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New MSDOS.SYS Question

By Digital_DNA ·
I have a question regarding the MSDOS.SYS roll in the boot process (Win9. I should probably start from the beginning.

The other day I was experimenting with my win98 system. I decided to delete the MSDOS.SYS file to see what type of error message I would receive without the file. Upon re-boot I got the following errors:

VORTEX DOS AUDIO DRIVER (2.007) Copyright ? 1997-1999 Aureal Semiconductor
ERROR #3: WINBOOTDIR environment variable missing. Driver not loaded.

ERROR#5: AU30DOS.COM section not in AU30DOS.INI. Driver not loaded.

PCI AUDIO PRO enabled at Ports 220-22Fh, Interrupt 5, DMA 1, Joystick 201h.

I'm confused by this error. In reviewing several "Boot Process" articles I know that after the bootstrap phase, control is turned over to IO.SYS. From there IO.SYS looks to MSDOS.SYS. If this is the case, I don't know where IO.SYS is getting the above driver information. It can't be getting it from the AUTOEXEC.BAT (which does have entry's for the hardware). AUTOEXEC.BAT isn't loaded until the end of the boot process. Surely, IO.SYS's internal AUTOEXEC.BAT wouldn't have any reference to system specific Hardware.

Anybody have a clue?

Please no comments on how dangerous it is to delete system files. I'm very well aware of the consequences of such actions. If you don't experiment, you'll never learn.

Thanks

EBCDIC

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New MSDOS.SYS Question

by maxwell edison In reply to New MSDOS.SYS Question

The Windows Setup program creates the file called Msdos.sys in the root folder and sets the file with the Read-Only, System, and Hidden attributes. Unlike the Msdos.sys file in MS-DOS, this file is a text file. It contains a [Paths] section that lists the locations for other Windows files (such as the registry) and an [Options] section that you can use to personalize the boot process.

In your case, there are most likely registry settings that the IO.SYS retrieved which refer to the msdos.sys, which, of course, it can't find.

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New MSDOS.SYS Question

by maxwell edison In reply to New MSDOS.SYS Question

By the way, Microsoft Knowledge Base Article, Q118579, titled, "Contents of the Windows Msdos.sys File", which you may or may not have seen, has some good information about the MSDOS.SYS file.

http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=KB;EN-US;Q118579&

REMOVE SPACES from the pasted URL.

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New MSDOS.SYS Question

by Digital_DNA In reply to New MSDOS.SYS Question

Poster rated this answer

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New MSDOS.SYS Question

by TheChas In reply to New MSDOS.SYS Question

EBCDIC,

Took a look at the files on my W98 box with an Aureal based sound card.

The DOS driver is listed in the Autoexec.bat file.
Like you saw, there is no mention in MSDOS.sys
IO.SYS has the original W98 file date, so it has not changed.
DOS mode drivers for most devices that require them are loaded from Autoexec.bat

I know on my W98 system that Autoexec.bat is processed before the GUI starts up.

The errors that you are getting mean to me that either;
You no longer have the sound card with the Aureal chip in your system, and the DOS driver lines were not removed from Autoexec.
1 or more files for the Aureal driver are missing.
Or, there is an error in the command lines, and
they cannot be processed properly.

If you still have the Aureal based sound card, the easiest way to correct the problem would be to re-install the sound card driver.

Another event that happens, is that Windows polls the PCI bus looking for hardware. This may be part of what is giving you the errors.

Chas

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New MSDOS.SYS Question

by TheChas In reply to New MSDOS.SYS Question

While it does not specifically list the startup files in sequence, the "Windows 98 Resource Kit" (from Microsoft) implies that for Windows 98 the file processing sequence at boot is:

Config.sys
Autoexec.bat
IO.sys
MSDOS.sys
followed by the Win and SYS.ini files

Chas

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New MSDOS.SYS Question

by Digital_DNA In reply to New MSDOS.SYS Question

Chas,

Thanks for confirming my suspicions. I'm pretty confident now that the autoexec.bat does get read before MSDOS.SYS. When reviewing the AUTOEXEC.BAT file the following lines exist:

SET BLASTER = A240 I5 D1 T4
LH C:\WINDOWS\AU30DOS.COM

This corresponds with the errors I received. I suspect that because the MSDOS.SYS file isn't present, the IO.SYS can't find the path to search for these drivers. That is most likely the cause for the errors.

Thanks again for your assistance.

"Knowledge is Power"

EBCDIC

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New MSDOS.SYS Question

by Digital_DNA In reply to New MSDOS.SYS Question

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