Computer Data Storage - Floppy Disks
Computers have always had the need to store data for permanent or future use. The floppy diskette (or disk for short) is the only standardized method which is fast, cheap, and portable.

In 1971, IBM introduced the 8-inch floppy disk, initial capacity was about 100K bytes (100,000 characters)

In 1979 the Radio Shack TRS-80 II computer system had an internal 8-inch floppy drive capable of storing 500K of data.

In 1976, Shugart introduced the 5 1/4-inch floppy disk. Initial capacity was about 100K, eventually reaching 1.2M bytes per disk.

The Northstar Horizon (1977) was one of the first computers with built-in 5 1/4-inch floppy drives - they held 90K of data each.

In 1980, Sony introduced the 3 1/2-inch floppy disk. Initially holding about 400K, current capacity is 1.4Meg per disk.

In 1984, the Apple Macintosh had an internal 3 1/2-inch floppy drive capable of storing 400K of data.

Return to the Obsolete Technology Homepage