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Phoenixink 02-14-2007 05:30 PM

How to move open office doc from Linux computer to Windows computer
I am new to linux but have managed to set up an Edubuntu terminal server network for a local middle school.
However, I am now tryign to figure out how the students can move open office doc from the Linux computer to Windows computers they may need to use the documents with.
It seems the standard formatted floppy is not recognized by the Linux machine so I cannot copy the file off of the Linux machine to move to the Windows machine.
Hopefully this is just because I am new.
Any assistance is greatly appriciated.



MS3FGX 02-14-2007 05:44 PM

Floppies, USB flash drives, and CD-Rs are all compatible between Linux and Windows without any adjustments being needed.

You could also transfer files over the network if your setup will allow for that.

pixellany 02-14-2007 05:58 PM

"regular" floppies--ie one's made in Windows or DOS---work fine on Linux. At least on my system, they do not auto-mount so you have to mount manually.

But you say you have a network--why not use that?

jschiwal 02-14-2007 05:59 PM

You can mount floppies on Linux. However, a floppy disk may not be large enough to hold many documents. If you can't transfer files on a network, a usb key drive would work out better.

Does Edubuntu have a /media/ directory. It may be setup to recognize floppys and mount them automatically when someone inserts a floppy disk. There may even be an icon popup on the desktop. If you have a floppy icon on the desktop, right-click on it and see if there is a mount and unmount option. It is important to unmount the disk before ejecting it. The contents will be cached in memory until you umount it or run "sync".

I'm bringing up the graphical solution first because then the kids will be able to transfer the files themselves.

You can also mount a floppy manually. You might want to use "visudo" to allow ordinary users to mount and umount floppies without a password. There is a commented entry for mounting and unmounting the CDROM. You could add a similar entry for the floppy device.

If edubuntu uses the HAL and UDEV daemons, then there may be a /dev/floppy that is automatically linked to correct floppy device (e.g. /dev/fd0H1440, /dev/fd0, /dev/fd0H0720). You need to explore a bit after inserting a floppy to see which device is best to use.

Here is a YoLinux tutorial on using floppies in Linux. It includes commands to check for bad blocks, format a new floppy, etc.

Phoenixink 02-14-2007 07:23 PM

I cannot use the network to transfer the files because the kids need to take the files home and work with them on Windows machines.

I have figured out how to mount the floppy manually.

Your comment about unmounting the floppy before ejecting is timely, I was just trying to figure out why the files were not on the floppy, now I know.

I am now trying to figure out how to have the floppy mount automatically and show an icon. As you mention this will make it easy for the kids to use. Edubuntu does have a /media/ directory I just need to figure out exactly what to do with it.

Any additional assistance is welcome.

Thanks for all your help


MS3FGX 02-14-2007 07:50 PM

I am not sure that is actually possible, since the floppy drive has no mechanism to alert the computer that a floppy has been inserted (at least, not on PCs, the old Mac drives could).

I would be interested to see if that can be done however.

jschiwal 02-15-2007 07:09 AM

You may be right. I haven't used a floppy for some time. However, the system may still put a floppy icon on the desktop or under /media which would make things easier for kids to use.

The Amiga also detected a floppy. You could hear the drive click periodically checking for the presence of a diskette.

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