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Old 09-24-2010, 06:35 AM
Basil Chupin
 
Default WTF?! NO floppy in Lucid or in Meerkat!

I've busted my balls over the past 2 days trying to figure out why my

floppy will not be recognised and display the contents of a floppy disc.

I need the floppy to be able to flash the BIOS on a pre-loved mobo I
bought 2 weeks ago.

I buggered around trying to figure out why the floppy (floppies actually
on all the 3 Ubuntu systems I have) won't work - when all did work under
the previous distro I was using.

And what do I now find?

The floppy drive is not really catered for by Ubuntu Lucid, or even
Meerkat (I've tried) now!

Here is a gem from a Lauchy discussion on this matter:

QUOTE

> NoOp [2010-08-31 2:20 -0000]:
> > Can one of the devs listed in the assigned: Andy Whitcroft and
> > Martin Pitt please explain the status?
>
> You already summarized it pretty well. None of the devs have a floppy
> disk, so debugging them is a pain (as much of a pain as floppy disks
> are in the first place..) Personally, the last one I had was 2002..
>
> So for now, I'm afraid that you have to use an older Ubuntu release
> for now, or use the downgraded version for a while.
>
> I'm sorry that this isn't the answer you are looking for, but it's the
> current situation.

UNQUOTE

Note: none of the devs computers with a floppy....so for all you silly
bums and no-hopers who do have one.....tuff teaties!

And for all those who still spout the line that Ubuntu will run on all
hardware -- get real! It's crap!

(Also, just FYI, and this might explain a few things, all the devs
appear to be using laptops, not desktops, for their work; this also
stated in this "bug thread".)

There are, however, at least a couple of "fixes" for the above wonderful
regression but one of them, which is to be issue on the cli,
"devkit-disks --mount /dev/fd0" comes up with the error message that
nobody on this planet knows the command "devkit-disks" except, most
likely, the one who actually mentioned it in the bug-discussion.

The first "fix" was to insert "floppy" as a new line in /etc/modules -
which went down like a lead balloon in my case.

And the last, is to replace in Lucid the latest udisks package from
ubuntu with the earlier udisks.1.0.1build1 (by using Package:Force
Version) -- this courtesy of NoOp. And, of course, there is no way that
you can do this Package:Force Version in Meerkat.

Alright, now that I have vented my frustrations accumulated over the
past 2 days, does anyone have a REAL clue to make anything-Ubuntu
recognise a floppy drive and display the contents of the disc in it and
even format the disc? (Having stated this, the suggestion in the
bug-discussion is to keep running an earlier version of Ubuntu - I think
it is Karmic but don't quote me.)

If you want to see all of this for yourself then here is the bug-discussion:

https://bugs.launchpad.net/ubuntu/lucid/+source/udisks/+bug/441835

BC


PS I accidentally posted the above in the wrong mail list - opensuse - and the above is FWDed copy of that post.



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Old 09-24-2010, 06:42 AM
"[C]hicken [G] od"
 
Default WTF?! NO floppy in Lucid or in Meerkat!

Can't you just run a bootable CD with FreeDOS for flashing the BIOS?

On Fri, Sep 24, 2010 at 2:35 PM, Basil Chupin <blchupin@iinet.net.au> wrote:

I've busted my balls over the past 2 days trying to figure out why my



floppy will not be recognised and display the contents of a floppy disc.



I need the floppy to be able to flash the BIOS on a pre-loved mobo I

bought 2 weeks ago.



I buggered around trying to figure out why the floppy (floppies actually

on all the 3 Ubuntu systems I have) won't work - when all did work under

the previous distro I was using.



And what do I now find?



The floppy drive is not really catered for by Ubuntu Lucid, or even

Meerkat (I've tried) now!



Here is a gem from a Lauchy discussion on this matter:



QUOTE



> *NoOp [2010-08-31 2:20 -0000]:

> *> *Can one of the devs listed in the assigned: Andy Whitcroft and

> *> *Martin Pitt please explain the status?

