On Fri, Jan 23, 2009 at 5:11 PM, Michael Robinson
It is truly sad that Microsoft, since it doesn't support it's
> dos versions of Word anymore, won't allow free redistribution
> of it.  The reality is, there are very few old computers left
> that can only run dos, compared to the number of computers that
> run Linux or Windows.
> If people hand out illegal copies of software, it hurts
> efforts to replace that software with something like open
> office or ReactOS plus Open Office for example.  Why bother
> with free stuff if you can get commercial software without
> paying for it?  If the open source alternatives catch on,
> the legal problems of pirating software go away.
> How about producing an OSS clone of Windows
> 3.11 or Windows 98SE?  The advantage of doing the latter is
> that the clone can be made to work with freedos instead of
> the other way around.  I have never felt that Windows NT
> was a good replacement for dos based Windows.  Microsoft
> did a sloppy job, too many 9x programs want to be run as
> administrator on an 2000/XP system.
> There is experimental support of Windows 3.0 I guess, which
> I don't have, and I question the point of that.  Most copies
> of Windows 3.x are probably disk based and no good anymore.

It might be possible to make an "enhanced" Windows 3.1 clone on FreeDOS with
the use of many different components from different projects. I am not sure
if it is technically feasible or not, but here is my idea:

* Use the DOS HX Extender as a base for lowest level part of Windows 3.x/9x
(win.com, etc.)
* Wine project code could be used for implementing the higher level stuff
(common controls, etc.)
* Calmira for GUI or someone could write a Program Manager for GUI like
Windows 3.x. Personally, I like the style of Windows 3.x over the Windows 95
style of GUI.

Because DOS HX Extender supports OpenGL, it is possible to use WineD3D to
translate DirectX to OpenGL, so DirectX apps may not get left out anyway.
Currently, this is how ReactOS emulates Direct3D.

Doing this kind of work would literally make all the other GUIs obsolete
merely because this particular GUI has a LARGE base of apps to work with.

Additionally, more functionality could be added, like X11 compatibility in
order to bring DESQview/X like functionality to us as FOSS.
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