Author Topic: ArcaOS - Retro Gaming Machine  (Read 6935 times)

Martin Iturbide

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ArcaOS - Retro Gaming Machine
« on: February 01, 2019, 08:14:42 pm »
Hi

Since there was some interest at Warpstock and on the forum taking about the potential of ArcaOS (and OS/2) as a "Retro Gaming Machine" that can run DOS and Win 3.1 games, I want to do some tests and configure my Thinkpad L420 for that.

I'm not much into DOS and Win16 these days, so my first question will be ask for tips and suggestion to enable the audio on DOS and Win-OS/2 for my machine. UniAud seems to be running as audio driver, but tips to configure it for DOS and Win16 are welcome.

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Martin Iturbide
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Dave Yeo

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Re: ArcaOS - Retro Gaming Machine
« Reply #1 on: February 01, 2019, 09:07:43 pm »
Lack of sound drivers for DOS and WinOS2 is the problem. Currently, as far as I know, there is no sound support for DOS, and little for WinOS2 on modern hardware.
I believe Arca Noae is planning Sound Blaster level support for DOS and WinOS2, using UniAud or the next sound driver. Hopefully they find time to implement it.
It was nice back in ISA days, with lots of sound card support.

Doug Bissett

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Re: ArcaOS - Retro Gaming Machine
« Reply #2 on: February 01, 2019, 09:48:04 pm »
DOS WinOS2 won't even run on my newer machines (especially laptops, like my Lenovo T510, or L530), so the first thing to do, is see if it will run. Try both full screen, and windowed. Sometimes full screen will work, when windowed won't.

If it won't run, you can try DOSBOX (it is at HOBBES), which has worked pretty well, when I tried it (including sound). Of course, DOSBOX is available for other operating systems too. It has the advantage that it can run the latest Win 3.11, which OS/2 never could. You do need to install Win 3.11 in the supplied DOS environment. If you search the web, there is (perhaps 'was'), at least one, ready built win 3.11 package available for it.

Eugene Gorbunoff

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Re: ArcaOS - Retro Gaming Machine
« Reply #3 on: February 01, 2019, 10:51:33 pm »
I agree that
OS/2 as Retro Gaming Machine 
could become perfect Area of OS/2 Usage. I see demand on old DOS games among simple Windows users. And they can spend some USD to such computer.

Yes, main barriers: SoundBlaster support in DOS VM, and problems of DOS VM on newer machines

Pete

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Re: ArcaOS - Retro Gaming Machine
« Reply #4 on: February 02, 2019, 02:31:28 am »
Hi All

To have audio in DOD/Win16 sessions is possible when using uniaud. It requires the installation of another driver called DTA - Data Transport Agent.

The last version I used was 4.0a01. I think it was hosted on Rodericks site at 1 point but no idea where to find it now.

There is some info about it here https://ecsoft2.org/data-transport-agent-dta

I probably have a copy somewhere among my backups if required.


Regards

Pete

Martin Iturbide

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Re: ArcaOS - Retro Gaming Machine
« Reply #5 on: February 02, 2019, 01:51:15 pm »
Hi.

I found DTA (2002/11/30) and I just installed on the Thinkpad L420 with UniAud.

It partially sounds. I went to "Win-OS2 Main - Control Panel - Sound" and try the four sounds there. At first some of the four wavs sounds and some other don't (showed an error that "Cannot play the selected sound....) , close "Sound" and reopen it and all sounds worked. But the Win-OS2 session is now unstable when you try to close it, it hanged. So I checked the DTA readme and read it.....

It suggested to change the settings of the session to:
- EMS_MEMORY_LIMIT = 0
- EMS_FRAME_LOCATION = NONE
I changed that on the Win-OS2 Session (Windows) and it is working, with sound, in a very solid way for the moment. It plays all sounds and does not hangs on exit.

I will keep testing.

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Martin Iturbide
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Martin Iturbide

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Re: ArcaOS - Retro Gaming Machine
« Reply #6 on: February 02, 2019, 02:14:59 pm »
Hi

I'm also experiencing some DOS windows session issue.  Look at the attached image  and see if it looks familiar.
Any help is welcome.

