Getting data off a pre-USB laptop with a dead floppy drive.


V

VanguardLH

AL_n said:
Thank you. Yes, this had accurred to me as an option. If I can get hold of
a PCMCIA-ethernet adapter and successfully get it working on the laptop, I
will do that. Otherwise I will pull the hard drive and connect it to an old
IDE desktop, if I can find the one I think I have somewhere.

How about taking the hard disk out of the old laptop and hooking it to a
motherboard port in the PC? What hardware interface does the laptop's
HDD use (IDE or SATA)? What HDD ports are available on the PC where you
want to transfer the files?

In fact, if you don't plan on using the old laptop (or put in a
different HDD), just leave the laptop's HDD mounted inside the case for
the desktop PC. There's nothing you can find that'll be faster than
attaching the old laptop HDD right to the PC's motherboard.

Save a backup image of your PC's HDD with the partition(s) for the OS.
Microsoft gets too intrusive on detecting Windows installations on old
HDDs that you add to a computer.
 
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P

Paul

AL_n said:
Fascinating! I think I was confused because the IR emitters on my security
cameras at home are actually visible, but I guess that's so that burglars
have something they can visibly see. The IR emitters on my phone and old
laptop are obviously using true (invisible) IR.

Anyway, I am ustterly elated!!!! I have done what I needed to do!

I had no luck transferring the files using my Nokia E90 phone, but my old
HTC Blue Angel phone, running Windows Mobile was what did work, (after a
lot of trial and error and device-jiggling, puzzling and fretting! When the
IR connection was finally set up, all of my three critical Word files
transferred accross within about three minutes!

Getting these vital files onto my desktop has saved me a massive amount of
work! Best of all, it cost me nothing and took me a mere hour or so to do.
And I evern learned something useful in the process: how easy to transfer
files using IR or bluetooth.

WOOOHOOOOOOOOOO!!! (as Homer, the famous Greek philosopher said)

Thanks so much to all who advised on this one. I am so relieved!!

Al

Well, for once, a successful "orphan computer" story :) I've been
presented with challenges like this before, where the OP in the
thread never succeeds to find "some way off the old computer",
as just about all avenues are blocked. I never would have guessed
IRDA would be ready to go like that.

Paul
 
L

Loren Pechtel

Hi all,

I have an old Compaq Armada 4220T laptop with no USB ports and a dead
floppy drive. Floppy drives for these old laptops do occasionally surface
but they are not cheap.

I'm never likely to need this laptop again, after I salvage the old data
files from its hard drive. How can I get the data off it, cheaply?

The laptop has a printer port and a serial port and a port marked IOIO. Is
it possible that I could connect an external floppy drive to one of those
ports - or perhaps find some kind of serial-to-female-USB adapter or
parallel-t-female-USB adapter that would work? The laptop has a docking
station with a SC-Rom drive but it is read-only drive. It also has a PCMCIA
port.

I tried removing the hard drive, hoping it would fit one of my USB portable
harddrive cases, but the connector is different.

Did anyone make protable hard-drives prior to USB? If so, which port did
you plug them into?

I just want to get the data off with as little outlay as possible.

Thank for any helpful suggestions.

The drive connector is no doubt PATA. While I haven't seen PATA
enclosures in recent times I have seen gadgets meant for upgrading
that are the electronics of an enclosure with no enclosure--you plug
the drive into it right there on your desktop. (Keep your hands off
while it's running due to static issues!)

It's probably the 44-pin version of PATA that doesn't use a separate
power wire.
 
D

Dustin

The old Compaq 4220T laptop in question, has infrared (IrDA), and
so does my Nokia e90 mobile phone. In theory, I should be able to
transfer the required files from the laptop's hard drive onto the
E90 phone. The phone has as a micro-SD card, so I can plug the
micro-SD card into my desktop PC and transfer the files that way,
after the files are transferred onto the phone's sd card.

However, it seems easier said than done; I have IR switched on, on
both devices, but the the laptop is not finding the phone even
though it's in close range. Do the IR ports have to be within
eyesight of each other? I cannot find any kind of IR lense or
suchlike on either device. According to the laptop's user manual
at:

http://tinyurl.com/p4c9v9w

, the laptop should detect the phone and then automatically
transfer the necessary transfer software from it (I think). But it
isn't happening. Laptop says "no infrared devics within range".

This is an inexpensive very useful piece of hardware that will let
you mount that laptops hard drive on your computer as an external.
Far easier than what you're thinking of doing here. And, this will
let you mount all sorts of different drives as an external.

Hi-Speed USB Standard-A male; SATA L-type male; IDE 40-pin; IDE 44-
pin ports
Hi-Speed USB transfer interface
Hi-Speed USB, SATA 300 and ATA-100 spec v1.0 compliant


I have an older model of this device and it's worked flawlessly for
years now. I'd have no issues replacing it with this one when it
finally dies on me, or I run into a drive capacity it cannot support.

