I'm a little confused. I no longer own a copy of Win 9x or of DOS and at this point I can't afford them so I'm afraid I'm stuck with what I've got for now, which is Win XP.
Admin was probably trying to "catch up" on posts and zipped by that part before he posted...just a guess.
When I get a chance, I'll try FreeDOS and Dr-DOS (both available as freeware) and see how XP treats them. I know it works with DOS 6 (and newer) and PC-DOS 2000.
Even if I did get a copy of Win 9x (preferrably Win98SE)...
Actually, since the primary reason for the install would be game compatibility, you would probably want a minimal install of the least resource(& money)-hungry OS.
Win95A uses the least and it's the cheapest, but it doesn't have FAT32 support.
Win95B is a good compromise (minimal resources,FAT32 support, and I found it at a Half-Price book store for about ).
Win98 has the USB support.
Win98SE...Not really sure what advantage this would have game-wise.
WinME...If someone gave it to me for free, I suppose...
I'm also going to check on the "After XP' dual-boot installs.
Seems pretty scary to me, but there are a lot of people who already have XP installed and don't want to start from scratch.
I could set up a dual boot into DOS with a WinXP DOS disk but I would have to set up a FAT partition because my partitions are all NTFS at this point.
You would want at least one FAT/FAT32 (for DOS/Win9x), the rest should probably stay NTFS.
NOTE:Have heard stories that some old titles that bomb out on NTFS work ok on FAT drives. Rumor only, I have no personal experience with that.
I probably could download a trial version of Partitionmagic or some such program...
There are freeware Partition tools out there, but I don't think they can handle XP's NTFS "flavor" (And the PM demo won't let you really partition...).
However, that won't work in any event because my mouse is a USB mouse and I don't have the option for USB support in my BIOS.
To be on the safe side, always have a serial or PS/2 mouse around (cheap types, or maybe you can find one with a "free-bate"). That way your always covered (especially when one of them "dies" unexpectedly).
Even if I did manage to set up that FAT partition and boot into DOS with the WinXP disk, .
Probably better to use one of the many custom "boot-disks" on the net based on Win9x. The XP version gives you little more than a command prompt.
setting up the DOS drivers could prove to be tricky because the only DOS drivers I have available for my sound card were the ones that were included for DOS support under DOS 7.0 that came with Win 98SE. I'm not sure that they would work..
This (suprisingly) is true. I have 2 soundblaster cards where you simply _can't_ install DOS drivers. They are installed as part of the Win9x driver setup. However, once installed you may be able to copy the files manually for future use.
Usually, all you need is to set the proper parameters:
SET BLASTER=A220 I5 D1 H5 T4 (or something like that)
and sometimes the card must be "initialized" before use:
c:\UTILS\CREATIVE\SBLIVE\DOSDRV\SBEINIT.COM (for example)
If those two can be setup, the DOSgame setup usually will handle the rest.
I'm also not sure that the DOS that you boot into with the WinXP DOS boot disk is a fully operational version of DOS.
Correct. It's the equivalent of typing FORMAT A: /S in DOS.
IOW, you get a command line and nothing else.
I have been posting to two boards throughout this process, both here and the VDMS boards.
...I thought that X-Com was SVGA (hence the patch). I also tried the VESA support option under VDMS and it didn't seem to do anything.
Confusing, I know...
1) VESA generally refers to the SVGA screenmodes supported by your card. SVGA was a kind of made-up term for "our card has really high-res displays with lots of colors" (IOW, no standards).
VESA was an attempt at enforcing standards for SVGA displays.
Clear as mud? Good.
2) Vlad's VESA option is rather poorly labeled. What it really means is "Start up in Full-Screen mode instead of a DosBox window". The VESA support comes from the OS, not VDMSound. Also, to confuse things further; sometimes the VESA support won't work right unless you start in the window instead of full-screen.