VOGONS


First post, by radiance32

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Hello everyone,

For those of us with 8086, 80186 and similar CPUs like the NEC V20/V3o,
such as old PC/XT and compatible machines, late 80's and 90’s era Portables, Luggables, Laptops and Palmtops, and more,
Windows 3.0 in real-mode is the only option to run Windows applications.
As most of you know, running Windows 3.0 in real-mode presents quite a challenge,
as getting hold of Windows 3.0 real-mode compatible software is hard...
Most software will simply refuse to install or run with an error message like "... requires standard or protected mode"...

I created this topic to ask everyone give a hand and to post any software you know will work in real-mode Windows 3.0
Hopefully, my list will grow and we will end up with a fairly complete list of real-mode Windows 3.0 software...

MARKERS
Here is a list of markers that I will add to the entries in the list to mark the entry with a specific requirement or status:

(tested) -> I have personally installed and tested the software to confirm it runs in real-mode on Windows 3.0a,
on a 80186, CGA (640x200 mono), MS-DOS 5.0 machine with 600KB of conventional DOS memory available.
(XMS required)-> Expanded memory is required to run the software.
(XMS optional)-> Expanded memory is not required to run the software, but supported and recommended.
(tweaks required)-> Some tweaks are required to get the software to run. I will explain them when necessary under the entry.

I will add any suggested software in replies to this topic to this main list in this topic, and, if I have the time, test them,
so we have a handy, complete list of all known software in one place...

This is the current list: (last updated on Saturday, 20 February 2021)
____________________________________

Windows 3.0 real-mode compatible software

Graphics:

* CorelDraw! v1.10 (tested)
A fairly capable 2D vector drawing application.

* U-Lead/Aldus PhotoStyler v1.1a (tested)
An early PhotoShop like Image editor with similar features to early versions of PhotoShop.

* Aldus PageMaker v1.0 (tested)
* Aldus PageMaker v1.0a (tested)
* Aldus PageMaker v3.0 (tested)
A very capable DTP application with multi-page editing, import/placing of various text, vector and image formats, and a large selection of high-quality fonts.

* Z-Soft PC Paintbrush v1.05 for Windows (tested)
* Z-Soft PC Paintbrush Plus v1.22 for Windows (tested)
An enhanced version of the classic "Paint" application that came with Windows 3.x

* Micrographx Designer 2.0 for Windows (tested)
A capable 2D vector drawing application comparable to CorelDraw! v1.10 in functionality/features.
* Micrographx Designer 3.1 for Windows (tested)
A very capable, advanced 2D vector drawing application far better than all the others on this list, definately a must try, it has many nice example files

Office/Productivity:

* Microsoft Word for Windows v1.1a (tested)
The first version of Microsoft Word for Windows, capable of reading/editing/writing (early) .doc files.

* Microsoft Excel for Windows v2.1d (tested)
The first version of Microsoft Excel for Windows, capable of reading/editing/writing (early) .xls files

* Lotus Ami Pro v1.2b (tested)
A very capable WYSIWYG word processor with basic DTP functionality. Released one year before Microsoft Word for Windows 1.x.

Utilities/Tools

* BeckerTools Plus 2.0 (tested)
A collection of tools for file managament, disk management, backup / restore, disk/file compression and a screensaver.

Games:

* Pipe Dream for Windows (tested)
The windows version of the popular Pipe Dream 2D puzzle game where you fit different pieces of pipes together to make water flow through them.
____________________________________

Please feel free to post more software that you know will run on pre-286, real-mode, MS Windows 3.0,
and I will add them to the main list in this post...

Thank you for your contributions,
Terrence (aka radiance32)

Last edited by radiance32 on 2021-02-20, 06:43. Edited 11 times in total.

Reply 1 of 12, by Jo22

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Hi! Interesting topic! 😎
Not a product per se, but certain Windows 2.x (2.03) compatible device drivers do function in Windows 3.0's RM.
Like graphics drivers. Though only Windows 1/2 programs seem to benefit from this,
since Windows then uses the old colour palette.

