Formatting 1.44 floppies to 720?

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Formatting 1.44 floppies to 720?

Postby retroaudio » Sun Jul 10, 2011 11:13 am

Hi All,

I need to format a batch of new 1.44 floppies to 720 as the ST floppy image and file transfer software does not like 1.44's

As I have windows 7, I have created a windows 98 book disk and ran the format program with the /F:720 /C switch but this produced an invalid disk error. It would, however re-format the disk to 1.44. Very frustrating...

Anyone any ideas?

Thanks in advance,

Richard.
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Re: Formatting 1.44 floppies to 720?

Postby nativ » Sun Jul 10, 2011 11:23 am

Makedisk force formats to 720k . 80 tracks? Format them on the ST with Fastcopy first? Maybe the 720k switchisn't available in your version of DOS? I hear this might be the case...
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Re: Formatting 1.44 floppies to 720?

Postby BoNuS » Sun Jul 10, 2011 11:26 am

Did you already tape of the second hole in the disk ? If I put a DD floppy in my PC it formats it nicely to 720 Kb and when I put an HD in it it will do a 1,44 Mb.
But then again I'm still using XP, but it should work. The format routine is probably detecting what kind of media it is and formats
it to that standard.

If you hold the floppy in your hand with the shutter down you should tape the left hole.
A piece of tape should do the trick, might even have to make it dark with a marker
or something (just in case detection is done by light).

Note: HD floppy's formated as DD aren't as good as original DD's. Some older floppy
drives have problems reading them !
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Re: Formatting 1.44 floppies to 720?

Postby retroaudio » Sun Jul 10, 2011 11:43 am

That's good avice guys,

Thanks!
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Re: Formatting 1.44 floppies to 720?

Postby wongck » Sun Jul 10, 2011 3:14 pm

retroaudio wrote:As I have windows 7, I have created a windows 98 book disk and ran the format program with the /F:720 /C switch but this produced an invalid disk error. It would, however re-format the disk to 1.44. Very frustrating...


It's the floppy drive that detects HD or DD and reports back to windoze.
Your command line switch is not working because Windoze thinks that it knows better. :wink:

As stated, covering the hole will make it detect as DD.
Some use light sensor while some use mechanical means, so colouring the tape black will do the trick.
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Re: Formatting 1.44 floppies to 720?

Postby Dal » Sun Jul 10, 2011 6:16 pm

wongck wrote:It's the floppy drive that detects HD or DD and reports back to windoze.


You'd think. But according to Greenious in thus thread it seems like Windoze sets the DS/HD mode on the drive. On Atari, it is how you describe, the drive sets the machine.
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Re: Formatting 1.44 floppies to 720?

Postby wongck » Sun Jul 10, 2011 11:59 pm

Dal wrote:
wongck wrote:It's the floppy drive that detects HD or DD and reports back to windoze.


You'd think. But according to Greenious in thus thread it seems like Windoze sets the DS/HD mode on the drive. On Atari, it is how you describe, the drive sets the machine.


Ok.... I guess I may have got it the other way round.
May be too much of NASA and Amiga for a day..... :wink:
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Re: Formatting 1.44 floppies to 720?

Postby ijor » Mon Jul 11, 2011 12:20 am

DId you try to format the disk on the ST (you can do that even without covering the hole, unless you happen to have an HD drive on the ST)?

As said already, you need to cover the hole when using an HD drive. But this method is not fully reliable.

I didn't try on Windows 7, but on XP and Vista you can format a DD disk to 720K on the command line. We are talking about an internal PC drive, or is it an USB external drive?

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Re: Formatting 1.44 floppies to 720?

Postby SofiST » Mon Jul 11, 2011 11:39 am

Interesting how this still makes some dilemmas ...
Someone should check and write here is in Windows 7 possible to perform command line format of 720KB : format a: /n:9 /t:80

Formatting on Atari is not bad idea, but I don't recommend FastCopyPro - it can produce floppy unreadable on PC, as is already discussed/examined and stated here . There are some other format tools which can produce exact PC format. However, I see that such floppy is readen/written much slower on PC (at least with my config). I guess that it has something with fact that PC prefers perpendicular format, what exists not on Ataris.

Considering what determines HD or DD on PC : it is detemined by SW, so can force DD format even if hole is not covered. But ... it may be that it will produce worse formatting than when hole is covered - depending on floppy drive self . As we know, there may be some writing compensations activated by detected disk type.

So, I think that best is to perform format on PC. If Windows 7 accepts not proper command line (described above) likely is best to try with some tool.
For instance you can fast make 720K empty floppies (and 1.44MB) with Floppy Imager - there are images of empty floppies in atchive, which you can fast write onto floppies, what is practically same as formatting - there is even some simple error checking.

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Re: Formatting 1.44 floppies to 720?

Postby retroaudio » Mon Jul 11, 2011 2:45 pm

Hi,

Working solition:

Use windows 98/ME boot disk

Use format with /f:720 switch

Cover hole!!!
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Re: Formatting 1.44 floppies to 720?

Postby Guitarman » Tue Sep 10, 2013 2:09 am

Old thread but I thought I'd inject my experience.

Note: This will work with a USB floppy drive.

A 1.44 disk can be formatted in Windows 7 in a 2 step process. If you take and try to format a 1.44 disk to 720K directly (format a: /t:80 /n:9), it will fail, even with the 720K hole covered. The trick is to format it in the ST first (hole covered of course). It doesn't matter what TOS version either, as long as the version of TOS can format 720k, since it's not going to stay in that format.

