Question about Intel disk formats

From: joe <>
Date: Thu Jun 21 10:12:21 2001


     I'm a bit rusty on my Intels but I *think* the original MDS 200
machines used single sided and single density. However they could be
upgraded to DS-SD and/or DS-DD. So your disks could be any of several
different formats. My 235 has the DS-DD upgrade and I'm running ISIS-II.
It's still set up and it was running the last time I tried it a couple of
years ago. If you want to sent your disks to me I'll see what I can find
out about them.

     I was going to E-mail you about something else. After getting this
MDS-800, I realized that some of the bits and peices that I saw at a
scrapper's are part of an 800. There's not much left of it except the
housing but you mentioned that some of the case parts on yours were
missing/damaged. If you'll sent me a list of what you need, I'll see if I
can find it in the pile. I think the floppy drives are still in the box
but they're almost certainly 801s.


At 08:31 PM 6/20/01 -0700, you wrote:

>I've got some 8" disks that are apparently double density (the
>manufacturer label says so). I thought they were Intel ISIS formatted
>disks (which Eric Smith said would make them M2FM and uncompatible with
>anything other than an Intel MDS development machine) but I'm not so sure,
>since I can't seem to access any on the two Intel MDS systems I have set
>Both machines have Shugart 801 drives in them, and after doing some web
>research, I've come to find out they are single-density only. This would
>probably explain why I am not able to access these disks on these
>The disks I am trying to access are supposedly CP/M, but the labelling
>indicates they were perhaps used on an Intel development system (they have
>filenames on the label with ".HEX" file types; this may not mean
>anything). If this is the case, and they were formatted on an Intel MDS
>(and therefore M2FM), and since they are double-density, then I may not be
>able to read them with the machines I have.
>However, I want to check their format on some CP/M machine and see if
>perhaps I can read them. If so, then they are probably more standard DD
>formatted diskettes, maybe even CP/M since that is what I was told they
>If they are in a standard DD format, and I have a computer that can boot a
>DD CP/M system master, could I then pop these disks in the drive and do a
>DIR to see if I get a directory?
>For those who've used these before: when I put any of the disks in
>question in the drive, the drive seems to seek for a few seconds, then
>goes off for a split second, back on again for half a second, then off
>(and the system crashes). The normal boot sequence for a (single density)
>system disk is, upon reboot the disk seeks for a few seconds, then stops
>for a split second, then starts seeking/reading for a few more seconds and
>the ISIS prompt comes up.
>It seems the system is trying to read the double density disks and just
>not seeing anything intelligible and crashes. With single density
>non-system diskettes, the machines will come up with something like "NOT A
>Suggestions appreciated.
>Sellam Ismail Vintage Computer Festival
>International Man of Intrigue and Danger
Received on Thu Jun 21 2001 - 10:12:21 BST

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