Hi,

On Wed, Aug 9, 2017 at 7:11 PM, Jerome Shidel <jer...@shidel.net> wrote:
>
> Just replacing the COMMAND and SYS files won’t really give you 1.2. It would
> just be 1.1 an upgraded kernel. Take a look at the software comparison chart
> on the official FreeDOS software repository.
>
> http://www.ibiblio.org/pub/micro/pc-stuff/freedos/files/repositories/1.2/pkg-html/comparison.html

Or you could just look closer at specific categories that are relevant
to your usage:

http://www.freedos.org/software/

BASE, Archivers, Boot tools, Development, Editors, Emulators, Games,
Networking, Sound, Utilities

(I know it's the same thing, but it's easier to me to only have to
look in Sound for relevant sound/music tools than scroll through a
list of hundreds of programs, even if sorted / ordered.)

So, obviously, kernel and shell are supremely important, but the
changes were minor (2040 -> 2042) or even non-existent (FreeCOM).

I wouldn't recommend to overload yourself with worries about updating
literally everything. I dislike having a billion files that are all
falsely considered "important".

I would suggest focusing only on your most commonly used utils and
system drivers (e.g. JEMM).

Honestly, a lot of stuff hasn't seen major changes. And for things
like compilers (e.g. FPC), the upgrade path is usually to delete and
reinstall from scratch anyways.

> The FreeDOS 1.2 installer will backup your config files. Also, if the new
> system directory (C:\FDOS), already exists, it will also backup and replace 
> it.
> So, make sure you have plenty of free disk space.

Yes, always have backups, if possible, but I don't think you need to
backup literally everything.

I guess you could always cat or dd from atop *nix the relevant
partition into a .img file. Or, for Windows, use something like this:

https://sourceforge.net/projects/win32diskimager/

> However, that assume everything works as designed and nothing goes wrong.
> I highly recommend you create your own backup of anything important.

Okay, but anything unmodified from stock builds (e.g. easily available
on reliable online mirrors) isn't worth backing up. You can always
re-download DJGPP or FPC again without worries. (These take up a ton
of space but are also quickly updated / obsoleted, so it's not worth
preserving them to backup, IMHO, without a good reason.)

> The first step in that process would be to make a known good bootable
> backup. Format a floppy and preform a sys transfer to that diskette. That way 
> you
> can easily boot that floppy and restore your kernel. I would also copy your
> current autoexec.bat and config.sys to a directory on the floppy along with 
> any
> drivers you may require.

Is this an ancient machine? Why can't he backup to USB jump drive
instead? They certainly have higher capacity (and are dirt cheap
nowadays). A good boot floppy can be useful, I'm not disagreeing.  ;-)
  But overall it's a very limited medium for backups.

> Also, please be sure you have good backups for any games you have. I
> wouldn’t expect any serious problems. But, you never know. On top of that, a 
> hard
> drive can go bad or even completely fail without warning.

For proprietary games, yes, back them up. Even CD media is prone to
failure these days. Otherwise, if the game is freeware, just backup
config and save files (and maybe mods / add-ons), not the original
data itself.

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