MS-DOS Setup Appears to Corrupt or Damage Windows .INI Files (105791)

The information in this article applies to:
    Microsoft MS-DOS operating system 6.0
    Microsoft MS-DOS operating system 6.2
    Microsoft MS-DOS operating system 6.21
    Microsoft MS-DOS operating system 6.22

This article was previously published under Q105791


MS-DOS Setup may appear to corrupt or damage your SYSTEM.INI, WINFILE.INI, or PROGMAN.INI files.


This problem occurs due to the difference in how MS-DOS and Windows interpret corrupted SYSTEM.INI, WINFILE.INI, or PROGMAN.INI files. While Windows simply ignores garbage in corrupted .INI files, MS-DOS may interpret such characters as an end-of-file (EOF) marker (depending on the type of data corruption).


To first determine if your .INI file problems are the result of existing corruption and then to correct such problems, use the following steps:

    Copy the unmodified backup .INI file over the corrupted one. For example, type copy c:\windows\progman.bak c:\windows\progman.ini at the MS-DOS command prompt and then press ENTER.
    Edit the .INI files with a hexadecimal editor and remove the data corruption.

    MS-DOS Setup ignores any data corruption involving the standard character set (that is, incorrect text or corrupted text in your .INI file is ignored). However, incorrect formatting characters or other values can cause problems. For this reason, you need to look at the files with a hexadecimal editor.
    Run SETUP /E to install the optional programs (Microsoft Backup, Microsoft Anti-Virus, and Microsoft Uninstall).

Modification Type: Major Last Reviewed: 11/19/1999
Keywords: KB105791