Free Software for DOS
Disk Utilities – 2

9 Dec 2005

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HARD DISK PARTITION UTILS (sizers, fdisks, save/restore)






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FLOPPY DISK UTILS (diskcopy, image, format, recover...)




DEFRAGGERS (FAT 16 only, not for Win9x)

Hex editors: See Programming.

CD music players: See Sound Programs & CD Players.


Free FDISK — Disk partition management utility.


[added 2000-04-18, updated 2003-05-13]

Free FDISK is Open Source and licensed under the GNU GPL.

Author: Brian Reifsnyder (2003).

2003-05-13: v1.2.1.

See Free FDISK Home Page for latest versions.

XFDisk (eXtended FDisk) — Open source FDISK replacement with boot manager.


[added 2000-12-13, updated 2005-12-08]

XFDisk is an open source FDISK which resembles OS/2's. XFDisk can also function as a boot manager. Requires 80286+, HGC, MDA, EGA or VGA card (80x25 display), DOS 3.3+. Manual is in German, available in German program package only. XFDisk is distributed under the GNU General Public Licence.

Authors: Florian Painke & Ulrich Müller, Germany (2001). Suggested by Timo Gransch.

2001-09-09: v0.9.3 beta. Last version, development has ended.


Get more info & source at the XFDisk homepage in English, or/oder auf Deutsch.

Partition Manager — Disk partition and boot manager, FAT16/32.

Untested here, but praised by other users.

[added 1998-06-15, updated 2005-12-08]

From the docs:
Private users, educational and non-profit organizations may evaluate the program for the period of 10 years, then they must pay registration fee of $10 per household/classroom/department or stop using the program. If you cannot afford $10, you may send me a postcard with a nice view of your city, and I will count you as a registered user.

Commercial users: see docs.

Author: Mikhail Ranish (2002).

2002-06-09: V2.44beta. Earlier versions are still available, including 2.40 stable (2001-02-08), and 2.37 (1998-09-15, runs on 8086).

Download (136K).

See the Partition Manager Page for other versions, help/info, screenshots. Also available: CVT – converts FAT16 to FAT32.

PRESIZER — Non-destructively resize disk partitions, FAT16/32.


[added 1998-06-15, updated 2001-01-20]

From the docs:
This program does not intend to replace FDISK. It's rather complementary to it. You will still need FDISK if you want to create and delete partit ions. Partition Resizer processes only existing partitions. Also, Partition Resizer does not convert FAT16 (older DOS partitions) into FAT32.

Author: John Lagonikas, Greece (2000).

2000-12-31: v1.3.4.

Download (96K).

FIPS — Non-destructive partition splitting program, FAT16/32.

[added 1999-01-30, updated 2005-12-08]

A veteran DOS utility that's been updated to handle FAT32. GNU GPL, source included.

Author: Arno Schäfer, Germany (1998).

1998-05-11: v2.0.

Download (159K).

More info at the FIPS page.

Partition Saving (Savepart) — Copy, save and restore hard-drive partition and other data.


[added 2001-08-14, updated 2005-07-17]

Partition Saving can copy and save an entire hard drive, a partition only, a Master Boot Record, or a floppy disk to a file. Saved files can be used to restore data after a drive crash. The program can compress files (using gzip's algorithm) and split them (to fit onto target disks). With FAT12/16/32, ext2/3 and NTFS partitions, all sectors can be saved, or sectors in use only.

While the program recognizes NTFS partitions, it can't create them. Solution: Create them under Windows, and then reboot to DOS.

For complete details, see the online manual,in English or/ou en Français.

Author: Damien Gibouret, France (2005). Suggested by Lars-Erik Sandberg.

2005-04-17: v3.00.

Download (32K).

Get more info, utilities and documentation at Partition Saving site, in English and/et en Français.

STBFP — Save and/or restore Boot Record, Partition Table, and FAT.


Three small programs, STB.COM (Save The Boot), STP.COM (Save The Partition), and STF.COM (Save The Fat) compare the current boot record, partition table and File Allocation Table with backup copies, and restore the current records from the backups, if necessary (FAT16 only?). Not guaranteed to run properly under Windows or any other multitasking OS. Free for personal use.

Author: Jad Saliba, Canada (1997).

1997-09-25: v2.0.

Download (45K).

ZPart — Compresses / restores IDE disk partitions on multiple computers.


