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My floppy drive just exploded!

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November 24, 2005 4:38:37 AM

I stuck a disk in and heard two pops and a huge cloud of stinky smoke billowed up. At the same time a window popped up stating the disk wasn't formatted. Meanwhile the light on the drive stayed on. I've seen PSUs explode but I've never seen that happen to a floppy drive. Weird. I shut down as quickly as I could. Do you think that could that have damaged my new mobo? Has this happened to anybody else?

More about : floppy drive exploded

November 24, 2005 4:44:08 AM

I haven't had it happen to me, but I would definitely do a good visual on the mobo. Go for a minimalist config after you check it out, then slowly add the other components and check for stability along the way.
a b V Motherboard
November 24, 2005 8:24:49 AM

I figured out the problem...you must have had your speakers turned off, as you didn't hear "this disk will self destruct in 5 seconds".
Related resources
November 24, 2005 3:24:40 PM

Yeah, I turned them off. It kept calling me Mr. Phelps. :D  I took apart the drive. It's a Samsung. There's a chip on the PCB that's completely melted. The underside of the case has a big black mark on it indicative of a fire. In the meantime, my mobo seems to be okay. For those of you who are on the edge of your seats during this most interesting event, I will conduct further tests and give you the results later. :?
November 24, 2005 8:22:58 PM

Could you please send that mission floppy back? thanks [/mission impossible crew]
November 25, 2005 5:29:35 AM

Seen that chip burned a few times. It was always on a system where the power plug was installed improperly. Hard on the psu, no problem for the mobo.
a b V Motherboard
November 25, 2005 5:48:08 AM

My friend set his wires on fire that way! But cutting the wires off that got melted together made the power supply functional again.
December 3, 2005 6:07:23 PM

Quote:
Seen that chip burned a few times. It was always on a system where the power plug was installed improperly. Hard on the psu, no problem for the mobo.


The power plug is pretty idiot-proof. The FDD was actually working fine. Then I tried to use it one day and... POP! POP! Poof.

Well, for all of you who were biting their nails in suspense I have good and bad news about my new mobo. I installed a few floppies and exchanged a few cables and it appears that the FDD controller is kaput. The drives will power up and Windows recognizes the drive, but when I put in a floppy it thinks there's nothing in the drive. It won't boot off the floppy either. Otherwise, my entire system is stable.

This build has been a nightmare:

No 64 bit driver support for my GTXP
A bad IDE cable
A bad USB cable (I was trying to transfer files from an external drive)
Exploding floppy/dead FDD controller
Broken case fan blade
My Pioneer DVD-ROM no longer fit due to E-ATX mobo
Mobo came with NO chipset drivers (which were unavailable on Gigabyte's website)

*pours Dalwhinnie 15 year and adds rocks* Ahhh...
December 3, 2005 6:52:11 PM

I've had builds like that... :x

Mike.
December 3, 2005 6:55:28 PM

The one good thing is that it's my pc. If somebody else was waiting for it... :cry: 
a b V Motherboard
December 3, 2005 7:09:37 PM

Does the floppy light stay off until you try to access the drive, or does it stay on?
December 3, 2005 7:50:17 PM

It stays off. It comes on when you try to read or write to the disk but Windows thinks the drive is empty.
December 4, 2005 12:39:51 PM

Are you ready for this one? Any time you try to install a FDD, this board kills it. I have four floppies here. All dead. They were working until I tried to install it in this board. Coincidence? Incompitence? Well, two of the FDDs are completely idiot proof. It is impossible to put the cables on backwards. Now, could the mobo do this or is it the PSU? How could I test to see if it's the PSU?
a b V Motherboard
December 4, 2005 1:34:07 PM

Monitor your 5v and 12v lines, if they're stable, it's not the PSU.
December 4, 2005 2:08:07 PM

Is there a good program out there that you know of? Motherboard Monitor doesn't support this board. Would it be okay to monitor those voltages in the BIOS?
a b V Motherboard
December 4, 2005 2:21:34 PM

I guess that would be fine, but you'd have to find a way to vary the load. Got an old hard drive around you can plug and unplug from the power supply?

Or maybe just a volt meter so you can do it from windows without the software?
December 4, 2005 2:55:05 PM

I'm down to my last 10 or 12 old hard drives. I'm long overdue to get a volt meter. I'm going out today to get a new floppy so I guess I'll pick one up. If I hook up an old hard drive then unplug it, what should I expect to find? Would the voltage spike up when it's unplugged?

I was checking out the voltages in the BIOS and found that the 12V reads 11.88 and doesn't fluctuate at all. The 5V fluctuates from 5.046-5.073 and nothing in between. It either reads 5.046 or 5.073. I don't fully trust the accuracy.

One other thing I could do is hook up the new floppy to a separate PSU and see if it dies. The only drawback is that if it does die, I'll have 5 dead floppies!

BTW my PSU is the Silverstone Strider ST60F. According to the reviewer, the 12V line never went under 12.15.
a b V Motherboard
December 4, 2005 4:17:41 PM

Wal-Mart has own-branded (I believe Popular Mechanics is their brand) testers for $9.99. I had a very nice pocket tester that used a stack of watch batteries, and when it died I found it cheaper just to buy one of these. Bonus, they use a single 9v battery.
December 5, 2005 1:33:20 PM

Sounds like you had the power plug in wrong (reversed) and melted your floppy.

Just get a new floppy they're 5 bucks.

