VOGONS


First post, by boby

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I have this Toshiba 486 laptop, which by default have 300 MB or 500 MB HDD. On mine someone replaced it with 2 GB HDD, and this drive was working as it had DSL (Damm Small Linux) installed.
As my floppy is not working, I took the drive out, reformat it with win 95 system disk on another laptop. After that, HDD didn't boot, until I fixed MBR (probably leftovers of linux grub loader)
At the end HDD booted ok from that other laptop, but when I put it back into toshiba laptop it reports:
Disk I/O Error Replace the disk and press any key.

Should I reformat it to FAT16 maybe? It is FAT32 at the moment. What else I could do?

Thanks!

Last edited by boby on 2024-02-21, 15:38. Edited 1 time in total.

Reply 1 of 6, by Deunan

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2G HDD requires either translation or LBA addressing. Is the BIOS in this laptop capable of dealing with it properly? It might have worked with Linux because as soon as the OS loader (GRUB, LILO) is started it takes over and no longer relies on BIOS and doesn't much care what's in the partition table except to know the HDD size in general. DOS/Win9x requires BIOS support (at least until the Windows kernel is running) so if the BIOS sees the HDD differently to what's written into parition table the system will fail to boot at all.

It would be best to remove the partition and remake it on the target laptop. If it can't be done (no floppy drive there) then use a standard desktop PC and experiment with BIOS settings. If neither LARGE nor LBA is accepted by the laptop then you might have to resort to making 2 partitions, of which the first one is fully below 504M limit, and/or some overlay software that loads before the OS and patches the BIOS to support larger HDDs.

Reply 2 of 6, by wierd_w

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A DDO can be installed and used, with the drive geometry set to something small in the bios.

Ontrack DiskManager, for instance, will set the drive to 504mb in size for you, if you boot and use the setup floppy. (Protip, an eltorito cdrom with the floppy's disk image works just as well, if you have a cd drive, but no working floppy.)

It's possible to set up the DDO on another machine that does have a working floppy drive, then transplant it.

Reply 3 of 6, by boby

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Thx for the messages. I just tried a 5GB HDD with fat16 and it booted. Partition is ofc 48% of the HDD capacity. So for my 2GB HDD will take 99% with fat16. Gonna try that now. Then I could try to make 2 partitions

Reply 6 of 6, by boby

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wierd_w wrote on 2024-02-21, 04:16:
On a 486? […]
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On a 486?

'Kinda sorta'.

It will labor trying to play a single mp3 file. 😁

It's better to keep it as an early 90s dos pc, with retro dos games, imo.

Pentium 90 is entry level for 9x games, imo.

I installed win95 and it actually works nice. 😀
Maybe 16 MB of RAM helps, but CPU is bottleneck for sure