[updated 1998-07-20]

From the docs:
ZPart is a DOS 32-bit utility developed to compress the contents of a hard disk partition into a disk file, to load compressed partition and to save or load current contents of master boot record (MBR). ZPart has been tested only on IDE-compatible HDDs. Starting from version 1.00, ZPart can move partitions across HDDs with differing geometries (if there's enough room).
ZPart may be useful if one needs to maintain easily restorable uniform software configuration on many computers with identical system components (in our case, with identical HDDs numbers and types)...Maintaining a computer class is a good example. 150- 200 Mb partitions...compress in 10-30 minutes, depending on contents, and decompress in 5-7 minutes (our computers are 5x86 133MHz), which is quite reasonable time. Another way to use ZPart is to store the boot partition of fragile and administrator-hostile systems such as Windows 95...when your '95 goes crazy and dismembers beyond can easily restore it in several minutes.

Requires 80386+, 2MB+ RAM, DOS 5.0+ or compatible. Program messages and manuals in English and Russian.


Author: Konstantin Boyandin, Russia (1998).

1998-07-12: v1.11.

Download (198K).

Partition Support — Misc. c-line disk utils for experts.


[added 2000-01-01, updated 2002-09-29]

The command line disk sector and partition tools in this group are intended for advanced users. Minimal documentation. Each program is available for DOS/Win9x/WinME, and some also for Win9x/ME/NT/2K/XP (i.e., one version works under DOS, one works under WinNT/2K/XP, and both work under Win9x/ME).

Lists the content of a FAT partition. Can be used for evaluating the integrity of lost partitions.
Searches for lost and not lost directories in a lost or not lost FAT partition. Files in a lost directory can be copied to another partition. So far this is a low tech utility. Note that on an fdisk damaged partition, some files can contain sectors filled with ascii 246 characters.
Command line partition table editor. For experts.
Locates bad sectors.
Searches for BSD disklabels.
Searches for subdirectories, and calculates the estimated location of cluster number two.
Searches for Linux ext2/ext3 superblocks and calculates possible partition location.
Searches for FAT's and gives an estimate of the condition.
NTFS data recovery tool. Lists the content of an NTFS partition, or copies files.
Searches for lost FAT, NTFS, HPFS, BeOS and Linux ext2, ext3 and swap partitions.
Searches a disk for occurrences of a word or sentence.
DOS device driver that adds read-only drive letters for lost FAT partitions.
Examines if a 32 GB problem is present for a disk larger than 32 GB.
Retrieves sectors from a harddisk and writes them to a file.
Examines PQRP partitions that were originally FAT32 partitions.
Writes a sector to disk.
Sets the ATA Max Address (size of disk).

Author: Svend Olaf Mikkelsen, Denmark (2002-05).

2000–2005: Various issue dates and versions.

Download individual programs from the Partition Support Utilities page, and see the Home Page for links to more info.


For *experienced* users only. Normally run from a bootdisk (unless you're editing a floppy). Also see: DFSEE disk analyzer (w/ sector edit capability); LSD, a completely safe disk sector viewer that can write to a file.

DISKED — Recovers data from disks with damaged BOOT sector, FATs, and directory areas.


[added 2000-10-22, updated 2004-08-07]

From the docs:
DISKED is a simple to use disk editor and data recovery program for IBM-PC/XT/AT and compatible computers. It allows the editing of any sector and the saving of sectors to a file. DISKED provides a way to recover data from disks with a damaged BOOT sector, damaged FATs, and damaged directory areas, allowing the saving of otherwise lost data.
Corrupt data can be a foreign type of media (not really corrupt but able to be interpreted), a disk that was inadvertently written to by power failures or system crashes, or, on single floppy systems (like laptops), a disk was changed at the wrong time causing another disk's data written on it.
Some non-DOS floppy disk formats will be able to be read if they are formatted for 512 byte sectors.

Author: Gregg Jennings (1995).

Download (88K).

WDe — Disk editor capable of editing physical disks.


[updated 2004-08-07]

From the docs:
WDe is a disk editor written in assembly designed to run on a 80386+ running MS-DOS 4.0+ or compatible. It's currently capable of editing logical, physical and CD-Rom drives. It should (theoretically) be able to edit drives up to 2 TB in size.

Author: Ben Cadieux (2004).

2004-03-08: v0.20, released under GPL. Source included.
2004-04-17: v0.21beta. Many new features and bug fixes. Manual + source included.


