Virtual OS/2 International Consumer Education

September 1998

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By: Dr. Allie Martin -

Bluesky Innovation's Power Boot is a great tool for those who use multiple operating systems and especially those who do not install operating systems all at the same time. With it, you can install various operating systems and boot from each in ways that you cannot normally do without the use of Powerboot.

Power Boot is compatible with all operating systems for the PC platform, including our beloved OS/2. It is purely a bootmanager and therefore does not offer other features as the comparable application, System Commander, which costs significantly more. Most of us who use and install multiple operating systems, already use Partition Magic which comes with these additional features anyway.

Hardware Requirements

CPU : 386 or above
Hard disk drive with at least 26 sectors/track.


Power Boot may be purchased electronically either from BMT Micro, or via the OS/2 Supersites rapid internet purchasing facility and comes as a 32KB zipped archive. It installs on your first harddisk but does not require it's own partition on which to be installed nor does it need a FAT formatted partition on which to be installed. The installation executable is DOS based, however, and is therefore run either after booting to DOS or booting with a DOS boot diskette.

Installation on my fully HPFS formatted first harddisk was very easy and quick. This involved unzipping the archive on a diskette, booting with a DOS diskette, running the install executable on the installation disk and following the simple instructions.

Uninstalling was just as easy, involving the same installation steps but instead, selecting uninstall from the first popup menu.


Power Boot is indeed a lean and mean bootmanager. It lacks the frilly appearance of System Commander, in fact looking more like OS/2's bootmanager in simple layout, but Power Boot comes packed with very useful features.

It may be run in simple or expert mode and may even be run in quiet mode where you are not presented with a boot menu but instead the copyright statement. The quiet mode can be interrupted readily by pressing the spacebar.

Power Boot's features include:

Three other features require special mention and each was an absolute winner for me. These were the DOS swap drive, win9x swap drive and OS/2 boot driveletter features.

The DOS swap drive allows you to boot an operating system from a disk other than disk one which needs to boot from drive C:, such as DOS/win3.x. It does this by logically swapping the drives so that the operating system to be booted thinks that it is on the first disk and hence on drive C:. If you get a new hard disk you can then install it as the first hard disk and with Power Boot still be able to boot your old DOS installation on your old disk.

The win9x swap drive feature provides the ability to install on and boot win9x from a second, third, or fourth harddisk. This means that you can install a second harddisk leaving OS/2 on your first disk and then going ahead and installing as well as booting win9x from this new disk.

Adding new disks and creating new partitions can unexpectedly change drivelettering making your OS/2 installation unbootable. Hence the use of the OS/2 boot drive letter feature, which allows you to boot OS/2 from a HPFS partition using any driveletter you need to. This overrides the default driveletter allocation.


Power Boot is an excellent value for the money and provides great loopholes and removes hassles that would normally exist for someone who is installing multiple OS's, creating partitions or adding harddisks to their system especially if this is being done on a system already up and running with one or more operating systems already installed.

So, if you find yourself spending a long time planning how you are going to install another OS on your system without one getting in the way of the other, then Power Boot is a great solution.

Power Boot can be found at:

You can register Power Boot online at BMT Micro - or the OS/2 Super Site -
Registration prices:
$25.00 - Single User License
$230.00 - 25 User License
$525.00 - 50 User License

Dr. Allie Martin
An end user of OS/2 Warp 4

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