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Installing DOS drivers on an Audigy2 ZS

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Reply 20 of 60, by TorqueDaisy

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Thank you for this thread! I was able to get sound working in pure DOS mode, though I seem to still be having issues getting DOS games to work under 98SE.

There's also this.. very weird bit where the midi music is running what seems to be half the speed it should be. Is this due to my CPU or something I fiddled with in the config?

Reply 21 of 60, by Joseph_Joestar

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TorqueDaisy wrote on 2020-10-24, 01:38:

Thank you for this thread! I was able to get sound working in pure DOS mode, though I seem to still be having issues getting DOS games to work under 98SE.

Check my instructions in this post to see if you might have a resource conflict. What games are you having trouble with, specifically?

There's also this.. very weird bit where the midi music is running what seems to be half the speed it should be. Is this due to my CPU or something I fiddled with in the config?

The slowest PC that I tested this approach with was a Celeron 466 with 256MB RAM, and I didn't experience any slowdowns there. What are your system specs?

Build #1: Celeron 466 / Abit ZM6 / Voodoo3 / AWE64 / YMF744 / SC-155
Build #2: AthlonXP 1700+ / Abit KT7A / GeForce4 / SBLive / ALS100
Build #3: Athlon64 3700+ / DFI LanParty / 9600GT / X-Fi Titanium

Reply 22 of 60, by JSO

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Tested on my socket 939 new build, which I replaced the Athlon XP build (A8V deluxe, 4400+ x2, 9600 PRO, Audigy 2ZS), works great, but the games are working better under Windows 98 and not in pure DOS.

Doom Ultimate, Duke3D, Warcraft, working great with Sound Canvas, but I believe Live! has better sound in pure DOS.

DOS IS THE POWER OF OUR CHILDHOOD MEMORIES!

Reply 23 of 60, by Joseph_Joestar

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JSO wrote on 2020-11-09, 20:08:

Tested on my socket 939 new build, which I replaced the Athlon XP build (A8V deluxe, 4400+ x2, 9600 PRO, Audigy 2ZS), works great, but the games are working better under Windows 98 and not in pure DOS.

Nice to hear that this works on a Socket 939 board!

Doom Ultimate, Duke3D, Warcraft, working great with Sound Canvas, but I believe Live! has better sound in pure DOS.

Can you elaborate on the SBLive having better sound in pure DOS? Do you mean its General MIDI (ECW files) or something else?

Build #1: Celeron 466 / Abit ZM6 / Voodoo3 / AWE64 / YMF744 / SC-155
Build #2: AthlonXP 1700+ / Abit KT7A / GeForce4 / SBLive / ALS100
Build #3: Athlon64 3700+ / DFI LanParty / 9600GT / X-Fi Titanium

Reply 24 of 60, by JSO

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I'm glad that you can justify it. I didn't knew until recently that the 939 platform is somehow Windows 9x / DOS compatible due to VIA chipset.

On my K7 (Asus K7M) build with SB Live!, I think that on pure DOS the sound is more clear and with better bass, but is my personal opinion comparing the two builds.

On Windows 98 SE DOS games on Audigy 2 ZS have clearest sound.

The only DOS game I'm experiencing sound issues on pure DOS or Windows 98 is LionKing. No sound at all on both occasions.
It works without issues on K7 and Live!.

DOS IS THE POWER OF OUR CHILDHOOD MEMORIES!

Reply 25 of 60, by Joseph_Joestar

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JSO wrote on 2020-11-09, 20:46:

I'm glad that you can justify it. I didn't knew until recently that the 939 platform is somehow Windows 9x / DOS compatible due to VIA chipset.

Kudos to VIA for this. I have an nForce4 based socket 939 motherboard and the DOS drivers of several PCI sound cards that I tried on it simply crash. Nvidia really dropped the ball on DOS compatibility with their nForce product line.

The only DOS game I'm experiencing sound issues on pure DOS or Windows 98 is LionKing. No sound at all on both occasions.
It works without issues on K7 and Live!.

In my experience, SB16 emulation compatibility varies by driver version (it is shown after SBEINIT.COM loads). Audigy cards use the latest 5.00 version, while SBLive cards use 3.xx to 4.xx depending on the driver CD that came with the card. None of these are perfect, so a game that works fine on version 3.xx might crash on 5.00 and vice versa.

