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Invalid Drive

Posted on 1998-09-14
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Last Modified: 2011-09-20
I formatted a partitioned drive on a 486/66 and now the machine will not boot or acknowledge Drive C, although it responds to the floppy drives  a & b.  

I have a boot disk, but fdisk will not recognize a Drive C either, listing it an an "Invalid Drive Speifiation."

The hardware mechanisms are in good order.  By what means can I "restore" or get fdisk to acknowledge Drive C? Its an old bios and I just don't see a way to reroute the boot sequence. Thank you.  RH.
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Question by:ronaldito
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6 Comments
 
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Expert Comment

by:mark2150
ID: 1125116
Check your BIOS settings and make sure the drive shows up there. If the BIOS supports autodetect, use it. Once this is complete then FDISK should be able to find the drive. If the BIOS isn't sensing the drive I'd start checking cables and jumpers. Be sure to note the drive geometry and the drive type number for future reference.

Some older machines simply cannot understand certain types of drives. Check for REMAP and LBA settings.
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jhance earned 400 total points
ID: 1125117
How are you specifying drive C to FDISK?  When y ou run FDISK, you don't specify a drive letter.  It comes up and you either create a partition, delete a partition, or if you have more than one drive, you get option 5 to change hard drives.

When you boot from the DOS floppy, you run FDISK and then create a valid PRIMARY partition on the drive.  Then you set the partition as "active".  Then you exit FDISK and must reboot the system   with the boot floppy. Now you run FORMAT to actually format the partition you just created.  If you use the command:

FORMAT C: /S

you will get a bootable copy of DOS on the disk.  Otherwise, after FORMAT, you can use the command:

SYS C:

to put a copy of DOS on the drive.  Now the system should boot from the hard drive.
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Expert Comment

by:Mimic34
ID: 1125118
Someone else has this exact problem but you guys arn't understanding.  You cannot state "format c:" if there is no "c:".  That is the grand problem.  There has to be some way to assign a letter to the drive.  FDISK recognizes that there is a drive # 0 that is say, 4 gigabytes in size.  but when booting, it says that there is only a floppy drive that you booted from.  Please help cause my friend has this problem also.  Any info would be greatly appreciated.
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Expert Comment

by:gward28
ID: 1125119
when I was still useing a 486dx2 I had a Problem just like this
many bios at this time did not read hard drives larger than 540mb
Im not sure but some read up to 840mb .that in it self is not stated above but just in case it is it my bois on usertype 47
with info on the drive stated it saw it all 1.6gig but when I
booted back up it didn't see it at all I thougt it crapped out
on me the hard drive was bad .I took it to the Guru's they went
over it and they were stumpped .At last after reading every thing
Icould find at the time I found upgrade bios that solved my
prob.this sounds to fimiliar.
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Expert Comment

by:Mimic34
ID: 1125120
well plz tell us how to fix this problem.  My friend is about to take this to a guy who is going to hook up the computer with his and try to look on it.  I dont think that is necissary, but i dont know what to do to help him.
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Expert Comment

by:gward28
ID: 1125121
what type of HD is it?
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