"Time, it seems, doesn't flow. For some it's fast, for some it's slow.
In what to one race is no time at all, another race can rise and fall..." - The Minstrel

//My video channel//

Reply 2 of 12, by radiance32

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Jo22 wrote on 2021-02-19, 05:20:
Hi! Interesting topic! 😎 Not a product per se, but certain Windows 2.x (2.03) compatible device drivers do function in Windows 3 […]
Show full quote

Hi! Interesting topic! 😎
Not a product per se, but certain Windows 2.x (2.03) compatible device drivers do function in Windows 3.0's RM.
Like graphics drivers. Though only Windows 1/2 programs seem to benefit from this,
since Windows then uses the old colour palette.

That's interesting to know 😉
So a Hercules monochrome display driver for example for windows 2.0 real-mode will work in 3.0 / real mode?
What about printer drivers?

I've downloaded a whole bunch of early versions of windows programs,
like Aldus PageMaker v1 and many more, and plan to test them all,
and keep updating the list...
Expect updates during the following days and weeks,
and please, if you have any entries or are aware of any software that runs in real-mode on win 3.0,
please mention it so I can add it to the list 😀

Cheers,
Terrence

Reply 4 of 12, by Cyberdyne

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I just wanted to start an experiment to make a hybrid Windows 2.11 / Windows 3.0. Make it look and feel like Windows 2.11. Because the windows button images and many visual resources are inside the video drivers.

I am aroused about any X86 motherboard that has full functional ISA slot. I think i have problem. Not really into that original (Turbo) XT,286,386 and CGA/EGA stuff. So just a DOS nut.

Reply 5 of 12, by Jo22

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radiance32 wrote on 2021-02-19, 06:12:
Jo22 wrote on 2021-02-19, 05:20:
Hi! Interesting topic! 😎 Not a product per se, but certain Windows 2.x (2.03) compatible device drivers do function in Windows 3 […]
Show full quote

Hi! Interesting topic! 😎
Not a product per se, but certain Windows 2.x (2.03) compatible device drivers do function in Windows 3.0's RM.
Like graphics drivers. Though only Windows 1/2 programs seem to benefit from this,
since Windows then uses the old colour palette.

That's interesting to know 😉
So a Hercules monochrome display driver for example for windows 2.0 real-mode will work in 3.0 / real mode?

Cyberdyne wrote on 2021-02-19, 07:33:

I just wanted to start an experiment to make a hybrid Windows 2.11 / Windows 3.0. Make it look and feel like Windows 2.11. Because the windows button images and many visual resources are inside the video drivers.

Yes, this should work. I used older SVGA drivers before.
Like the PVGA1A drivers for Windows 2.03.
But beware, drivers for Windows /386 may or may not work.
I'm sorry, I can't give a better explanation here. Since Windows /286 and /386 were built on various version numbers (2.03, 2.11, 2.01? etc), which could also be the culprit here if a 2.x driver doesn't work in 3.0 RM.

Anyway, here's a little demonstration of the Win 2.x driver on 3.0 RM.
It was included as a little gag. The tablet runs Lander 3.0 in Windows 3.0's Real-Mode.

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=G-gXfHpedtY

radiance32 wrote on 2021-02-19, 06:12:

What about printer drivers?

That's a good question, I seriously don't know.
Printers were a special case in Windows 2.x, I believe.
They still could be installed / removed after installation of Windows.. In Control Panel, if memory serves.

"Time, it seems, doesn't flow. For some it's fast, for some it's slow.
In what to one race is no time at all, another race can rise and fall..." - The Minstrel

//My video channel//

Reply 9 of 12, by radiance32

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Stiletto wrote on 2021-02-20, 02:30:

Links removed. Please don't link to them, thanks.

