(This is a guest post by Antoni Sawicki aka Tenox)
A friend and I were recently discussing differences between WABI, WINE, WISE, Merge, VP/IX, FX!32 and SoftWindows. This article covers Merge specifically which is a DOS/Windows emulator initially built for AT&T 6300 Plus computer. Later ported to UnixWare, OpenServer and eventually served as basis for Win4Lin. Later versions of Merge were build using Microsoft WISE SDK which allowed to run apps without full copy of Windows kind of like WINE. I will be running it on OpenServer 5 using VirtualBox. However one could get it going on UnixWre and under any other hypervisor same as easy.
For Vbox/OSR5, when creating a VM, make it other/other type, give 256MB to 1GB RAM and 4GB HDD. Once VM is created go to Settings and change network adapter to Intel PRO/1000 MT Desktop and Attachment to Bridge mode. For some reason I could not get DHCP working out of the box. Also under Display change graphics controller to VM SVGA.
Boot and go through the prompts as normal. At some point you will be stopped by a lovely prompt for license number and code:
SCO043568 / pnhohvqm to get past this.
Watch out for this screen:
Don’t worry about not being able to get the NIC detected at this point. Leave it as Deferred for now. You need to install MP5 update and a driver update for this to work. This will be covered later.
Select some decent resolution for VESA SVGA:
Also select PS/2 Mouse:
The rest should just fly through on autopilot. Once system boots login as root with the password you set.
First thing you will need to install MP5 update. Download the ISO file from this link and attach to your hypervisor. Open the terminal and type “custom” to install software. Or double click that fancy “Software Manager” icon on the desktop. Under Software click Install New… and select this host. Select your attached cdrom.
You will need to install Maintenance Pack 5 and GFX / NIC Drivers:
Make sure to hit install twice one for each of these items as they cannot be selected together. Once complete you will need to reboot of course.
After reboot you should be able to add and configure the NIC. You will need to either run “scoadmin” or go to System Administration – Networks – Network Configuration Manager. Add a new LAN adapter. The Intel PRO/1000 should be detected automatically. I could never get DHCP to work and just used static IP config there. Make sure to ok re-link the kernel and reboot.
Installation of merge is a little bit more complicated. The latest version can be downloaded from here. If you are installing under UnixWare then this is your folder. Transfer it to your OSR5 VM via browser, ftp, samba, iso file or however you like. Open a terminal and go to the directory with the cpio file file and run:
cpio -icv -I osr5_merge5323a_vol.cpio
This will produce a bunch of VOL* files. These are installed with “custom” as well. However instead of cdrom you select Media Images and point to the directory with extracted VOL files:
There should be an option to install Merge.
You will be also prompted by a lovely license code prompt. Enter
SCO837369 / bhtepkxy to get through. You will need to reboot again.
After login there will be a new folder on the desktop with Merge tools:
Root is not allowed to run it, but you can pre-install Windows as root. To do so go to Merge Setup and open System Wide Administration. You will find a button to Load Windows CD. You can just mount any bootable Windows 9x cdrom to your hypervisor and Merge will copy it for you.
There will be a prompt for network configuration. I opted for WinSock option which is user mode emulation, it’s enough to get a web browser going. If you need to use SMB/CIFS, open network shares, etc you will need the bridged mode with extra IP address for the guest.
Finally you will need to create and login as a different user to get this thing running.
This is the final product, with 4 level inception:
For the lazy of course provided is a fully installed OVA, one with VBox NIC and one with VMware NIC. Passwords are root/root and tenox/tenox. Note that this image has a static IP address of 192.168.1.111.
Have fun with virtualization!
Update: Article about OpenServer 6 and MergePro