DOS Games Message Board
DOS Games Discussion
A message board to talk about DOS games, get help, and find old games.
Do NOT post warez or abandonware requests please
 
 FAQFAQ   SearchSearch   MemberlistMemberlist   UsergroupsUsergroups   RegisterRegister 
 ProfileProfile   Log in to check your private messagesLog in to check your private messages   Log inLog in 


VPC thoughts.

 
Post new topic   Reply to topic    DOS Games Discussion Forum Index -> Game Help, Hints and Tips
Author Message
The DOS Master
Newbie
Newbie


Offline
Joined: 14 Jan 2008
Posts: 4
Location: Eastern United States

PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2008 2:21 am     Post subject: VPC thoughts. Reply with quote

Hello everyone! I've been looking through the forums about getting a lot of old PC games working under XP. I guess it was about a year ago that I finally found a solution to the "old games under Windows XP" problem. I found a really neat little gem (completely by accident) that really surprised me.

To give you a little background information, the game I was trying to run was a game released sometime back in the 1990's. A game called Carmageddon. I'm sure several of you have heard of it ... heedless to say, I wanted to be able to play this game for a long time (ever since I built my current PC and upgraded to XP from Win98.)

I'm a DOS fanatic and I still love to play all my old DOS games ... I hated the way XP "emulated" DOS and DOSbox just doesn't work very good for a lot of the "newer" DOS games. (DOS games that were released right around the same time as Windows95 and required a Pentium-class CPU to run.) Rise of the Triad gave me fair video frame rates under DOSbox, but the sound was stuttered and choppy. Duke Nukem 3D had terrible frame rates and bad sound under DOSbox. Oddly enough, both Duke Nukem 3D and Rise of the Triad worked great under XP's "command prompt" - but there was no sound. I tried Carmageddon under DOSbox and it was too choppy to even play. DOSbox just doesn't move fast enough, I guess.

I tried the VDMSound tool with a lot of my DOS games and while it did give me sound in my games, the sound was terrible. It lagged and it was choppy. I did find a utility like VDMSound that worked GREAT - it was called SoundFX 2000. It emulated a Sound Blaster 16 PERFECTLY! I had no stuttering, muttering, or anything else. The problem was that the author of SoundFX 2000 quit the whole project several years ago. I did manage to find his web site and I tried to see if I could still buy the program from him, but the payment site was down, and he never responded to my emails asking to buy a copy of the software. Since the program would only work for 14 days before becoming non-functional ... I had to find a new solution.

So, I went through my piles of computer junk and I found an old motherboard and processor (AMD 5x86 150MHZ CPU, 64MB RAM, S3 Trio32/64 video card, and Diamond Monster 3D II). I threw it together and set it on top of my XP machine's tower. With a little switch I can share my keyboard/mouse/speakers and monitor with my "DOS system." That worked great for 99.9% of my DOS games - all except Carmageddon. Even with the genuine 3Dfx accelerator card, the 150MHz processor is just too slow to give me good frame rates ... (and that's under REAL DOS using REAL hardware.)

So, I really, really, REALLY wanted to be able to play this old game ... but I was beginning to think I was going to have to just scrap the whole idea and let memories be memories. (I could have just bought a faster old computer, but why pay money and spend time on another computer that's only going to run this one game?)

Several weeks later, I stopped at the local grocery store late one night after work to get a gallon of milk. I was browsing through the magazine rack when I saw a copy of MaximumPC's PC HOW-TO magazine. (It also had a CD-ROM included with tons of different apps and stuff.) I saw the magazine and picked it up to read while I "sit and think." (Hey, I like to do something besides just sit there, alright?) Anyhow, there was an article in this magazine that talked about "Virtual" computing. I thought to myself, well, that's neat. So, I popped the CD in my drive and checked it out. They included a copy of Virtual PC by Microsoft on the disc. I installed it and read through the article to see what was up.

OK, OK, I know - you want me to get to the point ... bear with me, because this is where the cool stuff begins!

Well, to give you a heads up - a Virtual PC is exactly that: a Virtual PC. The Virtual PC gives you a CMOS, Award BIOS, hard disk drive (that you choose the size), a Sound Blaster 16 ISA sound card (at the default settings!), a network card, an S3 Trio64 video card (8MB of video RAM, VESA 2.0), and all the RAM you could want (up to your physical computers maximum, of course.) What was NOT included? An operating system. That wasn't a problem for me ... I still have the original disks (or CDs) for every operating system I've ever used ... (DOS 3.0 thru 6.22, Win95-98, Windows 3.1, 3.11, Windows 286, and XP). If you don't have your DOS disks, there are several free OSes (including FreeDOS and OpenDOS) available for free download. (These are compatible with MS-DOS I've read.)

