DOSBox 0.74

Handy application that is able to run classic MS DOS applications on other operating systems

  • Vote:
    6.2 (140)
  • Category:

    Various Utilities

  • Version:

    0.74

  • Works under:

    Windows XP / Windows 2000 / Windows ME / Windows 98 SE / Windows 98

  • Also available for:

    Mac

  • Program available in:In English
  • Program license:Free (gpl)

DOSBox is a freeware application that provides users of modern operating systems the ability run programs originally designed for DOS. While many command-line functions have been preserved in the modern iterations of Windows, the advancements in hardware and processing power have rendered mot games and programs from the DOS era unusable. That is where DOSBox comes in. DOSBox emulates an intel-based x86 PC and the hardware within it on modern hardware. Graphics drivers, sound cards, CPUs, input devices and even TCP/IP networking are emulated with regulated speeds to make old software run as it was initially designed to. The result is a piece of software that brings the nostalgia of the DOS era back to life in a usable and enjoyable fashion.

Setting up DOSBox can be a bit tricky as it involves steps such as creating and mounting a dedicated folder within the program. Furthermore, DOSBox is a faithful DOS emulator, which means there is no fancy graphical interface to make starting up that old copy of Commander Keen any faster; DOS commands are the only way to get programs running. Thankfully, DOSBox is supported by a comprehensive manual (included with the install) and a very active online community; guides are readily available online to assist with the configuration process.

Ultimately, the user's initiative is rewarded by DOSBox's competent execution. The first time the familiar blips and bloops echo forth from an emulated Adlib Gold and a game or program comes to life in its originally vibrant sixteen-color EGA glory, it becomes apparent that the effort was worth it. Despite the slightly technical barrier to entry, DOSBox is an effective tool in transforming your modern Windows PC into a vintage 486 powerhouse.

Pros

  • Allows older DOS software to be usable on modern hardware
  • Nearly any DOS game or program is compatible if properly configured
  • Excellent support materials included
  • Freeware

Cons

  • Some initial effort required to set up
  • Majority of functions are only accessible through DOS commands

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