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Floppy Disk Drive (FDD)


Considered hardly worth including in a modern computer the humble floppy disk drive is virtually obsolete in this day and age and has reached the twilight of its usefullness. Originally invented by IBM the floppy disk has enjoyed nearly two decades of popularity but other forms of data storage such as flash drives and compact discs have far exceeded the floppy's minute 1.44mb of storage and many computer manufacturers simply do not include one in a new computer any more.

The floppy disk however lives on in our hearts and minds, still being included in some new computer builds and seen everyday in various programs as an icon commonly clicked when we want to save our work, a far cry from the mid 1970's to late 1980's where many computers loaded their operating systems from a floppy drive, in some instances every time it started up.

Installation of a floppy disk drive is not much different to installing a hard disk except that it does not need to be jumpered for master or slave. The floppy drive receives power by a four pin mini-connector that is plgged into the back of the drive. The ribbon cable is plugged into the motherboard and that end commonly has a key (a protrusion on the cable connector) that lines up with a slot on the connector on the mainboard. The floppy drives end of the cable is usually the same variations on the theme. If you find that when you power your computer up for the first time the LED on the floppy drive stays on permanently then the cable is not orientated correctly and one end needs to be rotated 180 degrees.