+ Commander Keen

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John The Ax
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+ Commander Keen

Post by John The Ax »

This isn't really a problem, but on my old computer, I couldn't run CK under MS-DOS, but could run it under windows. It gave a "Not Enough Memory" thing. Can anyone explain this to me?
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Why I wrote 'Play in right computer'?

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John The Ax
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Post by John The Ax »

You have the same IP as 486 Player. Interesting. WTF do you mean, Play in Right Computer?
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Post by Kazer0 »

I dont want people seeing my IP, u can hack computers with that! And i had that problem with cK, but it was because mycrap-pc that i use has 1.5 mb ram and is a 386.

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Post by lakerzz8 »

only the mods and admins can see your i.p.. and they weont tell anyone unlesss you...i mean THEY ARE SURE NOT TO TELL ANYONE...DONT WORRY!!!!
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Post by procerus »

John The Ax asked:
This isn't really a problem, but on my old computer, I couldn't run CK under MS-DOS, but could run it under windows. It gave a "Not Enough Memory" thing. Can anyone explain this to me?
When you play the game in Windows then Windows is managing the memory for you. When you play a game in DOS you have to set the computer up so that the memory is managed properly.

A game like Commander Keen needs free "conventional memory". This memory is the first 640K of available memory. For legacy reasons (someone called Bill Gates decided that "640K ought to be enough for anybody" when deciding the architecture for DOS) those 640K are all that a PC can access in "real mode". These days everything runs in protected mode instead so that barrier is effectively overcome. But early games need those 640K largely empty to run in.

The problem is that the drivers you need to play the game (sound, mouse and sometimes CD-ROM and disk cache etc.), which are loaded from files called config.sys and autoexec.bat, will fill up this 640K leaving not enough memory for the game to run. So to get enough memory you need to use a memory manager (DOS comes with EMM386) which will load all those drivers "high", which means in memory between 640K and 1MB, and to do this you need to configure those files (config.sys and autoexec.bat) properly. This can be done automatically in DOS by running a program called Memmaker but better results can usually be achieved by hand.

There are also various third party memory managers for DOS like QEMM mentioned in my sig. These usually achieve still better results. But some people (like me :D ) get carried away with this stuff since it becomes a game in itself. No PC game really ever needed more than about 610K of free conventional memory.

Note that there are also various types of memory that have been required by various games and programs over the years. Expanded memory (EMS), extended memory (XMS), DPMI and VCPI and so on. So, in turn, memory managers can also be tweaked to favour different types of memory depending upon the demands of the program or game you're trying to run.

All this confusion and complication was one of the main reasons that Windows has been such a success. Windows dynamically manages memory according to the demands of running programs and it does it seemlessly and usually pretty well. Some of us find it all rather anodyne and boring however.

I'll shut up now. I can go on about this stuff for hours :sleep: so if there's anything more you need to know...
<CENTER><A HREF="http://www.litepc.com/index.html"><IMG SRC="http://www.procerus.btinternet.co.uk/98 ... A></CENTER>
<CENTER>with <FONT COLOR=FF0000><B>629K</B></FONT> of free conventional memory in full DOS mode using QEMM 9.0<BR>(or 628K with <A HREF="http://www.uwe-sieber.de/umbpci_e.html">UMBPCI.SYS</A> providing real mode for <A HREF="http://members.aol.com/axcel216/speed.htm">FastVid</A>) with SmartDrive, CD-ROM,
<A HREF="http://cutemouse.sourceforge.net/">CuteMouse</A>, sound support and <A HREF="http://home.student.utwente.nl/r.muller ... Refresh</A> all loaded high.</CENTER>

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Post by John The Ax »

I hate to break it to you, but I was happy with the first paragraph. The second one was good, too. That is what I wanted to know. Thanks! :thumbsup:
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Post by 486 player »

It was me. I wrote it JUST before I got the confirm message. (Too early thou say) :laugh:

DOS games are meaned to be played in DOS and that means P120 or older. Go! Get it!
NO Windows, NO DOSBox, DOS!

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DOS and CPU power

Post by procerus »

I agree, 486, that DOS games should be played in DOS. They're faster and more stable that way (indeed, I have several games that won't run in any version of Windows). But fast processors are fine. The original DOS version of Flight Unlimited, for example, (IMHO the finest civilian flight sim yet created and I've owned most of 'em) only runs smoothly with max detail and res on a 1Ghz machine!