>

> *You already summarized it pretty well. None of the devs have a floppy

> *disk, so debugging them is a pain (as much of a pain as floppy disks

> *are in the first place..) Personally, the last one I had was 2002..

>

> *So for now, I'm afraid that you have to use an older Ubuntu release

> *for now, or use the downgraded version for a while.

>

> *I'm sorry that this isn't the answer you are looking for, but it's the

> *current situation.



UNQUOTE



Note: none of the devs computers with a floppy....so for all you silly

bums and no-hopers who do have one.....tuff teaties!



And for all those who still spout the line that Ubuntu will run on all

hardware -- get real! It's crap!



(Also, just FYI, and this might explain a few things, all the devs

appear to be using laptops, not desktops, for their work; this also

stated in this "bug thread".)



There are, however, at least a couple of "fixes" for the above wonderful

regression but one of them, which is to be issue on the cli,

"devkit-disks --mount /dev/fd0" comes up with the error message that

nobody on this planet knows the command "devkit-disks" except, most

likely, the one who actually mentioned it in the bug-discussion.



The first "fix" was to insert "floppy" as a new line in /etc/modules -

which went down like a lead balloon in my case.



And the last, is to replace in Lucid the latest udisks package from

ubuntu with the earlier udisks.1.0.1build1 (by using Package:Force

Version) -- this courtesy of NoOp. And, of course, there is no way that

you can do this Package:Force Version in Meerkat.



Alright, now that I have vented my frustrations accumulated over the

past 2 days, does anyone have a REAL clue to make anything-Ubuntu

recognise a floppy drive and display the contents of the disc in it and

even format the disc? (Having stated this, the suggestion in the

bug-discussion is to keep running an earlier version of Ubuntu - I think

it is Karmic but don't quote me.)



If you want to see all of this for yourself then here is the bug-discussion:



https://bugs.launchpad.net/ubuntu/lucid/+source/udisks/+bug/441835



BC





PS I accidentally posted the above in the wrong mail list - opensuse - and the above is FWDed copy of that post.







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Old 09-24-2010, 06:48 AM
Christopher Chan
 
Default WTF?! NO floppy in Lucid or in Meerkat!

> The first "fix" was to insert "floppy" as a new line in /etc/modules -
> which went down like a lead balloon in my case.

'modprobe floppy'

That should load the floppy driver.
>
> Alright, now that I have vented my frustrations accumulated over the
> past 2 days, does anyone have a REAL clue to make anything-Ubuntu
> recognise a floppy drive and display the contents of the disc in it and
> even format the disc? (Having stated this, the suggestion in the
> bug-discussion is to keep running an earlier version of Ubuntu - I think
> it is Karmic but don't quote me.)
>

After that, insert floppy into drive. Then perhaps do:

'sudo mkdir /mnt/floppy'
'sudo mount /dev/fd0 /mnt/floppy'
'ls /mnt/floppy'

To format the floppy with FAT, just do:

mkfs.msdos /dev/fdo

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Old 09-24-2010, 06:55 AM
Karl Auer
 
Default WTF?! NO floppy in Lucid or in Meerkat!

On Fri, 2010-09-24 at 16:35 +1000, Basil Chupin wrote:
> The floppy drive is not really catered for by Ubuntu Lucid, or even
> Meerkat (I've tried) now!
> [...]
> Alright, now that I have vented my frustrations accumulated over the
> past 2 days, does anyone have a REAL clue to make anything-Ubuntu
> recognise a floppy drive and display the contents of the disc in it and
> even format the disc? (Having stated this, the suggestion in the
> bug-discussion is to keep running an earlier version of Ubuntu - I think
> it is Karmic but don't quote me.)

A USB floppy will almost certainly work, as it's just USB mass storage
to the OS. You can get one of these very cheaply, or maybe even borrow
one. I've got one that will read and write 1.44Mb 3.5" floppies - if you
are desperate I'll send it up to you, just send it back when you are
done. I don't read floppies that often :-)

Another alternative is to install VirtualBox (free) and install the
necessary older version of Ubuntu as a guest system; see if it
understands the floppy drive. I'm not that confident in this solution,
because presumably it needs to use the host system's floppy subsystem,
but worth a shot maybe.