So, I installed Microsoft Virtual PC. I set my Virtual PC to have 64MB of RAM (DOS versions prior to Win95 did not support more than 64MB of RAM), I disabled the network card altogether because DOS networking software doesn't "talk" to Windows ... (and I wasn't interested in doing any networking anyway.) I created a 500MB hard drive, and I told the Virtual computer to use my real floppy disk drive and CD-ROM drive as the floppy and CD drive in the Virtual machine. I inserted MS-DOS Setup floppy #1 in my floppy drive and clicked "Start" to "turn on" the Virtual machine. MS-DOS booted up from the floppy and I installed DOS.

Once DOS was installed, I setup all my device drivers in CONFIG.SYS and AUTOEXEC.BAT to load my CD drivers and the old MSCDEX.EXE program. Once all that was finished, I put my Carmageddon CD into my CD drive and installed it.

The result was UNBELIEVABLE! The frame rates were awesome, and the sound was PERFECT!

I played the game all night and all day for about a week. (I forgot how hard that game is in the later levels!)

Since then, I've used Virtual PC to play the following games/apps under the following OSes:

Warcraft II - DOS 6.2
Zone66 - DOS 6.2 (Disabled ALL upper memory programs!)
Rise of the Triad - DOS 7.1
Duke Nukem 3D - DOS 6.2
XTree Gold - DOS 6.2 & 7.1
Leisure Suit Larry - DOS 6.21 & 7.1
Windows 3.11 - DOS 6.2 & DOS 7.1
Windows 286 - DOS 4.01
Carmageddon - DOS 6.2
DarkSun Shattered Lands - DOS 6.21
Phantasmagoria - Windows95

I did most of these on a P4 3.4GHz system with 1GB of RAM. The exception was Phantasmagoria, which my wife wanted to play on her XP computer: AMD AthlonXP 2GHz with 1GB of RAM. My wife's computer is a lot slower than mine (only a 233MHz bus) but it still runs Virtual PC plenty fast enough to run the Windows 95 operating system.

If you have games that you can't get to work right under DOSbox, then try running them under REAL DOS. Believe it or not, Microsoft offers Virtual PC for FREE - download it directly from them at the following URL:

http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyId=04D26402-3199-48A3-AFA2-2DC0B40A73B6&displaylang=en

Virtual PC works under Vista, & XP. Additionally, you can run Vista or XP in the Virtual machine. (I have not personally done this.)

On a last note, Microsoft says that they do NOT support Virtual PC for running Win9x or MS-DOS, but I have run all of them without any problems at all - just remember to keep the hard disk sizes below 1GB if you are going to install a FAT16 DOS! Also, don't bother setting more than 64MB of RAM for your Virtual PC if you are running any DOS before version 7 because those versions will not "see" more than 64MB.

If anyone has questions or comments, drop them in the forum and I'll do my best to help you out.

Please do not ask me where to get illegal copies of proprietary operating systems! You can buy legal MS-DOS and older versions of Windows for cheaper than dirt on eBay. (If you DO decide to buy a copy of MS-DOS from somewhere, try to get version 6.2 or 6.22 ... these versions give the best utilities and have not given me any problems with any DOS applications.)

Good luck!
Back to top
dosraider
Admin
Admin


Offline
Joined: 15 Mar 2005
Posts: 9246
Location: ROTFLMAO in Belgium.

PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2008 5:53 am     Post subject: Reply with quote

Moved from Get games to work, reason: you don't give any concrete help how to set up correctly VPC with Dos and eventually W9X.

Had you written a complete and comprehensible howto about setting up correctly a good working VPC with sound/shared files/LAN connection and without all the non-to-the-point chatter I would have pinned it on top.

Edited topic title, reason: "A new approach to DOS under Windows XP ... check it out!", it's not a new approach, it's in fact a very old one, sorry.
The first VPC was released by Connectix for the Mac users, as the Mac was a complete screwup for dos/win based programs. Later the application is bought by MS, adapted to the Windows platform and released as MS VPC.
So: a 'new' approach, nope, really not.
"New", hardly, and also far from the only one, nor the best virtualisation application:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comparison_of_virtual_machines

Dosbox 0.72 can handle all you mentioned, with maybe exception of W286(that's the only one in that list I haven't tested in dosbox yet).

