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Bad Floppy controller...

OK, I was putting together a system for the kids using my really old SlotA 700MHz athlon. For some reason the floppy controller "went bad". The cable was installed right (they are keyed). Replacing the cable didn't help. The light on the floppy just stays on as soon as I boot and the drive doesnt do anything. I tried another known good floppy drive (the one from my PC). I even put the "bad" floppy in my PC (with the "bad" cable) and it works fine. The PSU is a 400w antec and the connector is fine. The floppy light only comes on when the data cable is plugged in. So, the controller must be bad. The board IS old. Other than that, the board is actually fine. I was able to install win2000 on it with no problems; all the other ports are fine.

The trouble is I just bought 256MB PC133 RAM. Id like to just replace the mobo but cannot find one anywhere. The only thing I have found *cheap* is another SlotA mobo/CPU bundle at TigerDirect.com. The only problem there is the AGP is only 2x and the card that I am using in their PC is a GF2 GTS. I know the CPU is a bottleneck here, but it should be good enough to play some older games (the PC is for the kids).

Does anyone know where I can pick up just the mobo (in the USA please)? I've checked all the local shops already and all the reputable online places I know. I'd even settle for a PCI floppy controller card but cannot find one of those either. Like I said, its for the kids so I need cheap!
Befor you go any further...

Check all connections on the on the floppy drive and the motherboard. The red stripe on the gray cable should be connecting to Pin1 on both the floppy drive and motherboard. The power connector should be properly connected to the floppy drive. There is a twist at one end of the cable indicating drive A: In the BIOS, make sure you have a floppy setup. Try another cable to see if it works.

Have you tried the cable both ways on the floppy drive...ie..red line at either side,even if it is keyed or not.
Thanks, but I'm afraid that's not it. Ive tried disabling/enabling the floppy drive in BIOS. Hell, Ive even cleared the CMOS and disconnected the battery/power for a while in the hopes it was firmware.

The 'bad' floppy drive and cable work fine in another PC and another known good floppy and cable that works fine in another PC will exhibit the same problem as the 'bad' set. So there is nothing wrong with the drive or cables. The connections are ok. I used a brand new cable. The power connector is good too. I've pretty much resigned myself to the fact that the controller is bad. The question I ask myself is "Should i just live with not having a floppy drive, or should I buy a new mobo/CPU?" Again, this is for the kids. The 700 is plenty for them, they are used to using a Compaq Celeron 566 w/ integrated video!

So I guess my real question is if anyone knows of reputable USA online sales sites for PC parts (such as mobos/cpu) other than newegg, tigerdirect, etc? The best deal I have found so far is a mobo/cpu bundle from DITComputers (local shop): BIOSTAR M7VIQ or a GIGABYTE VKML (both via kt266 chipsets) and a Duron 1.3 for $99.00. It's a bit more than I wanted to spend though. I was hoping to recycle some old parts and put together something halfway decent for them and spending almost nothing.
Try lookin at insight.com it searches a few hardware vendors and then you can look for the cheapest prices.

I think it searches eBuyer and others like it.
You can live without...

The floppy drive just create a bootable cdrom with the aid of nero (this is what i did as i do not have a floppy drive),if indeed you need one.

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