Vista and the Phantom Floppy Drive B

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Ok, yeah, it’s probably, um, quaint?, to even have a floppy drive in a Core 2 Duo based machine, but still, that’ no excuse for Vista to mysteriously change my floppy drive to Drive B.

You can’t fix this with the Drive Management dialog, and I couldn’t find any place else to assign a drive letter to the floppy. And there’s no jumpers on floppies, so what the hell?

On a whim, I opened up the Device Manager and started looking for any drive letter controls on the floppy devices.

There weren’t any.

But then, I started wondering if just uninstalling the drivers and letting “scan for new hardware” do it’s thing would work. It usually does for network cards.

So I right-clicked on each and uninstalled the drivers for both the Floppy Drive and Controller:


Then right clicked on my computer and chose “Scan for new hardware”. In reality, just rebooting would also work.

A few seconds later, I’m back in the land of the whopping 1.4mb Drive A floppy!

Hey, you can get about a second and a half of HD Video on one of those things. Awesome.


  1. Ralf says:

    Heh. Recently I needed a boot floppy for a malfunctioning computer. I haven’t bought any new 1.44 disks in years, so I reached into my ancient box of moldy old media and grabbed the first floppy I touched — a Far Side screensaver from the early 90’s.

    Formatted the disk, but darn — the stuff I wanted to copy there simply wouldn’t go. Not enough space. Obviously, the disk had simply decayed, lost its bits. Too many bad clusters.

    I was about to toss it when I noticed… it was only a 720K disk. D’Oh!

    I’d forgotten those even existed.

  2. Darin says:

    Hehe. I went through my own box of "Dusty old media" about 2 years ago and threw out all the 720’s. I had grabbed one of those accidentally just one time too many.

    But I still have some 360k’s for good measure! They’re the install disks of the first commercial product I worked on, back in 88-89.

    Eventually, I want to cobble up a frame of the install disks of every commercial app I’ve shipped, plus a few patents I picked up over the years.

    But they’ll probably get far dustier before then.

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