Quote:
I stuck a disk in and heard two pops and a huge cloud of stinky smoke billowed up. At the same time a window popped up stating the disk wasn't formatted. Meanwhile the light on the drive stayed on. I've seen PSUs explode but I've never seen that happen to a floppy drive. Weird. I shut down as quickly as I could. Do you think that could that have damaged my new mobo? Has this happened to anybody else?
December 5, 2005 3:55:08 PM

Nah. Read the thread more carefully. Was working fine. Suddenly exploded. All subsequent floppy installations also die. I wish it were my own stupidity, then I would have killed only 1. It's actually quite difficult to put that in upside down. There's a small plastic tab that guides the connector on. One would have to break that piece of plastic or bend it quite severely to put it on upside down. I have seen floppies with the tab broken off, but all my drives have the tab intact. They're fairly idiot-proof. Which is a good thing for me. :D 
a b V Motherboard
December 5, 2005 5:56:18 PM

The tab in the circuit board? Yes, that needs to be broken off, floppy cables go with the key on the twisted end facing downward, unlike IDE drives.
December 5, 2005 9:40:55 PM

I'm talking about the power connector, not the ribbon. The floppies I have even have the notch cut out for the ribbon cable. Completely idiot-proof.
a b V Motherboard
December 5, 2005 10:03:26 PM

A bunch of older floppies didn't have the key notch in the curcuit board, so the only way people could install their keyed cable was the wrong way. And then when their floppy didn't work, they argued about it!

I have some floppies with a breakout in the circuit board for the key. So even those didn't support the key unless the builder knew enough to break out the spot made for it!

But OK, you got yours squared away and it still doesn't work, that sucks.
December 6, 2005 2:01:13 AM

Yes. It indeed sucks. But the question remains, can a motherboard kill a floppy? In all your years of experience, have you ever come across something like this? It seems unlikely, but I gots to know. I have 4 new floppies coming to me. They're cheap enough, but I'd like to not kill any more.
a b V Motherboard
December 6, 2005 10:39:46 AM

I've never seen a motherboard kill a floppy. In fact, I don't even think there's enough voltage in the data cable to kill the floppy. But go ahead and prove me wrong! That's right, go ahead and burn up more floppy drives!
December 8, 2005 2:43:48 AM

Well, you weren't wrong. The PSU is the culprit. I may have stated before that my PSU is a Silverstone ST60F 600W. And much like when the then mayor of Washington DC, Marion Barry, once said, "Aside from the killings, crime is down", the PSU is great. It just kills floppy drives.

And yes, I sacrificed another floppy.
a b V Motherboard
December 8, 2005 12:06:28 PM

Actually Marion Barry's revolation could have been good news for a lot of people, a person could live in a bad neighborhood for a rather long life and get robbed several times but never murdered. So for the majority of people, reducing robbery is better than reducing murder rates!
December 9, 2005 1:10:48 PM

Gee, I never thought of it that way. Boy, those people in DC were lucky to have a mayor like him.:p 

While researching my PSU problem, I came across this link. Check out the negative reviews (there are some on page 2). It appears that they're not too good at wiring things over at Silverstone and on more than one occasion have swapped the +5 and +12V wires. Luckily, none of my IDE devices fried, but obviously there's a problem with how these things are assembled.
December 9, 2005 1:15:34 PM

Is it still under warranty? If not, rewire the floppy power.
December 9, 2005 1:16:17 PM

Actually, SS is a good company, and a mistake like that should not have a warranty period.
December 9, 2005 2:40:08 PM

I just got it a few weeks ago. Luckily, I can't find the receipt. I shot an e-mail to their tech support. It's a modular design. If they just send me new wires I'd be content. And yes, they are a good company. I have a Silverstone case which is of excellent quality. It just sounds like they had a few FUBARs on the assembly line. Perhaps some colorblind workers?
December 9, 2005 2:45:30 PM

or stoner lackeys...
December 9, 2005 2:47:31 PM

either way it is not good news for SS's reputation and hurts thier buying power if this is even an occasional occurance...
December 9, 2005 7:50:26 PM

I just got off the phone with a fellow named Joel in tech support at Silverstone. I explained the problem in detail to him and he told me to ship it back so they can check it out. They're sending me a new one. He explained to me that they were having problems with the first edition (v 1.0?) of this PSU. One of the problems was that the molex connectors could be installed backwards in the PSU (it's modular). That is one of the reasons why people were killing their IDE devices. My problem is unusual in that my IDE devices were fine (my harddrives used the same wire as the floppy). So to make a long story short, they're sending me a new PSU which is good. I didn't have to wait but 20 seconds to get a human being at their tech support which is also good. If the new PSU doesn't kill any more of my floppies that will be good too. They're fairly new at the PSU game so I'm not going to condemn them for making one defective product. If I shied away every company that sold me a defective product, I wouldn't have a computer at all!
December 9, 2005 8:40:20 PM

Whoa! Luckily, with me it wasn't as dramatic.
a b V Motherboard
December 9, 2005 8:56:55 PM

Er d00d, isn't that an in-house garage with a service pit? I didn't know they had rednecks in Europe?
December 12, 2005 2:35:35 PM

Ya same i'm notarious for doing idiot things. Like plugging in the IDE cables on backwards and wondering why it can't see the drive (back in the day when there was no tab)

Quote:
Nah. Read the thread more carefully. Was working fine. Suddenly exploded. All subsequent floppy installations also die. I wish it were my own stupidity, then I would have killed only 1. It's actually quite difficult to put that in upside down. There's a small plastic tab that guides the connector on. One would have to break that piece of plastic or bend it quite severely to put it on upside down. I have seen floppies with the tab broken off, but all my drives have the tab intact. They're fairly idiot-proof. Which is a good thing for me. :D 
!