Directly Access USB Floppy Drive

Dell / Mxc051
February 26, 2009 at 13:15:08
Specs: Microsoft Windows XP Professional, 1.729 GHz / 2039 MB
Hey all

Some of you may recognize that I'm the guy who's always tinkering with old stuff. For those of you who didn't, you do now haha.

A fundamental part of that is, of course, floppy disks...and a floppy drive. My main computer is my laptop which lacks a floppy drive, so I bought a Dynex USB floppy on ebay. Worked flawlessly, no issues at all, fantastic. (OS is XP Pro SP3)

However, recently, while writing floppy images for an IBM PS/2 system (these images are stored inside the executable with which to write them, which runs in a DOS box), I had a message pop up about an application requesting direct hardware access, and that the request was blocked.

Ever since that, I have been unable to use either those self-extracting applications or WinImage to read or write images, or even format the drive. It seems that Windows is denying access to the drive to anything except explorer itself.

How can I go about undoing this? I have a desktop computer with a floppy drive, but the process of putting the images onto a USB stick, booting desktop, then writing images, and then just to shut it down immediately after, is both annoying and wasteful (electricity).

Any ideas?


PS. I use a third party USB device management program called USB Safely Remove which enables more advanced 'ejecting' of flash media. The error message I received was not from this application, it was from Windows, but perhaps this is relevant anyway. Software was also installed and functioning when this problem did not exist yet.

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February 26, 2009 at 14:14:11
Sounds like a firewall, maybe registry? Use Admin. Might be sp3 issue.

Uninstall the floppy from software and try again. See event viewer.

Consider if not able to fix the floppy drive virtual floppy,

Universal extractor or some zip apps might read exe file. Most times the file can be expanded in place with option. IBM used an odd image application but I think it was just raw bin data.

"Best Practices", Event viewer, host file, perfmon, antivirus, anti-spyware, Live CD's, backups, are in my top 10

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