Drivers and Hardware-related Tools
DOS systems have to load drivers for access to and use of hardware that
doesn't conform to the inbuilt standards, which means nearly everything
today. Since DOS memory was always at a premium (1 MB maximum, 384 KB Upper
Memory reserved for drivers), drivers should be as small as possible. There
were Memory Managers to squeeze the last byte out of your configuration, and
Boot Managers to allow different configurations on one machine.
Some general utility links which might come handy and seem to fit in no
DOS-Mode Patch for Win ME
DOS-Mode Patch for Win ME
(by PC-WELT) DOS for Windows ME: reintroduce the hidden DOS
mode in Windows ME. MS has gone to some length to hide the fact that Win
ME still sits on top of DOS "like a misbehaved TSR".
Google's Directory is a good place to start the search for an old or new
elusive device driver.
DEVLOAD provides a method of loading device drivers from the
command line under MS-DOS, rather than having to re-boot in order to load
extra drivers. - Freeware by David Woodhouse
DIY Data Recovery
DIY DataRecovery offers utilities, tutorials and support, thus enabling
technicians and users to conduct their own data recovery.
Huge driver collection. Login required. For the time being enter without
hassle using - Name=driver / PW=all -
Information for DOS on installing, memory management,
partitioning, formatting, optimizing and more.
Probably Driver Guide under another name: most links point
there. Use same Name and PW.
is the world's largest development and download
repository of Open Source code and applications. At this moment there are
about 600 DOS-related projects here, among them alternative interfaces,
extenders, languages like Basic and Pascal, protocols, multimedia players
Commercial utility to curb excessive CPU usage by DOS progs under Windows
/ NT. - by David G. Thomas
German site: bootdisk images, drivers and more.
English / german site.
Specializes in old Win3.x compatible drivers, and Win 3.1x software. - by
Tool to read, change and write the Bios settings - by Matthias Bockelkamp
Bootable CD Utils
Bootable CD Wizzard, Loader, FAQ, etc. - by Wolfgang
bootdisks, CD-Rom files, tools ... - by Ed Jablonowski
PC configuration with a nice boot menu. This was and
still is better than the boot menu that came with MS-DOS 6(?). Shareware.
- by Hans Salvisberg
BootPart is an easy tool for adding additional partitions to
the Windows NT multi boot menu (for example, add the OS/2 boot manager or
a Linux partition).
HKCPU is a useful Utility for checking the CPU type and
speed on a given machine, and due to its text-based output information
from CHKCPU can easily be used to get CPU info from each machine in a
network by calling CHKCPU from the network log-on script. - by Jan
Allow ECHO, CLS and much else early in your config.sys. Great for
debugging. Free. - by Douglas Boling, 1994
GSETUP is designed to allow you to set/modify CMOS ram
values to tell the system what the time, date, type and number of floppy
disk drives and hard disks, monitor type, etc., are for your personal
has boot disk images for Win95/98/ME and Win NT4/2000/XP
Bart's way to create bootable CD ROMs (PE-Builder), SCSI and other
tools, Boot Disk and other useful things. When it comes to create
boot(able) disks, this is the place to go. Take a
look at the sitemap.
- by Bart Lagerweij
has boot disk images of many DOS versions plus useful tools.
A small (11 KB) "universal" ATAPI CD ROM driver. Should work
with most ATAPI drives. Free. - by Acer
Software package for burning cd-rom and dvd-rom disc under
16-bit DOS systems. - by Horvath Istvan
Another "universal" ATAPI CD ROM driver. Should work with most
ATAPI drives. Free. - by Oak Tech.
Golden Hawk Technology still develops and maintains a
complete suite of MS-DOS command line utilities for CDROM recording. Both
16-bit and 32-bit versions are offered.
HD, RAM- and Floppy Disk
For those of you who want to
access an old HD and need head / cylinder / sector count here's an old
(1996) data sheet of hundreds of models of all brands:
Another good source for info is
CPUs, HDs and Floppies were slow, memory and diskspace at a premium. So
disk-cache programs, ramdisks, and HD compression were rife. Plus
there are some tools here to access Win32-style Long File Names and NT-style NTFS partitions from DOS, as well as protected disks.
