A question about booters

Getting old DOS games working. (DOSBox topics belong in DOSBox areas below, not here).

A question about booters

Postby thecrankyhermit » 2018-2-09 @ 02:03

It's my understanding that PC booters are games that ran without DOS, you just put the disk in and powered on the machine, and then you got to play. No hard drive or operating system required.

Several booter games are commonly distributed as abandonware as ZIP files containing a single EXE or COM file. For example, Alley Cat contains a single file CAT.EXE, which has a "modified" date of 8/22/1984. This is something I associate with DOS games.

What does that mean? If you stick an Alley Cat floppy disk into a DOS machine, could you go to the A drive and see a CAT.EXE file there? Or is this an official DOS conversion, even though Mobygames doesn't list one as ever existing? Or is this a DOS compatible pirate copy that was made in 1984?
Running:
Windows 7 Pro 64-bit
Core 2 Duo 2.53Ghz
Geforce 9600 GT
2GB RAM
thecrankyhermit
Member
 
Posts: 157
Joined: 2006-5-12 @ 03:47

Re: A question about booters

Postby leileilol » 2018-2-09 @ 04:10

There's been plenty of old scene rips of booter games since the 80s that would dump the disk to some bin file and have a little loader program to go with it (where a nice cracktro would also go) sometimes with an additional function to quit back to dos.
User avatar
leileilol
l33t++
 
Posts: 8872
Joined: 2006-12-16 @ 18:03

Re: A question about booters

Postby thecrankyhermit » 2018-2-09 @ 04:17

Alley Cat doesn't have a bin file, though. It's just a CAT.EXE file, no cracktro, and IIRC no way to quit to DOS. Or is the bin likely embedded inside the EXE?
Running:
Windows 7 Pro 64-bit
Core 2 Duo 2.53Ghz
Geforce 9600 GT
2GB RAM
thecrankyhermit
Member
 
Posts: 157
Joined: 2006-5-12 @ 03:47

Re: A question about booters

Postby 133MHz » 2018-2-09 @ 07:35

If I remember correctly you can exit back to DOS on that conversion of Alley Cat by pressing CTRL + Y. Also pressing CTRL + 9 gives you nine lives.
User avatar
133MHz
Member
 
Posts: 434
Joined: 2012-1-18 @ 02:06
Location: Santiago, Chile

Re: A question about booters

Postby konc » 2018-2-09 @ 09:22

Oversimplifying things here: The disk of a booter game doesn't have a DOS filesystem (at least all booters that I know of, maybe there are some few exceptions). So when you insert the floppy in a PC running DOS and try to list the directory you get nothing. But the disk of course contains data, the game, in some binary that can be executed on a PC. When you see a booter game appearing as an .EXE this means that someone got the binary off the disk and created an .EXE file out of it which runs in DOS.
User avatar
konc
Oldbie
 
Posts: 870
Joined: 2013-1-14 @ 15:09
Location: Greece


Return to DOS

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest