On Thu, Jul 5, 2012 at 11:27 AM, Bret Johnson <bretj...@juno.com> wrote:
>> So if they aren't overly concerned, I guess I shouldn't be either.
> FWIW, I use MS-DOS on a daily basis instead of FD for reasons
> like this.  MS-DOS is, by far, the most stable of the DOS's, and
> is still the "minimum standard" to which others must compare.

I disagree. While I've used MS-DOS in the past (and it's by far the
most popular DOS), it's not the best overall except in rare cases.
Same with other DOSes. We could probably have interesting discussions
about the pros and cons (lacks, bugs, improvements) of MS vs. DR vs.
FD, etc., but for now I'll avoid that. (Where is Matthias Paul when
you need him? Heh.)

While lots more software was tested with MS in the past, *to me
personally*, there are few reasons to want MS-DOS specifically, if at
all, so I don't miss it. Since FreeDOS is open (and MS-DOS is harder
to buy these days), I think a better goal would be using and improving
that. (And DOSBox gets more commercial use than any, e.g. lots of old
Gog.com games.)

However, for a developer or tester, dual booting (MetaKern?) is
probably the ultimate solution for everything. Then again, as far as
that goes, MS is far inferior to DR, which is far inferior to FD due
to partition installation handling (which was one of the reasons I
ended up having to use DR on my old P166 and also why I didn't bother
re-installing that but instead prefer FD on this Core i5).

> I would classify possible file corruption as a major problem, not
> a side issue.

Sure, if it was 50%, but we're talking like %0.02 (or maybe 5%, I
don't honestly know, but it can't be that high ... feel free to prove
otherwise though).

In all seriousness, real mode and FAT aren't meant for high security.
Bad things are always possible (even in Linux or Windows, you can
still hang or crash the machine by accident). Things could always be
better, but if you're that serious, start writing a pmode ext2 Linux
fs driver for FD.   :-))

> I do tests with FD just to test basic compatibility, but don't
> really trust it 100%.

I don't trust anything 100%, mainly because no software is totally
trustworthy. There are a lot of DOSes (and compatible environments)
for a lot of reasons, and similar to hundreds of Linux distros, we're
not likely to convince everyone to *exclusively* run native, under
VBox, VMware, Win9x, etc. any time soon. So there will always be
environmental issues in software beyond just the kernel proper.

I get it, MS' kernel is pretty good, but it's far from perfect, and
it's far from ideal in getting a copy (most people just use old ones
from years past). FD isn't perfect but is very very very good, thanks
to the hard work of a lot of people (hi, Eric!).

> The FD utilities, as a rule, are more useful
> to me than the kernel.  Some of the FD utilities are just as good
> or even better better than their MS counterparts, while others
> are not.

All software has bugs, just some are more obvious and painful than
others. Seriously, I know it's heavy cliche and exhausting, but if you
have any complaints, start coding, patches accepted! That's the only
way to make progress. (I'm honestly not against binary patching

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