Super project. My congratulations. I have a question whether it is possible to transfer the image to a real computer. I have very old software that I would like to have installed on a real computer. I was able to install FreeDos 1.2 but I have a problem with starting the network. I would like to try to move your image to disk.
Happy new year! And thank you very much for your feedback.
Transferring the image to a real computer will not work out of the box. You can do it, but you will need drivers for your network card: A NDIS driver is needed for MS Client, a packet driver or a packet driver shim for mTCP. Then you would have to change AUTOEXEC.BAT, FDCONFIG.SYS, SYSTEM.INI and PROTOCOL.INI to point to these drivers.
Unfortunately these days my time is occupied by other things (job, family) and I am not practicing DOS Networking everyday any more. So the best place to ask questions about this should be the FreeDOS user list at:
Hello, good job. I’d like to know how to get bigger the virtual screen under freedos in Orcale Virtualbox and how to get the Orcale Virtualbox virtual audio driver up and running?
Do you happen to know why Serial I/O in a VirtualBox Guest OS is so bad? There seems to be some mentions of this in various threads on the Internet, but no known solution. Inbound data is lost, or paused (until more data is received or sent). I realize this is not a FreeDOS question, but you seem to have a lot of experience with DOS under VirtualBox.
Excellent site, with detailed and very informative things about connecting modern OSs and FreeDOS. I need to connect my old Clipper database program (which works fine, even 20 years after it has been made) on Windows 7 pro PC. Since it is x64 Windows, I can’t use CMD/COMMAND to start old DOS programs and Windows XP Mode is not working good (extremly slow) on that machine (I don’t know why, since it works fine on other, completely same PCs?!??!).
So I have to go back to FreeDOS under VirtualBox. But I am worried about the free RAM that I get after loading all drivers. It’s pretty low, cca 434K of conventional and 79K of UMB. It’s probably not going to be enough, but I’ll try something.
Anyway, thanks a lot and best regards for having this site!
I have build new VirtualBox images with FreeDOS 1.2. The new FreeDOS version makes a lot of things easier. There is now a great app called FDIMPLES which you can use to install additional packages from the install CD. The package manager FDNPKG works now per default – so you can easily update your DOS system. Also installing networking is much simpler.
Finding and following the instructions on this page was the very first time I got a DOS machine of any kind on my home network:
This does work but it’s buggy and necessarily needs tweaking if you don’t strictly use DHCP. I found all the places where I have to change the IP address in the MSCLIENT folder .INI files and in a HOSTS file and a couple others where my machine’s IP needed to be corrected (I don’t use DHCP).
Couple other settings in the .INI files as well.
What doesn’t seem to work is copying files through the file system and I can only imagine why…FreeDOS crashes with long Opcode errors when trying to move files in an Explorer window.
Suffice it to say however, this is the first time I ever got a DOS machine to connect on my home network and the internet. I missed out back in the day when I was using nothing but dial-up networking to get into BBSes and later on the local dial-in number for internet access. I never got familiar then with MNC30 and wish I did because this would have been a much easier learning curve.
I will be learning a lot about how this works and how to make it work better now that I have a working example. I hope to get this working on DR DOS 6.0 and Novell DOS 7.0 which are two OSes that I loved using back in the early to mid-90s.
Thank you so much for your fantastic effort in putting this together! I have turned a corner with some problems I was having trying to make my own VM from scratch and think I can figure this out now.
Thanks for sharing your experiences! The old address https://www.lazybrowndog.net/freedos/virtualbox-old/
is still there, but it I’d recommend to use these new
pages instead. I leave the old pages active because some other sites links to that, but a lot happened in the meantime.
The crashes can be fixed with using a special line for JEMMEX in FDCONFIG.SYS – or using the old memory drivers from FreeDOS 1.0. I wrote about that in the official FreeDOS wiki at:
Thanks so much for sharing your work.
I have switched the images from VDI type to VHD. VHD has the advantage that you can easily mount the image in Windows. So this makes it much easier to exchange files with the FreeDOS machine. See this page for details.
If you prefer to use VDI images, I still provide them at:
First at all … great job !
My quesiton is: Any .vdi with freedos are supported USB ? I need stick pendrive to freedos.
Sorry, I never used USB in FreeDOS. I will look into this, but it may take some days. Thanks!
No problem ! 🙂 Thanks for replay 🙂
Ulrich Hansen, your work is fantastic!
All I need is to run a program in clipper with the network database.
The only network resource I use is a “net use r: \\servidor\tussor”, which works perfectly.
But 540 of free memory is not enough for this program.
It would be possible to improve it?
Or it is already configured to get the largest amount of available base memory?
Just saw your comment. I am afraid I already tried to configure it to leave as much conventional memory free as possible. But of course check fdconfig.sys and autoexec.bat for drivers you don’t need. Or ask in the “freedos-user” forum – I am sure there are a lot of people with more experience in memory management. Thank you and good luck.
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Impressive project. Have d/loaded the FreeDos + Net image – works great with Virtual Box.
This combination vastly outperforms Dos-In-A-Box which cannot handle record locking as it does not have share.exe.
Some users reported problems when booting the FreeDOS1.1net image. Sometimes they received the message:
Bad or missing Command Interpreter: C:\FDOS\BIN\COMMAND.COM c:\FDOS\BIN /E:1024 /p=C:\AUTOEXEC.BAT
Sometimes it just crashed. This seems to be a problem of the Memory Manager JEMM in combination with VirtualBox. For now I have replaced it with an older version that should work.
Please report, if you still see this error. Thank you!
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