How to create a MS DOS bootable USB drive

How to create a DOS bootable USB drive

How to create DOS bootable USB drive


MS-DOS isn’t widely used anymore, but you would need to boot in MS-DOS for BIOS updates, firmware-updating utilities, and other low-level system tools. They will often require you to boot into MS-DOS in order to run the utility. We once formatted our floppy disks with MS-DOS using the format utility built into Windows, but floppy disks are long gone and most computers don’t have floppy disk drives anymore.


Another problem is that Windows won’t allow you to Create an MS-DOS startup disk when formatting a USB drive. In this tutorial, we will show you how to create a MS-DOS bootable USB drive.


Guide to creating MS-DOS bootable flash drive

Step 1 : HP USB Disk Utility

Download the following files to get started :


Password : rumorscity

Extract both zip files to a location that is easily accessible. We will need to use the files later.


Step 2 : Install HP USB Disk Utility

Run the installer file and follow the on-screen instructions.



Step 3 : Create MS-DOS bootable USB drive

  • Plug-in the thumb drive to your computer (Make sure that the files in the thumb drive have been backup. We will need to format the thumb drive in the process.)
  • Launch HP USB Disk Storage Format Tool.
  • Select the thumb drive from the drop down list.
  • Select file system type as Fat 32.
  • Tick on the option Create a DOS startup disk.
  • On the last box, browse for the DOS system files that you have extracted earlier in Step 1.
  • Click Start to create the bootable USB drive.


After you have clicked the Start button, it will format your USB drive and set the MS-DOS startup files into it. So make sure that you have backup the files in the USB drive.


Step 4 : Boot into MS-DOS

You can reboot to MS-DOS by restarting your computer with the thumb drive plugged in. If it does not automatically boot from the USB drive, you may need to change your boot order or use a boot menu to select the device you want to boot from. Once you are in DOS, you can run the program you copied to your USB drive by typing its name at the DOS prompt. Follow any instructions provided in the manufacturer’s documentation to run applications.

4 thoughts on “How to create a DOS bootable USB drive”

  1. Cristian Matias Olivares

    This method can be used to directly install win98 on a machine with no USB boot up and broken optical drive if I copy to installation files to a folder?

  2. I’m using Windows 10 home 64 bit. I tried using the HP USB Disk Utility, but when I tried installing it, I get to the 2nd part and I get an error stating “An error occurred while launching the setup. The remote call procedure failed.”

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