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What the hell is this floppy?

Am386DX-40

New Member
Joined
Mar 28, 2011
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3
Location
Lincoln, Argentina
It's not mine, I don't have access to it, but someone posted pics on a facebook group.
Looks to be some soft of external 3.5 floppy, but what about that 15 pin connector? Maybe something proprietary? Does anyone have a clue?
I've googled that model number, the brand (seems to be related to 3M), but got nothing...

image.png


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image.png
 

animekenji

Experienced Member
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Nov 10, 2005
Messages
169
I researched the company that made it, and they were founded in 2010 and they seem to specialize in making hardware to be used with NEC computers, so it's probably proprietary to some NEC machine that came out between 2010 and today. It's most likely industrial with such a thick cable.
 

Chuck(G)

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Pacific Northwest, USA
PAR Microsystems Corp in New Hartford, NY goes back to at least 1988. I can find SEC filings and CVs going back to that (example).

They have a broad range of products, but seem to specialize in POS products (ref.)

My guess is that the floppy plugs into a POS terminal such as the PAR M500X here:
img_0018.jpg

See that 15-pin connector labeled "floppy"?
 

krebizfan

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May 23, 2009
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Connecticut
Is there any information about the model of the drive hidden inside? If it was a 40 track floppy, I would expect it to be for one of the portable computers which had all sorts serial connectors. The Casio design had an 11-pin connector for the external floppy. I can't find any reference to something with a 15-pin external floppy connector but there are probably lots of obscure machines I have never heard of.

The PAR I looked up in New Hartford, NY makes POS systems for restaurant use so having a proprietary external floppy drive might make sense from a security view. They claim to be a 40 year old company. https://www.partech.com/about-us/
 

Am386DX-40

New Member
Joined
Mar 28, 2011
Messages
3
Location
Lincoln, Argentina
Is there any information about the model of the drive hidden inside? If it was a 40 track floppy, I would expect it to be for one of the portable computers which had all sorts serial connectors. The Casio design had an 11-pin connector for the external floppy. I can't find any reference to something with a 15-pin external floppy connector but there are probably lots of obscure machines I have never heard of.

It's a regular Sony MPF420-1

Anyways, thanx a lot for all the info guys, that was amazing.
 

animekenji

Experienced Member
Joined
Nov 10, 2005
Messages
169
PAR Microsystems Corp in New Hartford, NY goes back to at least 1988. I can find SEC filings and CVs going back to that (example).

They have a broad range of products, but seem to specialize in POS products (ref.)

My guess is that the floppy plugs into a POS terminal such as the PAR M500X here:
img_0018.jpg

See that 15-pin connector labeled "floppy"?

Here's the information that I found.

https://www.dandb.com/businessdirectory/parmicrosystems-newhartford-ny-12590512.html

In any case, the drive is going to be useless if you don't have the machine that it was intended to be used with.
 

Chuck(G)

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Jan 11, 2007
Messages
38,870
Location
Pacific Northwest, USA
That D&B report is in error. That drive was produced long before 2010 and I can find CVs of PAR Microsystems people going back to the 1980s.

When it comes to accuracy on the web, never trust a single source. For example, Here's a news story from 1990

Click on Patents and you'll see that PAR acquired a number of patents (related to POS) in 1989

PAR Microsystems is a division of PAR Technology

In any case, given the date of the host system, I suspect that this is little more than a standard 1.44M drive, with power provided over the cable, although that's just a guess.
 
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