Looking Glass' foresight also goes for the original System Shock. When you activate the surround-view capability on your military grade cybernetic enhancements you definately need at least a Pentium III. Although FastVid helps too! :laugh:

DOS is scaleable with processor speed. It's just that, unlike Windows, it also works great on slower CPUs! :D
<CENTER><A HREF="http://www.litepc.com/index.html"><IMG SRC="http://www.procerus.btinternet.co.uk/98 ... A></CENTER>
<CENTER>with <FONT COLOR=FF0000><B>629K</B></FONT> of free conventional memory in full DOS mode using QEMM 9.0<BR>(or 628K with <A HREF="http://www.uwe-sieber.de/umbpci_e.html">UMBPCI.SYS</A> providing real mode for <A HREF="http://members.aol.com/axcel216/speed.htm">FastVid</A>) with SmartDrive, CD-ROM,
<A HREF="http://cutemouse.sourceforge.net/">CuteMouse</A>, sound support and <A HREF="http://home.student.utwente.nl/r.muller ... Refresh</A> all loaded high.</CENTER>

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Post by John The Ax »

I know you two have DOS fetishes (I don't think that is how that's spelled), but I don't really don't run my games in DOS if I don't have to. I find it easier to run most under Windows.
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Easier and better

Post by procerus »

Yes, it's certainly easier John, and for most people better, to run games in Windows whatever.

But these games were written before Windows had the capability (due to hardware speed) of running games effectively. Windows was demanding on hardware and so were the games. So you ran games in DOS and less demanding programs, like word processors, in Windows.

And I learnt the hard way. Games wouldn't run because I didn't have enough memory (free conventional memory as I explained above). So I read magazines, I asked friends and I experimented.

So I got all these hard won skills. And then they made the hardware fast enough to run Windows and the games and they invented DirectX.

And like many people with a hard won skill I like to practice it. So I run my DOS games in DOS. They are faster and more stable that way but most people wouldn't notice the difference. And, because I played and loved them all those years ago, I won't give up on my favourite games that won't run in Windows (although many have).

So play them any way you can! DOS games were great then and they're great now. And nearly all of them will now run in Windows. And that's a good thing! :D
<CENTER><A HREF="http://www.litepc.com/index.html"><IMG SRC="http://www.procerus.btinternet.co.uk/98 ... A></CENTER>
<CENTER>with <FONT COLOR=FF0000><B>629K</B></FONT> of free conventional memory in full DOS mode using QEMM 9.0<BR>(or 628K with <A HREF="http://www.uwe-sieber.de/umbpci_e.html">UMBPCI.SYS</A> providing real mode for <A HREF="http://members.aol.com/axcel216/speed.htm">FastVid</A>) with SmartDrive, CD-ROM,
<A HREF="http://cutemouse.sourceforge.net/">CuteMouse</A>, sound support and <A HREF="http://home.student.utwente.nl/r.muller ... Refresh</A> all loaded high.</CENTER>

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Post by John The Ax »

Procerous: Mad DOS skillz! DOSMASTA! I really don't know anyone as into DOS or as good at it as you. You really add to this forum!
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Aw shucks!

Post by procerus »

Now I'm embarrassed! :shame:

Trust me, there are plenty of people who know far more about DOS than me. I just learned what I had to learn to get the darn games to work.

I'm sure emmzee and 486 player and plenty of others know more than I do. I just like going on (and on and on and on :sleep: ) about it! :D
<CENTER><A HREF="http://www.litepc.com/index.html"><IMG SRC="http://www.procerus.btinternet.co.uk/98 ... A></CENTER>
<CENTER>with <FONT COLOR=FF0000><B>629K</B></FONT> of free conventional memory in full DOS mode using QEMM 9.0<BR>(or 628K with <A HREF="http://www.uwe-sieber.de/umbpci_e.html">UMBPCI.SYS</A> providing real mode for <A HREF="http://members.aol.com/axcel216/speed.htm">FastVid</A>) with SmartDrive, CD-ROM,
<A HREF="http://cutemouse.sourceforge.net/">CuteMouse</A>, sound support and <A HREF="http://home.student.utwente.nl/r.muller ... Refresh</A> all loaded high.</CENTER>

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Post by 486 player »

Thou don't have a card in Local Bus?
Try to play System in 320*240 mode.
NO Windows, NO DOSBox, DOS!

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