RFC: Floppy reader/writer project (recovering UniPlus Unix for the Lisa)

Jules Richardson jules.richardson99 at gmail.com
Fri Feb 22 08:48:40 CST 2008

Doc Shipley wrote:
> Jules Richardson wrote:
>> Chuck Guzis wrote:
>>> In my humble opinion, what's really needed is a quick and reliable 
>>> non-contact method of recovering floppy data.  Perhaps one of the 
>>> more modern head technologies, such as GMR might be suitable for a 
>>> head that doesn't contact the media.
>> Would a non-contact head 'fly' properly at floppy speeds, though? (I'm 
>> not sure how much more rotational speed you could get out of a floppy, 
>> even jacketless - I suspect the media is just too flexible)
> I keep wondering if the disk media could be "mounted" like a specimen on 
> a slide.  Then a flying head wouldn't be an issue, and multiple passes 
> become possible.

The thought of fastening the 'bare' media to something for rigidity had 
actually struck me too - but I'd kind of ignored it as:

1) Anything which sits between the media and the head (e.g. a thing film of 
something-or-other) is likely to impair read performance,

2) It'd probably be a messy/slow process having to attach media to something 
every time.

Then this morning I got to wondering whether a rigid circular plate with tiny 
holes in it could be used; the bare media would sit on top of it, and some 
process would suck the media onto the plate to keep it in place (possibly 
negative pressure somehow brought about by the disk spinning, rather than a 
complex pump arrangement).

It'd mean that only one side of the media could be read at once, but maybe 
that's an acceptable trade-off.



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