How to get rid of old floppy disks

Updated April 17, 2017

Floppy disks are external storage devices that were used to copy your data for storage and/or backup purposes. Floppy disks have become virtually obsolete with the growing usage of external storage devices, such as CD/DVDs or USB flash drives and external hard drives, which are not only portable and convenient, but also very secure. If you have floppy disks that you wish to dispose of, you may want to transfer the files stored on them to your computer's hard drive. Note that you will need a floppy drive to perform this task.

Insert the floppy disks (one by one) into your floppy drive. If you do not have a built-in floppy drive, you may purchase an external floppy drive that connects to your USB port. These are available in most electronics stores and online.

Click "Computer" from the Start menu or desktop shortcut.

Double-click the storage drive icon labelled "3 1/2 Floppy."

Press the "Ctrl" and "A" keys to select all files and folders on the floppy disk. Press the "Ctrl" and "C" keys to copy all of them. You can select individual files by pressing "Ctrl" key and single-clicking on each of them. When they are selected, press the "Ctrl" and "C" keys to copy them.

Navigate to a secure location on your hard drive (for example, the "Documents" folder on your desktop). Press the "Ctrl" and "V" keys to paste the files into the location.

Click to open individual files to make sure the data was transferred correctly.

Eject the floppy disk. Use a pair of scissors to cut the disk into pieces. This step is optional, but it is recommended if your floppy disks contain sensitive data or confidential files.

Repeat these steps for all other floppy disks you wish to dispose.

Things You'll Need

  • Floppy drive
  • Scissors
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About the Author

Suvro Banerji is a recent graduate of the Missouri School of Journalism where he earned a dual degree in broadcast news and political science. He began writing professionally in 2005 at KOMU-8 News (NBC) where he worked as a multimedia producer. Banerji has also interned with CNN for two consecutive years.