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SuperDisk - How does it work? Does it work well?

Thraka

Member
Joined
Aug 8, 2013
Messages
37
Location
Duvall, Wa, USA
I just discovered these. Didn't know they existed. It seems like a better solution than a zip disk. How does it work plugging into the IDE port but becoming drive A? Also, is there software that wouldn't work with it? Something that accesses A but if it's a SuperDisk, it just doesn't work right?
 

Chuck(G)

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Joined
Jan 11, 2007
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38,863
Location
Pacific Northwest, USA
It basically works as an IDE drive; as a normal 1.44M floppy drive (assuming your BIOS supports it) it can be used as your A: drive (use the LS-120 device select in your BIOS). Added capacity is realized when you use the disks made for this drive--basically, the high-capacity disks have an optical servo track added.

Legacy software for interchange (e.g. Imagedisk) won't work with it and non-standard formats do not work either. I have had the experience that some revisions will cause XP and later to hang--but this doesn't occur with all drive versions. When formatting or reading, it is much faster than a plain vanilla floppy.

Wikipedia pretty much sums it up nicely.

I'd stay away--the media is expensive and the technology has sunsetted.

FWIW, I've got a stack of Caleb UHD144 drives and media--another dead high-capacity floppy replacement.
 

Thraka

Member
Joined
Aug 8, 2013
Messages
37
Location
Duvall, Wa, USA
It basically works as an IDE drive; as a normal 1.44M floppy drive (assuming your BIOS supports it) it can be used as your A: drive (use the LS-120 device select in your BIOS). Added capacity is realized when you use the disks made for this drive--basically, the high-capacity disks have an optical servo track added.

Legacy software for interchange (e.g. Imagedisk) won't work with it and non-standard formats do not work either. I have had the experience that some revisions will cause XP and later to hang--but this doesn't occur with all drive versions. When formatting or reading, it is much faster than a plain vanilla floppy.

Wikipedia pretty much sums it up nicely.

I'd stay away--the media is expensive and the technology has sunsetted.

FWIW, I've got a stack of Caleb UHD144 drives and media--another dead high-capacity floppy replacement.

Thanks for the tips. Its more of the cool factor of having the drive in my little fun dos/98 machine. Did it work ok in dos 6+?

Regarding the zip drive, I already have one working, thanks though. The computer recycle place here has hundreds all at $5 each.
 

krebizfan

Veteran Member
Joined
May 23, 2009
Messages
5,331
Location
Connecticut
The Superdisk will not be a bootable drive with DOS 6. There are drivers that will make it work with DOS 6; I hope you got a copy of the drivers disk.

Two possible issues to realize:
1) It seems many Superdisks have fragile heads for the 120/240 MB disks. I have seen a lot of people report that their drive stops being able to read the 120 or 240 MB disk but the drive keeps on trucking with the 1.44MB and 720kB disks. Even more so than other old drives, don't leave anything of value on a Superdisk.
2) Some drivers for competing removable drives would conflict with the Superdisk drivers. If you run into strange behavior, try removing the drivers for other removable drives before more strenuous troubleshooting methods.
 

Compgeke

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Joined
Sep 30, 2011
Messages
780
Location
Fairfield, CA, USA
I have a USB LS120 drive (blue\white for Mac) that works fine on PCs with Windows 7 and older. It's picked up as a floppy drive and still can read\write LS120 disks. I like it as it's fairly quiet compared to a lot of the cheap USB floppy drives I've seen, plus it was $2.

I don't remember LS120 disks being all that fast, however being 90s technology it won't be as fast as a modern flashdrive anyways.
 

Caluser2000

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Jan 3, 2010
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Location
New Zealand
A search on this forum for dos drivers will point you in the right direction. I've got a ls120 hooked up to a parallel port on my 286 at the moment. Being able to read/write 1.44meg/720k disks is handy and something a zip drive can't do. Being able to write to 120meg media is a bonus.
 

wesleyfurr

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Joined
Jul 16, 2009
Messages
606
Location
Virginia, USA
FWIW, I've got a stack of Caleb UHD144 drives and media--another dead high-capacity floppy replacement.

That looks interesting! Odd storage devices like that are one of my pseudo-vintage interests. Guess I'll have to keep an eye out for one of those units and disks now too... :)

Wesley
 

Caluser2000

Veteran Member
Joined
Jan 3, 2010
Messages
4,585
Location
New Zealand
Thanks a bunch for the info everyone, and the drivers Caluser2000
You're most welcome. It was very easy to set up on the 286. Was expecting to do a bit of work getting it to function but just ran the setup software, reboot and away you go......
 

wesleyfurr

Veteran Member
Joined
Jul 16, 2009
Messages
606
Location
Virginia, USA
You can also get a 200 MB Sony HiFD drive... but good luck finding any media for it!

http://www.ebay.com/itm/390716892355

Now why did you have to go and do that to me? :) Will have to keep an eye out there too. I managed to get two 21Mb Floptical drives and some disks, which I were told were pretty much unobtanium...so I guess anything is possible! But, I imagine they were more popular than the odd things we got off-track talking about though. Maybe I should start a thread to discuss odd storage formats like that...

Wesley
 
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