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 PostPost subject: MS-DOS Prompt in Windows 1.0 DR5 and Alpha        Posted: Thu Jul 06, 2017 2:21 pm 
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This is my second post about Windows 1.0 DR5. Windows 1.0 1983 Byte Magazine Beta Build and Windows 1.0 1983 COMDEX Beta Build can handle MS-DOS 2.0 Prompt DOS programs. In Windows 1.0 DR5 and Windows 1.0 Alpha went you to COMMAND.COM it get out error in windows say "Support for old applications not enabled." Did Microsoft Disable MS-DOS Prompt in Windows 1.0 DR5 and Alpha and put back in Windows 1.0 Beta and Windows 1.0 Premiere Edition.

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If you look closely, you can see a DOS prompt open in those screenshots. I've tried opening a DOS prompt in DR5, this is what I get:
Just wondering, can you get DOS programs to work in DR5?


Last edited by johnlemon647 on Fri Jul 07, 2017 4:50 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 PostPost subject: Re: MS-DOS Prompt in Windows 1.0 DR5 and Alpha        Posted: Thu Jul 06, 2017 3:49 pm 
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I tried so in DR5, but I don't know how to make DOS apps work on it, and just for reference, if you really can't get 86box to work on your own, just use MAME for such old builds, not VBox.

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 PostPost subject: Re: MS-DOS Prompt in Windows 1.0 DR5 and Alpha        Posted: Thu Jul 06, 2017 3:51 pm 
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Actually, the application that you're talking about in the early builds is not command.com from DOS running under Windows - it is a Windows application that emulates command.com behaviour. It's an early version of MS-DOS Executive in fact. During the development release stage (so after May 1984), it turned from a specialized command prompt window (complete with it's own menu bar and all) to a simple graphical file manager like it is in DR5 and later builds. It has even kept the same icon throughout the entire development process.

This obviously implies that these early builds can't run MS-DOS applications and that makes sense, considering that neither can DR5 or the Alpha. Of course back then Windows still had the top status bar which acted as a quazi-shell and the command prompt application could be opened and closed like any other application. Later on, the MS-DOS Executive existed side by side with that status bar before the latter was finally removed and the Executive took its place as the default shell. Ever since then you can't close MS-DOS Executive without also leaving Windows.

Support for running MS-DOS applications under Windows was apparently only added/completed/enabled in the Beta, and the ability to run a command prompt window under Windows (this time the actual command.com from DOS) returned along with it.

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 PostPost subject: Re: MS-DOS Prompt in Windows 1.0 DR5 and Alpha        Posted: Thu Jul 06, 2017 4:45 pm 
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Overdoze wrote:
Support for running MS-DOS applications under Windows was apparently only added/completed/enabled in the Beta, and the ability to run a command prompt window under Windows (this time the actual command.com from DOS) returned along with it.

I must admit that evidence of early builds of Windows 1.0 being able to run MS-DOS applications is very weak, but they certainly made it look like it was possible even in the December 1983 issue of Byte, where you can clearly see MS Basic running in a window and MS Piano switching to fullscreen. Of course, you have to believe the screenshots were from an actual Windows running on a computer, and not simply mock-ups.

The fact that DR5 or Alpha claim that the old application support is not enabled hints to the possibility that it could be enabled; after all, somebody at MS must have been already working on it. Of course, as you would expect, it was not even nearly ready to be shown to third parties.


Last edited by xelloss on Thu Jul 06, 2017 5:12 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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 PostPost subject: Re: MS-DOS Prompt in Windows 1.0 DR5 and Alpha        Posted: Thu Jul 06, 2017 5:07 pm 
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xelloss wrote:
I must admit that evidence of evidence of early builds of Windows 1.0 being able to run MS-DOS applications is very weak, but they certainly made it look like it was possible even in the December 1983 issue of Byte, where you can clearly see MS Basic running in a window and MS Piano switching to fullscreen. Of course, you have to believe the screenshots where from an actual Windows running on a computer, and not simply mock-ups.


Those photos depict actual software running on an actual PC. However, even the author of that article later admitted that whatever he was shown may not have been a fully functional build of Windows, but rather a mix of early Windows with specially designed applications to create the illusion of things working before they were actually working. It's impossible to tell from simple photos of course. Photos of later builds with the new UI don't show any DOS applications running under Windows. That itself doesn't mean there was no DOS app support, but it does cast some doubt on it. Especially considering this support was only enabled for third parties in the Beta, when the product was nearly ready for launch.

They were clearly planning on implementing DOS app support in 1983 obviously, since Piano is described as an "uncooperative application" which runs in fullscreen, meaning that DOS apps could, at least in theory, bypass Windows and talk directly to the hardware like they normally could under DOS. In any case, to me the BYTE build looks more like a proof-of-concept, showcasing what Microsoft's general plan for the product was, than anything suitable for even basic testing. It's also worth noting it was shown to some members of the press before the product itself was actually announced in early November and by then, the UI was already completely overhauled.

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 PostPost subject: Re: MS-DOS Prompt in Windows 1.0 DR5 and Alpha        Posted: Fri Jul 07, 2017 4:44 pm 
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I test COMMAND.COM in Windows 1.0 Alpha see will go into MS-DOS Prompt it did not go MS-DOS Prompt but COMMAND.COM in Windows 1.0 Alpha run a Shell. So is possible run DOS Program in windows 1.0 alpha not in MS-DOS Prompt Mode.

