[rescue] Floppy disks and lifespans

Kevin Fitzgerrell fitzgerrell at gmail.com
Fri May 2 12:43:50 CDT 2014

> Date: Thu, 1 May 2014 23:35:48 -0500
> From: Justin Haynes <justin at justinhaynes.com>
> To: The Rescue List <rescue at sunhelp.org>
> Subject: [rescue] Floppy disks and lifespans
> I have not been able to find information on this and I expect it may be
> difficult to do so.  Like most commodity hardware or media, we see it get
> more and more inexpensive and we see lower quality options come out the
> longer a technology is on the market.
> I remember floppy disks from the 80s lasting much longer than floppy disks
> from the 90s, but I don't ahve any written proof or anything other than
> anecdotal information to support any of this.
> I'm wondering if any of you have any hard data on the quality of media over
> time, such as floppies and CDROMS.  Not a terribly important question I'll
> admit but one I have always been curious about.  Plenty of my old C64 disks
> still worked the last time I used them and they were almost 30 years old at
> the time.  that's both the 5 1/4 180K per side ones and the 800k double
> sided..  I have found PC disks from the 90s that were completely unusuable
> and had been stored in the same place and under the same conditions.
> Information density may be part of the reason for that.
> I've had good luck with Sony diskettes over the years and agree that older
seems to hold up better.
For stuff I need to save, I normally image my diskettes to a file.  I've
got some old programs floating around somewhere called filetodsk and
dsktofile that image and unimage floppies.



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