Dosbox 0.72 is much easier for the average help seeker.

But your post was a nice read, and it's appreciated.
Back to top
The DOS Master
Newbie
Newbie


Offline
Joined: 14 Jan 2008
Posts: 4
Location: Eastern United States

PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2008 2:12 pm     Post subject: VPC ... new to me as of 07/2007 ... Reply with quote

Greetings, all. The problem I have with DOSbox as opposed to other solutions (whether they be real DOS, VPC, etc) is that my definition of "playable" and "game X works ..." seem to be different from everyone else's.

You say you were able to play Carmageddon under DOSbox? Was it good? When I say. "good" I mean did it play smoothly in full-screen, no sound stuttering, no frame-skip, and in hi-res mode? I got the game to work myself under DOSbox, but not in the hi-res mode. (I'm not talking about 3Dfx mode ... but the 640x480 VESA mode.)

Also, I never said Virtual PC was the ONLY one ... just the one that I've been using. The best virtualization software that I have seen is the VMWare Workstation. It supports a lot of stuff the VPC does not support. (Like USB.) However, VMWare's system is about $200, and DOS never supported USB (at least, not any of the MS-DOS OSes anyway ...) So, I use VPC because it runs my DOS stuff just fine. I've also installed several Windows OSes on it without problems. DOSbox didn't like it when I tried to install Windows 3.11 on it.

I didn't go in-depth with details on setting the program up because I didn't expect anyone to really have a problem getting it to work. I figure most (not all) but most people trying to play DOS games today are people like me who grew up with DOS. I know DOS probably better then I do Windows. Setting VPC up is pretty straight-forward, really. Anyone with a pretty good sense about computers wouldn't have any problems.

I find it interesting that you would claim DOSbox to be easier to setup than VPC. I didn't personally have any trouble getting DOSbox up and running on my system, but I thought it was kind of complex. I could see where a lot of people might have trouble with it. That's why I offered a different solution. Of course, if you don't really know DOS and aren't used to the way a real computer with a real DOS on it operates, I can see where DOSbox might be easier. But, again, I consider the target. Isn't the target for this whole DOSbox thing for users of the DOS era? My kids don't even know what DOS is ... let alone how to use it...

I was just offering a solution that was new to me. So, while "hardly new" very well might apply to you ... it's a fairly new concept to me. Speaking of VPC and DOSbox, have you even tried using VPC to run DOS games under native DOS within Windows? If not, give it a try, you might like it ... especially if you are proficient with DOS. Heck, worst case scenario is you hate it and then you can just delete it off.

Well, good day everyone ... I've got to go to work ... the money is calling.
Back to top
dosraider
Admin
Admin


Offline
Joined: 15 Mar 2005
Posts: 9246
Location: ROTFLMAO in Belgium.

PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2008 3:14 pm     Post subject: Reply with quote

Why don't you read some of the post for help in the get games to work before stating who's asking for help usually?
You will be amazed, most are what I call Windows-babies, the only thing they know is point and click.
Let stand that most of them would be capable of setting up VPC and MSDos on it.
They even have no idea how to set up mscdex.exe in dos.
Most flip completely when you talk about a 'prompt' or a command line.
The ones who knows MSDos rarely ask for help, dosbox is easy for them.

VPC/Dos is beaten by dosbox 0.72, certainly for dosgaming, and the ease of use for gaming.

And FYI: I don't have to 'try' VPC anymore, I'm a fervent user of it, probably long before you ever heard it existed. But not for dosgaming since dosbox 0.72.

As for the 'smoothness' of games, it mainly depends how good your PC is. You can hardly expect games in dosbox to run smoothly on a crappy PC, or a PC filled up with all kinds of crap, same goes for VPC.
And you don't need a new beefy PC to run demanding games in dosbox, my home PC is a 2 year old AMD3500+ with 1Gb Ram. And games run fine in dosbox. (And in VPC too, yes).
VPC (gaming wise) is for me ourdays an instrument to run recalcitrant W95/W98 games in. Not for dosgaming.

And I even haven't mentioned the CVS dosbox builds, maybe you should give those also a look, lots to discover there, certainly for someone with a more than 'basic' dos knowledge.

