Question from Anna G.: Hi Rick. I read your post the other day about playing old games on new computers and it reminded me that I have a ton of old 3.5″ floppy disks filled with stuff that I’d like to check out and possibly copy onto my hard disk.
The problem is my laptop doesn’t have a floppy disk drive. Any ideas?
Rick’s answer: You’re in luck Anna. All you need to do is buy an external USB 3.5″ floppy drive and plug it into your laptop’s USB port. You’ll be able to view the files on your floppy disks and copy them onto your PC’s hard drive, onto blank DVDs or even onto a USB thumb drive.
There are a couple of things to be aware of however:
1 – Those old floppies might not work very well after all this time. You’ll probably get a lot of read errors, so being able to retrieve the files from some of them might be difficult.
2 – Many (most likely all) of the files on those disks were created by programs that might not be available anymore. And even if you still have the program disks you would need to install the old DOS programs using a DOS emulator like the one discussed in the post you mentioned.
Those are the caveats Anna. Now for the good news: Giving it a try won’t cost you an arm and a leg because you can buy an external USB 3.5″ floppy drive on Amazon for as little as $15!
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