Which MS-DOS Version Should I Boot to Run MS-DOS Setup? (77984)

The information in this article applies to:
    Microsoft MS-DOS operating system 5.0
    Microsoft MS-DOS operating system 5.0a
    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 Q77984


When upgrading to MS-DOS 5.0 or later on a hard drive, the Microsoft MS-DOS Upgrade SETUP.EXE program should be run in the version of MS-DOS that is currently installed on the machine. Booting the machine with another version of MS-DOS may cause improper access of the hard drive, leading to file corruption. Additionally, SETUP may make incorrect assumptions about which OEM-modified utilities to preserve.


If you are reinstalling MS-DOS 5 or later, you do not need to reinstall your previous MS-DOS version before running SETUP.

If the hard drive has MS-DOS 2.1 or earlier installed, contact your OEM (original equipment manufacturer) as to the availability of a version of their MS-DOS 5.0 or later for your machine. If you have version 2.11 or later, you can boot with this version and install MS-DOS 5.0 or later to floppy disks using the SETUP /F command. MS-DOS 5.0 or later can then be installed manually from this working set of disks. However, this may require reformatting the hard disk, depending on the partition structure currently in use.

If installing MS-DOS version 5.0 or later (not MS-DOS Upgrade), boot from disk 1 to install MS-DOS. The original equipment manufacturer (OEM) version of MS-DOS has a different Setup program that requires MS-DOS to be booted before installing it.

Modification Type: Major Last Reviewed: 5/12/2003
Keywords: KB77984