And a THIRD alternative is to send the floppy to me (or someone with a
drive that works) and get them to get what you need off it - the
executables or whatever. I can email the contents back to you and follow
up with the disk in snail mail. You can make a bootable USB stick and
put the bits on that for further use.

Regards, K.

PS: Are you the same Basil Chupin with whom I recall crossing swords
many years ago? Forgotten why now, time heals all :-)

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Old 09-24-2010, 07:03 AM
Basil Chupin
 
Default WTF?! NO floppy in Lucid or in Meerkat!

On 24/09/2010 16:42, [C]hicken [G] od wrote:
> Can't you just run a bootable CD with FreeDOS for flashing the BIOS?
>
> On Fri, Sep 24, 2010 at 2:35 PM, Basil Chupin <blchupin@iinet.net.au
> <mailto:blchupin@iinet.net.au>> wrote:
>
> I've busted my balls over the past 2 days trying to figure out why my
>
> floppy will not be recognised and display the contents of a floppy
> disc.
>
> I need the floppy to be able to flash the BIOS on a pre-loved mobo I
> bought 2 weeks ago.
>
> I buggered around trying to figure out why the floppy (floppies
> actually
> on all the 3 Ubuntu systems I have) won't work - when all did work
> under
> the previous distro I was using.
>
> And what do I now find?
>

OK, alright already, I'll just ignore the fact that you top posted.

I am in no mood to....oh, never mind....I just have to relax some after
days of not getting anywhere....Apologies...Pax...... :-) .

Firstly, thanks for your response.

Secondly, the only way I can download the file to be flashed is with
Ubuntu Lucid 10.04.1 or with 10.04 (or even Meerkat if I decide to waste
more time, nerves, and patience....)

OK, I did that (used 10.04.1). But now I have to transfer it to a floppy
to be able to have the BIOS flash it.

OK so far? :-) .

But this is where the bug in the ointment comes in..... :'( .

BC

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Old 09-24-2010, 02:17 PM
Liam Proven
 
Default WTF?! NO floppy in Lucid or in Meerkat!

On 24 September 2010 07:35, Basil Chupin <blchupin@iinet.net.au> wrote:
> I've busted my balls over the past 2 days trying to figure out why my
>
> floppy will not be recognised and display the contents of a floppy disc.
>
> I need the floppy to be able to flash the BIOS on a pre-loved mobo I
> bought 2 weeks ago.
>
> I buggered around trying to figure out why the floppy (floppies actually
> on all the 3 Ubuntu systems I have) won't work - when all did work under
> the previous distro I was using.
>
> And what do I now find?
>
> The floppy drive is not really catered for by Ubuntu Lucid, or even
> Meerkat (I've tried) now!
>
> Here is a gem from a Lauchy discussion on this matter:
>
> QUOTE
>
>> *NoOp [2010-08-31 2:20 -0000]:
>> *> *Can one of the devs listed in the assigned: Andy Whitcroft and
>> *> *Martin Pitt please explain the status?
>>
>> *You already summarized it pretty well. None of the devs have a floppy
>> *disk, so debugging them is a pain (as much of a pain as floppy disks
>> *are in the first place..) Personally, the last one I had was 2002..
>>
>> *So for now, I'm afraid that you have to use an older Ubuntu release
>> *for now, or use the downgraded version for a while.
>>
>> *I'm sorry that this isn't the answer you are looking for, but it's the
>> *current situation.
>
> UNQUOTE
>
> Note: none of the devs computers with a floppy....so for all you silly
> bums and no-hopers who do have one.....tuff teaties!
>
> And for all those who still spout the line that Ubuntu will run on all
> hardware -- get real! It's crap!

*Boggle*

That is /appalling./ It does explain why I've not been able to use the
FDD under 10.04, though.

I am dismayed that I am going to need to keep an older version around
just to read/write floppies, though. I don't use them often but I do
still need them sometimes.