Build #1: Celeron 466 / Abit ZM6 / Voodoo3 / AWE64 / YMF744 / SC-155
Build #2: AthlonXP 1700+ / Abit KT7A / GeForce4 / SBLive / ALS100
Build #3: Athlon64 3700+ / DFI LanParty / 9600GT / X-Fi Titanium

Reply 26 of 60, by JSO

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Back on 2003 I had Windows 2000 and 98SE installed on my Athlon XP, I've abandoned "forever" Windows 98 and DOS, because when I've replaced the GA-7DXr+ with GA-7N400 PRO2 the Audigy didn't have sound on DOS games and I thought newer motherboards will never have again. So I moved to XP for first time.

I didn't thought to use older DOS drivers...

Maybe next time. I packed the PC back to the basement for now. I made my testing during weekend.

DOS IS THE POWER OF OUR CHILDHOOD MEMORIES!

Reply 27 of 60, by Popaldini

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Hi Joeseph
I have the sb0350 non dell standard 2 zs variant
Having real difficulty
Sound working perfectly with win98 se but can’t get any dos sound
I’ve followed your guide to the tee
I don’t get the ctsyn.ini file after installing the dos drivers and I only get one sb16 emulation item in my device list with a yellow warning triangle.

Mega frustrating! Even tried doing a complete overhaul of win98SE but still no joy!

Any help appreciated!

Joseph_Joestar wrote on 2020-01-18, 14:29:
1. Introduction: […]
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1. Introduction:

To get DOS support on an Auudigy2 ZS, you would normally need to install WDM drivers from the CD (which is a lengthy and complicated process, sometimes prone to failure), then run the Creative Driver Utility to install VxD drivers and finally install the DOS support pack. With the new method, this is no longer necessary. You can install VxD drivers right from the start and then proceed with installing DOS support. For reference, by using this guide, you get the following features from your Audigy2 ZS under Windows 98SE:

  • EAX 1, 2 and 3 support for Windows9x games
  • Sound Blaster 16 emulation for DOS games
  • FM Synthesis emulation for DOS games
  • General MIDI emulation for DOS games
  • Soundfont support for DOS games running under Windows 98SE

Note that soundfonts only work when DOS games are running from within Windows 98. If you go to pure DOS (by choosing Start > Shutdown > Restart in MS-DOS mode) then the soundfonts won't load and the card will use those crappy .ECW sets instead. To my knowledge, there is no way to use .SF2 based soundfonts in pure DOS with an Audigy 2 ZS.

Before starting the installation you need to determine whether your Audigy2 ZS is made by Dell or by Creative. Dell cards have three, large white stickers on the back side and their serial number contains the string "SB0358". Creative cards don't have those white stickers and their serial number contains the string "SB0350". This guide is aimed at Audigy2 ZS cards made by Creative. I'm not sure whether this method will work on Dell branded cards since I don't own one of those, and they are known to be picky when it comes to driver packs.

Lastly, you don't need to modify the drivers in any way for this to work. All you need is some way to unpack a single CAB file, and 7-Zip does that nicely. This guide assumes that you have a clean install of Windows 98SE and an Audigy2 ZS (model SB0350). It will probably fail if you already have other versions of Creative's drivers installed, but it works 100% on a clean install.

2. Preparation:

2.1 Download and install 7-Zip version 9.20 for 32-bit Windows (it works fine on Win98)
2.2 Download the Audigy2 ZS driver CD ISO
2.3 Use 7-Zip to extract the contents of the "Audigy_2_ZS_Install_CD.7z" to C:\AU1
2.4 After that, right click on "C:\AU1\Audigy 2 ZS Install CD.iso" > 7-Zip > Extract Here to unpack the contents of the ISO image (it may report some errors with CHM files but that's ok)
2.5 Download the Audigy DOS support package
2.6 Extract the contents of audigy2-dospack.rar to C:\AU2 (note: it appears that this archive was created with a newer version of WinRAR, you may need to unpack it on your modern computer)

3. Windows Driver Installation

3.1 Right click on My Computer > Properties > Device Manager > Sound, video and game controllers. If there is an "Ad Lib Compatible (OPL2)" device present there, right click on it > Remove > Ok
3.2 Run C:\AU1\CTShared\LaunchApp\SysInfo\Setup.exe which will install the Creative System Information utility and update the InstallShield Engine (important later)
3.3 Run C:\AU1\DirectX\dxsetup.exe which will install DirectX 9.0a and restart your computer (if you already have a newer version installed, skip this step)
3.4 Go to C:\AU1\Audio\Drivers\VxD > right click on VxD.cab > 7-Zip > Extract Files > C:\AU1\Audio\Drivers\ (this should populate the existing VxD folder with the files from the CAB)
3.5 Run C:\AU1\Audio\Drivers\CTZAPXX.exe and select "Driver Installation" and "VXD Drivers" then click Ok
3.6 Driver installation will take several minutes, don't interrupt the process until you are prompted to Restart then click Ok
3.7 After the restart, wait until the installer finishes, then go to Start > Settings > Control Panel > Multimedia > Audio > Playback > Advanced Properties > Performance > Sample Rate Conversion Quality > move the slider to "Best"
3.8 Run C:\AU1\Audio\SFBMgr\Setup.exe and install the Sound Font Bank Manager (if you get an InstallShield Engine error here, repeat step 3.2)
3.9 Start > Run > sndvol32.exe > Ok. Note that all the volume sliders are currently at 50% which is fairly quiet. You might want to move the sliders to a higher value, depending on your speaker setup