PTS DiskEditor — Disk editor and viewer (FAT16/32 HDs).


[added 1999-10-08, updated 2004-06-27]

Untested. "PTS DiskEditor can work...without any operating system."

Notes: Apparently allows viewing and editing of fixed disks only. While not especially option-rich and lacking user documentation (but see the online help page, below), PTS DiskEditor uniquely handles both FAT 16 and 32. Includes Block copy and paste, undo, search for HEX/ASCII functions.

Author: PhysTechSoft, Russia (1998).

Note 2001-06-10: The rights to this disk editor were apparently acquired by another company in 2001 (a commercial variant [demo] is now available at The original PTS disk editor (1998) was licensed with a free distribution clause and is linked to below.

Download PTSDE104.ZIP, in English (161K).

Help page.

DE (DiskEditor) — Disk editor and viewer (FAT12/16).


[added 1998-06-23, updated 2004-08-07]

Untested. See a review of DE at ZDNET.

From the docs: "DiskEditor is a full function disk editor that supports graphics or non-graphics printing of all data displayed onto the screen, a DOS shell, Directory displaying, viewing, and editing, help, and mouse support." Also functions as an analysis tool: Locates stray / cross-linked clusters; can locate bad, reserved, invalid clusters; can compare both copies of FAT for errors; can test read all disk sectors. 50K EXE and requires 27K help file.

Requirements: 8088+; monochrome or better video; DOS 2.0+; Bytes@Sector, 4096 maximum; Sectors@Cluster, 128 maximum; FAT12 or FAT16.

Author: Jim Webster (1998). Suggested by Lars-Erik Sandberg.

1998: v3.0.

Download DE_30.ZIP (70K).

Jim Webster's Assembly Language Help and Programming Home Page.

Zap-It — Hex and disk editor (FAT16/32).


[added ?1997, updated 2004-06-27]


Zap-It can function as either a file hex editor or a disk editor and has the ability to insert or delete bytes in hex mode. Works with FAT32 volumes. Charityware.

Features from the docs:
- Commands accessible from pulldown menus or keys.
- Drive/directory/file listing for easy navigation and file loading.
- Last files edited history list.
- Binary/Decimal/Hexadecimal conversion and calculation.
- Hex and Ascii editing windows.
- Non specific text search.
- Disk caching.
- Easy display configuration.
- Filtering.
- Cut/Copy/Paste/Insert functions.
- ASCII viewer.
- File Compare feature.

Author: Marten Egmond / Elmer Productions (2001).

2001-09-28: v5.13.

Download (66K).


Also see: Secure File Wipers and WIPEUTIL (

Active@ KillDisk — Wipe an entire disk.


[added 2004-08-07]

Free version's features, from the docs:

Publisher: LSoft Technologies, Canada (2003).

Get (932K) & accessories from Active@ KillDisk page

WIPE (1) — Wipes fixed disks, up to 8GB.


[added 2001-09-23]

This small (3K) disk wiper will wipe entire disks (not just unused space). Useful if you are disposing of hard disks with sensitive data.

From a user:
... nice because it does not CARE about the file system – it starts from the first sector and starts writing zeros. Granted it will only do HDs up to 8 gig because of the new Bios thing [no int13h extensions], and not everybody wants to totally zarch their partition unless they are getting rid of hard drives...
   Syntax: WIPE <FDISK#>
                                    OR FIXED DISK DRIVE 7.
           OR?     ="Display" HELP.

Author: Unknown. Suggested by Daniel Schmidt.

1996-05-02: v1.0c.


Get this and more from Uwe Sieber's Utilities for DOS and Windows (in English) / Utilities für DOS und Windows (auf Deutsch).

WIPEM — Disk shredder overwrites unused hard disk space, Win swap files.


From the docs...
WIPEM is an assembler DOS program that protects the private data on your hard drives...Although there are several other programs...which perform the wiping of the unused space, all these leave the directory entries untouched and the files final cluster still contains data...Directories scanning, finding files FAT chains, unused cluster scanning are all done directly reading the sectors on disk. WIPEM uses different patterns when overwriting data on disks. If used repeatedly even advanced data recovery methods (like scanning the disk plates) won't give results.

This baby will wipe your Windows swap file too – a smart idea.

Limitations: not usable on FAT12 (floppies) or FAT32 disks.

