On Sat, Aug 11, 2018 at 12:22 PM, Tom Ehlert <t...@drivesnapshot.de> wrote:
> as an anecdote: in 2001, the official compiler was MSC 6.0 and MASM.
> nobody cared either, and everybody used happily the (free) Turbo C 2.01
> and TCPP 1.0.

IIRC, Pat V. himself wanted the kernel to be able to build with
relatively easily-available tools (compiler, assembler, etc), e.g.
Borland C. Later (in 2000? 2002?), Turbo C for DOS was made freeware
(but can't be redistributed) from the Borland's Antique Museum (after
login). And OpenWatcom (OSI approved ... barely) only appeared in 2003
after much work by Sybase (Kendall Bennett, et al).

A lot of things will indeed rebuild with either, but some require
other tools. This is obviously not ideal, but few people who
complained were willing to put in the time to fix it. Some problems
are easier to ignore, especially when the original maintainer isn't
available to help.

I took a closer look at many text editors back in the day. It depends
on what features you really need or want. So there are (too) many
choices. Personally, even though people love the familiarity, I
dislike FD Edit only because it's limited to 64 kb files or less
(albeit more than one). At the time I found that inconvenient, so I
never used it much. Hence I preferred others, and most of the really
good ones can be rebuilt with DJGPP (albeit requiring 386+, which is
far from burdensome these days).

So I tended to use TDE (my fav) and sometimes others (VILE, JED).
There's also e3-16 (less than 4 kb!), which builds with NASM, which
honestly isn't perfect but not too bad (although limited to 32 kb
files, lacks support for *nix-only LFs). Oh, and GNU Emacs, of course,
whose DJGPP build was last updated in 2015. IIRC, VIM dropped DOS
32-bit support with 8.0 a few years ago, but maybe you can still
rebuild the older version. OpenWatcom comes with its own VI clone,
too. Oh, and FreeDOS Edlin is GPLv2 and builds with OpenWatcom (among
others).   :-)

I don't hate FD Edit (hi, Aitor!), but I wouldn't consider it top
priority. We'd probably better spend our time converting / fixing FD
FDisk or similar crucial util. (I did semi-recently fix / rebuild
Format with OpenWatcom, but it's one of those utils that doesn't get
good testing. So we have to be careful in our changes!)

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