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attaching floppy drive to thinkpad 560X

I have IBM Thinkpad 560X. The manual says to turn off the
computer before attaching the external floppy disk drive,

	"Make sure you turn off the computer. Otherwise, the
	computer will not recognize the external diskette
	drive when computer power is turned on."

I'd like to know what this means. Is it a windows-specific
thingy, because everything works on Linux even if I connect
the drive while power is on, or might it damage the drive
or computer?

The sentence in the manual is very confusing, anyway.
What means "power-off"? Would hibernation/suspend/standby be ok?

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