VOGONS


First post, by johnyept

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I'm looking for some kind of customizable installer, somewhat similar to the one used to install Sound Blaster 16 drivers for DOS and Windows 3.x, with the ability to add entries to CONFIG.SYS and AUTOEXEC.BAT. The reason behind it is that I'm making an All-In-One DVD, and I want to add an option of easy install to most (of not all) of MS-DOS utilities and drivers that don't have one. For example, CuteMouse is just a compressed archive but I would like to turn it into an installer that extracts to c:\CTMOUSE or another folder set by the user, and add the necessary line to AUTOEXEC.BAT.

From Windows 95 and upwards I used AutoPlay Menu Builber to create an AUTORUN.EXE, and for DOS/Windows 3.x I'll use an AUTORUN.BAT to list the drivers/programs available to install.

I'm pretty sure I once tried something with an identical result, but it was so many years ago that it has been wiped clean from my memory by some crappy memory manager (me).

YOMwbLw.jpeg

xFOQqYk.jpeg

RETRO-W95/NT4: ASUS P3B-F, P3 550, 192MB, GF2+VD2 PCI, AWE64+VIBRA128, 80GB IDE
RETRO-W98/2K: ASUS A7N8X-E, Sempron 2.8+, 512MB, FX 5700LE 256MB, SB Live! CT4830, 320GB IDE
RETRO-WXP/7: ASUS P5KPL-AM EPU, XEON E5450, 4GB, GTS 450 1GB, 120GB SSD, 1TB sATA

Reply 1 of 33, by analog_programmer

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Use Turbo Vision for Turbo Pascal or Turbo C++, but you have to write your own installer code.

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Reply 2 of 33, by BloodyCactus

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you can use my simple installer. https://bloodycactus.com/code.html scroll down to simple installer 1.04

--/\-[ Stu : Bloody Cactus :: [ https://bloodycactus.com :: http://kråketær.com ]-/\--

Reply 3 of 33, by analog_programmer

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BloodyCactus wrote on 2024-02-23, 12:41:

you can use my simple installer. https://bloodycactus.com/code.html scroll down to simple installer 1.04

You have interesting collection of DOS programs, but unfortunately:

missing_file.jpg
Filename
missing_file.jpg
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8.3 KiB
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687 views
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Fair use/fair dealing exception

Here https://bloodycactus.com/files/ I see "si103.zip".

from СМ630 to Ryzen gen. 3
engineer's five pennies: this world goes south since everything's run by financiers and economists
this isn't voice chat, yet some people, overusing online communications, "talk" and "hear voices"

Reply 4 of 33, by BitFlip

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BloodyCactus wrote on 2024-02-23, 12:41:

you can use my simple installer. https://bloodycactus.com/code.html scroll down to simple installer 1.04

I too am getting the 404 😁

Reply 5 of 33, by johnyept

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BloodyCactus wrote on 2024-02-23, 12:41:

you can use my simple installer. https://bloodycactus.com/code.html scroll down to simple installer 1.04

I also got the 404, but I did try out the SI103.ZIP file. It seems to partially do what I want, but doesn't have an option to backup/modify CONFIG.SYS and AUTOEXEC.BAT.

One of the installers I want to do is use Windows 98 CD-ROM drivers and install them on MS-DOS, but only the first SYS file that works. I've managed to detect which driver works by loading them one by one with SYSLOAD and using ERRORLEVEL to figure out which one stays loaded (most commonly oakcdrom.sys), them copy that file to C:\DOSDRV\CDROM and add the correspondent line to CONFIG.SYS and MSCDEX to AUTOEXEC.BAT. Since I'm using a batch, it won't offer an option to select the destination drive and/or folder an will default to C:. At least I can make it look a little nicer with BE.EXE (Batch Enhancer).

RETRO-W95/NT4: ASUS P3B-F, P3 550, 192MB, GF2+VD2 PCI, AWE64+VIBRA128, 80GB IDE
RETRO-W98/2K: ASUS A7N8X-E, Sempron 2.8+, 512MB, FX 5700LE 256MB, SB Live! CT4830, 320GB IDE
RETRO-WXP/7: ASUS P5KPL-AM EPU, XEON E5450, 4GB, GTS 450 1GB, 120GB SSD, 1TB sATA

Reply 6 of 33, by analog_programmer

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I also tried this "Simple Installer" package (si103.zip) from BloodyCactus. It would be very handy to add options for executing external commands and for adding/changing/removing strings in DOS config/text files.

