Software / FDFORMAT 1.8


Replacing the DOS-Format program

FDFORMAT can do everything that DOS FORMAT can do, but much more. The author of FDFORMAT is Christoph H. Hochstätter from Germany. According to the entries in Github he now lives in Heerbrugg in Switzerland.

The program is public-domain and the source code is also available for own changes (see manual)!


1) Supporting 3.5"-1.44 MB drives with any BIOS-Versions in ATs and Clones. This saves you a lot of money, you would need for a new BIOS-Version.

2) Formatting and using of 720/820 kByte disks in AT 5.25"-1.2 MByte Drives using cheap double-density (DD) disks.

3) Increasing the capacity of your disks up to 300 kByte additional storage.

4) Supporting 3.5"-360 kByte format. This is useful, when you want to make copies of 5.25"-disks to 3.5"-Disks using DISKCOPY.

5) Enhance speed of your diskette I/O up to 100% with sector sliding. This is a method of physical ordering sectors in a way, that your drive is ready to read the next logical sector, when your head advances one track.

6) Improved BOOT-Sector, which automatically boots from harddisk, if the diskette in drive A: is not a system disk. This allows you to leave the diskette in drive A:, when you reboot the system.

Source: Manual FDFORMAT.DOC, Version 1.8

Update 08.09.2019:

FDFORMAT or FDREAD/FDR88 works perfectly with the TEAC FD-55F. This drive can normally not be used under PC/MS-DOS! With the CompatiCard IV I (CC4) formatted a 5.25" DSDD disk with 800 KByte (80 tracks, 10 sectors/track, 512 byte/sector), switched off the BIOS of the CC4 and restarted the computer. Then I started the TSR program FDREAD or FD88 and could access the 800 KByte disk without any problems.

Options and examples

In the following I have inserted three illustrations (from the manual), which explain the extent of FDFORMAT very well. Just go through the options.

FDFORMAT - F-Options
FDFORMAT - F-Options
FDFORMAT - other options
FDFORMAT - other options
FDFORMAT - Examples
FDFORMAT - Examples
FDFORMAT 1.8 still does not support 2.88 MB drives. These will be supported in the next version. The next version will support 2.88 MB drives for BIOS-Versions, which do not support 2.88 MB drives.

According to the entries and information in Github he finished the further development of the project in 1991. Version 1.8 is the last one. Too bad!