If you had some problems with dosbox/W3.X glance@
http://vogons.zetafleet.com/viewtopic.php?t=9405
I've got my W3.11 running better in dosbox than in VPC. -( Really ! )-
Except not for dosgames under dosbox/W3, but that was always bitchy anyway.
Back to top
The DOS Master
Newbie
Newbie


Offline
Joined: 14 Jan 2008
Posts: 4
Location: Eastern United States

PostPosted: Fri Jan 18, 2008 3:28 pm     Post subject: Good points ... Reply with quote

You have good points, most people do prefer a point-and-click interface. I'll admit that perhaps I'm an odd-ball when it comes to some of this stuff (referring to DOSbox, VPC, and emulation in general) I tend to find the "hard" stuff to be easier. When I say the "hard" stuff, I mean the things that everyone else seems to have trouble with.

Maybe the true point of my argument should be that if you are a DOS ace, you might prefer something that is more like a "computer" and less like a "work-around" to get your old games working.

I don't know if I've just had bad luck with DOSbox, or what ... but Carmageddon didn't run worth a crap under it. I tried it on a couple of the computers in the house and none of them did well. VPC gave me the best performance with it. Carmageddon didn't run great an a real system with real DOS without a genuine 3Dfx video card anyway. My old AMD K6 233MHz system played the game great back in the late 1990's, but only because I had a 3Dfx card installed. I once tried to run the game in the high-resolution mode (not 3Dfx mode) and the game ran like crap. Mind you, that's on the top-of-the-line hardware at the time.

DOSbox ran the game fine for me in low-resolution, but the DOSbox system itself just wasn't fast enough to run that game in the high-res mode. DOSbox does not emulate a 3Dfx chip, so running the game in Voodoo mode wasn't an option.

Of course, the sound timings were all off. I managed to get them close by "tweaking" the settings and whatnot, but never perfect.

I finally deleted DOSbox altogether when I discovered VPC. Mind you, VPC was not the first time I heard of PC virtualization ... it was just the first time I found one that worked good, and didn't cost a boat-load of money.

I tried that freeware bochs PC emulator, and it was slower than DOSbox. DOSbox worked great for really old games, but not for the newer ones. (Not for me, anyway.)

I have used VPC on my system, my wife's computer, my son's computer, and my daughter's computer. I haven't tried it on my laptop yet, but it works good on the other 4 PC's in the house.

I guess what it really all boils down to, is stick with what works for you. I was just offering an alternative to DOSbox for anyone who might be like me and want to try something else. You say you have used VPC for a long time, but there's probably a ton of people who still don't know it exists.

If someone out there really knew and used the old DOS, they would likely prefer VPC over DOSbox. Personally, I like typing "VER" in and seeing the familiar "MS-DOS Version x.xx" ... call me overly nostalgic if you want, but that's just me.

Well, the world of Darksun has been waiting for me all week ... have a good one everyone and thanks for the read!
Back to top
dosraider
Admin
Admin


Offline
Joined: 15 Mar 2005
Posts: 9246
Location: ROTFLMAO in Belgium.

PostPosted: Fri Jan 18, 2008 5:32 pm     Post subject: Reply with quote

Dosbox 0.72 works fine for the 'newer' dosgames too.
Try some of the CVS builds one day, glide support, 3Dfx support also.
And that's a bit the drawback for me in VPC, the best that one can do is a S3Virge, with zero 3D support.
Not that I don't like VPC, just not anymore for dosgaming.

Makes me wonder, do you have a 64bit OS around? Try the latest VPC for those, even better then the 32bit one. Runs even Vista32 in it at good speed, great to try stuff out.(Just a thought).

At the end it's all what we are used to employ I guess, what you feel comfortable with is the one you like.
Me my alltime fav was my old 486, t'll the power supply was smoking a bit last year, must repair that one, one day ....
So nowadays it's my P1/100. But dosbox 0.72 seems more compatible than MSDos ever was.
Or should I say all those drivers that were a bit crappy? Good for one game and screwing up the all the others.
Back to top
Dogbreath
Admin
Admin


Offline
Joined: 14 Sep 2002
Posts: 4627
Location: In the back of a jacked-up Ford.

