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[ The PC Guide | Troubleshooting and Repair Guide | The Troubleshooting Expert | Troubleshooting Specific Components | Troubleshooting Floppy Disk Drives | Physical Problems ]

A 3.5" floppy disk that I need to use has a broken or jammed metal window slider

Explanation: You have data that you need on a 3.5" floppy disk that has a problem with the metal slider used to protect the data access window on the disk. The slider is stuck and won't move freely so the disk can't be used properly in the drive.

Diagnosis: The metal shutter or slider on 3.5" disks is moved into place using a small spring mounted within the disk. Usually problems related to the slider mean that this spring has fallen out or become misaligned.

Recommendation:

  • Just take the metal slider right off. It isn't necessary for the operation of the drive, and this will allow you to access the contents of the disk.
  • Copy the contents of the disk to a new disk with a working slider. The metal piece isn't necessary for the disk to be able to be accessed, but it is mandatory for day-to-day use of the floppy disks. Otherwise the surface where the data is stored would be exposed to far too much damage and dirt.

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