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How to assign A: drive letter to USB floppy diskette
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Mark
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since: 14 Dec, 2005
1. How to assign A: drive letter to USB floppy diskette
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Hello all,

I've installed OS/2 MCP2 onto an IBM ThinkCentre S50 808636u ultra small form factor desktop and all works well (including networking!)

However, the machine has only a USB floppy drive and no conventional floppy drives. OS/2 assigns drive letter D: to the USB floppy drive, thus displacing the CD/DVD drive letter to E.

Question: Can the USB floppy drive be assigned drive letter A: so that it is recognised whenever I try to access the drive (eg: dir calls, coping to A: from a cmd line, etc) There is nothing in the BIOS to assist.

Many thanks,

Mark

Date: 14 Dec, 2005 on 06:36
Radek
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2. Re:How to assign A: drive letter to USB floppy diskette
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One, rather unsatisfactory, solution is the "join" command. It allows you to access drive D: as drive A: from the command prompt, both in DOS and OS/2 windows. IIRC, "join" is inherited, so that, for example, PM programs started from the command prompt should also be able to access drive A:
Therefore, place "join A: D:" into autoexec.bat, 4start.btm, tcstart.btm and similar files.

Well, it is not satisfactory: it is not "clean", drive D: still exists, it works only from command prompts, and format and similar programs will not work on "drive A:". But I don't think a "clean" solution exists. It is because firm BIOS standards, followed by all operating systems: "drive A: = internal floppy drive used for startup from floppy", and so on. No such floppy - no drive A: Period.

Date: 14 Dec, 2005 on 11:38
Bart
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3. Re:How to assign A: drive letter to USB floppy diskette
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I had just read this on the IBM device drivers site for the T42 laptop. I don't know if you have the option on your desktop or not but here is the section copied from the referenced article.

Reference:IBM Corporation (Mobile Systems - IBM ThinkPad)
Thinkpad T42 2373-xxx

For USB-attached Floppy Diskette Drive support,

* Download USB Removable Media Support to a temporary directory

* Enter usbmsd to expand the file

* Follow the instructions in the README.TXT that is visible once you have expanded this file.

* Please note:

o The USB BIOS Support must be Enabled within the IBM BIOS Setup Utility on your ThinkPad T42 system to boot from a USB-attached Floppy Diskette Drive.

o In addition, Legacy Floppy Drives must be Disabled within the IBM BIOS Setup Utility on your ThinkPad T42 system to allow the USB-attached Floppy Diskette Drive (or other removable drive) to be labeled as Drive A:

o The IBM BIOS Setup Utility can be accessed by pressing the blue Access IBM button on your ThinkPad T42 keyboard as you power up the system.

Date: 14 Dec, 2005 on 19:51
Mark
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4. Re:How to assign A: drive letter to USB floppy diskette
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Many thanks Bart and Radek for your suggestions. I've tried the bios route by setting the system to disketteless mode, but it makes no difference after boot up.

Seems the USB drive is recognised as an A drive (or at least a boot drive) at boot up, but as a D drive once OS/2 loads.

Perhaps the best route is to re-label my keyboard but thdt might bring its own aifficutlies.

Many thanks for the kind help help.

Mark

Date: 15 Dec, 2005 on 03:50
icebear
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5. Re: How to assign A: drive letter to USB floppy diskette
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Well, it's not touching your main question ...
... but did you consider setting:

RESERVEDRIVELETTER=R

to set your CD-Drive fixed to S: what ever drive letters you getting before that

I have set this on ALL our systems to make sure ALL the CD drives are with the same drive letter !?!

Date: 15 Dec, 2005 on 10:38
Mark
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6. Re:How to assign A: drive letter to USB floppy diskette
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Hi Icebear,

Thanks for the idea. The solution is perfect for a networked system. However, I'd like to assign drive letter d: to my cd and driver letter a: to my usb floppy. It seems this is not going to be possible. Heigh ho.

Thanks for the reply,

Mark

Date: 16 Dec, 2005 on 02:21
icebear
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7. Re: How to assign A: drive letter to USB floppy diskette
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Hi Mark,
I understood what you were looking for !

But you seem to be on the wrong path on not setting the "reservedriveletter=r" !!

This has nothing to do with "a networking system" !!!
Even the eCS installation procedure sets the CD drive by default to S:

And even with a standalone desktop it may happen that you get to connect another HDD and then your CD drive "D:" will move up ...
... possibly to your IN-convenience ?!?

You should reconsider it !

Date: 16 Dec, 2005 on 13:46
Mark
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8. Re:How to assign A: drive letter to USB floppy diskette
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Hi Icebear,

I'll follow your suggestion and use the reservedriveletter option. At least this way I know the drive letter to my USB floppy will remain stable!

Many thanks for the kind reply,

Mark

Date: 19 Dec, 2005 on 06:22
Pete
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9. Re:How to assign A: drive letter to USB floppy diskette
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Mark (14 Dec, 2005 06:36):
Hello all,

I've installed OS/2 MCP2 onto an IBM ThinkCentre S50 808636u ultra small form factor desktop and all works well (including networking!)

However, the machine has only a USB floppy drive and no conventional floppy drives. OS/2 assigns drive letter D: to the USB floppy drive, thus displacing the CD/DVD drive letter to E.

Question: Can the USB floppy drive be assigned drive letter A: so that it is recognised whenever I try to access the drive (eg: dir calls, coping to A: from a cmd line, etc) There is nothing in the BIOS to assist.

Many thanks,

Mark


Hi Mark

Yes

RTFM

But for anyone who cannot find the usbmsd readme file:-

" /A_USAGE:n Parameter controls usage of 'A' drive flag for the 1st floppy device. The following values of n can be used:
0 - 'A' drive flag is not used;
1 - 'A' drive flag is used;
2 (default value) - 'A' drive flag is used only if there is no other device driver using this flag. "


So, in theory, a default install with 1 Floppy should default to /A_USAGE:2 but your post suggest that is not happening.


I suggest that you add the parameter
/A_USAGE:1
to try to force the issue.

Oh, and make sure that anything offering Legacy/Mouse/Keyboard USB Support is Disabled in the BIOS; also make sure that there is no standard floppy drive enabled.

Regards

Pete

Date: 19 Dec, 2005 on 18:48
Mark
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10. Re:How to assign A: drive letter to USB floppy diskette
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Hello Pete,

It took me a while to figure out what you meant by the acronym RTFM! I'm still laughing.

Yes, I did read the manual and added the USAGE option, but this step did not work. So, I went back to the BIOS and interestingly it has two options for USB - one was to use the on board driver. So, I turned it off. When OS2 came back up, I had my A drive back. However, I expect not to be able to boot from the A drive. No loss.

I knew there had to be a way. Thank you Pete. And thanks for adding to my vocabulary!

And thanks too Icebear, Bart and Radek for the help.

Mark

Date: 20 Dec, 2005 on 06:09
How to assign A: drive letter to USB floppy diskette
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