IDE-CDROM for OS/2 2.0

I’ve slowly been trying to piece together my old Netware 4.1 stuff to try to run it on Virtual PC… the best I can find is that I’d need parts of Netware 6 to get the networking to run….

But then the other day, I had remembered that you could run Netware 4.1 under OS/2 (the 32bit ones)..

The only ‘snag’ is that I’d need a working CD-ROM driver… And IDE-CD’s didn’t become somewhat popular until the 3.0 WARP days.

Well I did manage to find this zip file, CL_ATAPI.ZIP (Mirror CL_ATAPI.ZIP) that contains the IDE drivers!.. And as it mentions in the BBS description it’ll work on 2.0! Except that it gives NO hints on how to install it.

After a LOT of googling around, I was able to piece together a working solution. Adding this to the config sys by first commenting out the ibm1s506.add.. (Naturally unzip CL_ATAPI.zip into the os2 directory!

BASEDEV=IBM1FLPY.ADD
rem BASEDEV=IBM1S506.ADD
BASEDEV=IBM1s506.add
BASEDEV=IBM1s506.add /A:1 /U:0 /ATAPI
ifs=c:\os2\cdfs.ifs /q
basedev=ibmidecd.flt
device=c:\os2\os2cdrom.dmd
BASEDEV=OS2DASD.DMD

And there we go, drive D all set!

MS-DOS lan client for Virtual PC 2007

So while I was going through the motion of making my tradewars more… multi user friendly, I needed to test between all kinds of clients and a server…

Since I’m using MS-DOS, Windows 3.0 as my test bed (if it’ll run there, it’ll run anywhere!) I had MAJOR issues with the 3.0 lan client… But digging around on the NT 4.0 Server CD I tried the lanman.dos client.

Using the lan drivers from here: http://wiki.oldos.org/Downloads/DriversAndBootdisks

It was a snap!

I’ve built an NT 4.0 domain controller with both NetBIOS & TCPIP protocols that way all my machines can map into it…

I wonder if there ever was a ms net requester for MacOS..?

OS/2 1.3 on a real pc

 

Ok so this isn’t much of an update, but I thought I’d share some Microsoft OS/2 1.3 on REAL hardware…. Yeah, so it’s not emulation but this is COOL!

I scored a copy of Microsoft OS/2 1.3 IN THE BOX.

OS/2 1.3 on a real computer!

Which is beyond rare. But they needed something as a ‘server platform’ for Microsoft Mail 3.x before Windows NT (OS/2 NT) was ready.

Minor tip for Virtual PC 2007 users

On vista with some fancy multi core machines… I’ve found that some OS’s will just DOG big time, inducing major latency, disk errors, and of course it’ll eventually corrupt the guest OS into not working.

As an instance, NT 3.1 takes about 30 minutes to install (compare to Qemu in about 2 minutes tops) and every time I’d try to convert the disk to NTFS it would either corrupt the disk so it couldn’t boot or it would fail saying the disk was unable to convert…

Anyways back when Virtual PC was a connectix product it was meant to run on a SINGLE CPU/CORE.  Back then multiproc machines were servers…  And who would be running Windows NT 4.0 server on a Windows NT 4.0 server??

Anyways the ‘fix’ here is to set Virtual PC’s affinity to a single core BEFORE you start any VM’s.  I’ve been setting mine to 0, but i suspect it doesn’t matter as long as no other VM’s have started before hand.  Anyways start up Virtual PC, then launch task manager, and set it’s affinity to a single core, then you’ll be good to go!

So far it would seem that Virtual Server is not hit by this, and I have to wonder if you install Virtual server onto a machine running Virtual PC with the new ‘core’ would it work correctly…..?

Anyways this fix is good enough for me.  It’s nice to boot up in a few seconds.

Networking with Windows NT 3.1 under emulation

 

Windows NT 3.1 does NOT support the PCI bus, making most emulation difficult to impossible.

However some vendors wrote their own PCI routines allowing their PCI devices to work under Windows NT 3.1!

And as luck would have it, the two that I found should work for both VMWare & Virtual PC users!

First the Virtual PC users, you’ll want this file GF10011.EXE , and just extract it, and put it on a floppy.  x64 users will either need to do this under dosbox / MS-DOS in a VM… Also another note about Virtual PC & NT 3.1 is that it has massive pauses, to where it seems to be unusable.  I’ve found that altering the Virtual PC process, and binding it to only a single CPU, and boosting it’s priority helps a great deal, although it’s nothing compared to the speed of Qemu…

VMWare users can download an AMD Pcnet driver here that will happily bind on PCI.  Once you install the driver, you can have it scan the appropriate busses and it should pull up and work.

