First post, by The_L1985
I'm having the darnedest time here, and the fact that I'm completely unfamiliar with DOS isn't helping one bit. All previous applications I've used DOSBox with, were re-releases of old games specifically coded so that when you opened them, DOSBox just automatically opened up and then automatically ran the program file. I know that "win" is a command. I thought that "run" was a command. (I already know this is wrong; I don't need correction on THAT score, at least.) There, my knowledge of all things DOS began and ended, because back when we had to use DOS prompts, my father had the computer locked down so only HE could use it. -_-
So here's what I've got, and what's going horribly wrong. I have some idea of how to proceed, in a general sense, but specific coding/commands elude me.
I have an old CD-ROM for the game Smart Games: Puzzle Challenge 2, which is designed to run on Win 3.1 and Win 95. I have a laptop running Windows 10. It does not have a CD drive at all.
So I downloaded a CD image as a ZIP file. (After all, I legally own a copy of the game, so technically this is just like making a backup.) When I unzipped, Windows created a new drive: "DVD Drive (E:\) SGPC2"
Heady from the recent success of installing this game on my Win10 machine (because, as a Win98 title, it has no reliance on DOS whatsoever), I thought installing Smart Games 2 would be a cakewalk. I clicked the game's setup.exe and...
FAIL. I cannot install the game in Win10 because it's just too darned old. I no longer have a copy of Win 3.1 or Win 95 that I can just boot up (and no floppy or CD drive anyway). I downloaded a bootleg of Win3.1.1 and tried to install it. It won't install, because the people at Microsoft, in their infinite wisdom, figured that nobody would be weird enough to try to install a 25-year-old operating system on Win10.
I think, "No problem. Win 3.1 worked with DOS, so maybe if I use DOSBox I can install it?" I installed DOSBox (I thought I already had it on this PC, but apparently not) under C:\DOS. I then (re-iterating I have no idea WTF I'm doing) unzipped the Win3.1.1 bootleg under C:\DOS\WIN31INS.
I tried to >BOOT C:\DOS\WIN31INS\WINSETUP.EXE and it failed. It says "Opening image file: C:\DOS\WIN31INS\WINSETUP.EXE" and then "Booting from drive A..." which is where it stops responding. I have no idea how to alter the Windows setup file to make it not search for A:\.
"Hmmm. Well, Windows before 98 used DOS for a lot of behind-the-scenes stuff, maybe I can just install it directly on DOSBox?" Cue the system wailing and gnashing its teeth because the disc image is on E:\ instead of an A, C, or D drive.
Flash drives are generally listed in my directory as (D:\), but since they didn't exist in the 90s, I'm uncertain whether the hardware difference will at all affect whether this runs on DOSBox. Is any D drive OK, regardless of hardware? Also, can I run this thing through DOS directly, or do I need to install Windows (and if so, how do I reconfigure the installer file to work with the drives I have instead of searching for a 3-1/2" floppy drive that doesn't exist)?
One step forward, two steps back, three steps sideways.