Hi Stiletto,

I'm sorry, I've only been a member of this forum for a few weeks,
and I wasn't aware it's not allowed to post links to abandonware / old software...

I'll make sure not to do it again in the future,
Terrence

Reply 10 of 12, by radiance32

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Jo22 wrote on 2021-02-19, 10:22:
Yes, this should work. I used older SVGA drivers before. Like the PVGA1A drivers for Windows 2.03. But beware, drivers for Wind […]
Show full quote
radiance32 wrote on 2021-02-19, 06:12:
Jo22 wrote on 2021-02-19, 05:20:
Hi! Interesting topic! 😎 Not a product per se, but certain Windows 2.x (2.03) compatible device drivers do function in Windows 3 […]
Show full quote

Hi! Interesting topic! 😎
Not a product per se, but certain Windows 2.x (2.03) compatible device drivers do function in Windows 3.0's RM.
Like graphics drivers. Though only Windows 1/2 programs seem to benefit from this,
since Windows then uses the old colour palette.

That's interesting to know 😉
So a Hercules monochrome display driver for example for windows 2.0 real-mode will work in 3.0 / real mode?

Cyberdyne wrote on 2021-02-19, 07:33:

I just wanted to start an experiment to make a hybrid Windows 2.11 / Windows 3.0. Make it look and feel like Windows 2.11. Because the windows button images and many visual resources are inside the video drivers.

Yes, this should work. I used older SVGA drivers before.
Like the PVGA1A drivers for Windows 2.03.
But beware, drivers for Windows /386 may or may not work.
I'm sorry, I can't give a better explanation here. Since Windows /286 and /386 were built on various version numbers (2.03, 2.11, 2.01? etc), which could also be the culprit here if a 2.x driver doesn't work in 3.0 RM.

Anyway, here's a little demonstration of the Win 2.x driver on 3.0 RM.
It was included as a little gag. The tablet runs Lander 3.0 in Windows 3.0's Real-Mode.

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=G-gXfHpedtY

radiance32 wrote on 2021-02-19, 06:12:

What about printer drivers?

That's a good question, I seriously don't know.
Printers were a special case in Windows 2.x, I believe.
They still could be installed / removed after installation of Windows.. In Control Panel, if memory serves.

Hello jo22,

Could you point me to this real-mode supported game you show in the video you call "Lander",
so i can track it down, and add it to the list ?

Thanks!,
Terrence

Reply 11 of 12, by Jo22

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radiance32 wrote on 2021-02-20, 04:02:
Hello jo22, […]
Show full quote
Jo22 wrote on 2021-02-19, 10:22:
Yes, this should work. I used older SVGA drivers before. Like the PVGA1A drivers for Windows 2.03. But beware, drivers for Wind […]
Show full quote
radiance32 wrote on 2021-02-19, 06:12:

That's interesting to know 😉
So a Hercules monochrome display driver for example for windows 2.0 real-mode will work in 3.0 / real mode?

Cyberdyne wrote on 2021-02-19, 07:33:

I just wanted to start an experiment to make a hybrid Windows 2.11 / Windows 3.0. Make it look and feel like Windows 2.11. Because the windows button images and many visual resources are inside the video drivers.

Yes, this should work. I used older SVGA drivers before.
Like the PVGA1A drivers for Windows 2.03.
But beware, drivers for Windows /386 may or may not work.
I'm sorry, I can't give a better explanation here. Since Windows /286 and /386 were built on various version numbers (2.03, 2.11, 2.01? etc), which could also be the culprit here if a 2.x driver doesn't work in 3.0 RM.

Anyway, here's a little demonstration of the Win 2.x driver on 3.0 RM.
It was included as a little gag. The tablet runs Lander 3.0 in Windows 3.0's Real-Mode.

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=G-gXfHpedtY

radiance32 wrote on 2021-02-19, 06:12:

What about printer drivers?

That's a good question, I seriously don't know.
Printers were a special case in Windows 2.x, I believe.
They still could be installed / removed after installation of Windows.. In Control Panel, if memory serves.

