Hi Marlon / Kaye,

to use DEBUG to change what is LPT1, you put the I/O port at
some memory location (378 for LPT1, 278 for LPT2, 3bc for LPT3)
which you can do for example like this:

d 40:08 l 6

This shows you the current settings, e.g. 78 03 78 02 00 00
if you have LPT1 and LPT2 installed but not LPT3.

a 40:08

This starts a session of "enter assembly code"...

dw 278
dw 378

You leave the edit session by entering an empty line, now
you get a "-" prompt again. Check the results:

d 40:08 l 6

Now it shows 78 02 78 03 00 00, swapping LPT1 and LPT2.


You leave DEBUG with the command "q". You can automate
the whole thing by making a text file with the commands
which you want to type, then doing "DEBUG < myfile.txt".

Instead of the "a" command you can also use the "e" command,
to enter raw bytes of data, but I find "a" easier to read,
because you want to enter words and not just bytes here...

You quoted some BIOS settings about printer ports and those
looked as if you had some mainboard printer port in addition
to the one on PCI expansion card. Maybe you would need some
cable to connect a printer port socket to the mainboard to
actually use it, if it is not already soldered to the board.

Alledgedly, you can also change your BIOS settings or use a
DOS PnP software to configure printer ports and select if a
port is LPT1, 2 or 3 in a more user-friendly way than DEBUG.
You do NOT need to do anything with the serial ports for it.

> 1.  Is it or is it not possible to install freedos in a partition
> of a hard drive by using a flash drive (instead of a CD)?

You can do that, but you first have to install DOS to that flash
drive then. Out of the box, flash drives are not usually set to
be bootable and they are not always DOS-formatted. However, most
computers have no problem to boot from flash drives or SD cards,
so there is no general problem that would be in your way.

When you have booted from SD or USB, the BIOS makes that visible
(often as harddisk, sometimes as floppy) to DOS, so you do not
need DOS drivers for SD or USB at that moment. You will have to
manually check which disk is which, because as said, your flash
storage might be treated as harddisk then. After installing DOS
to your hard drive and booting that, your BIOS will probably no
longer see the need to make USB drives visible to you, so after
the install, you may need DOS USB drivers to access USB drives.

> Earlier today I've made a bootable freedos flashdrive using UNETBOOTIN.
> ... isn't it suppose to be the same as burning the .iso image onto a CD

Not necessarily. USB sticks come in various sizes and are usually
already formatted. When burning a CD, you turn it from blank to
having a fixed content. UNETBOOTIN probably takes some effort to
get you from a variable start state on your USB stick to bootable
with DOS state :-)

> I'm not sure but the installation looked like it went well, but I
> can't boot from it, even if I ran the postinst.bat file.

Maybe you accidentally installed TO the USB stick? See above.

> 2.  If LPT1 is hard coded into the clipper program, can the autoexec.bat in
> freedos be edited in such a way as to somehow redirect the printer to LPT1?

No, but it can automatically invoke tools which do that for you.
In the worst case, that would be calling DEBUG with a text file.
But you can probably find more convenient tools to do the same.

> 3.  A little bit unrelated but I hope you can answer:  A dual boot
> computer, Windows and a Linux Distro.  In Windows, the printer is LPT1.  In
> Linux distro, it is LPT0.  This is an actual thing (our office computer).

You mean lp0, not LPT0. Windows and Linux use different ways to
give names to printer ports. But you can of probably configure
your DOSBOX (or probably better: Use DOSEMU) to gather data that
DOS sends to LPT1 and forward it to the Linux printer driver, a
file or directly to the physical printer port. Read the docs :-)

Cheers, Eric

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