Linked by Thom Holwerda on Sun 28th Jun 2009 17:22 UTC, submitted by Jim Hall
OSNews, Generic OSes MS-DOS is an old piece of work, a long line of operating systems dating back to the early '80s. First a stand-alone operating system, it would later work as a base for Windows, and starting with Windows 95, it became integrated with Windows and was no longer developed as a stand-alone operating system. To fill the gap the end of MS-DOS left behind, the FreeDOS project was started. Today, FreeDOS turned 15.
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Happy birthday!
by wawrzyn on Sun 28th Jun 2009 18:39 UTC
wawrzyn
Member since:
2009-03-24

It's a nice age, so happy birthday. We should only remember that they've spent a lot of time (years) developing this product. And they succeeded. As I remember, it was almost sure some year ago, that the project could be abandoned. But it was not. And that's great.

I'm using FreeDOS for games on my older PCs. It works very good. To be honest, it's also a very good replacement not only for older PCs, but also for some dedicated industrial systems, on which we cannot (or maybe rather don't want) use MS-DOS.

But FreeDOS is rather a hobby operating system for me today. I wonder if someone is using it in his daily work?

Anyway, 15 is... a good result for such project! Congrats to the Father of FreeDOS!!!

Reply Score: 2

RE: Happy birthday!
by jimbofluffy on Sun 28th Jun 2009 18:45 UTC in reply to "Happy birthday!"
jimbofluffy Member since:
2008-07-15

Happy birthday Blinky! I know, I know, he wasn't around for all 15 years.

http://www.freedos.org/freedos/images/logos/

I do use FreeDos on my Compaq 386.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Happy birthday!
by Rugxulo on Wed 1st Jul 2009 03:42 UTC in reply to "Happy birthday!"
Rugxulo Member since:
2007-10-09

It's a nice age, so happy birthday. We should only remember that they've spent a lot of time (years) developing this product. And they succeeded. As I remember, it was almost sure some year ago, that the project could be abandoned. But it was not. And that's great.


As someone "in the know", having more contributors these days would be greatly appreciated. There is a serious lack of manpower. Not completely crippling but definitely annoying. At the very least, more testers would be nice (but developers would be cool too).


I'm using FreeDOS for games on my older PCs. It works very good. To be honest, it's also a very good replacement not only for older PCs,


It's very very hard to find up-to-date software that runs on anything less than a 686. I'm no Linux guru, so maybe that hurts my chances, but I can get more software working in FreeDOS than Linux. (Hardware is a different story, but that's not FreeDOS' fault.) Then again, I'm quite picky in what I want to use, and compiling for DOS just seems so much easier.

but also for some dedicated industrial systems, on which we cannot (or maybe rather don't want) use MS-DOS.


Some people still use MS-DOS 6.22! Even DR-DOS 7.03 is old as the hills. I'm not saying FreeDOS 1.0++ is better in every way, but more or less. ;-)

Reply Score: 1

Too bad
by SoloDeveloper on Sun 28th Jun 2009 18:59 UTC
SoloDeveloper
Member since:
2008-03-16

too bad it does not adhere to the ms-dos command line specs.

for example, typing "dir /b /w > dump.txt" does NOT adhere to the width, files only basic info. those command line peramaters are just not in freeDOS. one of the main reasons i dont use it.

but still, good to see that DOS is still alive! I know of a video store rental chain that uses it.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Too bad
by Rugxulo on Wed 1st Jul 2009 03:43 UTC in reply to "Too bad"
Rugxulo Member since:
2007-10-09

too bad it does not adhere to the ms-dos command line specs.

for example, typing "dir /b /w > dump.txt" does NOT adhere to the width, files only basic info. those command line peramaters are just not in freeDOS. one of the main reasons i dont use it.


What you're referring to is the shell, and you obviously aren't using FreeCOM 0.82pl3 or 0.84-pre2 or even 4DOS. Make sure you're using the latest software (lots of old stuff floating around).

Reply Score: 1

Comment by Elv13
by Elv13 on Sun 28th Jun 2009 19:19 UTC
Elv13
Member since:
2006-06-12

I am always amaze to see how many time per years, even now, I see FreeDos. I repair a lot of computer to make some cash to pay for my study and I can say that almost 30% of manufacturer include FreeDos on their driver disk as a bootable system check & repair solution. Also many bootable tools available as boot floppy/CD come with it. Some great technician tools like the Ultimate Boot CD also run it. In the "windows technician land", FreeDos is everywhere but no body know it exist, that's sad.

