Dec 142017
A useful floppy formatter for use with Windows 3.0.
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A useful floppy formatter for use with Windows 3.0.
File Name File Size Zip Size Zip Type
README.WRI 3328 1440 deflated
WINFMT.EXE 141199 43396 deflated

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Contents of the README.WRI file

Windows Floppy Formatter

A floppy disk must be formatted before it can be used to store data. Formatting is something like putting the little blue lines on notebook paper before you can write on it, but it is done with magnetism instead of ink. Although some floppy disks are sold pre-formatted, most are not; these you must format yourself, before use.

Floppy disks come in different types, and each must be formatted differently (the same as the lines on notebook paper are not like the lines on a general ledger sheet, or graph paper). Disks come in high and low density, and different sizes.

You can format disks from DOS, using the FORMAT command. This command requires that you know how to use the rather arcane "command switches" to tell it what kind of disk you want formatted. For example, to format a low density disk from an AT-compatible computer requires at least the following command:

FORMAT a: /4

Disks can be formatted directly from Windows' MS-DOS executive menu. Among the items in the "Special" drop-down menu is "Format Data Disk". This menu item lets you select which floppy drive to use. However, it only formats disks of the maximum density supported by that drive--most AT-compatibles have just one floppy disk drive, a high-density unit, and therefore this Windows option cannot be used to format a low-density disk.

Windows Floppy Formatter allows formatting of both high and low density disks (in a high-density drive). It also works in the "background", although to be honest the formatting process is so CPU intensive you probably won't be able to do much useful work while a disk is being formatting. However, if you are a slow typist, some simple word processing may be feasible.

Windows Floppy Formatter also allows some custom formatting options, such as unusual cluster sizes or, on most machines, additional sectors per track (making room on the disk for more data). See the Help topics "Custom Densities" for more details. Also, see the topic "Special Boot Sector" for information on the improved Boot Sector program Windows Floppy Formatter puts on your disks.

Windows Floppy Formatter is sold as ShareWare, for a modest $10. license fee. Developers may use this product for free, but commercial installations are required to send AdvenTech, Inc., $10 for each machine on which Windows Floppy Formatter is run. There is a ShareWare display which appears the first time Windows Floppy Formatter is run on a machine, only. Afterwards, licensing information can be accessed via the Help facility.program Floppy Formatter puts on your disks.

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