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anyDOS Enhancement Project (Announce)

posted by Rugxulo(R) Homepage, Usono, 17.11.2017, 01:24
(edited by Rugxulo on 17.11.2017, 02:12)

> > may I suggest FreeDOS for this effort, as FreeDOS may be distributed,
> > and should perform essentially identical.

I strongly recommend it, too.

> I know about FreeDOS, yes, but I am not a big fan.

Since everything else is dead and buried, it seems unwise to dig through the trash to hope to find something that accidentally still works.

FreeDOS works very well. Even if it doesn't literally support 100% (who does?), it's worth keeping for the 99% of other useful stuff that does still work. (You can dual-boot DOSes via MetaKern.)

> I find it more interesting, and more fun, to use the authentic
> 1980s code. That is the retrocomputing angle.

But FAT32 and LBA didn't exist in the '80s. In fact, PC-DOS and MS-DOS were still using the same code base (until '91 or so). And FAT32 didn't come until, what, Win95 OSR2 or whatever?

> I also hope to get some more interesting stuff running on top, such as
> DESQview, GEOS, DR-DOS Task Manager and so on, and I do not trust 100%
> compatibility in FreeDOS.

Ah, obscure stuff that mucked with undocumented lowlevel details. "Just use DOSEMU2 [and FreeDOS]!"

You can still buy DR-DOS 7.03 online, but you're limited to 64 MB per task. (And you must forcibly use its EMM386 / DPMI all the time. Obviously that needs a 386 anyways.)

EDIT: EDR-DOS is based upon buggy OpenDOS 7.01, which didn't even have all of Novell's fixes. So don't expect miracles, it's not as fully bugfixed as 7.03 (but of course has other additions since 7.03 doesn't support FAT32). BTW, OpenDOS (very limited, not a full release) was "non-commercial only", so it's not technically FOSS (four freedoms).

> Secondly, bootable FreeDOS USB images already exist.
> > RUFUS might help you as a starting point to get a bootable USB stick
> > with a tiny FreeDOS configuration.
> You appear to assume I am working on Windows. I am not.
> Main dev platforms here are Ubuntu and Mac OS X. :-)

Then try reading these (EDIT: additional links):

* FreeDOS 1.1 Bootable USB Image
* FlashBIOS (Debian)
* DualBoot/FreeDOS (Debian)
* Flashing BIOS from Linux (ArchLinux)
* BIOS Update (Gentoo)
* Creating a USB Bootable Storage Device Using FreeDOS (Legacy Systems) (Dell)

> All I need to do now is work out how to make the hard disk bootable,
> and I'm in business.

Use FD SYS [sic]. It comes with the FD kernel download. See "/OEM:..." parameter explanation here.

EDIT: Or doesn't latest EDR-DOS change the system filenames? It may come with its own (modified) FD SYS. Nope, makeboot.bat seems to "diskcopy disk.img" and then manually copy drbio.sys and drdos.sys and to the floppy. Honestly, I forget how to (easily) grab the boot sector from floppy image. Maybe FD SYS can do it ("/DUMPBS", apparently). Or just use third-party tools like WDE or BOOTMGR. I'm sure someone (on freedos-user?) can clarify better than I can.

EDIT #2: Oops, if you're installing to hard disk, then floppy boot sector is of little use. Quoting Wayback's archived page for EDR-DOS: "To install the system files to your hard disk, you will also need the DR-DOS variant of the FreeDOS SYS command v3.5 (source or binary). To format FAT12/16/32 drives, you can use the new DR FORMAT command v1.0 (source or binary). This is based on FreeDOS FORMAT v0.91u with added support for 128K cluster size and some other enhancements;"


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