4. DOS Driver Installation

REGEDIT4

[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Creative Tech\Emu10kx\Emulation]
"EnableSB16Emulation"=dword:00000001

4.1 Paste the code listed above into Notepad and save it as SB16.txt
4.2 Next, rename SB16.txt to SB16.reg, then double click on that file and answer Yes > Ok when prompted (without this registry change, the SB16 Emulation driver will not install correctly on an Audigy2 ZS card)
4.3 Run C:\AU2\AUDIGY DOS DRIVER\Setup.exe and restart when prompted
4.4 Wait until the Creative SB16 Emulation drivers are fully installed (this may take a few minutes) then restart again when prompted
4.5 When the installer finishes, you will have a non-functional Creative SB16 Emulation device (yellow exclamation mark) in Device Manager. This is expected behavior, in the next step we will add the functional version of the same device
4.6 Start > Settings > Control Panel > Add New Hardware > Next > Next > No, the device isn't in the list > Next > No, I want to select the hardware from a list > Next > Sound video and game controllers > Next > Creative Technology, Ltd. > Creative SB16 Emulation > Next > Finish
4.7 Restart your computer when prompted
4.8 During the boot process you might see a "Config file is incomplete" error. If this happens, restart your computer one more time and it should disappear

If the installation was successful, you should now have the following under Device Manager:

006.png

Important: do not remove the Creative SB16 Emulation device with the yellow exclamation mark! Leave both devices as they are, otherwise, your DOS compatibility may cease to function. In addition, if you want to use this card in pure DOS you will need to run C:\AU2\AUDIGY12 PATCH\AUDIGY12.EXE each time you choose Restart in MS-DOS mode. This is only necessary in pure DOS, do not run that executable when playing games from within Win98SE.

Currently, the Audigy 2 ZS is using Creative's default 2 MB soundfont. If you want something that sounds much better, see below.

5. SC-55 Sound Font Installation (optional)

5.1 Download Patch93's SC-55 soundfont and extract the archive contents to C:\AU3
5.2 Download SF Pack and extract the archive contents to C:\AU3
5.3 Run C:\AU3\SFPACK.EXE > Ok > File > Add Files > Files of type: SFPack Files > C:\AU3\SC-55.sfpack > Open
5.4 After that, click File > Go/Stop. Wait for about 30 seconds. Now, if everything worked ok, you should have a SC-55.sf2 file in C:\AU3 (file size should be 45.1 MB)
5.5 Start > Programs > Creative > SoundFont Bank Manager
5.6 Click on "Midi Devices" and use the slider to set SoundFont Cache to slightly more than 50 MB then click Ok
5.7 Click on "Bank" then click on the default soundfont (2GMGSMT) to select it, then click Replace, point to C:\AU3\Sc-55.sf2 wait a few seconds until it loads then click Ok
5.8 Run your favorite DOS game (like Doom for example) and in setup choose General MIDI for music

007.png

Doom_Audigy2_ZS_SC-55_soundfont.mp3

Listen to the MP3 file attached above to check how Doom sounds on an Audigy2 ZS using this soundfont. For comparison, here's Doom on a real SC-55.

6. Getting MT-32 compatibility in pure DOS (optional)

6.1 Start > Shutdown > Restart in MS-DOS mode
6.2 C:\AU2\AUDIGY~2\AUDIGY12.EXE (this unmutes the card in pure DOS)
6.2 C:\Progra~1\Creative\DOSDrv\sbemixer.exe
6.3 Make sure that the MT-32 option is checked, then click Save and press ESC to exit
6.4 Run your favorite DOS game that supports MT-32 (like Monkey Island for example)

Note that MT-32 emulation doesn't sound too great on this card, but I'm including it for completeness sake. That said, these drivers also allow your Audigy2 ZS to emulate FM Synthesis, should you want that. Of course, this sounds different from a genuine OPL3 chip, but I'd still consider it tolerable.