PostPosted: Fri Jan 18, 2008 10:57 pm     Post subject: Reply with quote

DOS master: May I ask when the last time you used dosbox was? Because back around 2002, 2003, I tried using dosbox (0.60 at that time?) and absolutely hated it because it ran everything like shit. For years I ranted about how horrible it was and did my best to get people to use alternatives.

Except now, NOBODY uses dos, or even Windows 98 or earlier machines. Hell, I finally scrapped my Win98SE computer this summer, and I've had it since I was a kid. But that's not too bad, because for the past year or so (since 0.70 anyway) dosbox has been running damn near perfectly. There's still some tweaking left to do, but for the most part, it does everything I want it to.

But keep using VPC! It's a good idea, it's just that most people are too lazy/inept to bother. (Including me, sadly. I'm in college, don't have the time to mess around on computers much)
Back to top
Bowser555
Newbie
Newbie


Offline
Joined: 09 Aug 2008
Posts: 1
Location: Ohio

PostPosted: Sat Aug 09, 2008 1:17 pm     Post subject: Reply with quote

DOS Master, or anyone else who can help:

I'm having problems running some small games in DOS using Virtual PC. For example, despite having 128 RAM, Gizmos and Gadgets complains of having not enough RAM (it needs a whopping 550K).

Another game, Crime City, just shows a blank screen. It used to play, but I had no mouse in DOS, and the arrow keys would move the mouse way too fast. Since i installed a mouse in DOS, the game doesn't do anything but a black screen.

Any ideas?

Please e-mail me.

> snipsnap< @gmail.com
We're NOT running a callback service.
DON'T post your email adress.
Read the rulez please
~dosraider
Back to top
dosraider
Admin
Admin


Offline
Joined: 15 Mar 2005
Posts: 9246
Location: ROTFLMAO in Belgium.

PostPosted: Sat Aug 09, 2008 1:36 pm     Post subject: Reply with quote

Bowser555 wrote:
For example, despite having 128 RAM, Gizmos and Gadgets complains of having not enough RAM (it needs a whopping 550K).

The amount of attribued RAM in VPC setup has NOTHING to see with the base memory you have in Dos/VPC.
Input mem at the dosprompt to know the amount of FREE base memory in Dos.

BTW, more then 64 MB ram in VPC setup for a pure Dos VM is quit useless ......MSDos6.x can only see 64 MB maximum.


[Edit]
And to get mouse and soundsupport in VPC run the VM Dos addons from the floppy img.

[Editē]
For the mentioned games you'd better use dosbox 0.72, really.
Back to top
emmzee
Site Admin
Site Admin


Offline
Joined: 14 Sep 2002
Posts: 2402
Location: Ontario, Canada

PostPosted: Sat Aug 09, 2008 1:46 pm     Post subject: Reply with quote

There's an old Microsoft Knowledgebase article here explaining the various forms of DOS memory:
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/37242

The summary is, like dosraider said the amount of RAM you have (or in VPC how much you define) doesn't usually matter too much for DOS programs, it's the amount of conventional memory (the max of which is 640k) which is important. So in this image:

The "Free" amount under the "Conventional" line is what you're looking to increase; you need to get that number above 550k.

Here's a couple articles suggesting changes to your autoexec.bat and config.sys files that may help you get enough conventional memory to run the game:
http://www.pcguide.com/opt/opt/ramDOS-c.html
http://www.knowplace.org/pages/morgue/optimizing_dos_memory.php

[Edit: But yeah, try DOSBox first cuz if that works then you won't have to bother with VPC at all Laughing]
Back to top
dosraider
Admin
Admin


Offline
Joined: 15 Mar 2005
Posts: 9246
Location: ROTFLMAO in Belgium.

PostPosted: Sat Aug 09, 2008 2:17 pm     Post subject: Reply with quote

VPC2007
MSDos 6.22
32MB RAM attribued in VPC setup.

