BootPrep is a utility that enables FAT16-formatted media to boot Windows XP.

By default, MS-DOS formatted partitions cannot boot Windows XP Embedded. When a partition is formatted for FAT16, the partition boot sector is overwritten with a DOS boot sector. This sector points to the DOS boot loaders IO.sys and MS-DOS.sys.

BootPrep overwrites the jump instruction and part of the boot sector to point to the Windows XP boot loader, NTLDR. BootPrep updates the relevant boot sectors and preserves the FAT16 formatted disk information.

NTFS-formatted partitions do not need to run BootPrep.

BootPrep.exe is located in Windows Embedded\Utilities. You can run BootPrep from MS-DOS only; it cannot be run from Windows XP or from a command prompt within Windows XP.

To prepare media so that it can be booted in MS-DOS, use existing MS-DOS media preparation utilities, such as FDISK and FORMAT, to prepare the Master Boot Record (MBR) and one or more disk partitions on the target media.

**Note   **All removable media must be prepared as if it is nonremovable media using MS-DOS, and therefore containing a MBR. This is true even of removable devices, such as floppy disks and some flash memory devices that are formatted without partitioning and that do not require an MBR to become bootable in MS-DOS.

If you choose to configure your system to dual boot between a FAT16 file system and a Windows XP or Windows 2000, you do not need to run BootPrep. During the installation of Windows XP or 2000, the boot sector will be overwritten, allowing it to boot Windows XP or 2000.

See Also

BootPrep Commands | BootPrep Advanced Commands | CompactFlash

Last updated on Wednesday, October 18, 2006

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