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Reading HP 150 floppies - Derek Jones - 04-12-2005

I have been trying to read some floppies written on a HP 150 using fdutils (http://fdutils.linux.lu/) to configure the floppy controller. As I understand it the floppy has 70 tracks (10 are spares), 16 sectors, with 256 bytes per sector, single sided.

My lack of success in reading anything (not even the first track) may be due to age (the floppies are 20 years old), but I have managed to read some 5 1/4" floppies that are this old (presumably 3 1/2" floppies have similar aging characteristics).

Does anybody have any alternative ideas (yes I could go to a company that offer a copying service, but the contents are not that valuable).

Re: Reading HP 150 floppies - Raymond Del Tondo - 04-12-2005


have you tried with the LifUtils,

available from this site?

An alternative could be AnaDisk,

which is a tool for analyzing/reading

diskettes in strange formats.

I was able to save the operating system diskettes

of an HP 64000 Logic Development System with this tool.


Re: Reading HP 150 floppies - Derek Jones - 04-12-2005


Thanks for the suggestion.

lif_utils was able to read the first track of the floppy (an improvement on what I had previously managed to do).

My floppies are single sided. I edited lifimage.c to use a single head and got the same error message (Error reading cylinder 0, head 0, sector 16).

I will continue to experiment and report back if I manage to read any more tracks.

Re: Reading HP 150 floppies - Derek Jones - 04-12-2005

As an experiment I tried using sector numbers that started
at zero rather than one and it seemed to work.

Editing lifimage.c

line 65 now reads

for (head=0; head<1; head++)

and line 67 now reads

for (sector=0; sector<16; sector++)

I managed to 286,720 bytes off one floppy (i.e., upto
cylinder 70) and 18K off another (looks like a problem
reading one of the sectors).

Re: Reading HP 150 floppies - Vassilis Prevelakis - 04-12-2005

Try Tony Duell's Linux utilities:


Re: Reading HP 150 floppies - Eric Smith - 04-12-2005

You might try using the "rfloppy" program that is part of dmklib. It's not very user-friendly, but it will read anything that can be read by a PC floppy controller. After that produces a DMK image file, you can run it through the inluded dmk2raw program to get just the raw bits. Then you might be able to mount the raw file as a FAT file system using the loopback device.