> (Also, just FYI, and this might explain a few things, all the devs
> appear to be using laptops, not desktops, for their work; this also
> stated in this "bug thread".)

This I suspected; Mark Shuttleworth invited me & the other survivors
of a launch party back to his South Kensington flat once. Thinkpads
everywhere, no desktops.

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Old 09-24-2010, 02:21 PM
Rashkae
 
Default WTF?! NO floppy in Lucid or in Meerkat!

Basil Chupin wrote:

>
> https://bugs.launchpad.net/ubuntu/lucid/+source/udisks/+bug/441835
>


Allright, what I gather from that thread is that the Gnome/Freedesktop
gui automount thing isn't working with floppy devices anymore. The
kernel and udev still recognizes the floppy, (so no need to manually
insert floppy modules.) We just have to kick it back old school a bit.


Someone already started the first steps, to test:

sudo mkdir /mnt/floppy
sudo mount /dev/fd0 /mnt/floppy -t vfat

At this point, you should be be able to read the contents of your floppy
drive in the /mnt/floppy directory. Don't forget, before removing the disk:

sudo umount /mnt/flopyy

Assuming that works, and you want something a little more permanent, you
have to edit your /etc/fstab file. It's not a bad idea to make a backup
copy of this file first, and test that you are able to boot from a live
cd (in case a mistake is made and you need such a drastic measure to
correct it)

sudo gedit /etc/fstab

Then append this line to the bottom of the file

/dev/fd0 /mnt/floppy auto rw,users,noauto 0 0

Now when you want to mount the floppy drive, from terminal:

mount /mnt/floppy


Before ejecting the disk:

umount /mnt/floppy

You can create gnome "launchers" to execute these commands if you use
floppy often. There also used to be a large variety of disk mounting
applets that were common back in the day before automount when this was
common practice in linux systems.







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Old 09-24-2010, 03:02 PM
ms
 
Default WTF?! NO floppy in Lucid or in Meerkat!

On 24/09/10 07:35, Basil Chupin wrote:
> Here is a gem from a Lauchy discussion on this matter:
>
> QUOTE
>
>> NoOp [2010-08-31 2:20 -0000]:
>> > Can one of the devs listed in the assigned: Andy Whitcroft and
>> > Martin Pitt please explain the status?
>>
>> You already summarized it pretty well. None of the devs have a floppy
>> disk, so debugging them is a pain (as much of a pain as floppy disks
>> are in the first place..) Personally, the last one I had was 2002..
>>
>> So for now, I'm afraid that you have to use an older Ubuntu release
>> for now, or use the downgraded version for a while.
>>
>> I'm sorry that this isn't the answer you are looking for, but it's the
>> current situation.
>
> UNQUOTE
>
> Note: none of the devs computers with a floppy....so for all you silly
> bums and no-hopers who do have one.....tuff teaties!

I don't understand how could you insist that they maintain something
that they have no hardware to test on.

It's sad, I understand, but it's also normal. Technologies come and go.
Floppy is a dead technology since years and years.

> And for all those who still spout the line that Ubuntu will run on all
> hardware -- get real! It's crap!

It has always been crap, if you take this literally. Ubuntu won't run on
my 30-years old VIC20, nor on a PDP10, or on a 640K-ram 8086.

m.

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Old 09-24-2010, 03:26 PM
Liam Proven
 
Default WTF?! NO floppy in Lucid or in Meerkat!

On 24 September 2010 16:02, ms <devicerandom@gmail.com> wrote:
>
> I don't understand how could you insist that they maintain something
> that they have no hardware to test on.
>
> It's sad, I understand, but it's also normal. Technologies come and go.
> Floppy is a dead technology since years and years.

Floppies are not extinct, are still in common use, and for quite a
number of relatively modern machines that cannot boot from USB are
still the most commonly-available easiest and cheapest boot media. To
burn a CD for one use, such as re-Flashing a BIOS, and then throw it
away is appalling environmental irresponsibility.