My autoexec.bat:
Code:

SET SOUND=C:\SB16
SET BLASTER=A220 I5 D1 H5 P330 T6
SET MIDI=SYNTH:1 MAP:E
C:\SB16\DIAGNOSE /S
C:\SB16\MIXERSET /P /Q
PROMPT $P$G
PATH=C:\;C:\DOS;
SET TEMP=C:\TEMP
SET TMP=C:\TEMP
REM LH c:\DOS\smartdrv.EXE /L /X 1024 512 /V
LH C:\DOS\IMOUSE.COM
LH C:\DOS\NLSFUNC
LH C:\DOS\KEYB BE,,C:\DOS\KEYBOARD.SYS
LH c:\DOS\mscdex.EXE /S /V /D:CD003 /M:5
VERIFY ON
BREAK ON


My config.sys:
Code:

DEVICE=C:\DOS\HIMEM.SYS /VERBOSE
DEVICE=C:\DOS\EMM386.EXE NOEMS
DOS=HIGH,UMB
BUFFERS=15,0
FILES=30
LASTDRIVE=I
SHELL=C:\DOS\COMMAND.COM C:\DOS\ /P
DEVICEHIGH =c:\DOS\ATAPICD.SYS /D:CD003
COUNTRY=032,,C:\DOS\COUNTRY.SYS


Gives me in VPC2007/MSDos 6.22:
Code:


Geheugentype           Totaal   =    Gebruikt + Vrij
----------------       -------       --------   ------
Conventioneel            640K         23K       617K
Upper                     79K         70K         8K
Gereserveerd               0K          0K         0K
Extended (XMS)        31.601K        269K    31.332K
----------------       -------       --------   ------
Totaal geheugen       32.320K        363K    31.957K

Totaal onder 1 M         719K         93K       625K

Maximum omvang uitvoerbaar programma         617K (631.712 bytes) 
Maximum beschikbaar upper memory block         6K   (5.664 bytes) 
MS-DOS aanwezig in HMA.

617 Kb free base mem, 32 Mb total memory, I don't know any dosprog that will claim it hasn't enough memory .........
Remark:
-> Sound is set to SB,220,5,1,H5.
-> Mouse driver loaded.
-> CD drive.
-> Smartdrive is REM'ed out, anything that's better than a 486DX2 doesn't need smartdrive.

And should you use the files, adapt language settings to yours, is now AZERTY/Belgium.
Back to top
The DOS Master
Newbie
Newbie


Offline
Joined: 14 Jan 2008
Posts: 4
Location: Eastern United States

PostPosted: Thu Sep 04, 2008 4:31 am     Post subject: Update ... Reply with quote

Hello all. it's been a while ... too long probably. (Or not long enough ...)

An update to my original view of DOSbox:

I've been playing with a later version of DOSbox (0.72) on my new PC (she's not so new at this point, pushing 8 months old now). I wouldn't have ever picked it back up, but (much to my surprise) I found a game that would not work under VPC for some reason.

WarCraft II simply would not run under VPC. I forget the exact error message I got, but it was something like, "Fatal exception in WAR2.EXE" or something to that effect. I tried both DOS 6.2 and DOS 6.21, both gave me the same error. I also tried a clean boot which didn't make any difference. I might tinker with it some more later, maybe try DOS 5, or maybe I'll try it under Windows 95/98 ... I'll post more on that later.

In the meantime, I thought, "What the heck, I'll give DOSbox another go ..." So, I downloaded the latest version (at the time) and installed it. The game worked fine ... of course, I had to slow the CPU cycles WAY down ... it was like watching everything in fast forward.

Here's an interesting point that probably doesn't belong in this thread, but since I'm actually here to reply to something that IS related to this thread, I'll make this as short as I can: (all you DOSbox die-hard fans can ponder over this, let me know what you think!)

OK, like I said, I got War2 to work fine under DOSbox .72. The part that didn't work was the Warcraft II Expansion (The Dark Portal). Interestingly, it wasn't the expansion itself that didn't want to work ... but rather, it was the installer. Every time I tried to install the expansion, it would install all the way to 100% and then give me an error ... I forget exactly what the error was, but then the whole game stopped working. I'd have to delete the entire WAR2 directory and re-install War2.

I tried installing the game under straight WinXP, but the installer didn't even run. No error message, just nothing.

Anyone know what's up with that? It's not a big deal to me because I have a real DOS machine with a real Sound Blaster card, serial port mouse, etc. I just installed the game and expansion on the real deal, and then used Windows 98 to copy the whole installed game from that computer to my XP computer across my network. Once I updated the "mounted" drive in DOSbox, the game ran fine with the expansion pack installed. Anyway ... I guess that's a work-around if anyone else has the same problem.

Moving on ...

You do not need to install any VMadditions to get mouse and sound support in VPC. The mouse is automatically emulated (as a PS/2 mouse, I think) and DOS will use it if there's a compatible mouse driver installed.

Also, a Sound Blaster 16 is emulated (provided you have it turned on in the VPC settings.)