Small LFN (Long File Name) driver for DOS. Free. - by Henrik Haftmann
Utility collection for the duplication of protected or damaged floppy
disks. May not run on all modern PCs. - by Central Point Software. Other
DOS HD partition splitter. - Freeware by Arno Schäfer
GDISK.EXE is a very useful tool for patitioning and formatting of HDs,
commandline driven and batchable. Found together with other useful
material on this german
LFN (Long File Name) driver for DOS. Freeware. - by Chris Jones
LFN (Long File Name) tools (LCOPY, LDIR, LCD, LDEL, LCHK, LREN, LMD,
LRD). Freeware. - by Ortwin Glück
Other LFN drivers
Collection of LFN drivers and tools for DOS - by Joe Forster
Microsoft Ramdisk for Win2000, WinXP. Not tested under Win95/98/ME.
NTFS-Driver access to NTFS partition files in read/write mode from MSDOS.
NTFSDOS NTFSDOS.EXE is a read-only network file
system driver for DOS/Windows that is able to recognize and mount NTFS
drives for transparent access. It makes NTFS drives appear
indistinguishable from standard FAT drives, providing the ability to
navigate, view and execute programs on them from DOS or from Windows,
including from the Windows 3.1 File Manager and Windows 95 Explorer. - by
NTFS4DOS Full access to NTFS drives from a DOS
boot disk. Free for private use. - by datapol
Ontrack Disk Manager
Version 7, for the installation of big HDs.
Ranish Partition Manager is a powerful hard disk
partitioning tool. It gives users high level of control for running
multiple operating systems, such as Linux, Windows 98/XP, FreeDOS, and
FreeBSD on a single disk. - by Mikhail Ranish
3 Utilities, shareware: Hyperdisk was a Cache Driver, faster than
Smartdrive, and was nearly a must in serious DOS circles. Hyperkey and
Hyperscreen never caught on as much. - by Hyperware Inc.
ReSizeable Ramdisk Ramdisk driver, supports EMS and XMS,
resizeable. - by Marco Kohtala
Stacker was the premier disk compressor, now no longer sold, and even
Stac Electronics' Homepage is gone. Does anybody still remember how MS
first stole their technique, lost the lawsuit and then quietly made a deal
with Stac? These 3 files may be of help if you have to read a stacked
disk. - by Stac Inc.
Teledisk handles many protected disks, but has one serious flaw: It will
stop copying if it comes across an unformatted track. This will prevent
you from copying original Atari booters with Teledisk. Teledisk's
strongest point is that it will run on modern computers, which CopyIIPC
fails to do. - by Sydex
Turbodisk Ramdisk driver, supports EMS and XMS,
resizeable. - by Ciriaco Garcia de Celis
Here is a set of four DOS UltraDMA hard-disk drivers.
Small driver for resizeable xms or ems ramdisk. - by Franck Uberto
Dongles for DOS and Win 95/98/ME won't
necessarily funtion for WinXP. Or you lost them, but want to use the
software again. Or they got damaged. What to do? here are some links that
might (or might not) help:
Explanations, resources, tools, tutorials and more: a good
A very commercial solution to dongle problems.
Another commercial source for help
Emulators and Virtual Machines
Perhaps you need an emulator or or a virtual
machine to install a DOS system?
Bochs is a highly portable open source IA-32 (x86) PC emulator written in
C++, that runs on most popular platforms. It includes emulation of the
Intel x86 CPU, common I/O devices, and a custom BIOS. Currently, Bochs can
be compiled to emulate a 386, 486, Pentium, Pentium Pro or AMD64 CPU,
including optional MMX, SSE, SSE2 and 3DNow instructions. Bochs is capable
of running most Operating Systems inside the emulation including Linux,
Windows® 95, DOS, and Windows® NT 4. - by Kevin Lawton
DOSEMU stands for DOS Emulation, and allows you to run DOS and many DOS
programs, including many DPMI applications such as DOOM and Windows 3.1,
is a DOS-emulator that uses the SDL-library which makes
DOSBox very easy to port to different platforms. DOSBox has already been
ported to many different platforms, such as Windows, BeOS, Linux, MacOS
X... DOSBox also emulates CPU:286/386 realmode/protected mode, Directory
FileSystem/XMS/EMS, Tandy/Hercules/CGA/EGA/VGA/VESA graphics, a
SoundBlaster/Gravis Ultra Sound card for excellent sound compatibility
with older games... - Freeware at Sourceforge
vDos derived from the DOSBox project. vDos is for serious (mainly text mode)
DOS applications, Windows 32/64 bits (XP and later) only. It lacks many of the hardware
emulations of DOSBox (no joysticks, basic VGA...). Instead it adds a live file system,
file/record locking, Windows printing, a scalable screen font and more. You should be
able to run your DOS application quickly in a safe and convenient way.
