Does Dell Dimension 3000 (WinXP-SP2) support 5.25 Floppy?

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BetaNTest
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Does Dell Dimension 3000 (WinXP-SP2) support 5.25 Floppy?

Post by BetaNTest »

I've researched everywhere I know of (Google wasn't too much of a friend this time :> LOL) to see if a Dell Dimension 3000 controller would support both 3.5" and 5.25" floppy drives. Dell's manuals are not helpful. Couldn't find anything on Tom's Hardware. And all the DYI videos just show adding/removing the OEM Dell 3.5" floppy. I have the 5.25" TEAC drive, have the FD universal ribbon cable that has 3.5 and 5.25 drive connectors. Have the power Y cable. I'm hesitant from just plugging in and going ... the last time I did that on an Acer, I ruined the FD controller on the mobo. Just asking if anyone knew. I know it's old tech, but I need to transfer off a bunch of genealogy data and pictures that a deceased relative painstakingly had saved to boxes of 5.25" floppy diskettes decades ago. And the data recovery services out there want ridiculous amounts to do it (one service was charging $25 a diskette and no bulk pricing ...) Thanks in advance for your help - wish they made a USB 5.25 drive other than Device Side Data's Read-Only FC5025 USB 5.25" floppy controller (I'm not even sure they're in business anymore).

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Re: Does Dell Dimension 3000 (WinXP-SP2) support 5.25 Floppy

Post by DVINTHEHOUSEMAN »

I don’t have an old dell but I do have an HP dc7100 SFF and it detects 5.25” FDDs just fine
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Re: Does Dell Dimension 3000 (WinXP-SP2) support 5.25 Floppy

Post by mrpijey »

That's completely irrelevant, Dell is not the same as HP, they don't use the same motherboards or BIOSes.
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Exemptus
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Re: Does Dell Dimension 3000 (WinXP-SP2) support 5.25 Floppy

Post by Exemptus »

BetaNTest wrote:I've researched everywhere I know of (Google wasn't too much of a friend this time :> LOL) to see if a Dell Dimension 3000 controller would support both 3.5" and 5.25" floppy drives.
I cannot state this with 100% certainty, but I would be amazed if the Dimension 3000 BIOS had 5.25" support. I just checked and the BIOS options for floppy just say internal, USB, read-only or off. There is no option anywhere to declare capacity, which was the case for older systems where both 3.5" and 5.25" drives were compatible.

This said, maybe there are alternatives in the form of USB-pluggable controllers compatible with 5.25" drives. You might want to have a look at either the FC0525 or the SuperCard Pro and see if any of these could give you a way around your problem. If you have any success, please post a note - I know of these but have not used them in conjunction with 5.25" drives.

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Re: Does Dell Dimension 3000 (WinXP-SP2) support 5.25 Floppy

Post by DanielOosterhuis »

If you need something to plug the floppy drive into, could I suggest just looking for an old enough system that you could get your hands on? Something early Athlon XP, or Pentium 3, or older than those two, should have the BIOS and floppy controller features for 5.25" drives. Just look on local marketplace sites, thrifts, even by the roadside or at dumps if you have those in your area and are allowed to take things from there. With some persistance, you'll likely find something that will work great for that purpose.
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MrBurgerKing
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Re: Does Dell Dimension 3000 (WinXP-SP2) support 5.25 Floppy

Post by MrBurgerKing »

I've never heard of a 5.25" floppy killing a mb. Someone was able to get it working on a Dimension 1100, so it might work. If I can find a working 5.25" floppy I'll check with my Dimension 3000 and report back.
DanielOosterhuis wrote:Just look on local marketplace sites, thrifts, even by the roadside or at dumps if you have those in your area and are allowed to take things from there. With some persistance, you'll likely find something that will work great for that purpose.
Depends on where you live. My city doesn't have any ewaste dumps, it's illegal to leave it on the side of the road, and most don't go through the trouble of bringing it to a thrift store so they're taken to the local best buy and junked. So the only place to find older machines is through insane people on craigslist who are convinced their 90s pentium box is somehow worth hundreds of dollars.

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Re: Does Dell Dimension 3000 (WinXP-SP2) support 5.25 Floppy

Post by SAIYAN48 »

AFAIK, most OEM systems in the late 90s/early 200s didn't have support for 5.25'' floppy drives. What I did was get an old Pentium MMX system and put Windows 98. XP will work, but it's best to have DOS for older disks.

JustZisGuy
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Re: Does Dell Dimension 3000 (WinXP-SP2) support 5.25 Floppy

Post by JustZisGuy »

If I recall correctly, Windows XP supports 1.2mb 5.25" drives. Its format support is rather ridged so it will probably only read standard 1.2mb formatted disks and 360k disks. XP does not support 360k 5.25" drives. As mentioned a Windows9x machine or a machine you can dual-boot to DOS is often a better choice.

To determine if a PC's motherboard supports 5.25" drives, usually just enter the BIOS setup and see if it lets you change the drive type and if "1.2mb" or "360k" drives are allowed as options. If you plan to use the drive as a secondary in addition to another drive, make sure the BIOS setup lists and lets you change both a primary and secondary floppy drive type.

Now, keep in mind reading a disk is not always a simple as plopping it in a drive. If the disks have not been well stored, just plopping them in a drive is likely to rip them apart. Even well stored disks ocasionally get gunk in them.

If nothing else, be sure to carefully inspect the disks and clean any visible grime/dirt before putting them in a drive.

Don't forget to write protect your disks. Windows XP and 9x automatically try to write back to the disk even if you just read files, and that can cause various problems.

Also, non-standard formatting or copy protection may not be readable by DOS/Windows or your PC controller. If they are just data disks that you are familiar with, this should not be an issue.

Professionals have more tools and experience to avoid such problems. So ask yourself what the value of your data is. Of course, if it is not that valuable, then doing this ones self can be a rewarding experience.

Also keep in mind there might be hobbyists in your area that might volunteer to help you for a little or no cost.

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