About DiskExplorer

modified: 04 Mar 2004

DiskExplorer (also sometimes referred to as DiskEdit) allows you to open a disk image of a Windows floppy or hard disk in a two-pane window similar to the familiar Windows Explorer. You can also create directories and delete, rename, import, and export files. Importing and exporting can also be done by using the mouse to drag files between the DiskExplorer window and the desktop or other folders.

DiskExplorer can be found at http://hp.vector.co.jp/authors/VA013937/editdisk/index_e.html. The version I have experimented with is 1.65E, downloaded as editd165e.zip.

This program can be used as a tool to transfer files between your Minix on Bochs system and the Windows host. Just use mtools on the Minix side and DiskExplorer on the Windows side. You will have to "eject" a virtual disk from Bochs to be able to open it on the Windows side.

Minix on Bochs can create empty disk image files, and the Minix mkfs command can create a Minix file system on a new virtual disk. But how about making a new MS-DOS formatted virtual disk? One way to do this is take a newly formatted MS-DOS disk, put it in the drive on a standard (non-Bochs) Minix or Linux system, and read it in as a raw device:

    cat < /dev/fd0 > dosdisk.img
You can then transfer this to the Windows system using ftp, or by compressing the image file, and using mtools to write the compressed image of the MS-DOS virtual disk to a real MS-DOS disk. On the Windows side, WinZip and other common Windows archiving tools can decompress files compressed by Unix-style compression programs.

I haven't explored all the possibilities of DiskExplorer yet. It can also be used to manipulate virtual hard disks.

I learned about DiskExplorer from Chapter 8 of the Bochs User Manual, in a section called "Win32 only: Tools to manipulate disk images." A commercial program called WinImage is also mentioned there. It is available from http://www.winimage.com, and is available with a 30-day trial. I haven't tried this product.


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