Disc Drive?

If you buy a computer from a name brand, is it normal to have a disc drive - 3.5 inch floppy - on it? I thought I saw lots without and it seems odd.

Yeah, most laptops don’t come with a floppy drive anymore. My current laptop doesn’t have one, and, honestly, I don’t miss it. I can boot from a USB stick, if I really have to.

floppy disk? Thank god this time is over. I don’t remember the last time I needed one.

Thanks, but how do you transfer data around? Can you write to the CD???

or you can write to a CD if you have a CD writer, but I think a USB stick is probably easier.

or you can write to a CD if you have a CD writer, but I think a USB stick is probably easier.[/quote]
Also you can buy a little portable USB HDD drive enclosure and move data on another HDD.

USB sticks are cheap as chips now. I’ve been given a couple thru promotions etc, only 64mb but great for moving stuff around.
When I built my latest desktop, I opted to not buy a floppy. But, the raid drivers I needed to install into the bios came on, yep a floppy. Ok, it was only 300NT or something for a floppy but how many times have I used the drive in total? yep once. I probably should have tried to work out doing it from a usb drive anyway :s

Agree , Use a usb stick.

Can’t believe people still asking for floppies with so many other options available now.
For desktops and servers which still uses floppies for the raid drivers but that too will be changing very soon.

Please let the floppy go, it should have died 5 years ago.

There are loads of ways to transfer files without a floppy drive:

CDR - Windows XP has CD writing functionality built in, so if a computer has a CD writer there is little need for a floppy drive too.

IrDA - until recently most laptops were built with an infrared port. They are less common on desktop PCs, but a USB dongle about the size of your thumb costs about NT$500.

Bluetooth - Intended to supersede IrDA. Fairly common in recent laptops. A USB dongle costs about NT$700.

Wifi - If it’s an Intel Centrino laptop it has Wifi, and most other brands include it too. Can be used to transfer directly or via the internet. A USB dongle for a desktop PC costs about NT$1500.

Serial cable - still fairly common on laptops and PCs so viable in theory.

CAT 5 cable - RJ-45 ports are now standard on laptops and desktops. A cable for direct transfers costs about NT$50, or you can connect to the internet. Makes serial cable redundant.

USB cable - ports are standard on laptops and desktops, but the cables are expensive.

Firewire cable - ports are reasonably common on laptops and Macs, but not PCs.

USB flash drive - as small as you thumb. Costs about NT$1,000 for 64MB (about 50 floppy disks).

Flash media cards - readers are common on laptops. A USB reader costs about NT$700 and a 64MB card about NT$1,000.

None of these solutions are guaranteed to work in all situations, but then again Macs have not had a floppy disk drive for about 10 years, so even they are not universal.

The ubiquity of CD drives makes CDR the most versatile option. But CD media is relatively fragile, and for small files or frequent transfers between two machines it is not the most efficient.

The USB options work well, but are only guaranteed to work for PCs running WinXP.

For very small files it is often easiest to just email them too yourself, then collect the email on the other PC.

The only times now-a-days where you have to have a floppy disk are:
Flashing the firmware on some pieces of hardware. Most users never have to do this, especially on a laptop.


As mentioned, installing RAID drivers under Windows. Laptops never support RAID, so this is not a problem.

In essence, on a laptop a floppy drive is made redundant many times over, so just adds extra weight and drains battery power, both of which are at a premium on a laptop. This explains why they should have been phased out a long time ago.

For desktops, the only thing keeping floppies going is the fact Microsoft haven’t modified the Windows installer to look in places other than the floppy drive, Mac OS and Linux can both do this.

There are two options available while we wait for Bill to pull his finger out:

Make a slipstream CD. Google for it.


A ‘ghetto’ setup. This is where you temporarily take a floppy drive out of another PC. When doing this it is very important that you do not go to the trouble of securing the donated drive inside the recipient PC, and instead leave it hanging from its cables like some prolapsed organ.

For added style you shouldn’t even remove the drive from the donor box. Instead just stand the 2 boxes side by side and transfer the cables over.

The ultimate is when you don’t even bother swapping the 5V rail, those plugs are sometimes a bitch to disconnect. 2 PCs, 2 250W+ power supplies, and 1 cable connecting them all together :smiling_imp:

I’ll remember that when I buy my new computer and extras! Thanks!

USB flash drive - as small as you thumb. Costs about NT$1,000 for 64MB (about 50 floppy disks).[/quote]

things have changed… you chould check out the 3C… a 256Mb USB flash stick will run your about NT$1000+ and a 512Mb about NT$1600 or so…