> Here is what ultimately determines the feasibility:
> is 'SHCDX33A" a fileor a directory? if a file, is it exe or com?

You mean our alternative for mscdex? It is a second level driver.

> when you 'activate' the fdos from the 'c' drive being shared
> with 98, everything goes well except the message:
> "no drives assigned SHCDX33A could not load!".

Then you failed to load the first level driver. No real problem,
it only means you will be unable to use cdrom/dvd in FreeDOS
until you install suitable drivers.

I have no experience with dosusb, ask in a dosusb forum.
When in doubt, assume dosusb and shsucdx / shcdx33a cannot
be used at the same time ;-)

First level drivers can be for example gcdrom for sata or xcdrom
for atapi ide or uide which is a combined driver with a bit of a
cache and also harddisk ide/sata udma drivers. The latter is of
course already done by the BIOS if you are lucky. Read the docs
carefully, I have no experience in configuring uide for your task.

Summary: For cd/dvd access, first load a first level driver.
This can be done in config sys or via devload. Devload can be
used in batch files and at the prompt. The first level driver
depends on the hardware. Dosusb might contain one for USB CD.

After that, you load shsucdx. That can be done at the prompt
or in a batch file and maybe also in other ways. To make the
drivers able to find each other, you normally have to tell
both which device name they should use, for example fdcdrom1.

The drive letter is generated by shsucdx, you can also tell it
which letter you want. Not one which is already used by other
harddisk or ramdisk or floppy, of course. You can also add a
cache between both, that makes things a bit more complicated.

Without first level driver, shsucdx cannot help you, but without
second level driver, the first level driver already supports
basic commands such as opening the tray or playing audio via
the analog output in case your drive has such a connector.


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