Jump to content
modulusshift

Floppy drive compatibility question

Recommended Posts

I've got here a Performa 630CD, and a 400 MHz Sawtooth Power Mac G4. Is there any compatibility reason why I couldn't pop open the 630CD, remove the floppy drive, and attach it to the G4? 

 

I have a bunch of software on floppy that I want to get backed up to a modern computer. Unfortunately, my 630CD doesn't have an obvious way of communicating with anything newer that I have, and everything newer than it doesn't have a floppy drive. (I got a little excited when I first got this G4 until I realized the slot on it is just a Zip drive.) So I'm hoping I can just copy everything using the rigging I mentioned above, unless the 630CD has an incompatible SCSI bus or did something stupid like use an IDE floppy...oh gosh, that's possible, isn't it. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Macintosh floppy disks use a unique connector. The 630 has it, but no G4s have it.

 

The last machine(s) to have that connector are the Beige Power Macintosh G3 and the original iMac G3.

 

What other stuff do you have on hand? There may be other tools you have that can be used.

 

If you have any systems between those two, you may be able to use an appropriately wired serial cable to connect the 630 to the newer beige g3 and establish localtalk file sharing to copy the files, then re-configure the middle system to talk localtalk over ethernet to the G4.

 

There are also localtalk to ethertalk adapters, if you have one or could fine one, you can network them directly.

 

There are also things like modem simulators, you may be able to stuff or binhex all the files and use like ymodem or xmodem to transfer them, it would be the slowest but you could set it to go and just come back in a few hours.

 

630s can have LCPDS ethernet cards added fairly inexpensively, that may also be an option.

 

Other thought: the floppies a 630 writes will be compatible with imation superdisk drives and with other USB floppy drives, you could connect one of those to the G4 and transfer files that way.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

oh dang. I literally don't have anything between the two. I've got the 630CD, the Sawtooth, and an 800MHz iMac G4. Besides that I have an Ivy Bridge era desktop, and an old Gateway PC (2004-ish) that has both USB/Ethernet and a floppy drive (was hoping I could use the floppy in my desktop with a cheap adapter), but is currently disassembled and without an OS. That's probably my best bet without spending any money, though. I could get some sort of Linux to make disk images of the Mac software, probably. It sounds like a pain, but possible.

 

edit: and a Raspberry Pi 3.

Edited by modulusshift

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Question:

 

Can that Mac that you want to get software off of join a local ethernet network?

 

If the answer is yes, turn that machine into an FTP server with https://www.macintoshrepository.org/2783-netpresenz and then you can connect to it from any Mac, any PC, or any other client that can make an FTP connection. Yes even Macs FTP clients going all the wayup to 10.13.x

 

So the old Mac becomes an FTP server via NetPresenz software, free by the author. The said Mac must be connected to your ethernet LAN network. From there ANY Machine, Mac or otherwise can connect to it via a vanilla FTP connection.

 

It will work flawlessly and you can achieve your goal without floppies. You can send files to that old Mac or copy files from that old Mac. Remember to .sit your files first though or there may be issues with data forks. Zip doesn't support data forks so it will get dropped if you use zip and the file you transferred becomes unusable.

That's it!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you plan to keep the Performance 630, I second getting an Ethernet card for it. Otherwise, picking up a USB floppy drive will allow the sawtooth and iMac to work with floppies. USB floppy drives can usually be found in the $5 to $15 range.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×