Floppy What? These Are Headed for Extinction
Mike Breitkreutz 12.15.2015
Do you remember 3 ½” floppy disks? If you fall into Generation X, Baby Boomers or the Silent Generation (1923-44), then you probably remember this old-school media. Various equipment in use today is still attached to those old 3 ½” floppy drive units, including legacy control Okuma CNC machines! What can we say? Those Okuma machines keep on pumping out parts far beyond the shelf lives of floppy disks and drive units.
Headed for Extinction
Unfortunately, companies are discontinuing production of these 34-pin IDC connection units, and floppy disk media will slowly become extinct. Sony was the last manufacturer of the 3 ½” floppy disks, ending production a few years ago. Fortunately, Okuma designers had the foresight to come up with a viable solution.
OSP-FORMATTED FD/USB Adaptor Unit: A Floppy Drive Replacement
If you’ve had your share of frustration dealing with part program management on floppy disks and failing drive units or floppy media, we can help you. Okuma’s solution is a simple device referred to as an OSP-formatted FD/USB Adaptor Unit. This device replaces your current floppy drive unit, and because it’s made by Okuma it’s specifically designed to work seamlessly with your Okuma machine tool. It plugs directly into the existing floppy disk connector and has the same footprint as the original drive unit. It allows you to manage part program transfer to/from your Okuma machine via a USB memory device, and includes a software utility for your PC to manage the part programs and the NC Software on the USB memory. You can continue to utilize your old 3 ½” floppy media by inserting a third-party USB floppy drive unit into the USB port on the adaptor. Okuma even offers a FD/USB Adaptor Unit that replaces the 8” floppy disk drive units. Similar to the 3 ½” version, this model has limited functionality due to the obsolescence of the 8” floppy media devices and formats.
Now is the time to impress the Baby Boomers in your company by purchasing your very own OSP-formatted FD/USB Adaptor Unit. Hopefully they won’t miss their old disk drive units and your Millennials will have one less reason to laugh at the old folks’ technology!