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System76 To Release A "New Open-Source Computer"

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  • #41
    Originally posted by BiG_NoBoDy View Post

    nice link! So still Need Lost Vikings! (not sure if if will run on on dosbox on ARM or some other "exotic")...
    I haven't had any trouble with it inside DOSBox on ARM.

    (I even mapped the common functionality like Jump and Action to the gaming controls on my OpenPandora.)
    Last edited by ssokolow; 29 October 2018, 09:39 AM.


    • #42
      Whereas trying to get them to run without emulation (e.g.: by booting into FreeDOS) on modern hardware is getting hard :

      - no modern audio is compatible with Sound Blaster
      (for digital audio: ISA's DMA is completely different from PCI's bus mastering, and IRQ work slightly differently. That's why hardware-compatible PCI sound cards use an extra special connector - that's where the missing ISA bits go)
      (for music: except for a few vintage Yamaha YMF7x4-based PCI cards, Adlib-style OPL2/OPL3 FM synthesis is completely gone from modern sound cards. And that's still PCI card, so you'd need a PCIe-to-PCI riser to plug them into you modern hardware)
      At that point you're requiring quite some emulation just to get the audio running, you might as well go for an emulator.
      Or, for Supaplex, you could rely on the PC Speaker for crappy digital, and plug a real-deal physical MT-32 into a MIDI port for music.
      (Funnily, nowadays it's much easier to plug some exotic LPT port audio hardware like Covox Speech Thing and Disney Sound Source in your PCIe parallel port (don't use USB) or whatever bit-bangable GPIO your SBC offers)

      - currently FreeDOS only works with MSDOS-style partitions, not with GPT-style (though your linux boot-loader (Syslinux/Grub/etc.) will happily emulate a floppy out of an image using the memdisk payload)

      - for obvious historical reason, all DOSes rely heavily on BIOS for their low-level API. Soonish, the "Compatibility mode" is going to get deprecated and your hardware will exclusively boot into UEFI only. Which can't be supported by FreeDOS, unless completely rewritten from scratch. (Though some crazy conservationists might manage to make some UEFI payload out of SeaBIOS)

      (Also, I have no idea how long the GPUs are going to support EGA/VGA 16-color planar video modes)

      So long story short : for vintage DOS games, run them on DOSBOX rather than on real 86 hardware. And you can still plug your vintage synth into the ARM device you're DOSBOXing on, if you want.