A: gone

Posted on 2002-03-22
Last Modified: 2010-04-26
A: doesn;t recognize data on the floppy. Says disk not formated. When I try to format, it says windows cannot format this disk...
what shall I do?
the bios has the drive ok in it and so hardware manager says that both the drive and the floppy controllers are working
Also, a misterious B: appeared in my computer with a big red question mark...says the disk cannot be acessed.
Any help on that?
Question by:Quex
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LVL 23

Expert Comment

ID: 6888289
The first thing to do is verify if the drive is operating properly.  Can you access it and take a DIR if you boot to the command prompt?  Can you try it in another computer?  Do you have another floppy drive you can try on this computer?  Is it possible that it is only that floppy disk taht is bad?
LVL 31

Expert Comment

ID: 6888430
Cold start the computer and go into the BIOS setup. Verify that your floppy is listed as the correct type (1.44MB 3.5", I should imagine). Continue booting to the DOS prompt and try accessing files on a known good floppy. If this fails, I guess it's time for checking cables etc. If all seems OK, try another FDD.

LVL 23

Expert Comment

ID: 6888447
It looks like I forgot to mention the cables.  It is sort of hard to get bits and bytes from point A to B with a break in between.
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LVL 16

Expert Comment

by:Kyle Schroeder
ID: 6890082
When you try to access the drive from Explorer/My Computer, does the access light come on?  Does the drive make any noises like it is moving its read heads?  If not, then the drive is shot, or you've got a loose cable as suggested by rid and slink9.

Have you made any changes to the system lately (hardware or software?), like adding a hard drive, Zip drive, etc??  I know Iomegaware that comes with Zip drives has a program called "ZipToA" that could potentially lose your floppy drive.


Author Comment

ID: 6890403
yes, the light comes on when I click A: on my computer, when I put a floopy inside.
And yes, I addedl a lot of hardware. I will check the Iomega soft, but as far as I can remember, xp added the drivers for the zip drive...
I will try to delete the extra soft to see what happens

Author Comment

ID: 6890407
I installed a new floppy drive and it didn't change a most likely it's not an hardware prob.
The drive is *physically* responding, light on movement
but I got a message, the disk on drive A: is not formated and when I want to format it, I got the message, windows cannot format it.
I have another floppy drive connected by USB that reads and formats disks. My prob is, a program like ghost will only operate with a disk made out of A: and not E: (USB floopy drive)
LVL 31

Accepted Solution

rid earned 100 total points
ID: 6890522
Hardware or software?
Try booting from a bootable floppy. If this doesn't work, check BIOS parameters for FDD.

Does your O/S have a "safe mode"; loading with minimal amount of drivers? Try this. Can you access the floppy?

There may be a resources conflict. FDD typically needs a DMA channel, IRQ and I/O address. Some newly added hardware may be in the way...


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