Dos Menus

Getting old software/games running on older hardware.

Dos Menus

Postby Caluser2000 » 2019-9-03 @ 22:27

What Dos menus do have set up or used in the past. Direct Access was the main one used when I was at work in the earley '90s. In barracks I got Quick Menu III from NeoSoft (was OSCS Software Development Inc.). OCDS had some cool products like NeoPaint. It allowed you to run programs, had a few utilities like a calculator and had file management as well. If you has some ems available you could have a desktop background image. It's also cable of submenus and subsubmenus.Runs on an XT fine and covers CGA, EGS, Hercules and VGA palettes.

quick3psp.jpg

20190904_112735[1].jpg

20190904_112749[1].jpg


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aNEiKhJ5Co8
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Re: Dos Menus

Postby derSammler » 2019-9-04 @ 07:20

Using Quick Menu III too, since it's so highly customizable.

IMG_20180703_185629527.jpg


On low-spec systems, I use the DOS Shell from MS-DOS 5.0 instead.
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Re: Dos Menus

Postby Caluser2000 » 2019-9-04 @ 07:35

Yip it certainly is very customizable. I'll have a dig through the rest of my ye oldey software for more. I'm sure I have a few OEM ones that came with system I'd acquired over the years to take pics of. There was one freeware vga one that was very polished . It was done by a German chap I think.
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Re: Dos Menus

Postby dr.zeissler » 2019-9-04 @ 07:39

On ET4000/1MB it does produce wiered errors. In EGA-Mode it's OK, but therefore the ET4000 needs to be switched to ega "vmode ega"
and then the started game does only recognize EGA. I would love to use qm3 on my A2286/6 with ET4000.
CPU: PII 133-333 MOBO: SNI-D981 RAM: 512- FDD: Dualfloppy 3,5"HD/5,25"HD - 3,5"HD - 5,25"DD ISA-Catweasel HDD: 2x40GB - DVD
ISA(3): Audician32-S2Dreamblaster - GusACE PCI(3): Monster3D- Intel NW AGP(1): 3dfx V3-3000
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Re: Dos Menus

Postby derSammler » 2019-9-04 @ 07:50

That's easy to solve. Create a small batch file as a starter for games. Something like:

@echo off
vmode vga
%1
vmode ega

Then instead of using "c:\games\whatever\game.exe" to start a game from QM3, you use "start.bat c:\games\whatever\game.exe".
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Re: Dos Menus

Postby dr.zeissler » 2019-9-04 @ 09:57

I considered this already, but there must be another Solution for getting no error's with an ET4000.
QM3 should have been tested on this tseng-cards. Perhaps it's because the cpu 286/8 is too slow?
I do not have a 386/486 with ET4000. All I have is an ET400/w32 onboard on a 486/dx2/66 but
there are no glitches.
CPU: PII 133-333 MOBO: SNI-D981 RAM: 512- FDD: Dualfloppy 3,5"HD/5,25"HD - 3,5"HD - 5,25"DD ISA-Catweasel HDD: 2x40GB - DVD
ISA(3): Audician32-S2Dreamblaster - GusACE PCI(3): Monster3D- Intel NW AGP(1): 3dfx V3-3000
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Re: Dos Menus

Postby dr_st » 2019-9-04 @ 10:47

Another vote for QM3 here. Totally awesome.
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Re: Dos Menus

Postby BloodyCactus » 2019-9-04 @ 14:13

powermenu was a nice text mode one.
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Re: Dos Menus

Postby derSammler » 2019-9-04 @ 14:26

"Desktop 2" from Felix Ritter is also quite nice. Similar to QuikMenu but with some additional functions to make it more OS-like. Did not use it yet apart from some testing, however.

d2-3.PNG
d2-2.PNG
d2-1.PNG


There's an English version of it as well.
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Re: Dos Menus

Postby cyclone3d » 2019-9-04 @ 15:44

I never knew any of these existed back in the day.

I did use DOSSHELL and also have config.sys and autoexec.bat menus set up though.

How much RAM do these menu programs use up? Do they affect the speed of other programs running? I am guessing they don't exit themselves when a program is run from them.
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Re: Dos Menus

Postby derSammler » 2019-9-04 @ 16:23

cyclone3d wrote:How much RAM do these menu programs use up? Do they affect the speed of other programs running? I am guessing they don't exit themselves when a program is run from them.