P.S. I'm also too lazy to learn now how to use Borland's Turbo Vision just to write a single DOS installer (I have one abandoned project for writing a new m$-DOS 6.22 installer, which works from HDD/CD-ROM, not only from floppies).

from СМ630 to Ryzen gen. 3
engineer's five pennies: this world goes south since everything's run by financiers and economists
this isn't voice chat, yet some people, overusing online communications, "talk" and "hear voices"

Reply 7 of 33, by johnyept

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analog_programmer wrote on 2024-02-23, 17:04:

P.S. I'm also too lazy to learn now how to use Borland's Turbo Vision just to write a single DOS installer (I have one abandoned project for writing a new m$-DOS 6.22 installer, which works from HDD/CD-ROM, not only from floppies).

I have MS-DOS 5.00, 5.00a, 6.00, 6.20 and 6.22 installing from CD/DVD from the original floppy images 😀

RETRO-W95/NT4: ASUS P3B-F, P3 550, 192MB, GF2+VD2 PCI, AWE64+VIBRA128, 80GB IDE
RETRO-W98/2K: ASUS A7N8X-E, Sempron 2.8+, 512MB, FX 5700LE 256MB, SB Live! CT4830, 320GB IDE
RETRO-WXP/7: ASUS P5KPL-AM EPU, XEON E5450, 4GB, GTS 450 1GB, 120GB SSD, 1TB sATA

Reply 8 of 33, by analog_programmer

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johnyept wrote on 2024-02-23, 17:22:

I have MS-DOS 5.00, 5.00a, 6.00, 6.20 and 6.22 installing from CD/DVD from the original floppy images 😀

I tried to make a small ISO-image (not using FDD DOS-bootable image inside the ISO-image, but other format with bootable HDD image) from all the files from four (incl. supplemental disk) original DOS 6.22 floppy disks which I have, but there are some checks in SETUP.EXE if it was started from drive A: and if not it exits with some message "complaining" about this. I'm not much into assembly code to just disassemble the original setup executable and see how these checks are performed to bypass them, so I decided that it will be easier to write new alternative setup.exe with text-based menu system as in the original installer, but It is turned out to not be as easy as I thought.

from СМ630 to Ryzen gen. 3
engineer's five pennies: this world goes south since everything's run by financiers and economists
this isn't voice chat, yet some people, overusing online communications, "talk" and "hear voices"

Reply 9 of 33, by johnyept

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I use CDShell as the DVD boot sector / menu and a DOS 6.22 as boot floppy image for the MS-DOS installations. CONFIG.SYS has a menu to select which MS-DOS I want to install, AUTOEXEC.BAT uses DOSVER.COM to change DOS version (otherwise SETUP throws a tantrum), and E0X.COM to load the 1st floppy image from the selected MS-DOS and start the installation from A:, then I just use F11/F12 to switch between floppies during the installation. Simple, right? 😀

RETRO-W95/NT4: ASUS P3B-F, P3 550, 192MB, GF2+VD2 PCI, AWE64+VIBRA128, 80GB IDE
RETRO-W98/2K: ASUS A7N8X-E, Sempron 2.8+, 512MB, FX 5700LE 256MB, SB Live! CT4830, 320GB IDE
RETRO-WXP/7: ASUS P5KPL-AM EPU, XEON E5450, 4GB, GTS 450 1GB, 120GB SSD, 1TB sATA

Reply 10 of 33, by analog_programmer

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johnyept wrote on 2024-02-23, 18:33:

Simple, right? 😀

Not exactly. Better off to learn how to use this Turbo Vision package with C++ for DOS 😁

from СМ630 to Ryzen gen. 3
engineer's five pennies: this world goes south since everything's run by financiers and economists
this isn't voice chat, yet some people, overusing online communications, "talk" and "hear voices"

Reply 11 of 33, by BloodyCactus

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404? hmm I'll have to check it out. heh permissions issue with the web server.

anyway, if you tested 1.03 and it didnt meet your needs completly, 1.04 is just a bugfix, no functionality changes.

