Device Drivers on a Floppy
Most of us are used to letting the Windows registry take care of our hardware. Things are a little different with DOS. I recommend you read Boot Disks section before continuing
So you've got your DOS boot disk and you can use it to boot to a basic DOS operating system. What happens if you need to configure the machine to run in a certain way or to operate extra hardware like a CD-ROM drive? Well DOS uses two special files for the loading of device drivers (software which runs hardware). These are config.sys and autoexec.bat and can be seen in the root directory of your hard drive - C:\
Both of these files are clear text files. They can be created using a basic text editor such as Windows Notepad or the DOS edit.com and are thus easily editable. In this example we will load two device drivers from the boot floppy, to operate a CD-ROM drive.
The first step is to create these two files on the floppy diskette using either of the above editors. The autoexec.bat file has two line entries, the second line loads the generic DOS CD-ROM driver:
MSCDEX.EXE /D:oemcd001 /L:D
Capitals or smalls can be used interchangably, note the difference between the number '0' and the letter 'o' or 'O'. The file mscdex.exe is a standard DOS/Windows CD-ROM driver and can be found in the DOS or Windows\Command folder. Copy this file to the boot floppy disk.
The config.sys file has one line entry:
The file oakcdrom.sys is a generic CD-ROM driver used by Microsoft on their Windows setup floppy disk. The driver which came with your CD-ROM drive may be used instead. It will probably be on the CD-ROM driver floppy disk and end in .sys and can be copied to the boot floppy instead of the one above. Alternatively just click here to download oakcdrom.sys [40kb] from Andy's server and copy it to your boot floppy.
This is all you will need to get an IDE CD-ROM drive working using your DOS boot diskette. If you can't do without a mouse and really want to use one with your DOS diskette, then add the line:
to your autoexec.bat file, and click here to download the file (36kb) and copy this DOS mouse driver file to your boot diskette.
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