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What was at 0x0500-0x7bff that caused this convention? Nothing. There is no hard (-ware related) reason. And while loading an OS at top or bottom of memory is more of a philosophical question, it's one the OS to be loaded needs to decide for itself - nothing the BIOS should imply. So lets better look at what are the requirements for a boot location adding ...


As the least amount of memory needed to boot from floppy was 32 kilobytes, the first sector of the floppy, the FAT volume boot record, is loaded to just before the 32 kilobyte end of memory. However, it is loaded to 1 kilobyte before the end of memory, but the sector is only 512 bytes, so it could fit two sectors, or the remaining 512 bytes can be used for ...


Press Ctrl+Alt+Esc before you get the ‘Starting MS-DOS…’ prompt, but after the memory test (if any).

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