How to create a bootable CD/DVD and restore a Ghost image

Article:TECH107136  |  Created: 2000-01-06  |  Updated: 2007-01-16  |  Article URL
Article Type
Technical Solution



You need to boot the computer and restore the Ghost image from the same CD/DVD.


This document describes how to create a bootable CD/DVD that also restores the Ghost image to the computer.

Before you begin: If you need to create a bootable CD/DVD only, you must use a CD/DVD burning software.

Follow the steps in the order in which they appear. Click an icon to either expand ( ) or collapse ( ) each section.

Hide details for Choose a method to create a bootable CD that restores the Ghost image
Choose a method to create a bootable CD/DVD that restores the Ghost image
There are two methods for creating a bootable CD/DVD R/RW disc that can restore a Ghost image file. Choose one.

Method 1: Write directly to the CD/DVD R/RW disc
Ghost saves the image file directly to the CD/DVD R/RW disc, making it bootable at the same time. This method requires one of the following Ghost versions to write the image file to the disc:
  • Symantec Ghost Solution Suite 1.0
  • Symantec Ghost 8.2
  • Symantec Ghost 7.5
  • Symantec Ghost 7.0
  • Norton Ghost 2003

To configure Ghost to create a bootable CD/DVD
  1. Follow the procedure to create a Ghost image.
  2. During the Ghost image creation procedure, click Yes when prompted to make the disk bootable.
  3. If prompted, insert a floppy disk that has the appropriate CD/DVD R/RW drivers. For Norton Ghost 2003, the floppy boot disk is not necessary because the boot system files are stored in the Virtual Boot Partition. For detailed instructions, see the document How to save an image file directly to a CD-R/RW disk.

Method 2: Use third-party software to write to the CD/DVD R/RW disc
Ghost creates the image file and saves it to a temporary location, such as a partition on the hard disk.

Note: This information is provided as a courtesy only. Symantec does not provide technical support for loading DOS from a CD. If you encounter problems, contact your CD drive manufacturer or Microsoft for technical support.

Where to obtain DOS drivers for your CD/DVD ROM
DOS drivers for CD/DVD ROM drivers can be obtained at the following locations:
  • Windows 98 boot disk.
  • Symantec Ghost 7.0 and Symantec Ghost 7.5 include DOS CD-ROM drivers on the floppy disk when you chose the "CD-ROM Boot Disk" option on Ghost Boot Wizard.
  • Symantec Ghost 8.x and Norton Ghost 2003 include DOS CD/DVD ROM drivers on the floppy disk when you chose the "CD/DVD Startup Disk with Ghost" option in Ghost Boot Wizard.
  • For further information on obtaining DOS CD/DVD ROM drivers, consult your CD/DVD ROM documentation or contact the CD/DVD ROM manufacturer. Many CD/DVD ROM manufacturers have a Web site from which you can download drivers for free.
  • If the manufacturer does not make DOS drivers for the CD/DVD ROM, you will not be able to boot the computer from the CD/DVD ROM drive.

To create the Config.sys file
Create a text file called Config.sys that contains the following lines:


In the above example of Config.sys, replace the line:

with the appropriate line or lines for your specific CD-ROM drive. For example, the line for some types of Adaptec CD-ROM drives might look like:
    device=oakcdrom.sys /D:mscd001

The /D:mscd001 switch assigns a name to the driver file. For instance, /D:hello would also work. Note that this switch is used in two locations: in the Config.sys file and in the Autoexec.bat file (see the following section "To Create the Autoexec.bat file"). You must use the same name in both locations.

Consult your CD/DVD ROM documentation or the CD/DVD ROM manufacturer for more information on how to load and configure DOS CD/DVD ROM drivers for your CD/DVD ROM.

