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----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Mike Richter" <[log in to unmask]>
> steven c wrote:
>
> > You can, indeed, assign an 11-character name to any drive in a DOS-based
> > system...in fact, when you farmat a disk, hard or floppy, you'll be
prompted
> > to enter a name for it. However, what you can't do is access these disks
> > by typing in the names...Wintel only recognizes letters of the alphabet
> > as drive designations, and A:, B: and C: are automatically assigned to
> > two floppy drives and the first hard drive (or partition) on the system.
>
> Permit me a minor correction. Windows inherits the boot drive letter
> from its installation. That is also the only drive designation which
> cannot be changed.
>
> Under normal circumstances, the boot drive will be C: and the above is
> correct. However, I learned to my regret that a perfectly normal startup
> with an empty primary drive is not "normal" in that sense. Since I have
> a number of optical and other drives (including the one holding the
> CD-ROM to install XP), they were assigned letters C: through F: and my
> boot drive is G:.
>
> Some software looks for a writable C: drive. In order to satisfy its
> demands, I have assigned C: to a flash drive.
>
Correct...and a detail I had forgotten! However, it is possible to
select either A:, B: or C: as the boot drive...in fact, many Wintel
machines will try to boot from a floppy if one is in a drive, and
usually fire back "Non-System Disk In Drive <wotever>

For those who want to access "real" DOS instead of the Windows 9x
substitute...simply copy the system files from an ancient (pre-W9x)
machine, and stick it in the floppy drive before booting!

Steven C. Barr