I expect testing on desktop machines and I expect support for fairly
recent legacy hardware. PS/2 ports, parallel & serial ports, analogue
VGA ports & monitors, CDs as opposed to DVDs, the ISA bus, the
parallel PCI buses, these are all "legacy" technology but still in
use. I have a live P4 server with Cirrus graphics on an electronic PCI
interface (physically, it's on the motherboard); I still expect such
things to work.

Also, it pays to be aware of the position of Linux and Ubuntu in the
real world. It is a tiny minority OS in a world dominated by Windows
and one commercial UNIX. One of the main uses for Linux for many
people is to bring old PC hardware back to life, for which no licence
is available for a commercial OS, or where it would be too expensive
or modern commercial OSs too heavyweight. This is an important niche
and should not be neglected.

>> And for all those who still spout the line that Ubuntu will run on all
>> hardware -- get real! It's crap!
>
> It has always been crap, if you take this literally. Ubuntu won't run on
> my 30-years old VIC20, nor on a PDP10, or on a 640K-ram 8086.

No, but I *do* expect it to work on kit that meets the minimum
requirements and kit that is (say) ten to 12 years old if it was of
good specification at the time.

A 64MB Pentium 1 from 1995, no. A 1GB P3 from 1998 or 1999, yes.

I am still using live machines less than a decade old that can't boot from USB.

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Old 09-25-2010, 12:25 AM
ms
 
Default WTF?! NO floppy in Lucid or in Meerkat!

On 24/09/10 16:26, Liam Proven wrote:
> On 24 September 2010 16:02, ms<devicerandom@gmail.com> wrote:
>>
>> I don't understand how could you insist that they maintain something
>> that they have no hardware to test on.
>>
>> It's sad, I understand, but it's also normal. Technologies come and go.
>> Floppy is a dead technology since years and years.
>
> Floppies are not extinct, are still in common use,

We have different definitions of "common". Anyway they could be as
common as you want: if developers can't test them, they can't support them.

If you want floppy support, you can perhaps donate a machine with a
floppy drive to an Ubuntu developer willing to work on that.

> and for quite a
> number of relatively modern machines that cannot boot from USB are
> still the most commonly-available easiest and cheapest boot media. To
> burn a CD for one use, such as re-Flashing a BIOS, and then throw it
> away is appalling environmental irresponsibility.

For one CD?! Please.

> I expect testing on desktop machines and I expect support for fairly
> recent legacy hardware. PS/2 ports, parallel& serial ports, analogue
> VGA ports& monitors, CDs as opposed to DVDs, the ISA bus, the
> parallel PCI buses, these are all "legacy" technology but still in
> use. I have a live P4 server with Cirrus graphics on an electronic PCI
> interface (physically, it's on the motherboard); I still expect such
> things to work.
>
> Also, it pays to be aware of the position of Linux and Ubuntu in the
> real world. It is a tiny minority OS in a world dominated by Windows
> and one commercial UNIX. One of the main uses for Linux for many
> people is to bring old PC hardware back to life, for which no licence
> is available for a commercial OS, or where it would be too expensive
> or modern commercial OSs too heavyweight. This is an important niche
> and should not be neglected.

I think you are not getting the point of the Linux *ecosystem*. There's
plenty of Linux distributions that support all of this stuff and more.

But Ubuntu is not geared towards revitalizing old hardware. Ubuntu, as
far as I understand it, is designed to be a modern OS running on
relatively modern machines. I have personally run Linux (and FreeBSD) on
64MB Pentium 1s, not more than three years ago. It wasn't Ubuntu,
however. It wouldn't have been the right thing for the job, simply.

There is a world of Linux distros out there, even if Ubuntu pretty much
shadowed a lot of them.

> No, but I *do* expect it to work on kit that meets the minimum
> requirements and kit that is (say) ten to 12 years old if it was of
> good specification at the time.
>
> A 64MB Pentium 1 from 1995, no. A 1GB P3 from 1998 or 1999, yes.

And... why is 10 to 12 years old your expectation?

10 years are *aeons* in computing. It isn't unreasonable at all, sad as
it may be (because I love old hw myself) that some hardware of that age
is no more actively supported by a standard modern desktop distribution.

m.

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