Proper care of floppies
- Never leave diskettes in the disk drive, as data can leak out of the disk
and corrode the inner mechanics of the drive. Diskettes should be rolled
up and stored in pencil holders.
- Diskettes should be cleaned and waxed once a week. Microscopic metal
particles can be removed by waving a powerful magnet over the surface of
the disk. Any stubborn metallic shavings can be removed with scouring
powder and soap. When waxing the diskettes, make sure the surface is even.
This will allow the diskette to spin faster, resulting in better access
- Do not fold diskettes unless they do not fit into the drive.
"Big" diskettes may be folded and used in "little" disk
- Never insert a diskette into the drive upside down. The data can fall off
the surface of the disk and jam the intricate mechanics of the drive.
- Diskettes cannot be backed up by running them through the Xerox machine.
If your data is going to need to be backed up, simply insert two diskettes
into the drive. Whenever you update a document, the data will be written
on both diskettes.
- Diskettes should not be inserted or removed from the drive while the red
light is flashing. Doing so could result in smeared or possibly unreadable
text. Occasionally the red light remains flashing in what is known as a
"hung" or "hooked" state. If your system is
"hooking" you will probably need to insert a few coins before
being allowed access to the slot.
- If your diskette is full and you need more storage space, remove the disk
from the drive and shake vigorously for two minutes. This will pack the
data enough (Data Compression) to allow for more storage. Be sure to cover
all the openings with scotch tape to prevent loss data.
- Data access time can be greatly improved by cutting more holes in the
diskette jacket. This will provide more simultaneous access points to the
- Diskettes may be used as coasters for beverage glasses, provided that they
are properly waxed beforehand. Be sure to wipe the diskettes dry before
using. (See item 2 above.)
- Never use scissors and glue to manually edit documents. The data is stored
much too small for the naked eye, and you may end up with data from some
other document stuck in the middle of your document. Razor blades and
scotch tape may be used, however, provided the user is equipped with an
- Periodically spray diskettes with insecticide to prevent system bugs from
Original author: John L. Kinsella