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Windows 3.1 Installation


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7 replies to this topic

#1 Fett 1138

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Posted 12 February 2009 - 04:45 PM

I have a formatted hard disk (size: ~1.7GB) that I want to install Windows 3.1 on. I used my DOS 6.22 boot disk to install Windows with, but when I start setup on the 3.1 diskette and tell it to install to C:\, C:, or C:\WINDOWS, it says:

"Setup is unable to create the specified directory on the specified drive."

  • Press ENTER to type a different path and continue setup.


The hard drive is a Seagate, and I don't have the DiskWizard floppy, could that be related?

Thanks,
Connor Montgomery

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#2 Platypus

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Posted 12 February 2009 - 05:02 PM

Welcome to BleepingComputer.

Do you mean you used the DOS 6.22 to format the hard drive, or is the drive already formatted and you're just booting from the DOS 6.22 floppy?

If the hard drive has already been formatted, and it's formatted with the FAT32 filesystem, Win3.1 won't be able to use that. You'd then need to re-format the hard drive to get back to FAT16, using FORMAT C: from the DOS boot disk.

How old is the computer you're using? The only time you should need the DiskWizard is if the computer is old enough that its BIOS can't handle a hard drive larger than 512M.

Edited by Platypus, 12 February 2009 - 05:03 PM.

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#3 Fett 1138

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Posted 12 February 2009 - 05:18 PM

The drive is already formatted, how can I tell whether the file system is FAT32 or FAT16 in DOS.
Can I plug the hard drive into my main PC's external HD case to change the file system back to FAT16?
The computer itself is relatively new.

#4 Fett 1138

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Posted 12 February 2009 - 05:59 PM

I changed the file system from FAT32 to FAT by use of my external hard drive casing. I don't know if FAT and FAT16 are the same.
Win 3.1 still will not install. I could use some more help.
Thanks!

#5 hellknight

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Posted 13 February 2009 - 03:40 AM

No, FAT32 and FAT16 are related, but diffrent, filesystems.
FAT32 is to new for win3.1, and thus not usable.
AFAIK, windows XP and newer cannot format to FAT16.
You should be able to do so via a DOS bootdisk, otherwise you'll need to use some external application for that.

#6 Platypus

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Posted 13 February 2009 - 07:13 AM

FAT32 aware versions of Windows just call FAT16 "FAT". If the hard drive is formatted FAT16, when you boot to the A: prompt, you should get a directory of the drive when you type DIR C:

How familiar are you with DOS and Windows 3.1? Are you aware (or have you recalled) that Win3.1 isn't a complete operating system, you will have to have DOS installed and operating on the hard drive to set up Win3.1? What DOS files do you have available on your DOS boot floppy? You will certainly need at least FORMAT.COM, or SYS.COM to make the hard drive bootable, and HIMEM.SYS to make extended memory available to Windows.

I also don't recall if there's any CPU clock speed limitation to run Windows 3.1 - Windows 95 certainly had problems with AMD CPUs over 350MHz (and Intels over about 700MHz), and had to be installed at a lower clock speed and patched.

Edited by Platypus, 13 February 2009 - 07:16 AM.

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#7 Fett 1138

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Posted 18 February 2009 - 11:09 AM

Thank you, I have now installed Windows 3.1. All I needed to do was install DOS first! :thumbsup:

#8 Platypus

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Posted 18 February 2009 - 04:02 PM

Excellent! Glad it's up and running for you.

If it's plain Windows rather than WFW (or 3.1 rather than 3.11 - I forget which made the difference), don't be tempted to try enabling 32 bit Disk Access on a drive over 512M, that doesn't work and can mess things up.

Not sure if some of the detail is still current, but there's a lot of info on Win3.1 here:

http://stephan.win31.de/w31mm_en.htm

Edited by Platypus, 18 February 2009 - 04:05 PM.

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