Hello jo22,

Could you point me to this real-mode supported game you show in the video you call "Lander",
so i can track it down, and add it to the list ?

Thanks!,
Terrence

Hi, yes, sure.
https://archive.org/details/win3_LANDER

I believe there were quite some more games that not only run on Windows 3.1, but also Windows 3.0, too.

However, there doesn't seem to be a list that covers which of them are/were Real-Mode compatible.

So I think we need to check them manually for compatibility.

Luckily, the internet archive has many of the old Shareware CDs archived.
So we can go back to say, 1988 to 1992 releases of Shareware CDs and run the games on Windows 3.0 in Real-Mode.

Alternatively, there's also internet archive itself, of course.
It has a large collection of freeware/shareware applications for Windows 3.1x.

Another site used to be win3game.com
It housed many of these free/shareware Win 3.x games and had a Win 3 theme.
Unfortunately, the site went down after just ~2-3 years.

Here's the archived version :

https://web.archive.org/web/20180103132518/ht … w.win3game.com/

"Time, it seems, doesn't flow. For some it's fast, for some it's slow.
In what to one race is no time at all, another race can rise and fall..." - The Minstrel

//My video channel//

Reply 12 of 12, by radiance32

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Jo22 wrote on 2021-02-20, 04:39:
Hi, yes, sure. https://archive.org/details/win3_LANDER […]
Show full quote
radiance32 wrote on 2021-02-20, 04:02:
Hello jo22, […]
Show full quote
Jo22 wrote on 2021-02-19, 10:22:
Yes, this should work. I used older SVGA drivers before. Like the PVGA1A drivers for Windows 2.03. But beware, drivers for Wind […]
Show full quote

Yes, this should work. I used older SVGA drivers before.
Like the PVGA1A drivers for Windows 2.03.
But beware, drivers for Windows /386 may or may not work.
I'm sorry, I can't give a better explanation here. Since Windows /286 and /386 were built on various version numbers (2.03, 2.11, 2.01? etc), which could also be the culprit here if a 2.x driver doesn't work in 3.0 RM.

Anyway, here's a little demonstration of the Win 2.x driver on 3.0 RM.
It was included as a little gag. The tablet runs Lander 3.0 in Windows 3.0's Real-Mode.

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=G-gXfHpedtY

That's a good question, I seriously don't know.
Printers were a special case in Windows 2.x, I believe.
They still could be installed / removed after installation of Windows.. In Control Panel, if memory serves.

Hello jo22,

Could you point me to this real-mode supported game you show in the video you call "Lander",
so i can track it down, and add it to the list ?

Thanks!,
Terrence

Hi, yes, sure.
https://archive.org/details/win3_LANDER

I believe there were quite some more games that not only run on Windows 3.1, but also Windows 3.0, too.

However, there doesn't seem to be a list that covers which of them are/were Real-Mode compatible.

So I think we need to check them manually for compatibility.

Luckily, the internet archive has many of the old Shareware CDs archived.
So we can go back to say, 1988 to 1992 releases of Shareware CDs and run the games on Windows 3.0 in Real-Mode.

Alternatively, there's also internet archive itself, of course.
It has a large collection of freeware/shareware applications for Windows 3.1x.

Another site used to be win3game.com
It housed many of these free/shareware Win 3.x games and had a Win 3 theme.
Unfortunately, the site went down after just ~2-3 years.

Here's the archived version :

https://web.archive.org/web/20180103132518/ht … w.win3game.com/

Thanks 😀
I'm gonna have a look at that archive link and try out a few games, see if they run in real-mode win 3.0...
If anyone wants to give me a hand, feel free to help! 😀
If you have system that supports standard or protected mode, just start windows with: win /r
and you'll be running in real-mode and can test the software. This only works in windows 3.0 and 3.0a, not in 3.1x ! 😀

Cheers!,
Terrence