Another fun thing I found for Virtual PC users, is that the HP Pavilion 5000 desktop shipped ready for Windows NT 3.1, and it was equiped with a S3 video card! And it’s video driver will work with Virtual PC! You can download it from HP’s site here.

This brings Windows NT 3.1 into a far more usable state. Another fun thing I found is that Netscape 2 & 3 for Windows 3.1 WILL RUN! One of these days I’ll have to sort out the exchange client situation…

And if anyone wants to see it in action, be sure to check out Apache running on Windows NT 3.1!

Or you can hit it directly:

http://winnt31.superglobalmegacorp.com/

Security update for Virtual PC/Virtual Server

The articles from Microsoft are available here and here.  It sounds like some good fun….

FTA:

This security update resolves a privately reported vulnerability in Microsoft Virtual PC and Microsoft Virtual Server. An attacker who successfully exploited this vulnerability could execute arbitrary code and take complete control of an affected guest operating system. An attacker could then install programs; view, change, or delete data; or create new accounts with full user rights.

I know I’ll be updating all my machines…!

Windows XP Mode in Windows 7

Well it seems to be all the rage in the world of emulation on Windows 7. Windows XP mode, from the user standpoint is just like the old days of WIN/OS2 from OS/2 2.0 and above.

While WIN/OS2 used specialized device drivers that could ‘punch thru’ the virtual machine, and render each window on the OS/2 PM display, Windows XP mode, takes the Citrix like approach of using Terminal Services (RDP) to initiate a remote display to the local desktop.

Since RDP is the mechanism used, only XP and above will work, sorry Windows 2000 users. Another minor (is it?) annoyance is that the new version of Virtual PC has NO floppy driver support! It also seems to not have sound support, although it’s totally unverified at the moment. I’ll have to snag a VHD with MS-DOS pre-installed along with whatever integration tools I have around.

Anyways, the install is a snap, you can find all the components here.

Setup is straight forward, just install the Virtual PC component, then Windows 7 will want to reboot. Then install the Windows XP msi file (it’s over 450MB) and you’ll get a fully installed copy of Windows XP ready to go, and best of all you don’t have to configure anything. Start Windows XP in a “normal” desktop environment, install whatever it is you want to run. Publishing apps to the Windows 7 desktop is easy, just paste a shortcut under the “all users” start menu, and the screen will blink and it’s available.

The down side, is that other OS’s seem to perform poorly under this version of VPC. The mouse is very erratic on RHEL 4 that I had to setup to emulate a production environment. Also you need to have a CPU with the new virtualization extensions. It seems this VPC version is more like the hypervisor in 2008, then like the old Virtual PC we all knew. I almost wonder if there is a way to run VPC 2004 or 5 on Windows 7 natively for running older stuff…

It will be interesting to see where Microsoft goes with this, as this could leave a major rift in their product lineup. And as I’m sure a few people will find out, just because you have a ‘new’ machine doesn’t mean the CPU is up to the task… Not all new CPUs have the virtualization environment built in…

Another issue I’ve been having is that the network from time to time disconnects and will remain disconnected… It seems if you shut down & power the VM on/off (no hibernation!) eventually the NAT adapter will reconnect. Clearly it’s a beta. Also it won’t let you publish solitary, pinball, nor any of the other games. However it will let you publish cmd.exe so you can run them that way.

 

 

Virtual disks revisted…

Again for Linux/ OSX users, it’s no big deal as they have access to the ‘dd’ command. Well I was installing AT&T SYSVr4 when it hit me that you can somewhat convert physical disks with Virtual PC & Qemu…
linked disk1
In Virtual PC you can create a ‘virtual disk’ that links to a physical volume..
linked disk2

And again, just select a physical slave disk with your legacy OS already installed.

Once the disk is linked, re-run the utility and you can then convert the linked disk into a dynamic disk. Once you have your .vhd, you can use Qemu’s qemu-img tool to convert the disk image into qcow,qcow2 (Qemu) or even VMDK for VMWare. The syntax is pretty simple..

qemu-img convert –f vpc attsysv.vhd –O qcow attsysv.dsk

I’ve tested it with AT&T SYSVr4 & OS/2 1.3! Much to my amazement with the fixpacks, OS/2 1.3 will actually RUN on Virtual PC 2007. It’s a shame that IBM saw the SDK’s for OS/2 as a revenue generation opportunity, as it’s amazing how quick it is (once it’s done initializing….) but I guess that’s a given of any 16bit OS that’s written in assembly….

For the heck of it, here’s a screenshot.