QEMU is a generic and open source processor emulator which
achieves a good emulation speed by using dynamic translation.
Virtual PC f. Win
this and related progs (Connectix Virtual PC, Virtual PC for Mac, Virtual
Server) to offer.
This software consists of a virtual machine suite for Intel
x86-compatible computers which allows the creation and execution of
multiple x86 virtual computers simultaneously. Each virtual machine
instance can execute its own guest operating system, such as (but not
limited to) Windows, Linux, and BSD variants. In simple terms, VMware
allows one physical machine to run numerous operating systems
German keyboard driver with many extras. Recommanded. There's
a Windows version available, too. Shareware. - by Martin Austermeier
Another very good enhanced german keyboard driver, other languages
available. Freeware. - by A. C. Frinke & Matthias Paul
Keyboard / Mouse Further keyboard and mouse utils
DOS programs for MP3, AVI, MOV, MPEG, DivX...
CreateCD is a (XP/NT) command-line tool that allows
recording files and folders to a data CD from The command line. This is
often useful when a large amount of files needs to be recorder. Windows
GUI can be slow and takes a lot of space on a system disk for temporary
files. CreateCD writes files in one step. It can also be used from a
scripts and batch files to perform automated backup on CD-RW. - by Alex
is another DOS MP3-Player. - by Matt Craven
From the people who brought you WinAmp, this is a nice DOS
version. It uses only about 3-6% of your CPU time.
Tis is a software package for burning cd-rom and dvd-rom
disc under 16-bit DOS systems. supports IDE/ATAPI, SCSI, Parallel Port,
USB (EHCI/OHCI/UHCI), IEEE1394 (Firewire),and PC Card devices, supports
CDR, CDRW, DVD/R and DVD/RW. Freeware by Horvath Istvan.
DVD PLAYER for 16bit DOS systems!!!(MS-DOS,DR-DOS,FREEDOS
and compatibles). DVD4DOS Beta 1 can play the first 1 minute of a DVD
movie file with Dolby AC3 sound. Freeware by Horvath Istvan.
A nice overview of available players.
screen video films and music...
Memory Management under DOS
With MS-DOS 6.0 through to MS-DOS 6.22, a utility called Memmaker was
introduced that is designed to automate memory optimisation. Far more
powerful memory management products were available from third parties (eg
QEMM or 386Max) but were discontinued long ago.
Not much experience with this one. Updates can still be found
by Qualitas Inc.
Qemm was a commercial memory manager, able to give you much more free
upper mem than the Himem.sys / Emm386.exe combination. Qemm was nearly a
must in the middle 90s, before Windows 95 came along. - by Quarterdeck,
later bought and buried by Symantec
Small UMB-driver, replacement for Emm386.exe, free. - by c't-Magazin
Very small universal mouse driver. Free. - by Daniel Nagy
Allows use of mouse with ANY program. Version 3.05. TSR, completely
configurable from command line. Several operation "modes", clipboard,
speeds up mouse for other programs. - by Bret Johnson
Converts mouse movements to cursor key presses. Useful for DOS
progs without mouse support. Only 900 Bytes. Shareware. - by Vincent
Precise Pointer replaces the coarse block cursoer under DOS with
a graphical pointer of your choice. It's only optics, but nice to
have. Abandoned shareware. - by Andy Hakim
Multitasking under DOS
the old DOS days, multitasking was no easy feat. You needed a configuration
with lots of usable DOS memory. Desqview was the market leader. This all
became moot with the advent of Windows.