They don't affect speed. They also use almost no RAM. At least the ones I know work similar to DOS Shell: launching a program removes the menu from memory and hands control over to a batch file, which re-loads the menu after the program has ended.
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Re: Dos Menus

Postby keenmaster486 » 2019-9-04 @ 16:45

I used DOSSHELL a long time ago, but I since dispensed with menus because of the memory footprint.
I flermmed the plootash just like you asked.

http://classictechnology.herokuapp.com
http://keenmaster486.github.io
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Re: Dos Menus

Postby dr.zeissler » 2019-9-04 @ 17:25

I never used dosshell because it's so slow if you have lot's of files. I am a nc/vc user since 1988.

The smallest and fastest menu-system I have and probably will use on my A2286 is called "hard-disk-manager"
and I found it on my neighbors 8088xt laptop which he had purchased in the us and brought it
back to germany.
Attachments
P1060005.JPG
CPU: PII 133-333 MOBO: SNI-D981 RAM: 512- FDD: Dualfloppy 3,5"HD/5,25"HD - 3,5"HD - 5,25"DD ISA-Catweasel HDD: 2x40GB - DVD
ISA(3): Audician32-S2Dreamblaster - GusACE PCI(3): Monster3D- Intel NW AGP(1): 3dfx V3-3000
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Re: Dos Menus

Postby Caluser2000 » 2019-9-05 @ 02:16

derSammler wrote:"Desktop 2" from Felix Ritter is also quite nice. Similar to QuikMenu but with some additional functions to make it more OS-like. Did not use it yet apart from some testing, however.
That is the one I was thinking of. Magic Desk 3 iirc is another graphical Dos menu. Couldn't find it on the interweb. My search foo seems down today. I have a disk here with Magic Desk on it so will fire it up on the 286 sometime and post a pic.
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Re: Dos Menus

Postby leileilol » 2019-9-05 @ 03:13

This?
mdmain.png
mdmain.png (2.56 KiB) Viewed 258 times

(Fans of Tech-Express may recognize this :) )
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MDESK322.ZIP
(158.16 KiB) Downloaded 9 times
by the way, DOSBox is not for running Windows 9x
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Re: Dos Menus

Postby Caluser2000 » 2019-9-05 @ 05:02

That is the one. Used it in one system at one stage.
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Re: Dos Menus

Postby dr.zeissler » 2019-9-05 @ 06:38

yesterday I configured the basic-stuff on my A2286/8 with "The Hard-Disk-Manager" and all I can tell you is, that's superbe and fast.
I will defently use this for XT/AT/Tandy machines. 386+ I will go for something like QM3.
CPU: PII 133-333 MOBO: SNI-D981 RAM: 512- FDD: Dualfloppy 3,5"HD/5,25"HD - 3,5"HD - 5,25"DD ISA-Catweasel HDD: 2x40GB - DVD
ISA(3): Audician32-S2Dreamblaster - GusACE PCI(3): Monster3D- Intel NW AGP(1): 3dfx V3-3000
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Re: Dos Menus

Postby Caluser2000 » 2019-9-05 @ 15:19

On GeoWorks Ensemble 1.2 Pro there is area you can set up to run Dos programs.
pro12-01.gif
pro12-15.gif
pro12-15.gif (4.07 KiB) Viewed 185 times
It was dropped from later versions of PC Geos.
Last edited by Caluser2000 on 2019-9-05 @ 16:33, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Dos Menus

Postby mothergoose729 » 2019-9-05 @ 16:15

Neat stuff. Going to try it out later.
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Re: Dos Menus

Postby Orkay » 2019-9-05 @ 21:23

dr.zeissler wrote:The smallest and fastest menu-system I have and probably will use on my A2286 is called "hard-disk-manager"
and I found it on my neighbors 8088xt laptop which he had purchased in the us and brought it
back to germany.

I've got the same program, along with an earlier menu program that I found on some backup diskette of a relative's IBM XT (which was either trashed or given away around 1993, to my absolute disappointment). It even has a little screensaver!
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