If you search for a while you'll find out that you can do the same with a USB instaed of floppy.
I wish I could. However my BIOS doesn't support booting from USB! (If I've understood it correctly.)
Redownload the firmware. you might have a something missing that didn't get downloaded the first time.
No, I've downloaded several versions, and I can't flash with any of them.
Is it possible that there's some kind of 'write-protect' on the flash?
(I'm not very up-to-speed with DVD-firmware, but I've worked a lot with flash memories, and one thing I find VERY confusing is that my drive still works... The first thing you do when writing to a flash is to erase it to 0xffffffff, before writing the actual data. (When writing to a flash memory, it is only possible to set bits from 1->0, to change a bit from 0->1 you need to rerase a whole sector.) If this was the case, the drive wouldn't 'boot' at all. So, somehow not even this erasing works. In the 'bad old days' of dual-voltage flashes, I could have explained this as the 'write-voltage' missing, but nowadays all flashes are single voltage. And most flash memories don't offer independant write-protection for the entire memory.
How does the NEC ND-3500 drive work? Does it somehow have a 'backup-firmware' that's loaded if the default flash is corrupted?)