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14 Years & Kicking: FreeDOS Is Still Alive

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  • 14 Years & Kicking: FreeDOS Is Still Alive

    Phoronix: 14 Years & Kicking: FreeDOS Is Still Alive

    FreeDOS, the open-source DOS operating system, is still alive and seeing activity around the GPL-licensed project though the FreeDOS SVN code repository hasn't seen any activity in nearly one year...

    http://www.phoronix.com/vr.php?view=MTI2Mzg

  • #2
    There are some great games for DOS, like Little Big Adventure for example. But most of them can be played using DosBox AFAIK. I really see no reason to keep FreeDOS alive.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by wargames View Post
      There are some great games for DOS, like Little Big Adventure for example. But most of them can be played using DosBox AFAIK. I really see no reason to keep FreeDOS alive.
      Only to ship it in pcs without so

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      • #4
        Btrfs

        Why are people asking for Btrfs for FreeDOS? LOL!

        FreeDOS doesn't need advanced stuff such as Btrfs, virtualization, PulseAudio, X.org, Python, Ruby, etc.

        What FreeDOS needs is good compatibility with MS-DOS, long file name support, international text editing support, etc.

        Though, it would be pretty cool if Midnight Commander ran on FreeDOS.

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        • #5
          I fired it up on my Toshiba Libretto a few months ago just for laughs. The SSH client and Arachne web browser worked great.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by wargames View Post
            There are some great games for DOS, like Little Big Adventure for example. But most of them can be played using DosBox AFAIK. I really see no reason to keep FreeDOS alive.
            Hmm, what OS are you running inside DosBox? :-)

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            • #7
              FreeDOS needs a package management system else it will never be able to take over the desktop PC market.

              I have a FreeDOS floppy image that I can PXE boot for installing BIOS updates on old systems.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by jhansonxi View Post
                FreeDOS needs a package management system else it will never be able to take over the desktop PC market.
                FreeDOS is not intended to take over the desktop PC market.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by uid313 View Post
                  FreeDOS is not intended to take over the desktop PC market.
                  You're really oblivious to sarcasm.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by jhansonxi View Post
                    FreeDOS needs a package management system else it will never be able to take over the desktop PC market.

                    I have a FreeDOS floppy image that I can PXE boot for installing BIOS updates on old systems.
                    it drives me mad that mobo makers don't ship the OS to flash the BIOS and just tell the person to google it. its not that bad anymore since many boards let you flash directly from the BIOS (which is the proper way that is independent of the OS) or Windows.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by wargames View Post
                      There are some great games for DOS, like Little Big Adventure for example. But most of them can be played using DosBox AFAIK. I really see no reason to keep FreeDOS alive.
                      There is still a need for an updated DOS system for some legacy hardware. For instance, many retail outlets still use DOS based hardware for handling purchases, although I admit this is something I have been seeing less and less of recently.

                      Of course, the main and best reason for having it is simply because it is so god damn cool.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Hamish Wilson View Post
                        There is still a need for an updated DOS system for some legacy hardware. For instance, many retail outlets still use DOS based hardware for handling purchases, although I admit this is something I have been seeing less and less of recently.
                        Indeed, cash registers from IBM and probably other manufacturers came with DOS until at least 10 years ago or so, and why would you buy new cash registers as long as the old ones still work?

                        There is also legacy software that contains a lot of process info, and drives industrial processes & equipment that nobody dares to replace, because doing so would likely disrupt production majorly for weeks or months.

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                        • #13
                          FYI: there is a package manager for freedos, and that was one of the main features for FreeDOS 1.1.
                          See http://https://sites.google.com/site/blairdude/fdpkg

                          From what I've heard, DosBox uses a fork of freedos that uses bcc as compiler.
                          But, there are games and programs that work better with dosemu--which runs its own dos.
                          One of the main use cases for FreeDOS is in a virtual environment (VirtualBox, Qemu, VPC, dosemu, and just about any PC emulator in existence)
                          Also, there's testing for stuff like SeaBIOS, and Zet (the FOSS clone of the x86 architecture; currently discussing how to add 386 support)

                          International text editing is available via blocek and mined.
                          LFN is available, after a fashion (with the right shell and TSR)
                          While I'm not aware of a Midnight Commander port, there's doszip, and Necromancer's DOS Navigator (NDN), and a few other *DN variants.
                          And I know slang and ncurses have been ported, so it should be possible...

                          Off topic, I hear that they've been getting 40,000+ downloads /mo. lately.
                          Last edited by Ibidem; 01-27-2013, 02:59 AM.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Ibidem View Post
                            FYI: there is a package manager for freedos, and that was one of the main features for FreeDOS 1.1.
                            See http://https://sites.google.com/site/blairdude/fdpkg

                            From what I've heard, DosBox uses a fork of freedos that uses bcc as compiler.
                            But, there are games and programs that work better with dosemu--which runs its own dos.
                            One of the main use cases for FreeDOS is in a virtual environment (VirtualBox, Qemu, VPC, dosemu, and just about any PC emulator in existence)
                            Also, there's testing for stuff like SeaBIOS, and Zet (the FOSS clone of the x86 architecture; currently discussing how to add 386 support)

                            International text editing is available via blocek and mined.
                            LFN is available, after a fashion (with the right shell and TSR)
                            While I'm not aware of a Midnight Commander port, there's doszip, and Necromancer's DOS Navigator (NDN), and a few other *DN variants.
                            And I know slang and ncurses have been ported, so it should be possible...

                            Off topic, I hear that they've been getting 40,000+ downloads /mo. lately.
                            Wow, that's great news. I was always wondering if it were possible to have that sort of functionality with the limitations of a 286 processor.
                            I found that people are still writing FOSS GUI's for this single tasking OS too which is interesting.
                            The latter doesn't have any form of multitasking (i.e. when you open any program, it'll quit the desktop shell to run it), but the former does to a degree as long as they interface with the Ozone shell, as far as I can gather.
                            https://lightdos.wordpress.com/
                            https://code.google.com/p/nanox-micr...-fltk-for-dos/
                            There is also a distribution based off FreeDOS called Doscore, however while it is freeware the desktop shell, either a fork or rewrite of Ozone, is not open source, which is a pity because the guy looks like he's doing some good work with it.
                            http://doscore.net/

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                            • #15
                              http://sagetos.blogspot.com/ is interesting.
                              http://www.bttr-software.de and http://www.bttr-software.de/forum/board.php are the main page and forums for bttr software, the main generic DOS website.
                              I see semi-regular updates over there, with a recent announcement of DOS binaries for x265.
                              I've also run across several other projects there: the fltk/nano-x stuff meant dillo and flwrite ports were possible, I've seen a couple media players (mplayer and a native DOS one) and pdf viewers (mupdf port), compilers, games, ports like ffmpeg, (p)7zip, and so on, drivers, and the most interesting is HX: a sort of "Wine for DOS" that can run some programs that even Win98 can't, including a few GUI ones.

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