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Author: Subject: MS-DOS Machine Problem Question
JackInCT
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[*] Post 506427 posted on 26-1-2017 at 20:57 Reply With Quote
MS-DOS Machine Problem Question



MS-DOS Machine Problem Question

Today was a day that I decided that I would fire up my olde 1980's era Compaq "laptop". It's been sitting on a shelf unperturbed since the last time I fired it up 3-4 yrs ago; it worked then.

It's battery is kaput, but it powers up with its brick.

This machine does have a purpose re being a last resort option re availability for a legacy software program that I still regularly use.

Today upon booting I got error messages, but no C: prompt.

I formatted a 1.4 MB diskette on my Win 7 machine [I have a USB 1.4 MB diskette gizmo], and used the "Create an MS-DOS Startup Disk option".

However when I insert the diskette in the machine, I don't get an A: prompt. Without a C: or A: prompt I presume that I'm at a dead end re resuscitating this machine.

Can anyone confirm that I'm out of options re a resuscitation.

FYI: it's never been taken apart and I also presume that finding any spare parts such as a hard drive is zero. It does do a 'mem check' upon powering up so at least that still works, and there is no discernible damage to any part of the machine whatsoever.
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LSemmens
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[*] Post 506434 posted on 26-1-2017 at 23:41 Reply With Quote


Have a look in BIOS and see what it reports as connected? You may also need to change the boot order to select floppy drive first or, maybe even enable it in BIOS.
what was the OS on the machine before it was put away?

What is the program that you need to run?
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JackInCT
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[*] Post 506435 posted on 27-1-2017 at 00:37 Reply With Quote


Quote:
Originally posted by LSemmens
Have a look in BIOS and see what it reports as connected? You may also need to change the boot order to select floppy drive first or, maybe even enable it in BIOS.
what was the OS on the machine before it was put away?
What is the program that you need to run?


This is a pure command line only MS-DOS machine. I don't ever recall seeing a BIOS/POST--BUT it's been years.

Boot Order: This machine has some version of MS-DOS on it; probably Ver 3 or thereabouts. There is not I think a boot order like Windows; you change to, say, like Drive A (the diskette drive) by CD:A at the C: prompt

I DO recall that it has Peter Norton Utilities installed on it, and I do recall that it ran Peter Norton "stuff" on all bootups; I don't remember what happened when that was done, but anyway that's not running now. I also don't remember if it has an autoexec.bat file either.

I have Q&A on it, and although I can't copy my current Q&A files to it cause they're too big (even one at a time to a diskette, the 1.44 MB size, the major data files are too big), it does give me emergency database/file printing capability.

How desperate am I for long term "survival" for my Q&A financial stuff--I bought a 2nd refurbished printer with parallel port/centronics capability this week cause they are not made by anyone anymore (and I really looked hard for one), and the only new ones are dot matrix which would probably do the job if needed.

Would you have any idea what the hard drive is in these old machines, I. e., are they the same as the desktop PCs from that era?

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