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    MAXIForm / MAXI Disk FAQ Sheet

    Additional Information...
  • MAXI Disk
  • MAXIForm
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  • Disk format info

  • What is MAXI?
      MAXIForm and MAXI Disk are floppy disk formatting utilities from Herne Data Systems Ltd. which can format special extended capacity DOS compatible disks. 360k becomes 420k, 720k is increased to 800k, 1.2 meg becomes 1.4 meg, and 1.44 meg is increased to 1.6 meg. MAXI is designed to format floppy disks only. (In a multi user environment, this helps to protect your hard disks from accidental erasure by in-experienced persons trying to use the DOS FORMAT command.) MAXIForm requires PC- or MS-DOS version 3.20 or later. It will not run with earlier versions of DOS. MAXIForm is also compatible with DR-DOS. MAXI Disk requires Windows 3.1 or later.

    What will MAXI do for me?
      Plenty! The extra space MAXI gives you on each disk allows you to store more data on each disk. This lets you use fewer disks for hard drive backups. For example, backing up 20 megs of data from a hard disk using the DOS BACKUP command requires about 55 standard 360k floppies. Using the MAXI 420k format, you only need about 47. With 1.2 meg disks, you will need about 17 disks to backup the same 20 megs, while with the MAXI 1.4 meg format, you only need 14. The extra space also means you can store larger files on a floppy disk. With the size of many software packages, it is virtually impossible to run them from a single 360k floppy and still have any space left over for data storage. With MAXI 420k disks, you get an extra 60k of space on each disk that can be used for your data storage. An extra 60k per 360k disk is 600k per box of 10!! This is like getting more than one and a half disks FREE in every box of floppies you buy. It doesn’t take long for the savings to add up.

    Are the extended capacity disks reliable?
      Absolutely! The MAXI program has been around since the early days of MS-DOS. The MAXI extended capacity disks are just as reliable as normal DOS disks. The data are recorded at precisely the same bit density on each track as normal DOS disks. The extra space is achieved by recovering some of the space that is ‘wasted’ by DOS with filler bytes. (There is so much filler in a DOS disk, that you can get an extra sector or two per track without sacrificing any reliability.) In fact, many other computers and operating systems (equipped with the same disk drives and using the same floppy disks as on PC type machines) have been using that extra space quite reliably for many years before PC/MS-DOS was even developed! We like to refer to this as the ‘space that DOS forgot’. Even Microsoft has recognized this now with their new special DMF disk format used for software distribution.

    MAXI seems to be a free lunch. Where’s the catch?
      As far as we know, there is no ‘catch’! Besides, MAXI is not really a ‘free lunch’ anyway. Think of it more like converting the unfinished a ttic in your house into extra living space. The basic structure has been in place since the house was built; it just wasn’t fully or efficiently utilized.

    Can I use MAXI style disks on other computers?
      Yes. MAXI style disks are usable on any MS-DOS/Windows computer,as long as it is running MS-DOS version 3.2 or later. On some machines, you may need to install our SMAX driver. SMAX is freely available for distribution.

    My computer locks up when using MAXI Disk under Windows '9x. How can I prevent this?
      Note to Norton Anti-Virus Users: Some versions of Norton Anti-Virus auto protect from Symantec (Norton AV) will cause your computer to lock up when using MAXI Disk for Windows under Windows'95 or '98. (Yes folks, you can cause Win'95 or '98 to lock up completely so that only a hard boot will restore your computer!) To prevent the lock up:

      • Open the Norton AV window by starting the program, or clicking on the Norton AV icon on the status bar.
      • Select "Options" from the Norton AV menu or button bar.
      • Select the "Autoprotect" tab.
      • Turn off the option box "Check floppies for boot viruses upon access".
      • Press "OK" and close the Norton AV window.

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