I didnt do editing of config/autoexec because that way danger lies! very easy to make a non-operational config.sys and such, and I didnt want to deal with that 😀

--/\-[ Stu : Bloody Cactus :: [ https://bloodycactus.com :: http://kråketær.com ]-/\--

Reply 12 of 33, by johnyept

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analog_programmer wrote on 2024-02-23, 18:50:

Not exactly. Better off to learn how to use this Turbo Vision package with C++ for DOS 😁

The last time I used C++ was around 1995 for a school project, which was on a 1.7GB HDD that went rogue on me. I didn't know what Turbo Vison was until I saw a Youtube Video about it. I'll make it work with batches for now, and I might try relearning C++ from scratch to see if I can come up with something half way decent.

BloodyCactus wrote on 2024-02-23, 19:17:

I didnt do editing of config/autoexec because that way danger lies! very easy to make a non-operational config.sys and such, and I didnt want to deal with that 😀

Backup AUTOEXEC.BAT AND CONFIG.SYS to AUTOEXEC.BAK and CONFIG.BAK, then insert a few lines. Nothing can go wrong there, even my batch can do that 😀

RETRO-W95/NT4: ASUS P3B-F, P3 550, 192MB, GF2+VD2 PCI, AWE64+VIBRA128, 80GB IDE
RETRO-W98/2K: ASUS A7N8X-E, Sempron 2.8+, 512MB, FX 5700LE 256MB, SB Live! CT4830, 320GB IDE
RETRO-WXP/7: ASUS P5KPL-AM EPU, XEON E5450, 4GB, GTS 450 1GB, 120GB SSD, 1TB sATA

Reply 13 of 33, by analog_programmer

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johnyept wrote on 2024-02-23, 19:27:

The last time I used C++ was around 1995 for a school project, which was on a 1.7GB HDD that went rogue on me. I didn't know what Turbo Vison was until I saw a Youtube Video about it. I'll make it work with batches for now, and I might try relearning C++ from scratch to see if I can come up with something half way decent.

Back in the DOS/Win3.xx/Win9x days I never used this Turbo Vision packet with C++. Not long ago I rediscovered it (due to abandoned DOS setup.exe project) and even found that someone's writing new FOSS versions. But I can't find any descent manuals on how to use it or some detailed examples.

johnyept wrote on 2024-02-23, 19:27:

Backup AUTOEXEC.BAT AND CONFIG.SYS to AUTOEXEC.BAK and CONFIG.BAK, then insert a few lines. Nothing can go wrong there, even my batch can do that 😀

Yeah, that's exactly what most of the DOS setup/install programs do when they modify some system files.

As I already mentioned, it will be very neat if "simple installer" support such an option in future version. Also I have a suggestion for support of external commands (for example, if other (de)compression tool like "arj", "expand" etc. is used for files).

BloodyCactus wrote on 2024-02-23, 19:17:

404? hmm I'll have to check it out. heh permissions issue with the web server.

Just add "si140.zip" in "bloodycactus.com/files/" if it differs from available "si130.zip" 😉

from СМ630 to Ryzen gen. 3
engineer's five pennies: this world goes south since everything's run by financiers and economists
this isn't voice chat, yet some people, overusing online communications, "talk" and "hear voices"

Reply 14 of 33, by johnyept

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OK, I'm gonna try my best to make a "Crappy Installer for DOS v0.1" but I probably won't use the Turbo Vision libraries due to the required learning curve, I'll just do a refresh on the basic programming and do simple graphics like the lines in the images I posted, with an INI file that reads something like this:

title=Program v1.56 -> name of the program to show on the screen top (optional)
info1=text
info2=text
info3=text
info4=text -> a few lines describing what the program is for (optional)
source=file.ZIP -> file to decompress (required) maybe source2 for a 2nd file?
destination=C:\FOLDER1\FOILDER2 -> destination folder (required) maybe destination2 for a 2nd folder?
config1=line1
config2=line2 -> lines to add to config.sys (optional)
autoexec1=line1
autoexec2=line2 -> lines to add to autoexec.bat (optional)

This would be fairly easy to do in a Windows XP batch, but DOS/9x batches are WAAAYY limited to try something like this.

