DOS Bootable USB Drive

Oh, what a horrible afternoon. I just needed to update the firmware on a couple of Adaptec 5805 SAS/SATA controllers as part of re-purposing a server with Windows Storage Server 2008 R2. I splashed about for ages, but the solution was easy once I got all the bits together.

  1. Unless you have a floppy drive, you’ll need a virtual one. If you have a virtual machine, you can use that to create a virtual floppy drive, otherwise:
    1. Download Ken Kato’s VFD driver from
    2. If you’re on x64
      1. get the x64 patch from (and read his story if you have the time)
      2. Copy the two files in Levicki’s download and save them over the ones from SF
      3. Remember to repeatedly hit F8 while windows is booting so you can Disable Driver Signature Enforcement
    3. Run vfdwin.exe as administrator to install and start the Virtual Floppy driver
    4. Create a driver using RAM and remember to assign it a Drive letter (in the vfdwin tool)
  2. Format the virtual floppy drive with Windows, and make it into a DOS bootable disk. This gets the DOS boot files.
  3. Download and install the HP USB Disk Storage Format Tool from SP27213.exe from
  4. Use the HP tool to copy the boot files to the USB drive:


  5. Put Windows Explorer in “show everything” mode
  6. Copy all of the files from the Virtual Floppy to the USB stick, except IO.SYS, MSDOS.SYS and COMMAND.COM, as they’re already there
  7. Reboot and select the USB stick as the boot device. Try F12 for a boot menu…


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