Norton Diskedit

From OSDev Wiki
Jump to: navigation, search

Norton Diskedit is a hexeditor for logical and physical disk drives on all Windows file systems. It is an undocumented utility that comes along with the standard Norton Utilities package for Windows. (There may also be a version that supports Apple filesystem formats on the Mac version of Norton Utilities?)


Diskedit is able to do some kind of magic to read and modify sectors on any logical or physical disk attached to a PC, whether the disk is formatted or not. It runs under DOS, either in a window, or in singletasking mode. When running in a DOS window, it reverts to "Read Only" mode, but can still read any sector on any physical or logical disk, and analyze the directory and allocation structure of the disk. In singletasking DOS mode, it is able to copy sectors from one disk to another, files from one disk to another, or modify individual bits on individual sectors. It can be used to find the cluster number, physical sector, or logical sector where a file is stored.


Diskedit is very useful as a disk image utility. It will analyze a filesystem's structure to help you locate the position of the disk image precisely on your hard drive. If you have data or binary images stored on a disk, you can open them and then store them into the disk image (once you know its location). Since it can copy raw sectors, it is not necessary for the disk image to be in any recognizable filesystem format.

Helpful Hints

Diskedit tries to scan your entire filesystem when it is started, to locate every file, and verify filesystem integrity. So it is nice to start it from a small ramdrive that contains the files you are interested in. If it is possible, somehow, to break the Read Only "feature" in Diskedit it would become an even better tool. A programmer could run Bochs in one DOS window, compile kernels in another, and transfer them into the Bochs disk image immediately with Diskedit in another. As it is, it is necessary to shut Windows down to DOS singletasking mode in order to do the Diskedit transfer, and reboot Windows.

This article is a stub! This page or section is a stub. You can help the wiki by accurately contributing to it.

Personal tools