After formatting in the ST, format it on the PC using the command line with format a: /t:80 /n:9. Now the PC will format the disk properly. You will end up with a disk that is now fully compatible with the PC and ST (all TOS versions, even pre rainbow), assuming the drive on the ST is NOT the original single sided drive.
Capture_002.jpg


The initial problem is when you try to format the 1.44 disk directly, it sees the existing format as raw and fails. By formatting first on the ST, it gives a format the PC can grab on to.
Capture_001.jpg


I have formatted a boatload of 1.44 disks to 720k on a USB floppy drive under Win7(64bit) with no issues.

This has probably been covered elsewhere but it looked like a good place to tack it to!!
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Re: Formatting 1.44 floppies to 720?

Postby Dio » Tue Sep 10, 2013 6:41 am

The formal wisdom is that this won't work terribly well if the floppy's ever been HD formatted: the higher frequency signal is stored in a slightly different layer of the tape than the lower frequency signal and the two can interfere with each other. But if it's working, it's working!

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Re: Formatting 1.44 floppies to 720?

Postby Guitarman » Tue Sep 10, 2013 3:47 pm

Agreed!! Reliability is the big question. I haven't had an issue.......yet!!!! But the general opinion is not to trust important data on a HD disk formatted to 720k without having a backup of the data somewhere. For me, I have all my important program and data disks copied to my PC so if something happens to the disk, just make a new one!!! LOL. Also, I use WinImage for all my ST disk archival since Floimg will not work with a USB floppy. It does a great job of both archiving my floppies and writing ST floppy images (.ST) back to actual disks.


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Re: Formatting 1.44 floppies to 720?

Postby Guest » Tue Sep 10, 2013 4:44 pm

cant you use a simple script and command line to format to any size???


try setting the pc's bios to 720K drive not 1.44
then xp and esp win98 {use a win98 boot cd then you have dos also}
ie if you tell xp its a 1.44 it treats it as one
if you tell the bios registers its a 720 k if you plug in the atari drive to the pc
the pc controller than treats the drive as a 720k type dd
DO YOU THINK xp is stupid??? no why add pperas patch to patch the 1.44 to work with older floppy stuff
when you can just change the type in the bios
just set the type then the controller orders the connection handshake and interchanges
ignore XP and use freedos and even a sdcard... using bootcd site boot to dos then format
using a dos string
if your not sure use
at the dos prompt
format /? then your get an expo what too do
i just dont understand
if you use a 720k drive in xp and set the bios then you get just that too work with
unless!!!! the floppy controller on your board is backward stupid
and some are
you can get for about $2 free post a pci riser card that supports ANY floppy drive {A,B} even old mfm

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Re: Formatting 1.44 floppies to 720?

Postby Guest » Tue Sep 10, 2013 5:03 pm

oh ye

I forget too add

if you just change the bios to 720k type
youll have little issues with dos and one drive set as drive B 720K drives DO NOT LIKE A TWISTED CABLE
dont try to use an atari drive as drive A in a PC

this is the rule


xp treats 720k drives the same way as B drives {no twist}
if you have dos and windows 3 then xp installed
then you have a fun setup

i would place a standard 720k drive in as drive B and a 1.44 as drive A
but youll need to change the jumper on the 720K atari drive to be a B drive in the pc


this will fix your setup on pc's

set one as 720 the other as 1.44
and they will guide each other and xp will 'see' both types as is

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Re: Formatting 1.44 floppies to 720?

Postby Guitarman » Tue Sep 10, 2013 5:57 pm

That is probably what I would do on a dedicated PC for just Atari purposes, which I do have for SIO2PC for my 8bit stuff and emulation. But for me, I do most all my archiving and disk manipulation on a fairly new 64bit Dell with Windows 7 that has no internal floppy drive, so I'm using a USB drive which doesn't work with the floppy driver you need to support using FloImg. This is why I use WinImage as it will read and write 'standard' ST disk images (.st) to the USB drive with no issues. I have yet to try WinImage with a compressed .MSA file.

As far as a script, that's how I format the disks. I created a batch file with the format parameters for formatting the 720k disk. Click the icon and off it goes!! I suppose if you need different format options, just write the script with a couple if/goto statements for different format parameters and choose which one you want when running the script.

If you have 'natural' 720k disks, there is really no issue formatting them on a USB drive. It's just when you're trying to down-format a 1.44 disk that you have to use the "2-step" method.

simbo2 wrote:cant you use a simple script and command line to format to any size???


try setting the pc's bios to 720K drive not 1.44
then xp and esp win98 {use a win98 boot cd then you have dos also}
ie if you tell xp its a 1.44 it treats it as one
if you tell the bios registers its a 720 k if you plug in the atari drive to the pc
the pc controller than treats the drive as a 720k type dd
DO YOU THINK xp is stupid??? no why add pperas patch to patch the 1.44 to work with older floppy stuff
when you can just change the type in the bios
just set the type then the controller orders the connection handshake and interchanges
ignore XP and use freedos and even a sdcard... using bootcd site boot to dos then format
using a dos string
if your not sure use
at the dos prompt
format /? then your get an expo what too do
i just dont understand
if you use a 720k drive in xp and set the bios then you get just that too work with
unless!!!! the floppy controller on your board is backward stupid
and some are
you can get for about $2 free post a pci riser card that supports ANY floppy drive {A,B} even old mfm
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Re: Formatting 1.44 floppies to 720?

Postby ScooberDiver » Mon Nov 13, 2017 5:29 am

I have been using this software with success.
http://atari.8bitchip.info/floimgd.php

I still have to cover the HD hole when the disk is in my PC, which is a desktop PC since USB floppy drives may not properly handle the larger 800K formatted disks (10 sectors per track). Maybe that actually would work - unconfirmed by me.

Maybe try Omniflop as another option.


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