I have ubuntu-14.04.1-server-amd64 operating system installed on my desktop computer. it is a clean installation. i have a USB 3.5 floppy drive. I need to format a floppy disk with the ext2 file-system. what do I need to do if i have the ubuntu-14.04.1-server-amd64 operating system up and running now? I need to be able to use the formatted floppy disk in a subsequent re-installation of ubuntu-14.04.1-server-amd64 operating system. The installation part of the operating system has to be able to identify the formatted floppy as "/dev/fd0" so that it is able to load GRUB on to the floppy.


For a pretty graphical way to do it, install/use gparted or even gnome-disk-utility ("Disks"). I strongly prefer gparted, gives more options and tells you more details on what it does, Disks may work, but seems more like a black-box "click and hope" solution.

Or, you can use the terminal tools yourself, using mkfs.ext2 (alias to mke2fs). If your floppy drive is /dev/fd0 then this command should make an ext2 filesystem on the floppy drive, using ext2 and automagically figuring out the other parameters (see man mke2fs for all the options). This would use the whole floppy disk with no partitioning, probably the same as gparted would do, I'm not sure.

mkfs.ext2 -t ext2 /dev/fd0

Making the disk bootable / setting bootable flag isn't an ext option, I always use gparted to do that, or even gnome disks, but you can use the terminal program fdisk like fdisk /dev/fd0 and then the a command to toggle the bootable flag (may need to add 1 for the 1st partition), then w for write.

Or if your floppy drive isn't /dev/fd0 then you could try lsblk or maybe blkid and see if it's listed, or after you plug it in check the logfiles and it should be listed in there somewhere (use dmesg or browse through /var/log/syslog and it should have some info. I think /dev/fd0 is the standard name for floppy drives, but with a usb floppy drive it could be different, I suppose you could try linking /dev/fd0 to whatever name the usb floppy drive is called if it's different, but I've never tried to needed to try that.

And installing grub to a floppy disk should work, though a cd/dvd/usb would be big enough for a whole ubuntu live iso, and might be easier. Unless your computer won't boot from usb or doesn't have a cd/dvd drive...


Download "Disks" from Software Manager. Insert your floppy. Open "Disks" (from Settings Manager). Select your floppy. Click gear button. Select "Format" and choose ext2 from system pop up list. Check "bootable" checkbox. Format it. If you want to use the floppy for stand alone installation live disk - take into consideration that the floppy size (1.44Mb) is not enough even for minimal Ubuntu iso image (~30-50 Mb). I would consider to use USB stick instead of FD

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