Win31 under DOSBox in macOS with printing, clipboard exchange, etc.

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Win31 under DOSBox in macOS with printing, clipboard exchange, etc.

Postby emendelson » 2018-12-27 @ 03:30

About a year ago I put together a system that lets you create a Windows 3.1x system running under DOSBox in Windows, described here:


As that thread explains, I automated Dominus's methods for setting up Windows 3.1x in DOSBox and put together a system that lets you print from Win311, exchange data with the Windows clipboard, open files in Win311, etc., etc.

So now, as another holiday project, I ported this system to the Mac. To you use it, you will FIRST need to set up the Windows version of it on a Windows machine, using your own copy of Windows 3.11, and then you will need to copy one folder from the Windows system (the folder containing the emulated C Drive with the Win311 system) to your Mac.

Here are the details:

1. Download this Win31DOSBoxMac application:

and move the application to any convenient location, for example, your Applications folder. (It should work smoothly on a multi-user system.)

2. Run the app once. It will create a folder named Win3Disk in your user folder and display a message explaining that you will now need to copy your C-DRIVE folder from the Win31DOSBox folder on your Windows machine, and place the copy of that folder into the Win3Disk folder on your Mac machine.

3. Copy the folder as described, and then launch the application again.

To learn what this system can do, read the docs about the Windows version here:

Because AppleScript is slower than the AutoIt system used for the Windows version, you will need to remember that the keystroke for copying the contents of the host Mac clipboard into the Windows 3.1x clipboard may not work the first time; you will almost certainly need to press Ctrl-Alt-V twice to copy the Mac clipboard into the Windows 3.11 clipboard. Otherwise the printing, PDF-creation, and other features are the same as in the Windows version.

As in the Windows version, you can drop a file from your Mac system on to the Win31DOSBox icon and the file will open in the default application for that file in Windows 3.11. Obviously, this will only work with file types that can be opened in Windows 3.11, and will only work with files with standard 8.3 DOS filenames.

Because this Mac-based system uses Dominus' 64-bit build of DOSBox, you should ignore the customized list of keystrokes on the page with the docs for the Windows version. Dominus's 64-bit build uses standard DOSBox keystrokes, such as Ctrl-F10 to capture/release the mouse. Someday, if and when I learn how to build my own 64-bit version, I'll update this system with slightly different key-assignments and additional commands.

If you find something wrong in this system, please let me know. If you don't want it or you don't like it, or you already have a much better way to do the same thing, please do not waste your valuable time posting a message saying that you don't need it or like it. Instead, simply delete it and forget that it ever existed. No one is forcing you to use it; no one is insisting that it's better than anything else. But I hope someone might find it useful.
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