This actually sounds similar to a problem I was having with FreeDOS, which I 
needed to work around in my programs.  In my case, the problem is actually with 
how FreeDOS allocates memory.  I don't know for sure if this is the same thing 
or not, but it could be related.

In my particular case, the problem occurs when I try to install a TSR in 
CONFIG.SYS using the INSTALL= option.  FreeDOS installs its code, including the 
code it needs to return to when it's done "installing" my TSR, at the top of 
conventional memory.  In and of itself this is not a problem.  But, the memory 
that the FreeDOS kernel uses is simply used without actually being allocated 
(there is no MCB to prevent other programs from trying to use the same memory).

My programs intentionally use the upper end of conventional memory themselves 
(part of the process they use to minimize memory use).  The result is that my 
programs clobber the memory that the kernel was using, and everything crashes 
when my program exits.  The root cause is a bug in the FreeDOS kernel (not 
always allocating memory with an MCB like it should), not with my programs.  My 
programs are able to detect the problem and "work around" it.  AFAIK, this only 
occurs in FreeDOS and not any others (at least not MS-DOS or PC-DOS).

Again, I don't know if this is actually related or not, but it sounds like it 
could be.
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