format floppy disks
format [ -n ] [ -v ]
[ -f ] [ -q ] [ device ]
[ -i interleave ]
The format command
formats diskettes for use on a UNIX system.
It may be used either interactively or from the command line.
The default drive is specified in /etc/default/format.
The following command line options are available:
The file /etc/default/format is used to specify the default
device to be formatted and whether or not each diskette is to be
verified. The entries must be in the format DEVICE=device
and VERIFY=[yYnN], as in the following example:
Suppresses the interactive feature.
program does not wait for user-confirmation before starting to format
Regardless of whether you run
interactively, track and head information is displayed.
This specifies the device to be formatted.
The default device is
specified in /etc/default/format.
Specifies the interleave factor.
Suppresses the track and head output information normally displayed.
Although this option does not suppress the interactive prompt,
it would typically be used with
to produce no output at all.
Specifies format verification.
Specifies that the diskette is not to be verified (overrides
verify entry in /etc/default/format).
The device must be a character (raw) device.
followed by any of the legal options except -f,
and press <Return>.
When you run
interactively, you see the prompt:
insert diskette in drive and press return when ready
When you press <Return> at this prompt,
begins to format the diskette.
If you specify the -f option, you do not see this
Instead, the program begins formatting immediately upon invocation.
Unless you specify the -q option,
displays which track and head it is currently on:
track # head #
The number signs above are replaced by the actual track and head information.
Formatting in floptical drives
1.44MB (HD), and
3.5" floppy disks may be formatted in an installed floptical
drive. The special device naming scheme is documented on
To format a diskette in the default drive, with verification:
To format a diskette in the second drive (a 3.5" high density
disk not listed in /etc/default/format):
format -v /dev/rfd1135ds18
Note that you cannot use the abbreviated device names
(/dev/rfd0 and /dev/rfd1) when
formatting floppy disks. You must use the full
device names that specify disk density.
For example, use /dev/rfd0135ds18 for
the primary 3.5-inch floppy disk drive.
utility does not format floppies for use under DOS;
use the dosformat command documented in
UNIX systems require error free floppies.
It is not advisable to format a low density (48tpi) diskette on a
high density (96tpi) floppy drive. Diskettes written on a high
density drive should be read on high density drives.
A low density diskette written on a high density drive may not
be readable on a low density drive.
The device /dev/install is used only for installing
and reading floppies. Attempts made to format
this device may result in an error.
Formatting VHD 21MB disks in a floptical drive can
take up to 30 minutes.
defines default device to format
floppy disk raw device files
floptical disk raw device files
© 2003 Caldera International, Inc. All rights reserved.
SCO OpenServer Release 5.0.7 -- 11 February 2003