software and tools that require MSX-DOS2

By st1mpy

Paladin (838)

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02-10-2021, 16:32

There are some tools and software that runs on MSX-DOS2. I guess they do that to make use of what dos2 offers, such as directories, memory management etc.
But it would be nice if those software and tools also worked on DOS1 (therefore most MSX1 machines).
What would be nice is, if the features that dos2 offers were also remade as a lib for programmers to use on dos1 environment (re-written obviously). Or it would be magical if there was a tool to simulate dos2 in dos1.

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By Juan Luis

Master (138)

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02-10-2021, 16:56

Isn't it possible to upgrade MSX1 BIOS to support MSX-DOS 2.x by some cartridge expansion? I thought that the answer was yes.

By Grauw

Ascended (10179)

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02-10-2021, 17:56

Well to use the Extended BIOS mapper support routines on DOS1 there’s MU.COM. Though probably for most if not all DOS2 software that will not be sufficient, it still needs to use DOS1 disk functions and be developed specifically with MU in mind (it’s a neat driver though).

But these days about everyone has a MegaFlashROM SCC+ SD or Carnivore2 or something similar around, or easy access to several affordable options if they don’t, and those all have Nextor MSX-DOS2 which will work on all MSX generations including MSX1.

So I think nowadays developers can safely just assume the user has access to DOS2 and there is no reason for them to go out of their way to support DOS1 as well. I mean they could invest the time to do so, but you could also just invest some money for yourself and get access to all the good stuff those cartridges offer. And then the developers can just focus on their software, rather than make their lives harder by maintaining compatibility with an OS that only a small minority will be interested in.

For example, VGMPlay MSX only supports MSX-DOS2, but it works great on MSX1 computers and I use it frequently on my Yamaha CX5MII. Adding DOS1 support would make the code more complex, reduce the memory available for new VGM playback features and chips support, and of course take away from the spare time I have to work on the project. So, the feature request is closed as won’t fix.

That said, if someone made a wrapper executable of sorts which translated DOS2 functions to DOS1, even if it required some small tweaks (like MU does), I would be willing to support it if it doesn’t take much effort. I wouldn’t want to integrate a whole library though, haven’t got the space for that.

By st1mpy

Paladin (838)

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02-10-2021, 18:24

That mu.com looks interesting.
I was thinking about this for Beer IDE, as it does not support dos2. I guess it's true that beer ide should be updated to support dos2 rather than fixing all the softwares.