To create the Autoexec.bat file
Create a text file called Autoexec.bat that contains the following two lines:
    mscdex.exe /D: /L:
    ghost -clone,mode=load,src=,dst= -sure -fx

Note: Ghost syntax requires a space on the Ghost line in specific locations. Do not include spaces in the Ghost line except at the following locations:
  • Between Ghost and -clone
  • Between number> and -sure
  • Between -sure and -fx

In the following example, the CD/DVD ROM drive is assigned the letter Q, and the image file, called Myimage.gho, is located at Q:\Myimage.gho:
    mscdex.exe /D:mscd001 /L:Q
    ghost -clone,mode=load,src=q:\myimage.gho,dst=1 -sure -fx

WARNING: Be aware that the Ghost command line, ghost -clone,mode=load,src=q:\myimage.gho,dst=1 -sure -fx, will start the Ghost image restore process without any user intervention. To prevent the Ghost command line from cloning automatically, the Ghost argument -sure has to be removed.

Check the Mscdex.exe line in Autoexec.bat and ensure that the /D:mscd001 switch provides the name of the driver file to the Mscdex.exe file. This must be the same name that you previously assigned in the Config.sys file. The /L: switch assigns a letter to the CD/DVD ROM drive. You can use any drive letter above C for the CD/DVD ROM drive, although it is advisable to use a drive letter that is higher than the highest drive letter for any of the drives on the system. For instance, if you have two hard drives, C and D, then you would assign the letter F or higher to the CD/DVD ROM drive.

Check the Ghost line in Autoexec.bat, which launches Ghost with the following switches:
  • -clone
    This tells Ghost that the switches following -clone will provide the parameters for the clone process.
  • mode=load
    This tells Ghost that the operation will write over a drive with an existing image.
  • src=
    This tells Ghost the location of the image file. The drive letter must match the drive letter specified in the /L: switch on the previous Autoexec.bat line. In the above example, the file Myimage.gho is located on the root of the CD/DVD ROM drive (instead of within a directory).
  • dst=
    This tells Ghost which physical disk Ghost will write over. Disk 1 is the first physical hard disk in the computer. This is distinct from a partition. These instructions provide for writing over an entire disk; not for writing over a single partition.
  • -sure
    This tells Ghost to run the process without requiring user intervention after the process has begun. This switch is optional. If you do not use the switch, you must answer questions in Ghost before it begins the restoration process.
  • -fx
    This tells Ghost to exit Ghost after the copy process has completed. When you use the CD to restore a Ghost image to the drive, this switch leaves the computer at a DOS prompt. This switch is optional. If you do not use the switch, Ghost will finish at a screen that displays a message such as "Load completed" or "Process successful."

To determine how many discs are needed
See one of the following documents for details on how to create or change a Ghost image file so it fits on a CD or DVD:
How to save a large image file on CD-ROM's
How to Split an Image File
Burning a Ghost Image to a CD

To copy (that is, burn) the files to the CD/DVDs
  1. Copy the following files to the first CD/DVD using third-party software: (Consult the manufacturer of your CD/DVD R/RW software for more information on making a bootable CD/DVD.)
    • IO.sys
    • MSDOS.sys
    • Himem.sys
    • Config.sys
    • Autoexec.bat
    • Mscdex.exe (This is a generic driver file for CD-ROM devices. You will also need a driver specific to your CD-ROM drive.)
    • The DOS CD/DVD ROM drivers that are specific to your CD/DVD ROM drive, such as Oakcdrom.sys for some of the Adaptec CD-ROM drives.
    • Ghost.exe
    • The first file of the set of image files.
  2. Copy the second file of the set of Ghost image files to the second CD.
  3. Copy each subsequent file of the set of Ghost image files to a separate CD.

Hide details for Restore the image
Restore the image
To restore the image from a CD/DVD that you created
  1. Set the computer's BIOS to boot automatically from CD. For information on changing the system BIOS, see the computer's documentation.
  2. Insert the bootable CD/DVD into the CD/DVD drive.
  3. Turn off the computer.
  4. Turn on the computer. Ghost will automatically write over the disk with the image from the CD/DVD. When the process is complete, the computer will be at a DOS prompt, such as at D:\>
  5. Remove the CD/DVD from the drive.
  6. Restart the computer.

Technical Information
If you encounter problems loading the operating system or launching Ghost, make sure that:
  • You are using the correct real-mode drivers for your CD/DVD drive.
  • All the operating system files you copy to the CD/DVD are from the same version of DOS.
  • None of the files are corrupted.
If the problem continues, contact your CD/DVD drive manufacturer or Microsoft for technical support.

Legacy ID


Article URL

Terms of use for this information are found in Legal Notices