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  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2005

    Default Keyboard use in DOS/bootdisk environment, please help

    Hi all!

    I“ve never really been forced to use DOS or a bootdisk until now, when I want to format my hard-drive using a bootable CD-ROM created off an old bootdisk.

    My problem seems to be that I can“t find the symbol ":" anywhere on my keyboard when running the command prompt of the Win98 bootdisk. Using the normal command prompt in Windows (cmd.exe) I get the : -symbol using the normal dot-key, this doesn“t work on the bootdisk however.

    Please tell me how the access the : -symbol in the older DOS-like environment.

  2. #2
    Pedant and proud of it
    Join Date
    Dec 2004

    Default Re: Keyboard use in DOS/bootdisk environment, please help

    Eh? The "normal dot-key"? On most standard "US" PC keyboards the colon ":" shares a key with the semicolon ";" and on this Compaq keyboard that is two to the left of the right-hand "Enter" key. It is diagonally between the ">/." and the "{/[" keys. For all these keys, :, <, and { are the uppercase (shifted) characters.

    Have you perhaps got a Portugese (or something) keyboard? Some of the "language" keyboards do have different positions for some keys. (I once had major difficulties using a US keyboard when the OS came set up to load the Portugese keyboard configuration -- ":" was a key I needed to edit the configuration file, and I had to find a DOS manual with the keyboard layouts Appendix.

    DOS does have a means of handling different languages (I vaguely remember
    "KEYB=..." statements in CONFIG.SYS).

    Wecome to PressF1 ... I think you've puzzled a few people with this one.

  3. #3
    Member beama's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    where eye patches are worn with pride

    Default Re: Keyboard use in DOS/bootdisk environment, please help

    you are right there is a keyb comand to set that enviroment within DOS, but if you are using standard qwerty keyboard (ps2 connector) which normally use the standard ANSI codes to comunicate with BIOS then the OS, you should not have to set this varable. Theres is another way, do you know ascii codes, every good computer user should, Im teasing. But you can use ASCII in codes in dos.......................

    and this bulletin board

    ╚ § σ „ £

    I better stop to much fun for one day
    Last edited by beama; 20-03-2005 at 10:11 AM.
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  4. #4
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2004

    Default Re: Keyboard use in DOS/bootdisk environment, please help

    Definitely puzzling, You don't use sticky keys by any chance in Windows mode.

    Sorry if this is insulting, you need to hold down shift key and then press ; key to get : key.

    Colon was in the ASCII characters, exactly after the codes for the numbers, however ASCII character codes are different from the keycodes. I don't know of any method, whether you can input raw keycodes into dos or some form of escape character to generate a colon.

    I know in Bash (linux console), I could definitely output a colon via some command.

    I wonder if you did the commands you want inside a batch file, whether that would work.


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