DOSFS Partition Table

Leon Pollak leonp at
Thu Feb 6 17:25:12 UTC 2003

I did not wanted to come deep in all the problems, but if already...:-)))

> 1) If the memory size of the card is large Windows may reformat it
> FAT32 even if it was previously formatted FAT16 or FAT12.  This can be
> overridden to a degree by selections in the drop-down boxes or via
> command line options to the FORMAT command.
Generally - you are right, but there are some other details: FAT type (16/32) 
is also defined in partition info. Windows does not take care of this 
dependences correctly (as it does not about many other things). 
You need to say to fdisk 'No" on its first question about "large drive 

> 2) If hard sector 0 of the card is corrupted and Windows cannot tell
> the card had been configured as an hard drive, it will be re-formatted
> as a super floppy.  That is, the FAT boot sector will be placed at
> hard sector 0.  The card will no longer have a Partition Table.  Just
> guessing here but the following may be worth a try.  A utility like
> Hex Workshop or sectedit might be used to read hard sector 0 from a
> good card then write it back out to a corrupted one.  I have no idea
> if utilities like FDISK will work on the cards as that utility is no
> longer present in WinXP.
I never tried to eliminate the partition table... I suppose, that Windows will 
not like this situation (as any other non-standard thing)...:-)))

Generally, the problem is, that you have no access to ATA cassette from 
ordinary PCMCIA drive in laptop/PC to run FDISK. We used the TrueIDE drive as 
I mentioned previously also to have the direct access to physical sectors to 
check our driver during development.
So, if somebody is going to develop something on the low level (our case was 
PCMCIA socket in MPC860) I should recommend to buy this.

> Hope this helps some.
Me too.

> -Bill Knight
> R O SoftWare

leonp at plris dot com

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