This was my favourite multitasker. Long since abandoned. Shareware. - by
The commercial multitasker under DOS in the 90s. More Quarterdeck files
Abandoned. - by Quarterdeck, bought and buried by Symantec
DESQVIEW / X 2.1
Desqview/X is a X-Windows port to DOS. Seems to be abandoned too. (10 MB
Download!). Useful tools
- by Quarterdeck, bought by Symantec.
Several multitasking operating system kernels. - by the
Department of Informatics, University of Zurich
Networking under DOS
This file from the MS FTP server contains updated NET.EXE, NET.MSG, and
NETH.MSG files. Using these files with version 3.11 of Workgroup Add-On
for MS-DOS corrects the problem noted above.
Network Boot Disk
A highly professional network boot disk for connecting to a network share
on a Windows 9x/ME/NT4/2000/XP or Linux Samba machine. Also allows you to
use network applications such as SSHDOS (secure shell) or Ghost
Peer-to-peer/multicast, using Packet driver interface. - by Bart Lagerweij
Netzwerk unter DOS
Deutsch: Beschreibung wie man unter MS-DOS ein Netzwerk
einrichten kann. by Gerd Röthig.
Deutsch: Sie benötigen einen Netzwerkzugang unter DOS? Hier
bietet sich der kostenlose Microsoft Client 3.0 für MS-DOS an.... - by
Wirth New Media Sarl
Connecting a DOS system to a Windows/NT network, with all necessary links
and detailed descriptions. - by J. Helmig
Novell DOS Client
NetWare Client for DOS workstations (here
Novell WIN32 Client
32bit Netware Client
DOS Programs and drivers for Laptops
DOS Palmtop Freeware
Lots of DOS utilities and Fonts for Palmtops - by Stefan Peichl
USB DOS Drivers
USB for DOS at Bootdisk.com, another site that seems to know
what it writes about.
While under DOS each application
had to have its own printer driver, here are some that solve a Windows
DOSPRINT / DLLPRINT
DOSPRINT modules let you use your existing DOS programs to PRINT your
data on any WINDOWS supported printer! (Note: DOSPRINT & DLLPRINT are true
32-bit Windows operating system solutions to the compatibility issues
between your DOS application and todays Window-only printers! And,
DOSPRINT/DLLPRINT are completely compatible with all WIN versions:
95/98/ME/NT/2000/XP.) - by Simply The Best Inc.
DOSPRN DOSPRN allows you to use a good old DOS program with new
printers irrespective of their types (Yes, USB and network printers,
print-servers, and PDF-printers too!). DOSPRN will also be useful if a DOS
program is in your native language. If your printer does not support your
language in text mode, DOSPRN will be a good helper. DOSPRN is distributed
as shareware. - by ???
Printfil This software allows character based applications to print
to any Windows printer, including USB, network printers, faxmodems and PDF
writers, even if it is a Dos/Windows application or a Unix/Linux app.
running on a Windows PC via telnet, without changes to the original
applications. You can set your application to print to an ascii file, or
you can have Printfil capturing a parallel port output, automatically
redirecting your print jobs to any printer, even if a printer is
phisically connected to the captured port. - by Guolo Davide
DOS Printer can capture DOS output sent to lpt1 and print
it. It does this by installing a modified generic printer to identify the
print jobs, steal them and delete them from the queue. It also monitors
for up to 4 different filenames which can be sent to 4 different printers.
In this way, a dos program can create a text file and send it to a
specific printer just by giving it the correct name. - Commercial program
by Dave Beggs.
Print to any Windows Printer
Description of a free method to print to any Windows printer. Works for
any program, not only Wordperfect!
Screen - VGA
My favourite replacement for ansi.sys and a lot of other
utils. A real do it all: adjust the hue of every single one of 16 dos
colours to your liking (your screen can look much better!), keyboard
control, key stacking (4DOS compatible), key macros, extended ansi
commands, VGA modes, scrollback buffer, clipboard and that still doesn´t
exhaust it´s features. Heartily recommended. Heavy memory footprint, but
Ansiplus can use xms, ems, umbs, and replaces more than just one driver.
Shareware. - by Kristofer Sweger.
v1.58 is a screen capture program that will capture the screensother
programs cannot reach! Captures
directly to .GIF, .PCX, .TIF or .BMP format, supports all VGA modes, plus
extended support for Trident, Cirrus, Paradise, Tseng, S3-911 and Oak
cards in SVGA modes. Will even capture soft fonts in text mode (such as
those used by DOS 6). Requires 286 AT or better with VGA display.
