Error Messages, Floppy Drives


I recently bought a 2nd hand pc to use for children's homework. Unfortunately the floppy drive didn't work. I have tried installing another drive with the same result.

I disabled the hard drive bootstrap in the bios to enable me to test the drives without it keep booting up. The pc tries to boot from the floppy, the light comes on, but it doesn't make the usual 'whirring' noise. Error message 'insert boot disk in drive a:' appears. On pressing 'enter' it comes back with 'Boot failure - insert boot disk in drive a:' and so on. I am using valid boot disks.

Can you suggest anything else I can try please? Thank you.


This question was answered on June 29, 2002. Much of the information contained herein may have changed since posting.

A common error when installing floppy drives is to reverse the ribbon cable on one or both ends If you reverse the cable on one end, the LED light on the drive comes on when you turn on the system and stays on If you reverse the cable on both ends, the LED will not come on at all - most of the time.

First make sure that the ribbon cable at both ends are oriented so that the colored stripe points to pin 1 Usually, the ribbon cable and the connectors are "keyed" or "notched" to help you get it installed correctly If you have the cable reversed nothing is destroyed, but when you boot up the floppy drive will not work Try again.

Also, if there are two connectors separated by a 7-wire twist make sure that you are connecting the floppy drive to the end connector If the floppy drive is installed on the end connector, it is the A: drive If the drive is installed on the middle connector, it is the B: drive.

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Posted by Lois of Mesa Community College on June 29, 2002