It has an external power supply so doesn't need to leech power from
your USB port. This actually enables you to mount old fashioned
desktop style IDE hard drives with it too. :)

http://www.amazon.com/Manhattan-Hi-Speed-Adapter-One-Touch-
179195/dp/B002TRD3FQ

or

http://preview.tinyurl.com/cyfn9cl
 
S

SC Tom

Dustin said:
This is an inexpensive very useful piece of hardware that will let
you mount that laptops hard drive on your computer as an external.
Far easier than what you're thinking of doing here. And, this will
let you mount all sorts of different drives as an external.

Hi-Speed USB Standard-A male; SATA L-type male; IDE 40-pin; IDE 44-
pin ports
Hi-Speed USB transfer interface
Hi-Speed USB, SATA 300 and ATA-100 spec v1.0 compliant


I have an older model of this device and it's worked flawlessly for
years now. I'd have no issues replacing it with this one when it
finally dies on me, or I run into a drive capacity it cannot support.

It has an external power supply so doesn't need to leech power from
your USB port. This actually enables you to mount old fashioned
desktop style IDE hard drives with it too. :)

http://www.amazon.com/Manhattan-Hi-Speed-Adapter-One-Touch-
179195/dp/B002TRD3FQ

or

http://preview.tinyurl.com/cyfn9cl
For that matter, he could get this one:

<http://www.amazon.com/eForCity-USB-...208&sr=1-4&keywords=usb+to+sata+ide+combo+kit>

or

<http://preview.tinyurl.com/np9sd4x>

I have one, and it works fine for anything under 3GB :)
 
P

Paul

SC said:
For that matter, he could get this one:

<http://www.amazon.com/eForCity-USB-...208&sr=1-4&keywords=usb+to+sata+ide+combo+kit>


or

<http://preview.tinyurl.com/np9sd4x>

I have one, and it works fine for anything under 3GB :)

Or maybe even 2.2TB (2^32 sectors) or 3TB. If the boundary
was there, is would likely stop with a 2TB drive, which is
under the 2.2TB limit.

Storage device adapters have all sorts of crazy capacity limits,
many of which don't make sense. So when someone tells me
one of these crazy limits, they don't always have explanations
for why they exist. One adapter stopped at 200GB for example
(not 128GB). A 160GB drive worked fully with that item.
A 250GB didn't work right.

You really need to check the customer reviews, as no info
is all that trustworthy. The marketing material isn't always
correct (or, up to date).

Paul
 
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S

SC Tom

Paul said:
Or maybe even 2.2TB (2^32 sectors) or 3TB. If the boundary
was there, is would likely stop with a 2TB drive, which is
under the 2.2TB limit.

Storage device adapters have all sorts of crazy capacity limits,
many of which don't make sense. So when someone tells me
one of these crazy limits, they don't always have explanations
for why they exist. One adapter stopped at 200GB for example
(not 128GB). A 160GB drive worked fully with that item.
A 250GB didn't work right.

You really need to check the customer reviews, as no info
is all that trustworthy. The marketing material isn't always
correct (or, up to date).

Paul

Doh, dumbass me- I meant 3TB :-(
I have a 2TB and a 3TB drive, and it works with the 2 but not the 3. Win8
sees it as a 3TB, but wouldn't let me do anything with it. Even ATI2014 says
it's there, but won't write to it. Both work fine with the 2TB drive. I
don't have 2.2TB one to test it :)
 
P

Paul

SC said:
Doh, dumbass me- I meant 3TB :-(
I have a 2TB and a 3TB drive, and it works with the 2 but not the 3.
Win8 sees it as a 3TB, but wouldn't let me do anything with it. Even
ATI2014 says it's there, but won't write to it. Both work fine with the
2TB drive. I don't have 2.2TB one to test it :)

The 3TB drives are a challenge. I guess that's why we
keep buying them (I have two).

There is BOT protocol and UAS protocol. It's possible
some day, you'll have enough UAS capable bits and pieces,
to retest your 3TB drive (with GPT perhaps). The BOT protocol
has room for a 16 byte command block, but I can't find the
format for the block, to check how big a device it can
talk to.

http://www.myce.com/review/beyond-usb3-with-uasp-67035/introduction-1/

I certainly don't plan on doing any nasty experiments to my 3TB
drive, as they cost too much if I break one. And they have backups
on them right now. So it's not like I have a "spare" that isn't filled
with something.

Paul
 
S

SC Tom

Paul said:
The 3TB drives are a challenge. I guess that's why we
keep buying them (I have two).

There is BOT protocol and UAS protocol. It's possible
some day, you'll have enough UAS capable bits and pieces,
to retest your 3TB drive (with GPT perhaps). The BOT protocol
has room for a 16 byte command block, but I can't find the
format for the block, to check how big a device it can
talk to.

http://www.myce.com/review/beyond-usb3-with-uasp-67035/introduction-1/

I certainly don't plan on doing any nasty experiments to my 3TB
drive, as they cost too much if I break one. And they have backups
on them right now. So it's not like I have a "spare" that isn't filled
with something.