Reply Score: 1

What I like on FreeDOS
by theuserbl on Sun 28th Jun 2009 20:42 UTC
theuserbl
Member since:
2006-01-10

What I like on FreeDOS:

- it is small
- it is perfect to learn Assembler. COM-files for example are complete Assemblerbinaries, without EXE-header or so.
- it is the only OpenSource-OperatingSystem I know, which is mature and not a Unix-like System. (Haiku, Syllable and so are comming with Unix-tools and are POSIX-compatible, etc)
- programs on DOS have access to the complete computer. If you write a program for DOS you have not to mind about overlapping windows on your window and redrawing your window and so.
- It is like a bootloader. FreeDOS starts not in RealMode, so it is possible to start any other OperatingSystem from FreeDOS. BeOS for example could be started on Windows95/Windows98 because that reason.

I think there are a lot of more advantages of FreeDOS.

Happy Birthday FreeDOS !

Reply Score: 2

Bootfloppy
by cato_minor on Sun 28th Jun 2009 21:07 UTC
cato_minor
Member since:
2006-02-13

FreeDOS has been invaluable for me when I was in the unfortunate situation of needing a bootfloppy, for example, in order to start a GNU/Linux installation from an external CD-ROM drive on a computer unable to boot from USB. In the days of Linux 2.2, there were also Linux bootfloppies available, but nowadays they are hard to find (or too specialised). FreeDOS is your saviour!

Reply Score: 1

Comment by chemical_scum
by chemical_scum on Sun 28th Jun 2009 22:18 UTC
chemical_scum
Member since:
2005-11-02

My wife is a touch typist who still lives in the era of Wordperfect for DOS. So to make WP 5.1 for DOS available to her on our Ubuntu system, I have installed WP on FreeDOS under DOSEMU.

She really likes to be able to use it full screen looking just the same as it was nearly 20 years ago on our first PC (not our first computer).

Reply Score: 3

Comment by kaiwai
by kaiwai on Mon 29th Jun 2009 04:11 UTC
kaiwai
Member since:
2005-07-06

The unsung hero of the computer world. Its amazing to see the number of commercial applications I have seen by hardware vendors. From motherboard vendors offering firmware updates to big name computer vendors employing it for their restoration procedure.

I know I've been reliant on it in the past when rescuing computers from the brink of oblivion. Even with the availability of WinPE, it lacks the flexibility and the price tag (free!) to pull many away from FreeDOS.

Reply Score: 2

That reminds me... what about FreeDOS-32
by neozeed on Mon 29th Jun 2009 04:55 UTC
neozeed
Member since:
2006-03-03

http://freedos-32.sourceforge.net/

This always sounded interesting, and I've always wondered if it was feasable to say run DOSBox under it... Maybe even port to 64bit space, but use dosbox for old 32/64 compatability.

But then it's just my ramblings... FreeDOS has always been interesting to me but it's been the little dumb windows lacking stuff that's been.. nagging.

Reply Score: 2

DREVILl30564 Member since:
2008-04-18

Hey I didn't know about that project. thanks for posting the link.

BTW happy birthday FreeDOS!!

Reply Score: 1

Rugxulo Member since:
2007-10-09

http://freedos-32.sourceforge.net/

This always sounded interesting, and I've always wondered if it was feasable to say run DOSBox under it... Maybe even port to 64bit space, but use dosbox for old 32/64 compatability.


I'm not sure, last I heard there was "very minimal" development going on with FD-32. They never even officially released 0.0.6, which I found troubling, esp. since that was a few years ago (blech). It's not too stable, kinda buggy "alpha" but interesting nonetheless.

64-bit is mainly a problem due to no V86 mode, but DOSEMU has already tackled that (from what I hear, I honestly haven't tried under x86-64 yet).


But then it's just my ramblings... FreeDOS has always been interesting to me but it's been the little dumb windows lacking stuff that's been.. nagging.


