I've had a collection of about 300 Atari 800 floppies for about 30+ years. As of last year, they were fine. All of them. Today, I decided to check them all out so that I can back them up with SIO2PC. When I booted my 800XL with the disk in one of my 1050s, all I got was "BOOT ERROR". Another floppy - BOOT ERROR. Another 1050 drive - BOOT ERROR. My Spartan Archiver 810 drive - BOOT ERROR. I literally tested about 100 floppies hoping one of them would work. Heads are clean on all floppy drives.
The problem I have is that I don't know how to tell if all three drives went bad or if all my floppies went bad. I realize floppies go bad, but I have a bunch of PC and ST floppies that still work after 30 years. Statistically, I'd think that some of those floppies should work. They've always been kept in a temp. controlled area, away from dust (in a container).
So, here's the thing - I don't want to get an SIO2PC if the floppies are shot. There's really no point, and it's a waste of money. Is there some way to get a clean floppy with an OS on it to test? All my Atari Master Floppies don't work, both version 2 and version 3.
If all this data is gone, I'll be upset because there may be things (games) that the community doesn't have. Also, my old BBS is on one of the floppies and there's some interesting personal stuff on there I'd like to back up. Also, the game I sent to the Star Wars Fan Club that won the Creativity Contest is on one of the floppies and that's giving me an error as well.
EDIT: I should mention that I swapped the IO cable. Could this be a problem with the 800XL?
Edited by Starman, Sun Mar 12, 2017 4:37 PM.