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Old Media File Exctraction
updated: Aug 02, 2014, 5:00 PM

I have a 3.5" disk that's probably 15-20 years old and I need to get a manuscript off of it. The one computer at work with a "floppy" drive can't read it. Are there services or people in town who specialize in extracting files off old media? Thank you!

 COMMENT 541642 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-08-02 05:38 PM

Try kinkos, if not you could call techease or any of the other computer support business's in town. I dont recall any media recovery specific business's in town


 COMMENT 541657P agree helpful negative off topic

2014-08-02 05:50 PM

You can buy an external USB connected 3.5" drive on Amazon four about $15.00, which is probably less than someone would charge you. But -- If the one at work reads other 3.5" discs but not yours, than it is probably the disc that is bad and that my not be readable to anyone.


 COMMENT 541691 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-08-02 08:45 PM

It's possibly an Apple disk that was formatted on a Mac, and you're unable to read it on a regular PC.


 COMMENT 541715 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-08-03 07:25 AM

There were about 3 variations on 3.5" floppy disks and over half a dozen possible ways to format each one. Most cheap USB external floppy drives can only handle one or two of the disk types and depending on the drivers/software one one or two of the formats.

Best bet is to find someone with a Macintosh old enough to have a built in floppy drive. These machines handle both the so called double density and high density disks and could read (though not necessarily write) single density and the so called single sided version as well. All but the oldest macs could read both Mac and PC formats and a few of the newest ones could read a couple unix formats as well.


 COMMENT 541720 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-08-03 07:45 AM

Try Compuwest on hollister and turnpike, they are great!


 COMMENT 541722 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-08-03 07:50 AM

I second 715's comment. The Mac's are the best for reading multiple types of disks as well as numerous formats.


 COMMENT 541790P agree helpful negative off topic

2014-08-03 10:31 AM

Might also try Mic's Macs. Mic is a nice guy who knows a lot and saved data from an old hard drive for me.


 COMMENT 541848P agree helpful negative off topic

2014-08-03 12:40 PM

Curious about Mic's Macs, I googled and found: http://micksmacs.com/


 BECKY agree helpful negative off topic

2014-08-03 05:34 PM

Ed Togami, at either ETogami @yahoo.com or @silcom.com . He's been doing Macs and PCs for over 20 years, and will have a few computers around with older floppy drives in them.

Also, let this be a warning to you and others. Formats change far more often than you'd think. Printing it in a common font on plain white paper is one of your best backup methods, as OCR (optical character reading) is pretty good nowadays. I've had to redo ancient documents from old greenbar paper, ancient disks, etc. It sometimes is faster and cheaper to retype it than to try to recover it from old electronic media. (The OCR didn't work on the dot matrix greenbar print-out, and the disks were too corrupted for anything to read, so we ended up retyping in my worst 'recover this document from decades ago' job.)


 COMMENT 542039 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-08-04 10:10 AM

Drive Savers.



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