Usage: WIPEM drive: [options]
/w - wipe (writes on disk - otherwise only simulates)
/e - only the erased space (free clusters)
/d - only directory entries
/f - only the files end (final clusters)
/p - hide .pgp files (mark delete)
/r - restore .pgp files (no other operation is performed)

Author: Emil Laurentiu, Romania (1997).

1997-07-21: v1.0. Cardware.

Download (11K).

WipeFree — Wipe over free disk space (DOS and Win32 versions).


[added 1999-07-10]

From the docs:
WipeFree for DOS creates files and writes to them until the drive is full. Each file can be up to 2GB and up to 1000 files can be created... WipeFree32 can handle this by creating a single file. WipeFree32 can overwrite the free areas twice. The parameter for this is /2.

Author: Uwe Sieber, Germany (1999).

Download (44K).

Uwe Sieber's Utilities for DOS and Windows (in English) / Utilities für DOS und Windows (auf Deutsch).


DFSee — Disk analysis and repair utility ([V]FAT[32], HPFS, NTFS).


[added 1998-07-05, updated 2004-08-07]

Display File Systems is a comprehensive disk sector and file systems information / repair utility for power users. Handles information from HPFS, NTFS and various FAT partitions. Includes OS/2, DOS and NT versions. Capabilities include sector reading, du mping and editing, bad sector scanning, sector checksums, file system analysis (e.g., displays errors in FS), MBR walking, file recovery, clear partition-tables sectors (MBR/EBR), clear LVM information sectors and/or all partition boot-records...and so on.

Recent versions include an FDISK module that also supports the OS/2 bootmanager..."you can FDISK your system from a DOS diskette, without any user intervention...reboot and restart a particular partition from DOS or Windows NT. Virtual disks allow experimenting with partitions without modifying the real physical disk."

Author: Jan van Wijk, Netherlands (2001). Suggested by Lars-Erik Sandberg.

2001-07-09: v3.42. Last freeware version – beginning with v4.0 (2001-07-24) DFSee is pay shareware.

Download (843K).

DFSee page.

TestDisk — Check partition and boot sectors, recover lost partition.


[added 1999-08-29, updated 2005-07-17]

From the docs:
TestDisk queries the BIOS (DOS/Win9x) or the OS (Linux, FreeBSD, Windows) in order to find the Hard Disks and their characteristics (LBA size and CHS geometry). TestDisk does a quick check of your disk's structure and compares it with your Partition Table for entry errors. If the Partition Table has entry errors, TestDisk can repair them. If you have missing partitions or a completely empty Partition Table, TestDisk can search for partitions and create a new Table or even a new MBR if necessary.
Usage: TestDisk [/log] [/debug] [/dump] [file or device]
       TestDisk /list [/log] [file or device]

/log          : create a testdisk.log file
/debug        : add debug information
/dump         : dump raw sectors
/list         : display current partitions
TestDisk works with these partitions: Versions are available for:

The DOS version runs under MS-DOS 6.x, FreeDOS, Win9x DOS-box. The download package & some files have Win32 Long File Names. Open Source under GNU Public License.

Author: Christophe Grenier, France (2005).

2005-05-28: v5.8.

Download (706K).

Go to the Testdisk page for more info and versions for other OSes.


Also see CD Navigator.

Disc-at-Once (DAO) — Golden Hawk's CD recording utilities.


[added 1998-12-08, updated 2005-12-08]

"...A set of useful CD-R applications for MSDOS. They support every major CDROM recorder..." 16- and 32-bit versions available (16-bit version does not support IDE devices). The following freeware programs are included in the larger Disc-at-Once commercial distribution packages:

Copies a single-track data CD from any supported CDROM drive to a CD recorder.
CD2FILE copies a CD from any supported CDROM drive to a hard drive image file, which can then be written to the same or a different CD recorder using FILE2CD.
Copies a SCSI harddrive block-by-block to a CD recorder.
Performs CDROM functions including "Disc Finalization", "Erase CD-RW Disc", "Table of Contents", etc.

Author: Golden Hawk Technology (2004). Suggested by Dev Teelucksingh.



Go to Disc-at-Once – DOS Programs for lots more info.

CD-BENCH — Benchmark program for CD-ROM drives.


[added 1999-04-17]

Evaluate the performance of your CD-ROM with CD-BENCH. Good docs, and includes options to defeat caching effects. From the docs: "Many common benchmarks report a...wrong result because they suppose that the reading speed is constant, so they read only at the beginning of the disc. the only benchmark that reads the disc in six different points and displays six results, so you can see if and how the speed varies." Runs only in plain DOS mode (not Win9x).

