I saw this the other day, although haven’t had a chance to write about it.

EtherDFS just needs a packet driver on MS-DOS, and it implements it’s own re-director to communicate with a Linux file-server, using it’s own raw protocol.

It certainly looks cool, and looking at how it works, it should be possible to write other drivers to read/write other filesystems for MS-DOS.  It’d be more interesting (to me anyways) if you can write an INT 14 re-director using a 32bit DOS extender to make things easier regarding filesystem ports.

When I get back home, I’ll have to test this on my retro machine, as the idea of just needing a packet driver + TSR sure sounds like a LOT less memory than the Microsoft re-director.

This entry was posted in MS-DOS by neozeed. Bookmark the permalink.

About neozeed

What is there to tell? I’ve loved UNIX like things since I was first exposed to QNX in highschool (we had the Unisys ICONS!), and spent the better time of my teenage years trying to get my own UNIX… I should have bought Coherent in retrospect.. Anyways latched onto Linux in 1992, and then got some old BSD admin books and have been hooked on the VAX BSD & other big/ancient things since…!

6 thoughts on “EtherDFS

  1. I’ve recently looked for a solution to transfer file to my PS/2 and settled on the FTP server from mTCP. While it works “the other way” (server on the DOS machine, client on Windows) I prefer not to install server software on my primary computer just for my retro machines to connect. The mTCP FTP server worked very well – it can be configured to give me access to all DOS drives so I can both easily transfer files where I want and backup the whole machine.

  2. I like the idea of the DOS machine being the server too.

    But for the more mainstream retro options, maybe there are some more lightweight than Microsoft’s client? Perhaps there is a difference in memory requirements between MS LAN Manager client and the MS Workgroup Client for DOS? I was just reading a review of peer to peer LANs from 1993, it says Netware Lite only needs 13K for a client-only machine. LANtastic was their editor’s choice but I never tried that myself, and unlike MS and Netware solutions I have no idea if there is any Linux software that can talk that protocol.

    • Lantastic uses a custom version of NetBEUI as protocol. In theory you could implement an usermode service in windows talking this custom version of NetBEUI and interface it with the network card using TUN/TAP for Windows. Then you could use Lantastic to connect to it using the minimal client without TCPIP for a less hungry memory communication.Probably something like this can also be done with EtherDFS.

      • Interesting, thanks! I think the article I was reading showed LANtastic had higher memory usage than Netware Lite though, so I’d be inclined to try Netware Lite on DOS as the client and Mars-NWE (Netware Emulator) on a Linux VM as the server, since I used both of those before and it will be a trip down memory lane. I gather from searching the web that Mars-NWE doesn’t work properly on 64-bit hosts, and I imagine it might be hard to get working on a recent Linux distribution, hence the VM. I may run it on Red Hat Linux 6 for nostalgia too!

  3. Is it possible to run a Netware Lite in DOSBOX _with_ network functionality (without I guess no problem) ? In a virtualbox/vmware player this should be no problem if you know the ethernet card (e.g. NE1000) and you got the corresponding driver….

    • If NW Lite runs under dosbox (have no information)

      Because: SLIP xor PPP+packet drivers are supported and packet driver – odi shim exists

      TL;DR try it in order to get experienced, serious serial networking howto is on dosbox wiki

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