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Flash BIOS FLoppy disc problem

Posted on 2008-06-14
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Last Modified: 2011-10-03
A chap at our radio club needs to flash his BIOS from a floppy disc and has been told he must use an IBM preformatted floppy disc and not one formatted under win NT, win2000 or the XP operating systems.  Does anyone know why this is so.  In other words, what is the difference between a commercially preformatted floppy disc and one formatted under Windows operating system.
Many thanks, any information you can give.
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Question by:dengolding
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☠ MASQ ☠ earned 125 total points
ID: 21785972
The format needs to be read by the bootstrap so can't be the NTFS format that emerged with Windows 2000 and its successors.
Easiest place to get one is www.bootdisk.com where they have images for a variety of operating systems including disks specifically designed for flashing BIOS.

So it's not about Windows formatting per se it's about the type of Windows format - in this case NTFS versus FAT32.

If you buy preformatted floppies they will all be preformatted with a variation on FAT32 so are fine to use for this.

The FAT harks back to when IBM owned the rights to DOS so  IBM format is loosely used to refer to this.
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by:Wakeup
Wakeup earned 125 total points
ID: 21786063
Well in all actuality, the formatted floppies from 2k xp nt etc, are formatted in Fat32.
http://www.dslreports.com/faq/2801  if you search for floppy it's in there under the title: If I use NTFS will I be able to use floppies/CD-ROMS/network drives?

So it should not be an issue to format a floppy using 2k, xp, nt etc...I do it all the time to make myself a bootable floppy.  The other issue is to make sure the floppy is bootable and not just a quick format no system on it.  
How to Create an MS-DOS bootable diskette

When formatting a floppy diskette, users have the option of creating a MS-DOS startup disk, follow the below steps to do this.

Place diskette in the computer.

Open My Computer, right-click the A: drive and click Format.

In the Format window, check Create an MS-DOS startup disk.

Click Start

Try that!  Good luck!
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Author Comment

by:dengolding
ID: 21786314
Thank you for your submissions. I'll offer them to the club and resond back here.
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Author Closing Comment

by:dengolding
ID: 31467213
The club reported that they'd found DOS6.2 floppies, but the reply will be useful to me in the future
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