Does anyone know a museum, university, etc that has the capability to read data from a IBM Winchester Disk? The contents of one may be important.


In 1973, IBM introduced the IBM 3340 "Winchester" disk drive, the first significant commercial use of low mass and low load heads with lubricated platters. This technology and its derivatives remained the standard through 2011. Project head Kenneth Haughton named it after the Winchester 30-30 rifle because it was planned to have two 30 MB spindles; however, the actual product shipped with two spindles for data modules of either 35 MB or 70 MB.[WIKIPEDIA]

  • Maybe contact IBM and they might be able to help more than we can – Eric F Sep 19 '16 at 18:15
  • Interesting question but off-topic. At least you got an answer. – fixer1234 Sep 20 '16 at 6:26
  • @fixer1234 yes on both – If you do not know- just GIS Sep 28 '16 at 3:03

You need an "ST506 interface adapter" with SCSI, PCI, AT or whatever bus for a DOS machine with drivers. I used to have adapters for Apple ][ and other machines too. Then cross your fingers that the iron oxide coating has not oxidized further and head flies properly on spinup and don't rip off from excessive "stiction" Modern drives buzz the heads to reduce surface stiction. Never rotate backwards.

Adaptec was a popular OEM adapter brand.

Contact Seagate QA for help.

We used to have 350 MB 8" drives on Apple ]['s as well. Pioneer Magnetics may have tools if they exist. I used to test the 5.25" 6MB HDD's in the early 80's and up for many years. So we had every tool you can imagine.

In short you need a DOS bootable machine with a BIOS that supports custom configuration of ST506 Head/CYL with same hardware port. System must be able to recognize drive in BIOS to have a change of recovering any files in DOS which is booted from a suitable DOS boot Diskette.


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