Gerry Hickman schreef:
Surely it's way ahead of any real-mode o/s Microsoft has ever written?
I'm already using it (with the help of umbpci) to build production
servers with the latest hardware. MS-DOS 5 and 6 are unusable on these
boxes. MS-DOS FDISK isn't scriptable, and can't cope with huge hard
drives, and EMM386 can't cope with SCSI and bootable USB devices
properly. Nor can they manage the memory required for networking and
NTFS drivers. FreeDOS runs all this like a dream without even
switching to prot-mode.
If you have the opportunity to test EMM386 before taking a machine into
production use.. Michael Devore will appreciate it :)
In many aspects FreeDOS (or parts of it) is way beyond MS-DOS indeed.
Finally a chance to implement additional functions in DOS core utilities
that we want.
I don't really understand the interest in this. Why would anyone want
to "install" it? I mean we all have CD-ROM and bootable memory sticks
these days. Why not just release a bunch of files and let people write
their own installers. It's a ten minute job. The convoluted SYSLINUX
installer and crazy FDCONFIG.SYS menus just cause confusion. All you
need is a boot sector, a kernel and a few pure-text config files. Some
guys will create ready-rolled ISOs and that's fine, but I don't see
why it needs to be part of the core o/s.
Some computers need a complete setup of the distribution, for example
when you want to develop more software. Just like a full Linux distro
comes with compilers etc though essentially, Linux is pretty easy to set
up and lightweight. I'm aiming at a usable FreeDOS. If you merely need
some binaries, just get ODIN, a single diskette binary distribution [
I never found the configuration of codepages, keyboard layouts and
user's preferred language an easy thing, so I try to automate it.
if only diskettes were used, I would agree with a simply batchfile which
does UNZIP or XCOPY /S for the contents of several diskettes.
I didn't know LBACACHE would be allowed by Win2000 setup process? Does
it still want Smartdrv then?
Setup process for Win9x is a bit more complex, you need the "SETUP /NM
/IS" command instead of "SETUP", and even then you might still get some
In these days, for Win3.xx goes the same as for DOS: there's a lot of
applications written for it, and this version is pretty lightweight,
unlike any later Windows and ReactOS.
being able to run Windows3.xx and installing Windows from
FreeDOS that are taking some effort.
Why anyone would run Windows 3.x I don't understand, but installing
Windows from FreeDOS is a snap. I have 48 client PCs and 4 production
servers all running Windows 2000 which were installed "hands-free" by
FreeDOS. You can even use LBACACHE during the file copy phase and you
get bags of memory. Way superior to Microsoft DOS.
Although I think Microsoft are trying to make it so you can't install
Windows from real-mode anymore. They are trying to push people towards
WinPE which is only available to rich corporations. You can still do
Windows Server 2003 from FreeDOS, but I don't know about Vista and
Probably WinPE will boot from CD/DVD, then you can dump some
preconfigured image file to harddisk, and then finish installation of Vista.
For me, the bigger issue would be native NTFS, UDF and NFS support,
although I understand these are not really "DOS" as such. I mean how
many FAT32 drives do you see these days? Not many, although I guess
USB removables are causing a major FAT comeback!
true. these filesystems will never be native in DOS. There's not even an
opensource SMB client for DOS. UDF is some kind of (read-only? packet
writing?) filesystem for DVDs?
One thing that crosses my mind a lot is "Should I be using Linux for
boot environments instead of FreeDOS?". I don't know the answer, but I
imagine Linux will cope with very modern hardware such as x64 and
protected execution, serial SCSI, USB and so on, but right now FreeDOS
does everything I need.
Each operating system its own goals and uses :)
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