The trials of the DOS Bootable USB Drive
Posted on May 31, 2012
I recently had a computer to fix that had a corrupt CMOS. I needed to flash the BOIS with the latest version to see if that would fix the issue.
There was not a Windows based flash tool. This was a custom built gaming computer with all high end components. The guy that built it had all the disk and decided to disappear with them. On a side note any time you have a custom built computer, make sure you get all the DVDs or CDs with the operating system, drivers and utilities for the all the cards and motherboard. In the event of a system failure it will save a lot of time when fixing the problem.
All I need is a bootable USB disk that would boot DOS. It’s been a long time since I have had to boot in to DOS to flash a BIOS. I have a couple of old CD boot disk which of course failed to boot. After several hours of trying to build a boot disk, I started search the internet for a boot disk image. I found several which I used dd (a linux command line disk utility) to “burn” the image on the usb disk. Most of what I got did nothing, FreeDOS I did get to boot but since I used dd there was no extra disk space to load the BOIS and flash tool. Several more hours had past and many more failures.
FINALLY I found one that worked. Rufus (“The Reliable USB Formatting Utility, with Source”) to the rescue, over on Pete’s Blog aka Pete Batard in Ireland was kind enough to share his easy to use USB boot disk utility. He has the project on GitHub https://github.com/pbatard/rufus/downloads The best part about using Rufus is that it gives you the entire USB disk, so there is plenty of disk space to put the new BIOS, backup the old BIOS and the flash utility.
He is also provides detailed instructions on his site http://rufus.akeo.ie/
Rufus turned out to be a huge time saver!