Floppyizer

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Summary

The Floppyizer is a project to build a mass 5.25" disk duplication/imaging system. Duplication is goal #1, imaging is secondary.

The idea is to build a system which has a ton of 5.25" drives so it can rapidly write 5.25" disks, at 360k/1.2m.

Design

The main problem is that there's no simple USB 5.25" drives, or I'd just buy a big hub and hook them all up.

TODO: Explain why we can't do any of the USB 5.25" drives

The current plan is to use several wikipedia:Mini-ITX motherboards with onboard floppy controllers, hooked into a case with enough slots.

Case

The chosen case says AMS BK-DAC800C on the (rather blank) box. That may not be the actual name (TODO: research this case)

It has 18 5.25" bays.

Controllers

The current plan is to use at least 3 systems with standard floppy controllers on them, each with 2 drives connected.

Currently I've ordered 3 Jetway J7F2WE1GS-OC-LF Mini-ITX boards and associated power supplies. I'm waiting to see how well they work, then it can be extended to support more systems.

These chosen boards can't be upgraded to support more than two drives, as there doesn't seem to be any PCI floppy controllers

Software

I'm planning on running some minimal headless Linux on them, then controlling them over the network. Once I have the system up and running, I'll write some simple scripts to manage that. It'll probably work by having a boss-node that SSHes into each of the controller-nodes and runs commands directly on them.