The DOS Zone
FAT System Guide
Non system disk or disk error.
Please view my Notices page before viewing this area, it is not complete!
This is work in progress.
You could be getting this message for a number of reasons. Most
likely is that you have left a floppy disk in the drive, if this
is the case then just remove it and strike any key. You can prevent
this from happening in the future by going into BIOS setup and
changing the boot sequence so that BIOS tries to boot from your
hard drive first. In fact this is advisable because it will help to
prevent your computer from becoming infected by a boot sector/MBR infecting
If you want to, you can change the non system disk message a floppy disk
generates by using a program I wrote called Disk Message. It's available
as freeware from the My Software area, it's in
the GUI section.
If you haven't left a disk in the drive, then you will need to get or make
yourself a boot disk with scandisk.exe and sys.com on it. The boot disk must
be from the exact same version of DOS you have on the hard drive, unless
it's a version of DOS which does not have scandisk. If that is the
case then you need two boot disks, one with scandisk the other
with the version of DOS you have. You should boot your machine with
the boot disk from the correct version of DOS before using sys.
Start the machine using the boot disk then run scandisk on drive C, make
sure that you do a surface check as well. If all goes well then exit from
scandisk and type "sys c:" and hit enter. Hopefully your machine should
now boot from the hard drive again.
You can find information about entering BIOS setup in the
section of this FAQ.
You will also find information on how to make a boot disk (and
where to download one) in the Setting Up DOS area.
Trawled this site and still can't find the solution to your problem?
If so I highly recommend The DOS Board.
It has several good techies waiting to answer your questions and I
hang around there a lot too.