FORMAT May Allow Access to Unformatted Drives (82272)
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
This article was previously published under Q82272
If, while attempting to format a fixed disk, you terminate the MS-DOS
FORMAT command by pressing N (No) at the
message, MS-DOS may allow access to a fixed disk drive even if it has
never been properly formatted.
A drive accessed in this manner isn't stable for use with MS-DOS, and
may report large numbers of lost allocation units or other problems
when you run the MS-DOS CHKDSK command.
Responding N to the "Proceed with Format (Y/N)?" message causes FORMAT
to incorrectly set the drive's SYSTEM (as reported by FDISK) to FAT12
or FAT16, allowing access to the unformatted drive.
Microsoft has confirmed this to be a problem in MS-DOS versions 5.0,
5.0a, and 6.0. This problem was corrected in MS-DOS FORMAT version 6.2.
To return the drive to its inaccessible status, simply reboot the
machine. To prepare the drive for use with MS-DOS, use the FORMAT
command to format the drive.
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