[fdutils] Need help with weird floppy issue

David C Niemi niemi at tuxers.net
Mon Mar 6 16:33:13 CET 2006

Hello Donnie,

I take it you are *the* Donnie Barnes.  Curious where you are these days. 
You've come to the right place, but Alain will probably need to get in on 
the answer.

Chances are, the 1.92 MB standard format and the one actually used on this 
floppy are not at all the same.  How was the floppy formatted?  I expect 
that using fdrawcmd you'll be able to do it, but you may need to know more 
detail about the sector sizes and IDs used by the machine.


On Sun, 5 Mar 2006, Donnie Barnes wrote:
> Okay, this is an oddball one.
> Anyway, I'm into classic arcade video games.  A small series of Sega games
> used a floppy drive for their game code instead of ROMs.  I have one of
> these games, and I believe my floppy disk itself has gone bad.  Problem is
> that they used a strange format setup.  It's a standard 3.5" PC floppy drive
> in the game and uses standard HD disks.
> Supposedly, however, the disk format alternates 256/1024 bytes per sector.
> I've even seen where the game I have uses 8K per sector.  Now, the image has
> been read successfully off of a disk in a PC running windows and Anadisk.
> But nobody so far has figured out how to *write* the image.  The games are
> emulated in MAME, and thus the disk image exists in MAME ROM archives.  The
> image for this game is 1925120 bytes in size.
> So, is it even possible to write that image back to a floppy?  If so, how
> would one tackle it?  I tried following the fdutils docs to create a special
> disk device and then using setfdprm to set it to the closest mss type I
> could find (1920/1440), but when I told it to dd to that device with a blank
> floppy, it hung (well, it was cranking on the drive for 15 minutes, but
> never completed and I couldn't kill -9 the dd process until I ejected the
> floppy).
> Any help would be appreciated.
> --Donnie

| David C Niemi  (Reston, VA, USA)  niemi at tuxers dot net |
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