Available options:
-S  reports the size of the disc without performing test.
-D  change the delay preceding reading. default=500 (millisec)
-B  change the quantity of data read. default=50 (blocks)
-I  start test immediately (no initial spin-up).
-Q  decrease readings from 6 to 3

My notes: tested successfully on a generic internal 32X CD-ROM but failed to access a parallel port external drive.

Author: Pino Navato, Italy (1999).

Download (14K).


XMSDSK & EMSDSK (FU_RD) — RAM disk (ramdisk, ramdrive) can be created, resized, destroyed from c-line.


[updated 2005-03-28]

A RAM disk is much faster than a hard disk but its contents only exist while your computer is on. I rarely use a RAM disk – and have little knowledge of the comparative benefits of available shareware and freeware programs. The FU_RD RAM disk suite caught my eye primarily because the RAM disk can be created, resized, or destroyed from the command line. In short, you don't have to reboot your machine to adjust the size of the RAM disk or to reclaim its memory for other uses. Note: Resizing will destroy any files present in the RAM disk.

XMSDSK.EXE & EMSDSK.EXE use XMS or EMS memory, respectively. and run on a 286+. A third program, EMSDSK86, is included for 8086 machines.


Author: Franck Uberto, France (1998).

1998-08-12: v1.9i.

Download (75K).

NTFSDOS — Windows NT File System Driver for DOS/Windows.


[added 1998-08-16, updated 2005-07-01]

From the docs:
NTFSDOS.EXE is a read-only network file system driver for DOS/Windows that is able to recognize and mount NTFS drives for transparent access. It makes NTFS drives appear indistinguishable from standard FAT drives, providing the ability to navigate, view and execute programs on them from DOS or from Windows, including from the Windows 3.1 File Manager and Windows 95 Explorer.

Mounts NTFS volumes formatted by WinXP. Packages are also available for Win9x (including commercial read/write versions).

Authors: Mark Russinovich, Bryce Cogswell / Sysinternals (2001).

2001-09-10: v3.02R+.

Download (37K).

Go to the NTFSDOS page for lots more info, and links to a Win98 version and to a read/write version.

NTFS (NTCP) — Windows NT File System driver & utils for DOS.


[added 1999-07-03, updated 2004-10-10]

Package includes three utils that allow access to NTFS drives or partitions from DOS, and two other utils. 32-bit DJGPP binaries, require 80386+ and a DOS Protected Mode Interface (CWSDPMI, included). Ported from Linux. Source code also included. GNU General Public License.

Reads files
Changes files
Change NT password
Extracts NT password info

Author: DOS version by Christophe Grenier, France (2002).

2002-03-25: v1.1.1.1 (2001-03-30) reissued.

Download either archive: (600K), or ntfs.tgz (571K).

Get more info in English & en Français at the NTFS page.

SleepHDD — Power-saving hard disk spindown (sleep) util.


[added 1999-10-18]

From a user:
SleepHDD lets you turn the motor of each hard disk on/off immediately, or after a user specified wait (e.g., 10 minutes)...SleepHDD is distinguished from similar programs by offering several options including a program to test your disk(s) for compatibility...The usual use for these programs is power saving...Tools such as SleepHDD can be annoying since they turn off the drive after n minutes of no disk activity, not n minutes of no keyboarding.
SleepHDD has been found to work correctly with about 80% of drives it was tested with.
Usage: SLEEPHDD.COM Drive0 [Drive1]
                       +--------- commands for the two hard drives
 Supported commands
 HELP, ?      Display this help screen
 1..18        Specify sleep time (in minutes) for the Auto Power Down mode
 0            Turn off the Auto Power Down mode
 INFO         Display the drive's model, parameters and current power state
 POWEROFF     Turn off the power (Standby Mode)
 POWERON      Turn on the power (Idle Mode)
 OFF          Turn off the drive completely (Sleep Mode)
 RESET        Recalibrate the drive
 CACHEOFF     Turn off the on-drive cache
 CACHEON      Turn on the on-drive cache
 SELFTEST     Perform the self-test
 COMPTEST     Perform the compatibility test, TRY IT!

Author: Solar Designer / BPC Productions, Russia (1995). Suggested by Howard Schwartz.

Download (10K).

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