Reply 28 of 60, by Joseph_Joestar

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Popaldini wrote on 2020-11-30, 15:38:

I don’t get the ctsyn.ini file after installing the dos drivers and I only get one sb16 emulation item in my device list with a yellow warning triangle

Are you sure that you completed step 4.6 correctly?

That's what gives you the second SB16 emulation device and enables DOS support.

Build #1: Celeron 466 / Abit ZM6 / Voodoo3 / AWE64 / YMF744 / SC-155
Build #2: AthlonXP 1700+ / Abit KT7A / GeForce4 / SBLive / ALS100
Build #3: Athlon64 3700+ / DFI LanParty / 9600GT / X-Fi Titanium

Reply 29 of 60, by Popaldini

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Yes followed it
Also when I boot up it says the sb emulation cannot be configured even after multiple restarts !

Joseph_Joestar wrote on 2020-11-30, 16:09:
Popaldini wrote on 2020-11-30, 15:38:

I don’t get the ctsyn.ini file after installing the dos drivers and I only get one sb16 emulation item in my device list with a yellow warning triangle

Are you sure that you completed step 4.6 correctly?

That's what gives you the second SB16 emulation device and enables DOS support.

Reply 30 of 60, by Popaldini

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Joseph_Joestar wrote on 2020-11-30, 16:09:
Popaldini wrote on 2020-11-30, 15:38:

I don’t get the ctsyn.ini file after installing the dos drivers and I only get one sb16 emulation item in my device list with a yellow warning triangle

Are you sure that you completed step 4.6 correctly?

That's what gives you the second SB16 emulation device and enables DOS support.

It says in the boot log that SB16 emu can’t load due to IRQ conflict

Reply 31 of 60, by Joseph_Joestar

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Popaldini wrote on 2020-11-30, 16:49:

It says in the boot log that SB16 emu can’t load due to IRQ conflict

I'm guessing IRQ 5 is in use by some other device on your system. For some tips on how to resolve IRQ/DMA conflicts see this post.

It's difficult to troubleshoot this since everyone's system is different in terms of hardware that is used. The only thing I can say with certainty is that by default SB16 emulation looks for address 220, IRQ 5, Low DMA 1, High DMA 5, port 388 and port 330. If any of those resources are already taken by other devices, the installation may fail.

Build #1: Celeron 466 / Abit ZM6 / Voodoo3 / AWE64 / YMF744 / SC-155
Build #2: AthlonXP 1700+ / Abit KT7A / GeForce4 / SBLive / ALS100
Build #3: Athlon64 3700+ / DFI LanParty / 9600GT / X-Fi Titanium

Reply 32 of 60, by Popaldini

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Managed to get the bugger working
Basically I had to set the emulation to IRQ7 as my card was forcing IRQ5 this got rid of the conflict
Then it wouldn't load the drivers....
So I had to change the CTSYN.ini to point to the drivers in the DOSDrv folder. After that it works in DOS mode only after loading the audigy12 patch
Just need to set up the mouse and the MSCDEX in dos now and hopefully jobs a good un.

Thanks for your help mate

Reply 33 of 60, by Popaldini

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Sound working pretty well now, only thing I cant get to work is the CD audio in quake and blood.
From reading around I think this is not possible with sb16 emulation and mscdex
Is this correct?

Cheers
Matt

Joseph_Joestar wrote on 2020-11-30, 17:21:
Popaldini wrote on 2020-11-30, 16:49:

It says in the boot log that SB16 emu can’t load due to IRQ conflict

I'm guessing IRQ 5 is in use by some other device on your system. For some tips on how to resolve IRQ/DMA conflicts see this post.

It's difficult to troubleshoot this since everyone's system is different in terms of hardware that is used. The only thing I can say with certainty is that by default SB16 emulation looks for address 220, IRQ 5, Low DMA 1, High DMA 5, port 388 and port 330. If any of those resources are already taken by other devices, the installation may fail.

Reply 34 of 60, by Joseph_Joestar

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Popaldini wrote on 2020-11-30, 20:16:

Sound working pretty well now, only thing I cant get to work is the CD audio in quake and blood.
From reading around I think this is not possible with sb16 emulation and mscdex
Is this correct?

CD audio should work fine under Windows, but I'm not sure I ever tested this under pure DOS since I mostly used my ZS to play games from within the Win98 DOS prompt.

It might also depend on whether you're using an analog or digital (SPDIF) CD audio cable.

