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Netware 5 server, corrupt DOS partition

By arobinb ·
I mistakenly overwrote my server DOS partition with a windows 98 startup disk. On restart I just get control characters, so I assume the FAT has corrupted. I downloaded DRDOS 7.02 I believe that was what was originally installed, and tried to load that. Still corrupt.
Can I reinstall the DOS netware files in order to reload the server without damaging the netware partitions. It is 8 years since I installed the server and have not done any since, so I am very rusty.

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Do you have an optical drive on that server?

by seanferd In reply to Netware 5 server, corrupt ...

You may be able to use one of the tools on the UBCD to detect the proper boot loader and fix it http://www.ultimatebootcd.com/

It would be a good idea to test the drive itself with the drive vendors testing utility, available from the vendor's site, and possibly on the UBCD as well.

You probably want to do a fsck or chkdsk or whatever is appropriate in this case, too.

Maybe a faster/easier better fix would be to wipe the corrupt partition (only!) with something like DBAN, then try to reinstall again. http://www.dban.org/

Of course, make sure that whatever OS and version you load will work with NW5. And if it isn't the same exact version, you may (or may not, I don't know) need to do some reconfiguring before everything works.

It's a big enough pain finding the Novell legacy documentation, and I still only find as far back as NW6. http://www.novell.com/documentation/archived.html

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Reponse To Answer

by arobinb In reply to Do you have an optical dr ...

Hi,
I am unsure whether my first attempt to reply has been posted so I am trying again.

It was the lack of CD drivers that led to the problem, because my rustiness led me to using a shortcut of using a windows 98 startup disk to access the cd. That corrupted the DOS partition.

The original DOS was DRDOS I think 7. I now have a clean downloaded copy. I think that the best option is to format C: and reload DOS.
My only concern is that I may damage the netware volumes in the process of the reinstall. I presume that I reinstall netware as an upgrade up to the point of creating or attaching volumes.
Is my thinking logical and correct or am I missing anything.

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The machine can't boot from a CD?

by seanferd In reply to Netware 5 server, corrupt ...

No drivers are involved, this would be handled by BIOS. If you haven't tried booting from the optical drive, do so.

Surely, you can reformat the DOS OS partition, just don't format any other partitions.

But again, especially considering the issues, wiping the partition before the format will take care of any potential problems. You can run DBAN off a floppy as well, if it is necessary.

I have no idea if you will need to reinstall NW at all, but if the OS is different than what was originally installed, you may need to do some configuration in NW or maybe a repair or reinstall.

Have you tried the DR DOS SYS command against the boot partition? There should be a file dosbook.exe with command references in it.

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