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Old DOS Newbie Seeks Advice (Miscellaneous)

posted by CluelessInSeattl(R), Seattle, USA, 13.07.2012, 03:31

Thanks Rugxulo, for welcoming me to the forum, and for your willingness to help me get back into the saddle again with MS-DOS.

> Do you just need a refresher on the common DOS commands or how to install
> or ... ?

I'm managing pretty well so far. I've got MS-DOS 6.21 installed on the "new" laptop and I am simplifying my config.sys and autoexed.bat files.

Back when I created my MS-DOS writing system I had, and I still have I'm afraid, a crippling tendency to overly complicate things and get side-tracked by the process rather than the goal. So I'm consciously trying to keep that bad habit under control and instead focus on my main goal which is using the laptop for writing -- essentially as a dedicated word processor or glorified typewriter.

The one limitation I'd like to find a way around is the 8.3 filename limitation in DOS. I understand that if I were to run DOS in a DOS box under Windows I would be able to use long filenames. But I would prefer to avoid Windows if at all possible. I much prefer the elegance and transparency of pure MS-DOS.

So I'm wondering if any of the alternative versions of DOS allow longer filenames.

> http://help.fdos.org/en/index.htm
>
> fdisk (create FAT), reboot, format c:, sys c:, xcopy /s a:\*.* c:\dos,
> etc.
>
> Also be aware of FreeDOS' iBiblio mirror (lots of third-party files, not
> counting the FreeDOS kernel, shell, .ISO, etc)

Thanks for those references! I'm sure they will come in handy as I advance with this project. The appeal to me of an operating system like MS-DOS is that it is like working with building blocks, something like playing with LEGOS, so that you can in effect create your own kind of operating system by assembling the commands in different ways.

> Some people swear by MS-DOS' kernel. There's nothing majorly wrong with it,
> depending on what you're actually trying to do. Heck, you can dual boot
> different DOSes (e.g. via MetaKern), but that's probably overkill here.
> Outside of lacking FAT32 and LBA and some minor installation restrictions,
> I think MS-DOS 6.x should be fine.
> this forum.

If I were to switch to an alternate DOS, such as FreeDOS, for example, would my MS-DOS batch files, autoexec.bat and config.sys files be transferable without too much tweaking?

> Feel free to ask or discuss anything DOS-related.

Thanks again for your offer of help. It means a great deal to me to know that there are still folks out there who appreciate this "old fashioned" style of computing.

---
Will in Seattle
a.k.a. "Clueless"
Running MS-DOS 6.21

 

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