The only time I ever use any of the VMadditions stuff for pure DOS mode, is when I want to use the FSHARE program, but it's kind of rare that I ever do.

I use the standard Microsoft mouse driver, and the OAKCDROM.SYS CD driver that comes with Win9x in my DOS boot setup. I also use EMM386. I get 601KB free conventional memory.

My CONFIG.SYS

Code:

DEVICE=C:\DOS\HIMEM.SYS
DEVICE=C:\DOS\EMM386.EXE NOEMS HIGHSCAN I=B000-B7FF
DOS=HIGH,UMB
FILES=30
BUFFERS=20
FCBS=4,0
STACKS=0,0
LASTDRIVE=Z
DEVICEHIGH /L:1,11264 =C:\DOS\OAKCDROM.SYS /D:CD001
SET PATH=C:\;C:\DOS;C:\UTIL


My AUTOEXEC.BAT:

Code:

@ECHO OFF
PROMPT $P$G
LH /L:3,27952 C:\DOS\MSCDEX.EXE /D:CD001
LH C:\DOS\MOUSE.COM
SET BLASTER=A220 I5 D1 H5 T6


Another option for you is to use an older version of DOS, if you have it. DOS 5 used less memory for itself than the later versions did, and most DOS software works fine under DOS 5.

Of course, you could always go the DOSbox route ... but I still prefer REAL DOS myself.

As far as your one game that gives a black screen, check to see if there is a FAQ or README.TXT included in the game directory. I learned a LOT of stuff about DOS and old games (back in the day) by reading all the little tech docs and README.TXT files that came with all my games. There might be something in there about that game running under certain conditions or something. I had an issue with VPC and one of my old games ... as it turned out, the game had a glitch with the S3 Trio 64 chipset that VPC emulates. The game offered a work-around and it got it going fine. The only game I've come across so far that wouldn't play was Warcraft II ... and I'm not entirely sure at this point that it's because of VPC itself ... I think the problem is probably with War2 itself. (I just haven't figured out the root cause yet.)

Good luck!

One last thing ... the latest game I've used VPC to play is Diablo. I have 7 PCs in my house. All but one runs WindowsXP. I couldn't get Diablo (the first one) to run under XP to save my skin. So, I created a virtual machine and installed Win98. Diablo works great under Win98. I then used the VPC networking components to launch a multiplayer network game over the old IPX/SPX protocol. So, I had 4 physical PCs running WinXP SP2 - each running a copy of VirtualPC running a copy of Win98. Then, my wife, myself, and my two kids all sat down and played ourselves a nice multiplayer co-op game of Diablo across our existing XP network. So, in short ... DOSbox might be warming my heart just a drop by its performance with War2 ... but VPC blows it away in my opinion - that Diablo multiplayer game was just neat, all the way around.

Good Night everyone!
Back to top
dosraider
Admin
Admin


Offline
Joined: 15 Mar 2005
Posts: 9246
Location: ROTFLMAO in Belgium.

PostPosted: Thu Sep 04, 2008 5:14 am     Post subject: Reply with quote

Read the dosbox readme, more especially the Serial Multiplayer feature which emulates a serial conn pretty good, very interesting to multiplay older games.
And of course the IPX section that allows you to run a server/multiple connect to a server and you'll see that it works as well as VPC .....
Just a thought.
Happy

Not that I want to pretend it works better than VPC connect, but it certainly isn't harder to do, and certainly it's more n00b friendly as you don't have to set up a complete OS, it's all there and ready to run.

VPC/W98 isn't very complicated to set up when you have lived through all those things, but for XP/Vista babies it can be a frustrating experience.
Heck, half of them even couldn't do a XP install. Half? 90% probably can't.

And as for the VMaddons: it's easy to use and it sets up the stuff for you.
If you want to advise setting up the stuff yourself, at least write a complete and comprehensible howto for those who even never have heard of config.sys/autoexec.bat. Plenty of those around.

Once again: do some reading in the GetGamesToWork sub, and cry.
Back to top
Display posts from previous:   
Post new topic   Reply to topic    DOS Games Discussion Forum Index -> Game Help, Hints and Tips All times are GMT - 5 Hours
Page 1 of 1

 
Free Windows games


Powered by phpBB © 2001, 2005 phpBB Group and Ask an Expert
Also powered by Darren and the other admin and mods' hard work! ;)