Depending on the version of Windows, the root folder can be accessed from the Windows Explorer simply by expanding My Computer and clicking on the drive. The drive is the root folder or directory. The root directory (folder) can be accessed from the MS-DOS prompt in a DOS Window or Startup floppy (see our How to articles) by (for example):
\ is the symbol for the root directory (or folder).
Changing to the root folder will confer no special powers that will permit copying files that are in use by Windows. Boot to the DOS prompt (hold Ctrl or press F8 just as Windows is booting) to do that with the attrib, cd, copy, dir, md, and xcopy commands. Use
..etc., to learn the syntax for these commands. With exception of MS-DOS 6.22 and earlier, Windows 3.x, Windows for Workgroups 3.1x, and Windows Me, xcopy (and xcopy32) will not copy system and hidden files when used from the DOS prompt. Larry