Paul

I use my 2TB and 3TB drives for backups/images. I bought this to use with my
3TB since nothing else I have works with it:
<http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817392076>

I have this I use with the 2TB just because it's easier to hook up than the
eForCity gadget:
<http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001J8BPYM/ref=oh_aui_search_detailpage?ie=UTF8&psc=1>

I originally bought the eForCity device when I was trying to save the data
on an old Creative MP3 player. It was the cheapest thing I could find that
would connect to a Hitachi 20GB TravelStar 1.8" drive. As it turned out, it
was the player that died, not the drive. So now I have 2 of the drives in my
parts box. Maybe someday . . .

Plus I have a 750GB WD Passport for backups, too. I got it for its Firewire
interface when I had my old MB. I still use its USB capabilities, since my
"new" (4YO) MB doesn't have Firewire. I got most everything covered, I
think, and lots of places to store them :)
 
P

Paul

SC said:
I use my 2TB and 3TB drives for backups/images. I bought this to use
with my 3TB since nothing else I have works with it:
<http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817392076>

I have this I use with the 2TB just because it's easier to hook up than
the eForCity gadget:
<http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001J8BPYM/ref=oh_aui_search_detailpage?ie=UTF8&psc=1>


I originally bought the eForCity device when I was trying to save the
data on an old Creative MP3 player. It was the cheapest thing I could
find that would connect to a Hitachi 20GB TravelStar 1.8" drive. As it
turned out, it was the player that died, not the drive. So now I have 2
of the drives in my parts box. Maybe someday . . .

Plus I have a 750GB WD Passport for backups, too. I got it for its
Firewire interface when I had my old MB. I still use its USB
capabilities, since my "new" (4YO) MB doesn't have Firewire. I got most
everything covered, I think, and lots of places to store them :)

So this thing you've got, it lists 4TB and UAS. I wonder
if it actually stops at 4TB ? I hope not.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817392076

Now, if your testing shows it has equal responses, no matter
whether connected to an older USB2 only machine, and
also with a newer USB3 machine, maybe that would be
proof that both UAS and BOT (legacy) can support
a drive that big.

I didn't think USB2 had a limit, but the disks just
keep getting bigger and bigger...

Paul
 
F

Flasherly

I use my 2TB and 3TB drives for backups/images. I bought this to use with my
3TB since nothing else I have works with it:
<http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817392076>

I have this I use with the 2TB just because it's easier to hook up than the
eForCity gadget:
<http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001J8BPYM/ref=oh_aui_search_detailpage?ie=UTF8&psc=1>

I originally bought the eForCity device when I was trying to save the data
on an old Creative MP3 player.

My latest and greatest PCI-slotted 2-drive controller, supposedly,
works with 3T. Those docking stations, the StarTech, I've been
getting for free (w/ drive purchases, toss-in incentives - in another
brandname, Rosewill, of course), if not for irresistibly ridiculous
sales promotion prices of $10, shipping included. Anyway, I've three
of them little beasties now - none of which will do over a 2T drive
(some even less).

Funny all that discrepancy with literally zillions of MBs, _Microsoft
Certified_, associative chipsets capable of handling larger disc
format schemes variously contingent upon the OS.

I've yet, though, to be knocked over by a 3T drive/sales offering at
significance below an average industry valuation of $35 a terabyte;-
Consequently I've a lot of 2T drives, along with some 1T and other
1.5T units. Maybe during these upcoming, most auspicious National
Black Friday observances, I'll get a 3T and spread it over 2T beside a
1T partition.

I very worried about that - that it might then induce me to consider
purchasing a 4T unit. I wonder if that's a logically extension to
formatting 4T into 4 1T or 2 2T partitions. ...Kludge and hacking, as
everyone knows, are especially addictive when it comes to hardware and
proverbial hair-pulling. What fun that should be. I can hardly wait!
 
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S

SC Tom

Flasherly said:
My latest and greatest PCI-slotted 2-drive controller, supposedly,
works with 3T. Those docking stations, the StarTech, I've been
getting for free (w/ drive purchases, toss-in incentives - in another
brandname, Rosewill, of course), if not for irresistibly ridiculous
sales promotion prices of $10, shipping included. Anyway, I've three
of them little beasties now - none of which will do over a 2T drive
(some even less).

Funny all that discrepancy with literally zillions of MBs, _Microsoft
Certified_, associative chipsets capable of handling larger disc
format schemes variously contingent upon the OS.

I've yet, though, to be knocked over by a 3T drive/sales offering at
significance below an average industry valuation of $35 a terabyte;-
Consequently I've a lot of 2T drives, along with some 1T and other
1.5T units. Maybe during these upcoming, most auspicious National
Black Friday observances, I'll get a 3T and spread it over 2T beside a
1T partition.

I very worried about that - that it might then induce me to consider
purchasing a 4T unit. I wonder if that's a logically extension to
formatting 4T into 4 1T or 2 2T partitions. ...Kludge and hacking, as
everyone knows, are especially addictive when it comes to hardware and
proverbial hair-pulling. What fun that should be. I can hardly wait!

I got this 3TB drive for $99 on sale:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822148844

I see the price has gone up, but as you say, there may be a Black Friday
sale on it this week. I get emails all the time from Newegg advertising
their sale products, but I haven't really looked at what is offered since I
don't need anything right now :)
 

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