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BlankVector
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DOSBox

Post by BlankVector »

Just for fun, I have compiled DOSBox for TOS/MiNT.
As you probably know, that's a PC/DOS emulator to run old PC games.
You can find it there: http://vincent.riviere.free.fr/soft/m68 ... nt/dosbox/

Since DOSBox uses SDL, it compiled almost out of the box with cross-GCC.
It works fine (I mean, it does not crash) on FreeMiNT+XaAES in a GEM window. See the attached screenshot running on my FireBee.
I believe that it should also work in full screen (without environment variable SDL_VIDEODRIVER), but had no success.

The keyboard is buggy, the keys does not produce the expected codes.
And of course that's very slow, even on ARAnyM.

However, it should also work on other Atari machines.
Don't expect to play something fun, that's just a proof of concept :angel:
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Re: DOSBox

Post by Dal »

Nice one! Thank you very much for sharing.
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Anima
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Re: DOSBox

Post by Anima »

Good one. Thanks.

What do you mean with "very slow"? ;)

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Re: DOSBox

Post by wongck »

Wow... good one.
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Re: DOSBox

Post by BlankVector »

Anima wrote:What do you mean with "very slow"? ;)
I mean something like 10% of the normal speed, or less.
A good test is to run DOSBox without arguments, and look at the blinking cursor.
When you run DOSBox on a fast machine (including my cell phone :? ), you see that the cursor blinks very quickly.
On my MiNT build in a GEM window, even on the FireBee or ARAnyM, it blinks very slowly.

But the situation may not be so bad.

First I don't know is SDL timers work as expected, to be investigated.

Also, SDL in GEM window is quite slow, due to pixel format transformations. On other SDL programs (PmDoom, Hatari...), running in full screen is much faster. For some unknown reason I didn't manage to run DOSBox in full screen. Probably wrong video mode, etc.

I suspect that most of the CPU time is spent to convert the screen data. In that case, increasing the frame skip should greatly improve the performance.

As you see, there is much room for improvements.

If you want to give a try, that's very easy. Just extract the "dosbox" executable from my binary archive, and rename it to .ttp. It is a stand-alone executable, you don't need anything else. By default DOSBox starts with a DOS prompt. You can also put the name of some external .exe file on the TTP command line to run it directly.
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Re: DOSBox

Post by nativ »

Does it work better than PC Ditto? :D
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Re: DOSBox

Post by wongck »

nativ wrote:Does it work better than PC Ditto? :D
dosbox does more colours than CGA. ( I was using it to play Ultima VI months ago)
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Re: DOSBox

Post by BlankVector »

nativ wrote:Does it work better than PC Ditto? :D
Seriously:

PC Ditto is amazing, I remember having used MS-DOS 5.0 and a few DOS programs on my STe. It was a bit slow but really usable.

DOSBox emulates a PC with a 386 CPU and a DOS-like operating system, everything in a stand-alone executable 8O
DOSBox can emulate several kinds of graphics and sound cards.
While the aim of DOSBox is to run old games, it can also run Windows 3.1 8O

The full list of DOSBox features is there:
http://www.dosbox.com/status.php?show_status=1
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Re: DOSBox

Post by DarkLord »

wongck wrote:
nativ wrote:Does it work better than PC Ditto? :D
dosbox does more colours than CGA. ( I was using it to play Ultima VI months ago)
What??? Why not just use the native Atari version of Ultima VI? :lol:
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Re: DOSBox

Post by wongck »

BlankVector wrote:While the aim of DOSBox is to run old games, it can also run Windows 3.1 8O
LOL :lol: :lol: now that's really something.
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Re: DOSBox

Post by wongck »

DarkLord wrote:
wongck wrote:
nativ wrote:Does it work better than PC Ditto? :D
dosbox does more colours than CGA. ( I was using it to play Ultima VI months ago)
What??? Why not just use the native Atari version of Ultima VI? :lol:
That is it got lobotomised to like 16 colours, couldn't make out a troll from a villager.... :lol: :lol:
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Re: DOSBox

Post by DarkLord »

wongck wrote:That is it got lobotomised to like 16 colours, couldn't make out a troll from a villager.... :lol: :lol:
Yeah, that might not sit well with your Avatar's reputation, if you smack a villager by mistake. :lol:

Still wish someone could take the 256 color VGA pics from the PC version and apply them to the Atari version,
so that at least the Falcon could display it correctly. :(
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Re: DOSBox

Post by thenodfather »

So this is a Dos Box to run Atari ST Programs yes? :D
I can't believe I signed up so long ago and have been here so little :( I must become a more active member.......
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Re: DOSBox

Post by joska »

BlankVector wrote:
Anima wrote:What do you mean with "very slow"? ;)
I mean something like 10% of the normal speed, or less.
Would it be possible to compile DOSbox to emulate a plain PC with no sound/joystick etc and just textmode graphics? That would probably speed things up a bit and it could be used to run old DOS-programs.
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Re: DOSBox

Post by BlankVector »

joska wrote:Would it be possible to compile DOSbox to emulate a plain PC with no sound/joystick etc and just textmode graphics?
Probably not.

You can have a look at the documentation to see what is possible or not:
http://www.dosbox.com/wiki/Main_Page
http://sourceforge.net/p/dosbox/code-0/ ... unk/README
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Re: DOSBox

Post by calimero »

hi,
I just try DosBox with MiNT 1.18 and MyAES 0.96 on CT63/75MHz.

DosBox starts in fullscreen (how I can force it to run in GEM window?) and it freez after 10 seconds.
In mean time when I try to type something in DOS prompt I get wrong characters: e.g. I press "return" key and I get letter "t" ?!?
it looks like that entire keyboard is shifted for around 7 keys to left!

"j" is "return" !! :D

does anybody manage to run it correctly except BlankVector? :D

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Re: DOSBox

Post by BlankVector »

calimero wrote:DosBox starts in fullscreen (how I can force it to run in GEM window?)
DOSBox uses SDL.
To set the SDL video driver, you need to change the SDL_VIDEODRIVER environment variable.

Personally, I put the following in my xaaes.cnf:

Code: Select all

setenv SDL_VIDEODRIVER gem
This forces any SDL program to run in a GEM window when running from FreeMiNT/XaAES.
calimero wrote:and it freez after 10 seconds.
You're right, I didn't notice that. I get the same freeze with ARAnyM. This happens sometimes.
calimero wrote:In mean time when I try to type something in DOS prompt I get wrong characters: e.g. I press "return" key and I get letter "t" ?!?
it looks like that entire keyboard is shifted for around 7 keys to left!
Yes, there is a bug in the keyboard mapping. You need to find the right keys. Not handy at all.

Note that this DOSBox build was just a quick test to see if could be compiled for MiNT. And it does, almost out of the box :) It is slow (even on ARAnyM), but that gives an idea of what is possible. Even the textmode cursor is very slow to blink, while ARAnyM is extremely fast, so I suspect some abnormal SDL slowness.

For info: you easily run any .exe directly from the dosbox command line, for example: "dosbox some.exe". This avoid suffering from the keyboard bug.
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