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COMMAND.COM in Windows 1.0 Alpha
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COMMAND.COM PIF in Windows 1.0 Alpha
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 PostPost subject: Re: MS-DOS Prompt in Windows 1.0 DR5 and Alpha        Posted: Thu Jul 27, 2017 11:45 am 
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Check to see if there is a file called 'winoldap.mod' in your Windows directory. This, and the pif editor (which is actually an IBM TopView format), is what makes dos (or old apps) run. Command.com is not emulated by any of the consumer versions of windows. They are all DOS programs, although the Windows NT version passes most commands to the underlying command processor.


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 PostPost subject: Re: MS-DOS Prompt in Windows 1.0 DR5 and Alpha        Posted: Wed Apr 24, 2019 12:52 pm 
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We now know that you can have DOS apps running in windowed form in Alpha. I found a nice package of DR5 demo images that include an image of DOS prompt running. Here they are: https://www4.zippyshare.com/v/VJpgC2my/file.html it is 16.png with command.com.


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 PostPost subject: Re: MS-DOS Prompt in Windows 1.0 DR5 and Alpha        Posted: Wed Apr 24, 2019 1:14 pm 
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Hum... nice find!

Here is the screenshot:
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I will try PC-DOS 2.10 when I get time.


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 PostPost subject: Re: MS-DOS Prompt in Windows 1.0 DR5 and Alpha        Posted: Wed Apr 24, 2019 3:44 pm 
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So using PC-DOS 2.10 can Enable COMMAND.COM in Windows 1.0 DR5 nice find Jerry056

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 PostPost subject: Re: MS-DOS Prompt in Windows 1.0 DR5 and Alpha        Posted: Wed Apr 24, 2019 6:42 pm 
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@Jerry056 stop spreading fakes. Unless you are implying there are two different builds of DR5, there is simply no way DR5 could run DOS apps without major modification.

Where do you claim you "found" this package of images?

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 PostPost subject: Re: MS-DOS Prompt in Windows 1.0 DR5 and Alpha        Posted: Wed Apr 24, 2019 7:34 pm 
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jagotu wrote:
@Jerry056 stop spreading fakes. Unless you are implying there are two different builds of DR5, there is simply no way DR5 could run DOS apps without major modification.

Where do you claim you "found" this package of images?


Yeah, there has been an unusually high amount of questionable images being found left and right lately. I'm fairly certain there is no code in the DR5 copy we have that could allow DOS applications to run, but if anyone thinks otherwise, I'll gladly change my mind if they can prove there is.

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 PostPost subject: Re: MS-DOS Prompt in Windows 1.0 DR5 and Alpha        Posted: Wed Apr 24, 2019 9:56 pm 
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Overdoze wrote:
I'm fairly certain there is no code in the DR5 copy we have that could allow DOS applications to run


Taking the general point of DOS programs under windows 1, 2, 3 (real mode), then for normal DOS applications, I would suggest no.

However by injecting a CON driver in to the driver list, it should be possible to get COMMAND or any other tty like (i.e. stdin/stdout/stderr only) program to run. Recall the CTTY command within the shell which allows for input and output redirection.

All it would need is for a terminal application to talk to that driver, and shuttle input and output characters between it and the window. It would fail as soon as something tried to do anything sophisticated, like control the video mode, screen memory, or interact with the video / keyboard bios routines.

The relative paucity of such programs on DOS would however make this a rather academic exercise; but that would not exclude the possibility of someone within MS performing such early experiments, before abandoning the results a being pointless.


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 PostPost subject: Re: MS-DOS Prompt in Windows 1.0 DR5 and Alpha        Posted: Wed Apr 24, 2019 11:42 pm 
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When ever you run a .COM file, it will say old application not enabled. So what if you rename COMMAND.COM to COMMAND.EXE? it just doesn't start.

I am suspecting that this screenshot is fake after some examination. Look at the bottom scroll bar of it, you see it is literally the vertical scroll bar turned 90 degrees.

There could be ways to run DOS apps in DR5 because of the message saying it was not enabled instead of not implemented. I tried using PC-DOS and as you may guessed, doesn't work.

Imagine if we could create a port of Alpha's WINOLDAP.MOD to DR5.


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 PostPost subject: Re: MS-DOS Prompt in Windows 1.0 DR5 and Alpha        Posted: Thu Apr 25, 2019 4:20 pm 
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ComputerHunter wrote:
There could be ways to run DOS apps in DR5 because of the message saying it was not enabled instead of not implemented.

Not enabled could just as well mean that it was #ifdef'd out.

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 PostPost subject: Re: MS-DOS Prompt in Windows 1.0 DR5 and Alpha        Posted: Thu Apr 25, 2019 4:24 pm 
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ComputerHunter wrote:

Imagine if we could create a port of Alpha's WINOLDAP.MOD to DR5.


good luck with that
1. the NE format is different, the header is at a different location and completely different
2. iirc MSDOS is hardcoded to return "DOS App Support Not Enabled" when attempting to run a DOS app
3. the API changed massively between DR5 and Alpha, so again, good luck. Even the init calls are different. You're better off, and it would take a lot less time, learning x86-16 asm and writing your own WINOLDAP.MOD replacement. WINOLDAP.NEW? ;)


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