Uncrippled shareware. - by Adrian Mardlin
Ultravision was the ultimate (commercial) screen enhancer: 20 great
fonts, new screen formats etc. By now it is abandoned, the company
defunct. - by Personics Inc.
Very small and enhanced ANSI.SYS replacement. - by Dan Kegel
Scitech's Software to enhance and generally speed-up the
performance of your display card and monitor inside and outside Windows
3.1x. This version should be installed whilst in DOS (less complicated?).
Version 6.53. Shareware 30-day limited.
several monospaced font packages designed to improve text
visibility and ease data entry in Windows and Terminal modes. They also
have several DOS utils you may like
is a Win-32 command line utility to change screen
resolution, color depth and refresh rate.
A backscroll buffer, if you don't want to use Ansiplus. Shareware
- by Bromfield Software Products.
This is a huge library of all kinds of screen savers, with
quite a few DOS-only ones among them.
Fake DOS Screen Saver is a special case: this amusing spoof
screensaver for Windows
98/Me/NT/2000/XP makes it seem as if an invisible person is
typing in DOS commands to do such things as format your hard drive and
delete important files. Of course, it's only a screensaver and your
files are perfectly safe, though it does look convincing.
After Dark Deluxe is availabled from Pearl. This was the most
prestigious commercial screen saver in DOS days.
Further screen utilities.
VideoThief is a DOS screen grabber supporting every mode
that VGAs were able to handle those days, and extended to handle VESA BIOS
extensions (VBE) modes.
VMode 1.1 allows you to switch between various text modes
(and even graphics modes) from DOS prompt. VMode allows you to set high
resolution text modes with newer VBE 3.0 video cards. However, it could
still be very handy with older cards. - by Denis Adrianov.
Very small and enhanced ANSI.SYS replacement, based on
NANSI.SYS. Faster and smaller . - by Thomas Hanlin III
DOS Drivers for SCSI drives, Scanners...
SCSI Tool Bootdisk Another of Bart Lagerwij's useful pages:
a collection of many ASPI and SCSI managers for DOS.
Sound card problems under NT in
a dos box:
Mpxplay by PDSoft is a DOS based (32-bit) audio
player. Supported files:
- audio: AAC, AC3, APE, DTS, FLAC, MP2/MP3, MPC, OGG, WMA, WV and CDW
(Audio CD ripp'n'play)
- containers: ASF (WMA/WMV), AVI, MP4 (M4A), WAV
- playlists: M3U, M3U8, PLS, FPL, CUE, MXU
SoundFX 2000 is THE sound card emulator for DOS programs
running on Windows XP, 2000 and NT4. Windows XP, 2000 & NT4 deny direct
peripheral access. Most DOS multimedia titles (games) provide sound by
directly accessing the sound card and as a result although many can be run
under Windows, they are unable to produce sound and hence lose a great
deal of playability.
SoundFX provides a complete emulation of a SoundBlaster 16 card and hence
enables old favourites such as Doom (1 & 2), Heretic, Duke Nukem (2 & 3D)
etc to be run with sound under Windows XP, 2000 & NT4.
DOS Drivers for USB, that was developed long after DOS was already
superseded by Windows, are rare.
USB To Whatever Fred Langa illuminates the pervasive but little-understood
world of USB, explaining how to hook it up to non-USB systems and
peripherals - even in DOS!
This page here is
also useful. - by Payroll Plus
USB DOS Drivers
A site that specializes in USB drivers for DOS, Win 3.nn ...
USB DOS Drivers
USB for DOS at Bootdisk.com, another site that seems to know what
it writes about.
USB DOS Drivers
Collection of links to USB drivers and tools
The Inquirer Yes, there are USB drivers for DOS.
BTW, the Motto Hairu Mass Storage driver (mhairudos.zip)
mentioned in the article is not so easy to find anymore. A still working
Resources Another very informative site.
Bootdisk with USB
Downloadable drivers and tools
A Computing.Net thread about USB2.0 storage in DOS and USBASPI.SYS
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