars Magazine
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