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Why oh why no release since 2010 ?

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First post, by NovHak

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Dear forum readers, and especially developers,

The last release of DOSBox dates back to 2010 now, but many patches have been applied since then...

So I'm wondering, is it really that these changes aren't considered stable enough compared to 0.74, or is it just that nobody's thinking about it any more ? The latter would likely mean that SVN is the way to go, but then it's sad for the people who aren't comfortable with the source code. May I suggest making a new release once a year then ?

I probably could make a binary available myself, but it wouldn't be as trusted as one directly downloadable from DOSBox's website, few people (if any) would use it and most would still download the old 0.74.

Best regards !

Reply 1 of 15, by Jorpho

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I probably could make a binary available myself, but it wouldn't be as trusted as one directly downloadable from DOSBox's website

There's a binary derived from the latest SVN version on the DOSBox wiki already, as well as a few other recent builds like the ECE edition or vDosPlus.

few people (if any) would use it and most would still download the old 0.74.

While there have definitely been some important changes (imgmount support for multiple floppy images strikes me as particularly significant), 0.74 is probably perfectly adequate for 99% of typical use cases.

Reply 2 of 15, by cyclone3d

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Funny thing is.... the CPU cores and a lot of the other stuff can be made a whole lot faster/use way less CPU cycles with some pretty simple optimizations.

I had done a few of the files years ago (version 0.6 something) and had realized a 25% decrease in required CPU cycles... a huge performance increase.

I plan on doing the same for the SVN code in the not too distant future as I recently looked at the code and saw the same exact type of thing I saw years ago that makes absolutely 0 sense to leave it that way when it will never be optimized by the compiler in the existing form.

There has been a ton of fixes to the 0.74 codebase since 2010 and I would never think to run a straight 0.74.

It is on the back burner for now as I have way too much other stuff to do before tackling it again.

Yamaha YMF modified setupds and drivers
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Reply 3 of 15, by NovHak

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Thank you for your replies !

While they do not exactly answer my question as to why there's been no release, they've helped me decide on whether I would stick to old 0.74 or go SVN : I will go SVN or more precisely get DOSBox ECE. Considering I'm interested in gaming applications (currently The Elder Scrolls Arena), it seems vDosPlus is not the ideal choice...

@cyclone3d : I hope you will find time to incorporate your update, since I'm the kind of person always wary about energy/heating issues, even more so during this summer...

Reply 5 of 15, by King_Corduroy

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Earth 2140 would be a better example of a game that doesn't run adequately. It's much too choppy compared to running it on real hardware, same with the video cutscene playback. No idea why that is but it's bugged me for a while 🤣.

Check me out at Transcendental Airwaves on Youtube! Also wtf, why are whoppers so good?!

Reply 6 of 15, by Jo22

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NovHak wrote:
Thank you for your replies ! […]
Show full quote

Thank you for your replies !

While they do not exactly answer my question as to why there's been no release, they've helped me decide on whether I would stick to old 0.74 or go SVN :
I will go SVN or more precisely get DOSBox ECE. Considering I'm interested in gaming applications (currently The Elder Scrolls Arena),
it seems vDosPlus is not the ideal choice..

Hi NovHak, that's a good question. As far as rumors go, the devs are said to be busy with other stuff and/or are a bit unhappy
about how things went. DOSBox code has been used everywhere without giving proper credits, for commercial stuff, etc.
Anyway, that's just what I heard so far. So please don't spread that. I'm just mentioning you this, because I don't feel comfortable
talking about someone behind someones back (ie, sending a PM). Only the devs themselves know the true reason behind the delay of
the next release of DOSBox. Besides.. DOSBox works very well since 0.7x! Personally, I was really happy with 0.63 already.
That version already worked fine for most things, incl. Windows 3.10 (286 mode/ems=false). If you're looking for recent binaries,
you will find some of them at EmuCr, too.: http://www.emucr.com/search/label/DOSBox?&max-results=16

Last edited by Jo22 on 2017-07-20, 05:42. Edited 1 time in total.

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Reply 7 of 15, by cyclone3d

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King_Corduroy wrote:

Earth 2140 would be a better example of a game that doesn't run adequately. It's much too choppy compared to running it on real hardware, same with the video cutscene playback. No idea why that is but it's bugged me for a while 🤣.

Massive amounts of case statements in the code. That is all.

Yamaha YMF modified setupds and drivers
Yamaha XG resource repository - updated November 27, 2018
Yamaha YMF7x4 Guide
AW744L II - YMF744 - AOpen Cobra Sound Card - Install SB-Link Header

Reply 8 of 15, by keenmaster486

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I remember when we had 0.63, 0.65, etc for the longest time and I was perfectly happy.

But the question is legitimate anyway, what's the point of having a versioning system at all if we just tell people to download the latest stable SVN?

I'd say with all the changes/improvements in the SVN we should be at 0.80 by now, if not (***gasp***) version 1.0.

I flermmed the plootash just like you asked.
World's foremost 486 enjoyer.

Reply 9 of 15, by NovHak

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Aha, the unreachable 1.0 ! 🤣

That's the same with teachers, some will never give the best mark because they consider it should be perfection, and perfection is unreachable. On the other hand, I've seen teachers give marks over the best one.

I'm happy with my freshly installed DosBOX ECE and its "pixel-perfect" renderer, but I admit TES Arena doesn't seem to be the most problematic among DOS games...

Reply 10 of 15, by Kerr Avon

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I must admit, I'd love to see a recommendation of what versions of DOSBox to use. I mean, DOSBox-x is supposed to be very good, but some versions have (I've heard) serious bugs. Plus presumably the SVN versions do occasionally have bugs introduced in them, which are fixed in later versions. And even though 0.74 is considered stable and worth using, presumably later versions (the SVN line, DOSBox-x, and whatever else) have features added that make it preferable to 0.74 (I'd like to try a version that has good snapshot-saving, for example), or are faster or more compatible.

Can anyone give any recommendations on which forks and exact versions are worth using, and why, please?

Reply 11 of 15, by Qbix

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0.74 for most.
SVN for if you are impatient. It works in general great. We don't have often bad bugs and it needs to be used in order to find bugs 😉

snapshot-stuff, I wouldn't recommend it as dosbox isn't designed for it to work.
Other ports I don't want to recommend as they are not our work, so that is a choice you have to make on your own. These forums are primary for 0.74 and SVN.

Water flows down the stream
How to ask questions the smart way!

Reply 12 of 15, by NovHak

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Now if that's not an informed reply...

However, considering there are 7 years between 0.74 and the current SVN, I'm not sure "impatient" is the best adjective 🤣

Having read this earlier, maybe I would have sticked to 0.74, but then I would not have the "pixel-perfect" renderer, which is not in the SVN anyway.

That being said, thanks to you and other contributors for this fine piece of software that helps us revive older pieces of software !

Reply 13 of 15, by jez

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Qbix wrote:

0.74 for most.
SVN for if you are impatient.

Heh, imparient - nice troll. How long is one meant to wait, a millennium? It's like Microsoft saying they're working on a new OS and still recommending Windows XP.

I don't really mind whether you use a versioning system or not, but I really don't see the point of a "download" page if it doesn't link to a recent version.

== Jez ==