RETRO-W95/NT4: ASUS P3B-F, P3 550, 192MB, GF2+VD2 PCI, AWE64+VIBRA128, 80GB IDE
RETRO-W98/2K: ASUS A7N8X-E, Sempron 2.8+, 512MB, FX 5700LE 256MB, SB Live! CT4830, 320GB IDE
RETRO-WXP/7: ASUS P5KPL-AM EPU, XEON E5450, 4GB, GTS 450 1GB, 120GB SSD, 1TB sATA

Reply 16 of 33, by johnyept

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elszgensa wrote on 2024-02-24, 12:59:

> DOS/9x batches are WAAAYY limited

Switching from ye ole' command.com to 4DOS (later called 4NT, even later TCC) would give you vastly expanded scripting capabilities. Batch files on steroids.

You're most probably right, but I never used 4DOS, I grew up using Microsoft paraphernalia and that's what I have nostalgia for. Plus, I found the original User's Guide manual for Turbo C++ 3.0 which should help figuring out some stuff. Man, just looking at the index is like looking at everything I learned at school and have long forgotten.
http://www.bitsavers.org/pdf/borland/turbo_c/ … _Guide_1992.pdf

RETRO-W95/NT4: ASUS P3B-F, P3 550, 192MB, GF2+VD2 PCI, AWE64+VIBRA128, 80GB IDE
RETRO-W98/2K: ASUS A7N8X-E, Sempron 2.8+, 512MB, FX 5700LE 256MB, SB Live! CT4830, 320GB IDE
RETRO-WXP/7: ASUS P5KPL-AM EPU, XEON E5450, 4GB, GTS 450 1GB, 120GB SSD, 1TB sATA

Reply 17 of 33, by analog_programmer

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elszgensa wrote on 2024-02-24, 12:59:

Switching from ye ole' command.com to 4DOS (later called 4NT, even later TCC) would give you vastly expanded scripting capabilities. Batch files on steroids.

We're thinking how to simplify the things, not to complicate them 😀

There are some bat-to-exe converters and extenders, but none of them seems descent. Some time ago I trued this one: https://www.battoexeconverter.com/ . It supports old DOS batch format, but it generally sucks 'cause it creates some temporary bat-file when converted to exe batch file is executed. It's like some kind of self-executable capsule for batch file.

from СМ630 to Ryzen gen. 3
engineer's five pennies: this world goes south since everything's run by financiers and economists
this isn't voice chat, yet some people, overusing online communications, "talk" and "hear voices"

Reply 18 of 33, by Cyberdyne

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Make your installer enviroment a mini Windows 3.1 and Installshield-ed installers. It can be make nice, intuitive. I have made one of those shovelware ISO 8GB multilayer DVD like that, that has all sorts on dos and windows programs and tools.

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.
PS. If I upload RAR, it is a 16-bit DOS RAR Version 2.50.

Reply 19 of 33, by johnyept

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Cyberdyne wrote on 2024-02-24, 15:21:

Make your installer enviroment a mini Windows 3.1 and Installshield-ed installers. It can be make nice, intuitive.

What is this referring to?

Cyberdyne wrote on 2024-02-24, 15:21:

I have made one of those shovelware ISO 8GB multilayer DVD like that, that has all sorts on dos and windows programs and tools.

Mine is a normal DVD5. It includes MS-DOS 5.x/6.x, Windows 3.x, 95B, 98SE, NT4 SP1, 2000 SP4, XP SP3 and MicroXP, plus normal / unattended installations for all Windows. It also includes the ability to install Windows 2000/XP/MicroXP folders inside a unique folder (ex: \Documents and Settings, \Program Files and \WINDOWS inside C:\WinXP) so they can be installed on the same partition as other Windows, because I hate having more than one partition for multiple OSes. It can also recreate the original Windows ISOs down to the same SHA1/CRC, and create 2 CD ISOs with just the bare Install folders to be used on computers with only CD drives, which also include the normal, unattended and customized installations. Everything was made to make it as noob proof and as easy to use as possible, like installations not requiring manually created partitions, not requiring a key (except for normal NT4 installation), and making all drivers/patches/programs being accessible from the AUTORUN.EXE. It's always "almost" finished because I keep adding new stuff or tweaking existing stuff...

RETRO-W95/NT4: ASUS P3B-F, P3 550, 192MB, GF2+VD2 PCI, AWE64+VIBRA128, 80GB IDE
RETRO-W98/2K: ASUS A7N8X-E, Sempron 2.8+, 512MB, FX 5700LE 256MB, SB Live! CT4830, 320GB IDE
RETRO-WXP/7: ASUS P5KPL-AM EPU, XEON E5450, 4GB, GTS 450 1GB, 120GB SSD, 1TB sATA