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I am just getting started with Windows Server 2003, and I am learning the Backup utility. I am creating a complete backup of my server to an external hard drive, and Backup says it will create a recovery floppy for me to use if I need to restore.

I would prefer to create a bootable CD, partly because I haven't even seen a floppy drive in years. Are there any instructions online for creating a bootable recovery CD for Windows Server 2003 that I can use to boot the server and start recovery from my external hard drive? In other words, I want to duplicate the functionality of a recovery floppy on a bootable CD. Thanks

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I hate to say it, but I am pretty sure that you can't. Windows requires it to be a floppy for reasons of their own, just like you have to load third party storage drivers from a floppy instead of something reasonable like a CD during installations.

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The requirement for a floppy drive is hard coded, so there's no option. I've read a few articles over the years where people tried to create a fake virtual floppy drive for this purpose. While that might be fine for writing it's useless for reading when the machine is cold booted. You could however try creating a floppy image that way and then burning it to CD as an emulated floppy. Not something I've ever tried but it may work.

I keep a USB floppy drive for those rare occasions when it's the only option. It's normally sealed inside a zip lock bag, so that there's a reasonable chance of it still working when required. It's got me out of a jam more than once.

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+1 for the USB floppy drive. I keep one handy as well... just in case –  joeqwerty Jan 8 '10 at 0:31
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