Build #1: Celeron 466 / Abit ZM6 / Voodoo3 / AWE64 / YMF744 / SC-155
Build #2: AthlonXP 1700+ / Abit KT7A / GeForce4 / SBLive / ALS100
Build #3: Athlon64 3700+ / DFI LanParty / 9600GT / X-Fi Titanium

Reply 35 of 60, by Popaldini

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Yeah I have a SPDIF cable and cd audio works in windows fine
My logic tells me probably won’t work in dos as running the patch which is forcing the sound from the emulator on irq 5 whereas the cd audio is going to the IRQ of the Audigy 2zs

I have managed to rectify my issues now, I could not get the SB16 emulator to work in MS Dos running through windows at all. I swapped the audigy 2 zs out for a spare standard audigy 2 and followed your guide but using the audigy 2 driver disc and it works flawlessly in win98 for both Roland and soundblaster with cd audio too.

Thanks for all your help
Cheers!

Reply 36 of 60, by dim0n

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First of all i need to say, that this forum and all community all around retro computing and gaming returns me to younger ages and I starts to think about to build some retro machines based on win98 & win xp from parts, that i have around just to return back and to play some good old games 😉 (and to feel a pain, like in old times 😁). Surprisingly it was Extreme Assault game, which force me to do this after i saw it on yt 😁. So almost 2 weeks i tried to get my Audigy 2 (no ZS) work in win-dos mode games, and it was a really pain, i downloaded 2 versions of Audigy 2 CD iso images, dos drivers, drivers from many pages, make a many reinstalls, found a good utility, which clears rest from drivers, i saw a lot of videos, read a lot before of course on google and forums, tried even audigy 1 drivers etc... but all the time I stuck on problem like many others, that win cannot make that emulation works (yellow triange). And for all of this i want to say THANKS YOU!

Thanks a lot guys you really really makes me happy and my respect goes to Joseph for this 😉

But, maybe isn't it all about that nobody knows, that after you install dos drivers, you need to add manually a "SB 16 Emulation" through add/remove hardware? 😉 Of course I didn't test it, because i'm happy, that i have sound in dos games!!!

Sound Blaster Audigy 2 SB0240
P4 3,2Ghz, i875p, 512mb, radeon 9550 256mb...

Reply 37 of 60, by Warlord

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I might try some of the advice in experimenting on the pcmcia cardbus Audigy2 zs notebook that everyone has said is impossible to work. But I could of swore that I got it working with vxd drivers on my own several years ago. Ask anyone else though it doesn't work and is impossible. probably will never work in pure dos but i see no reason it couldn't be hacked to work under windows.

Reply 38 of 60, by Warlord

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So I finally got around to trying this method on a PCI card not the notebook one yet. And I never had that yellow sb 16 emulation non functional device requiring you to have 2? It just worked for me and I didn't have to do that. I had working sb16 emulation from the beginning on that step.

Could it be because I didn't follow your directions and I installed the WDM driver 1st by normal method of pointing card to INF from device manager. Then with CTZAPXX.exe I uninstalled WDM and I chose "force" option when uninstall. Then I reboot and I install vxd driver i chose force again. Then rest of it went without problem. No extra step of manually adding sb16 emulation.

I tested with wold3d under windows.

Reply 39 of 60, by Joseph_Joestar

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Warlord wrote on 2021-03-26, 01:00:

Could it be because I didn't follow your directions and I installed the WDM driver 1st by normal method of pointing card to INF from device manager. Then with CTZAPXX.exe I uninstalled WDM and I chose "force" option when uninstall. Then I reboot and I install vxd driver i chose force again. Then rest of it went without problem. No extra step of manually adding sb16 emulation.

Interesting, I don't think I ever tried that. Originally, I used to install WDM drivers through normal means (autorun from CD) and then ran the Creative Driver Utility to replace them with VxD drivers. That's the official method AFAIK.

After all that, I would install the DOS support pack which resulted in the non-functional SB16 emulation device (yellow exclamation mark) and necessitated manually adding a second, functional instance. The method that I use in this guide is simply a condensed version of that, in order to avoid Creative's bloatware (electronic registration etc) which normally gets installed alongside the drivers.

Could you test the approach you described with a few more games, including soundfont loading, to see how things work out? If it's possible to eliminate the non-functional SB16 emulation device, then all the better.

Build #1: Celeron 466 / Abit ZM6 / Voodoo3 / AWE64 / YMF744 / SC-155
Build #2: AthlonXP 1700+ / Abit KT7A / GeForce4 / SBLive / ALS100
Build #3: Athlon64 3700+ / DFI LanParty / 9600GT / X-Fi Titanium