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Next Install MS-DOS 7.10 in this Windows 7 Dual-Boot

Last reviewed: June 2013

October 2013: This is the new location for this page on this site. Please update your link or bookmark.

Caution: You must have selected and then completed the first page before continuing here.

Now Install MS-DOS 7.10 and Dual-Boot with the installed Windows 7

Installing MS-DOS 7.10 on the previously prepared FAT32 Primary partition on the first hard disk does not make any changes to Windows 7 which will continue to boot normally - the NTFS drives are totally ignored.

If you don't have a floppy drive, download win98se_bootdisk.iso and use Windows 7 to create the MS-DOS 7.10 bootable CD (in Windows Explorer, right-click the win98se_bootdisk.iso file and select Burn disk image). It pretends it's a floppy!

  1. Bootup from a Win98SE boot floppy or from a Win98SE or MS-DOS 7.10 bootable CD/Flash drive.
    • At the Prompt, type these commands and press Enter after each. Note the space before each /A.
      DIR C: /A    to prove C is the correct drive
      SYS C:    to create MS-DOS 7.10 boot sector and boot files for C:
      DIR C: /A    to show the new boot files on C:
      - sys c: creates a DOS boot sector for the doos partition and installs a very basic MS-DOS 7.10.
    • Remove the floppy or CD/Flash drive.
  2. Restart computer (CTRL-ALT-Del). Windows 7 will bootup normally (the Active flag has not been moved).
    Next use EasyBCD to add the MS-DOS 7.10 boot option to the Windows 7 boot loader menu.
  3. With Windows 7 booted,
    Install/Run EasyBCD (click Yes for "User Account Control").
    • Select Add New Entry in the left pane.
    • Select the Windows tab in the upper right pane.
      • In Type drop-down, select Windows 95/98/ME (not MS-DOS 6.x).
      • In Name, rename "Microsoft Windows 9x" to MS-DOS 710.
      • In Drive, you'll see it is "Automatically configured". That's correct.
      • Click the Add Entry button in the same pane.
      • Optional: You can now modify the timeout of the boot loader menu
        - click the Edit Boot Menu (left pane) and set the Boot default OS after to about 5 seconds.
        Optional: You can also change the OS to boot by default. Click Save settings when finished.
    • Exit EasyBCD.
    Restart computer. See if MS-DOS 7.10 will boot from the boot menu.
  4. Skip this part if MS-DOS 7.10 does start from the boot menu.
    If DOS does not boot, you should copy MS-DOS boot files to the Active drive.
    • In Win8, press Win+X keys > Disk Management and identify the Active drive on the correct hard disk.
      If this Active drive has no drive letter, then add one (right-click the drive > Change drive letters and ... > Add)
    • In Windows Explorer, make hidden files and folders on your computer visible to you (read how).
    • Copy Io.sys from root of the DOS drive to root of the Active drive.
    • Remove that new drive letter now if you added one. Also undo the 'hidden' changes you made.

    Note: An alternative method is to use EasyBCD to copy the Windows 7 boot files and Boot folder to the DOS drive and then make the DOS drive the Active boot drive (click BCD Backup/Repair, select Change boot drive and click Perform Action, select the drive letter currently allocated to the doos drive, click OK).

    Restart computer. Both Windows 7 and MS-DOS 7.10 should now boot from the boot loader menu.

  5. Add the rest of the MS-DOS 7.10 files at your leisure using the same file versions.
    Add/Edit Config.sys, Autoexec.bat, and perhaps Msdos.sys, to suit your own requirements.

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Repair Windows 7 Startup

You will not have any problem if you follow the instructions as stated above. However you might encounter some freak occurrence like a power failure during an installation. Windows 7 will boot again if you execute the following procedure.

  1. Bootup from the Windows installation DVD or even from NeoSmart's free Windows 7 System Recovery Disk.
    It must be a 64-bit version if a 64-bit Windows is installed.
    • Press a key when you see Press any key to boot from a CD or DVD.
    • Select your Language and then Time....
    • Select Repair your computer (bottom left of the Install now screen).
      An automatic check of your system will run.
    • Click Repair and restart
      Windows 7 should boot normally (very likely). If not, continue here.
  2. Bootup from the Windows 7 installation DVD again
    • Select Repair your computer again.
    • In System Recovery Options, select Windows 7, and click Next.
    • Click Startup Repair.
    • Click Finish when it's complete, and then Restart.
    • You must let CheckDisk run if requested.
      Windows 7 should boot normally.

If still stuck for a solution, boot again from the installation DVD, select Repair your computer, highlight Windows 7, get to a Command Prompt, use DIR command (DIR C: or DIR D: etc.) to identify drive letter allocations (sizes and Labels will help), and type in:
bootrec /FixMbr
bootrec /FixBoot
bootrec /RebuildBcd
X:\boot\bootsect.exe /nt60 C:
  (where X: is your DVD drive letter, and C: is the installation drive for Windows 7).
EXIT, and click Restart. Remove the DVD.

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