3.5 Floppy to CD. Is this possible?

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by ricke46, Jan 22, 2008.

  1. ricke46 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2008
    Location:
    Northern California
    #1
    A friend of mine has an Apple 2E Basic and wants to transfer data from his 3.5" floppies to CD's. Does anyone know if this is possible? And if so, how is it done?

    Thanks in advance for any help! It's greatly appreciated :)
     
  2. samh004 macrumors 68020

    samh004

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2004
    Location:
    Australia
    #2
    Plug a floppy drive into your mac and drag and drop the files from the floppy into a folder on your mac, then burn them from there to a CD.
     
  3. ricke46 thread starter macrumors member

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    Jan 17, 2008
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    Northern California
    #3
    That's it!? I love apple :) Thanks for the help samh004!
     
  4. ricke46 thread starter macrumors member

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    #4
    Okay so there was a misunderstanding on my part. I need to be able to take data from a 5.25" floppy and burn that to a CD. Any recommendations?
     
  5. Makosuke macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2001
    Location:
    The Cool Part of CA, USA
    #5
    Actually, it wouldn't have worked even if it WAS a 3.5" floppy, because the old Apple floppy drives (even the pre-1.4MB Mac ones) used variable speed mechanisms, which no currently available drive can read, and no USB floppy drive has ever been able to read.

    The situation with 5.25" drives in Apple machines was similar--they used some seriously funky hardware tricks that made the disks unreadable with a normal PC 5.25" drive. I ran into this recently because I actually managed to find a 5.25" drive and get it functioning in a Windows (XP!) box to extract data, but it won't read Apple disks.

    However:

    http://www.oldskool.org/disk2fdi

    ..this page claims to have a DOS-based driver that is able to read data off an Apple // disk. You can probably find an archaic DOS machine with a 5.25" drive at a junk shop somewhere, and if this software actually works you can then get data off the Apple disks and onto either a standard 3.5" disk, which can be read easily with any USB-based drive on a Mac, or onto a hard drive which you then extract data from one way or another.

    There are three alternate methods:

    1) Find an Apple // with a working 5.25" and 3.5" drive. Copy the 5.25" disks onto Apple 3.5" disks. THEN find an old Mac with a built-in 1.44MB 3.5" drive--these can read old variable speed Apple // disks (and in the case of newer ones, also write standard 1.44MB disks). From there, either put the data on a drive, a USB key if the Mac has a card, copy it to standard 1.44MB floppies and read those with a USB drive, or use some other means of extracting the data.

    2) Find an LC with the Apple // personality card. My dad had one of these, and you should be able to plug an external 5.25" drive into the card, fire up Apple mode, and copy the data either onto the hard disk or some other useable format. I've never actually tried this, though if I had enough free time I would.

    3) I've read tutorials on Apple // emulator sites on how to basically rig a serial connection between an Apple // and a Mac, and use a special piece of software on the Apple to feed data from the floppy drive onto the Mac. This looks hairy, to put it mildly, but might also be an option. Hunt down some Apple // emulator software if you're interested in this.


    Incidentally, I just went through a similar thing trying to clean data off of nearly 1000 ancient 3.5" disks, which were a combination of old PC ones and REALLY old Mac ones that were only readable with one of the variable speed built-in drives in an old Mac. Took me weeks just to get a working Mac floppy drive, despite having piles of ancient Macs around. Those things are not durable, and PC drives are worse.
     
  6. ricke46 thread starter macrumors member

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    Jan 17, 2008
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    Northern California
    #6
    Great!!! Thanks for pointing me in a direction. If one of these methods work, how long (rough estimate) would it take me to transfer data off of 300 diskettes? Again, thank you very much for taking the time to help me out. It's very appreciated :)
     
  7. Makosuke macrumors 603

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    Aug 15, 2001
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    The Cool Part of CA, USA
    #7
    Different methods take different amounts of time (copying directly to an LC's hard drive being the fastest possible, I'd guess), but optimistically I'd guess, dunno, 5 minutes per disk? Which is a lot of hours, but mostly it'll be waiting for stuff to copy from one slow disk to another, so you can do something else at the same time--listen to music, at least, or any activity that's ok to be broken up periodically to swap disks.
     
  8. David Schmidt macrumors 6502

    David Schmidt

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2006
    Location:
    Southeastern USA
    #8
    5.25" Apple floppy, burn to a CD

    If you'll forgive my resurrecting this old thread for purely self-serving reasons - there are a couple of options that weren't discussed originally. You can transfer these disks to your contemporary mac or even a PC via the free ADTPro program:
    http://adtpro.sourceforge.net

    assuming you still have the IIe. It works via serial or audio (cassette port) links. Alternatively, if you don't want to do it yourself, I offer a service to do it as well:
    http://retrofloppy.com

    Back now to your regularly scheduled forum...
     

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