DOSBox can run under HXRT in FreeDOS but needs the non-free MSVCRT.DLL (due to MinGW), probably could be avoided if someone used a different compiler (e.g. OpenWatcom). And before someone gets the wrong idea, DOSBox emulates a bunch of video and sound cards (e.g. GUS or Adlib or SB) as well as lets you adjust the speed or take screenshots. Some older games won't run without it. (DOS still lacks decent sound drivers / libraries for modern chips, though.)

Reply Score: 1

good stuff
by poundsmack on Mon 29th Jun 2009 17:50 UTC
poundsmack
Member since:
2005-07-13

congratulations on 15 years of development. To bad many of the projects that were actively developped have stopped like SEAL and Cude (Gui's. also is open GEM still being developed?), mpxplay (audio player), and a few others. Though I must say, I am anxiously awaiting the 1.1 version. If anyone has any experience in pascal I might be willing to resurect my attempts at creating a nice GUI for FreeDOS.

Reply Score: 2

RE: good stuff
by darknexus on Tue 30th Jun 2009 04:11 UTC in reply to "good stuff"
darknexus Member since:
2008-07-15

More important than a GUI, is there a comprehensive TCP/IP solution for DOS yet? If it had that I'd be willing to get FreeDOS running again, so far though I've not found anything via google or freedos webpages that suggest networking is any easier than it was back in the days of DR-DOS unless it's a Netware network you're trying to connect to.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: good stuff
by Rugxulo on Wed 1st Jul 2009 03:51 UTC in reply to "RE: good stuff"
Rugxulo Member since:
2007-10-09

More important than a GUI, is there a comprehensive TCP/IP solution for DOS yet? If it had that I'd be willing to get FreeDOS running again, so far though I've not found anything via google or freedos webpages that suggest networking is any easier than it was back in the days of DR-DOS unless it's a Netware network you're trying to connect to.


I'm ignorant of all networking stuff, so all I can offer is two links:

http://www.bgnett.no/~giva/

http://sourceforge.net/apps/mediawiki/freedos/index.php?title=Netwo...

Reply Score: 1

RE: good stuff
by Rugxulo on Wed 1st Jul 2009 03:54 UTC in reply to "good stuff"
Rugxulo Member since:
2007-10-09

congratulations on 15 years of development. To bad many of the projects that were actively developped have stopped like SEAL and Cude (Gui's. also is open GEM still being developed?), mpxplay (audio player), and a few others. Though I must say, I am anxiously awaiting the 1.1 version. If anyone has any experience in pascal I might be willing to resurect my attempts at creating a nice GUI for FreeDOS.


Cude == Qube?? (No idea.)

SEAL supposedly has been (barely) resurrected, but I'm not sure what will come of it, if anything.

Last I heard (a year ago??), a new OpenGem was ready to go, but Shane was too busy to release it.

Mpxplay ain't dead yet, 1.57 alfa 1 was just released last week. :-)

FreePascal for FreeDOS recently got fixed (since the borked 2.2.0 release), and various people use it at BTTR's Forum. (One guy prefers VPC, though!)

Reply Score: 1

Mmmmmm!
by Tuishimi on Mon 29th Jun 2009 20:23 UTC
Tuishimi
Member since:
2005-07-06

FreeDOS are my favorite snack food!

;)

Reply Score: 3

DFSee via FreeDOS
by frajo on Tue 30th Jun 2009 13:13 UTC
frajo
Member since:
2007-06-29

FreeDOS is indispensable for me as it is used to boot the "swiss army tool", DFSee by Jan van Wijk, everytime there is trouble with disks, partitions, or file systems. Best known in the eComStation (aka OS/2) community, DFSee does its magic for other OSs, too.

Reply Score: 1

Official FreeDOS 1.1 (in the works)
by Rugxulo on Wed 1st Jul 2009 03:59 UTC
Rugxulo
Member since:
2007-10-09

For the record, a lot of tedious packaging and other things have to be done before FreeDOS 1.1 is ready to be released, and a lack of manpower makes this slow as molasses. Anybody willing to help will be greatly appreciated!! (A lot of minor software has been updated since 2006's 1.0, but putting it all together is another story.)

P.S. FreeDOS kernel 2038 "stable" was released on June 11, 2009. (No COUNTRY.SYS support, though, except in older 2037 "unstable", but 2039 may hopefully fix that.)

Reply Score: 2