OS/2 1.3 running from a linked disk

OS/2 1.3 running from a linked disk

 

OpenBSD 4.4 on VirtualPC 2007

Well it’s about that time, and OpenBSD has now just released version 4.4!
I’m a big fan of OpenBSD, and of course I wanted to load it up on my laptop. I’ve been wanting to do some tests with Quake1 so I have setup a test server, and now I was needing a client, so I figured OpenBSD should be able to do this.

I installed OpenBSD 4.4, ran ‘startx‘ and naturally had a completely deformed screen.

I did find out that manually running ‘xorgconfig‘ and setting up the wsmouse (protocol & port!), and then selecting the S3 driver “** S3 (not ViRGE or Savage) (generic) [s3]” Option number 25 I think… Anyways from there I told it to use 800×600 16bit depth, and now I’m able to use X11 no worries!

Back to DOS

It’s been a long while, life has been busy. But I figured I ought to try to make a post this year!

Ok, I’ve gotten a new laptop over the last few months & I’m running the 64 bit version of Vista. One or the first things us old people will find is that the MS-DOS & Win16 subsystems have been completely removed.

This of course, poses a massive problem! How to play games!!!!?

Thankfully there exists two really great solutions for Vista 64bit users. The first one I’ll suggest is Virtual PC from Microsoft, and DosBox.

It’s no wonder Microsoft has made Virtual PC a free download (http://www.microsoft.com/windows/products/winfamily/virtualpc/default.mspx) since they have crippled the compatibility of the OS. Now I’m personally a little biased for Virtual PC as I’ve been using it since it was owned by Connectix. Virtual PC is a complete PC emulation strategy, allowing you to run MS-DOS or quite a few other operating systems. For this example I’m going to install MS-DOS, but it’s capable of running all kinds of other operating systems.

Now back to my laptop. It of course doesn’t come with floppy drives, so I used an older PC with a drive to create disk images. (it was running OpenBSD so I just ran ‘dd’. Winimage is capable of creating disk images as well). Of course I could use a USB floppy drive and boot my MS-DOS 6.22 floppies from that as well.

The cool thing is that you can setup a virtual machine, boot off either real floppies or virtual disks, and you will need to setup a virtual hard disk. Naturally it will need partitioning, and formatting. As for installing games, again if you have floppies of them, everything is cool. There even is an emulated CD-ROM device, however you will need a device driver to use it! (http://www.google.com/search?q=idecd.sys) Virtual PC emulates an IDE CD-ROM, and you can use just about any driver you can find out there. Once you can read CD-ROM’s under the emulated MS-DOS you can install the ‘extensions’ program, which has an idle program (to stop the emulator from consuming 100% of your CPU, as MS-DOS has no inherent idle loop), and a neat program called fshare. Fshare will allow you to give your emulated PC access to a directory on the host computer.

The plus’s of Virtual PC is that it’s a more accurate emulation, it provides sound blaster pro emulation, and good psudo device emulation. The major downside for me is that it provides no joystick emulation. Of course you’ll need to bring your own DOS, however I imagine that freedos (http://www.freedos.org/) ought to work just fine, but I kind of like the real thing.

The second emulator I’d like to mention is DOSBox (http://www.dosbox.com/). Unlike Virtual PC, DOSBox is not a complete system emulator, it’s designed specifically to run MS-DOS programs. So you will not need a copy of MS-DOS, nor will you need to worry about such hassles as media, or emulated hard disks.

To run DOSBox for the most part all I do is add the following lines into my config file:

Mount c: c:\Users\Jason\dos
C:

This will make my “c” drive a dos directory in my home directory on Vista, and change the current directory there. From here I can unzip any of the old programs I have, or just copy from CD to my vista directory and just run things. Overall DOSBox has pretty good compatibility. I’ve even run Windows 3.1, and some compiler & development stuff. And yes, it supports Joysticks & the emulation of various sound cards. DOSBox also has various throttle and various video emulation strategies. The other cool thing DOSBox can do is setup a virtual IPX/SPX network, and allow you to play old DOS multiplayer games over the internet. Warcraft 2 & Doom work quite nice under DOSBox. While Virtual PC does provide virtual Ethernet interfaces, it does not provide a way to connect them up over the internet. While it could be done with loopback adapters & PPTP routing, it would be way beyond the average user. DOSBox can listen on a specified TCP port, you can setup your internet router to redirect that port to the host PC, then allow your friends to connect in.

While I can understand Microsoft’s desire to cut all ties with past OS’s in terms of support, It’s a good thing that there still exists an emulation strategy for the two of us. And between DOSBox and Virtual PC hopefully your needs will be met.

*Yes I’m aware of VMWare, however it’s not technically free, and while you can create your own config files, and disk images in Qemu, and install your own OS, it’s not the ‘right’ thing to do according to the EULA.