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Writing floppies with a directly attached IBM floppy drive


  • All floppy disk images, which you want to transfer, must be in XDF format.
  • You can only convert 1.2MB floppy disk images and not the 1.4MB (2HS/2HQ) format.
  • You can use Virtual Floppy Image Converter to convert 1.2MB floppy disk images from DIM to XDF and vice versa.
  • With DiskExplorer (junno) you can edit the XDF/DIM (1.2MB) images.
  • Clean the drive heads with isopropyl alcohol if the status of the drive is unknown. Some users reported that their 5.25“ floppy drives required different jumper settings in order to work.
  • You can get detailed info about various floppy drives and their jumper settings in the FTP's Floppy Drive documentation section.


OmniFlop requires a built-in NEC-compatible floppy disk controller. You can use the Diagnostic options of OmniFlop to see if this holds for your system. You should also check your motherboard BIOS to see if it supports 5.25” 1.2MB writing.

Omniflop Install&Format 5.25“ floppies:

  1. Install OmniFlop & OmniFDC drivers like mentioned in the Omniflop software .pdf installation guide.
  2. Once Drivers are installed open the omniflop program and click Next
  3. Select Format Disk, then select 5.25” floppy Drive unit, make sure that Auto-Detected format is selected and click Next.
  4. The next windows will show a list of compatible formats which you can select:
    • 78/2/8x 1024 Sharp X68000 78-Track 1248Kb
    • 77/2/8x 1024 Sharp X68000 77-Track 1232Kb
  5. The formatting will begin after Agree ON new display warning window.

Omniflop Write X68000 Disks:

  1. Open Omniflop and click on Write Disk
  2. Select Drive Unit and make sure that Autodetect format is selected
  3. In next window you can read: Select a format to write…ALL, below you should see Sharp X68000 78-Track (default format), click Next
  4. In file: you can select only .XDF files (You have to select “show all files” from bottom right window)
  5. Click next and it will begin to Write .XDF disk image to 5.25“ floppy disk
  6. After write process has finished, it is normal to see the following warning message:
    • The file is smaller than the disk - not all of the disk has been writen.
    • Apart from this, the operation completed OK
  7. You can ignore this message and press close.
  8. Alternatively, you can select “Format-Write” from the Omniflop option screen. This is a faster way to make images.

Using Virtual Floppy Image Converter:

Many image files you will find online are not .XDF format but in fact .DIM files. You will need to convert these before writing floppys to use on your X68000. The install is straightforward, just select your language and your output folder. You can drag your .DIM images right into the window to convert them. Note: If you need to change the language, read the “Readme” file in the install folder for using command prompt to do this. This is only necessary if you select the wrong language on first start up because reinstalling the program does not change the language.




We can write X68000 images directly to a high density disk without the need for special software. Obviously, don't use double density disks; they won't work. Also, the directions below are assuming your 5.25” floppy drive is the first drive in the chain (“Drive A”, or whatever). If it isn't, substitute fd1 for fd0 anywhere it appears below.

First, we need to tell Linux the parameters of an X68K floppy.

1. Edit (or create) the file /etc/fdprm and add this line to it (you only have to do this part once):

1232/1232 2464 16 2 77 0 0x35 0x08 0xDF 0x74

NOTE: If you have another (different) line for 1232/1232 in /etc/fdprm you may need to rename / comment it out

2. Now we have to tell Linux to adopt those parameters when it's dealing with your disk drive:

setfdprm /dev/fd0 -p 1232/1232

3. It's probably a good idea to format the disk at this point. Use:

fdformat /dev/fd0

4. Now write the image to disk with:

dd if=file.img of=/dev/fd0

…where naturally you will replace file.img with whatever your disk image is. Wait for the write to complete and you're done.

Repeat steps 3 and 4 as necessary with new floppy disks to write more images. Some floppy drives will reset the drive parameters each time you insert a new disk – even though -p means “permanent” – requiring you to also repeat step 2.

5. When you're completely done, tell Linux to clear the floppy parameters with:

setfdprm /dev/fd0 -c

Writing floppies with a USB Greaseweazle/Fluxengine interface

Greaseweazle or Fluxengine hardware can be used to format and write images to a floppy in one step. Besides XDF, there is also limited support for D88 and DIM floppy image support. Regardless of your hardware choice, you will need the Fluxengine software.

Writing 5.25" floppies

fluxengine write ibm1232 -i flop.xdf

Formats like D88 will override the setting for the disk format, you can use the more generic “ibm” format if you prefer in this case.

Writing 3.5" floppies

Most floppy drives spin at 300 RPM, so you'll need to compensate for this in software unless you found a 360RPM Japanese floppy drive (trimode drives will spin at 300 RPM when attached to a Greaseweazle).

fluxengine write ibm1232 --flux-sink.rescale=1.2 -i flop.xdf
x68000/writing_floppies.txt · Last modified: 2022/04/25 16:33 by TD-Linux