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Martin Iturbide
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Davorin

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Re: ArcaOS - Retro Gaming Machine
« Reply #7 on: February 02, 2019, 02:33:37 pm »
Hi Martin,
where you find this DTA. I can't found  any version of this driver.
best regards


Neil Waldhauer

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Re: ArcaOS - Retro Gaming Machine
« Reply #8 on: February 02, 2019, 03:38:44 pm »
Hi

I'm also experiencing some DOS windows session issue.  Look at the attached image  and see if it looks familiar.
Any help is welcome.

Regards

This item from the eComStation quick guide might help:

Code: [Select]
Q: When I try to start a DOS or Win16 window, I get a popup message saying that the
video mode is not supported. What do I do?
A: You can try two things:
1. Edit your CONFIG.SYS file and locate the line which loads VSVGA.SYS. Add
the following switch to the end of the line:
/int10textgrfxsafe
You may also need to edit AUTOEXEC.BAT and add the following lines to the
end of the file:
mode co80
cls
2. If solution 1 does not work, try changing the name of the VSVGA.SYS driver in
CONFIG.SYS to “VVGA.SYS” instead.

Also, many of us have seen this kind of problem fixed by ACPI 3.23.10.

Finally, if neither work, try older hardware.
Expert consulting for ArcaOS, OS/2 and eComStation
http://www.blondeguy.com

Doug Bissett

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Re: ArcaOS - Retro Gaming Machine
« Reply #9 on: February 02, 2019, 06:00:26 pm »
Quote
2. If solution 1 does not work, try changing the name of the VSVGA.SYS driver in
CONFIG.SYS to “VVGA.SYS” instead.

While I have used this (years ago), with no apparent problems, be aware that VVGA.SYS is not SMP safe, so you may see odd problems because of that.

Martin Iturbide

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Re: ArcaOS - Retro Gaming Machine
« Reply #10 on: February 02, 2019, 06:32:31 pm »
Thanks for the replies.

Sadly "/int10textgrfxsafe" on VSVGA.SYS does not solve the issue.
I even changed autoexec.bat as it says the Arca Noae page: https://www.arcanoae.com/wiki/arcaos/known-issues-commonly-reported/#doswin

but wait...

Quote
Another option, when full screen sessions work but windowed ones do not, is to open a full screen session first, and then press Alt-Home to switch it to a windowed session (this only works for DOS sessions, not OS/2 full screen and windowed sessions).

This trick is working.
Regards
« Last Edit: February 02, 2019, 06:37:16 pm by Martin Iturbide »
Martin Iturbide
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Martin Iturbide

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Re: ArcaOS - Retro Gaming Machine
« Reply #11 on: February 03, 2019, 03:49:49 pm »
Hi

Is there a way to get DOS sound by using UniAud on ArcaOS?
For what I read on DTA, DOS sound blaster emulation is not enabled.

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Martin Iturbide
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Joop

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Re: ArcaOS - Retro Gaming Machine
« Reply #12 on: February 04, 2019, 01:09:08 am »
First of all, never run DOS or WIN3.1 full screen, it is possible, but your mouse won't work or in case of WIN3.1 only half screen. So always run in a windowed session. When you do that you have full control with your mouse.

When you go to DOS then you go to DOS, so you have to deal with what you see right know. You have to make an autoexec.bat and this file is in the root of you boot drive with OS/2 or ARCAOS.
It could contain this, but back in the DOS days they have written many books about the subject;
@ECHO OFF
ECHO.
PROMPT $e[1;1H$e[31;46m Datum ──$g $d $e[30;40m $e[31;46m$e[1;26H Directory ──$g $p $e[25;1HOpdracht? ──$g$e[36;40m$e[0m
SET WIN3DIR=H:\OS2\MDOS\WINOS2
SET PATH=D:\ADVPCB;H:\OS2;H:\OS2\MDOS;H:\;H:\OS2\MDOS\WINOS2;H:\TCPIP\DOS\BIN;D:\OFFICE\GMKW
SET GMKW5=D:\OFFICE\GMKW
LOADHIGH APPEND H:\OS2;H:\OS2\SYSTEM
SET TMP=H:\
SET TEMP=H:\OS2\MDOS\WINOS2\TEMP
SET ETC=H:\TCPIP\DOS\ETC

Behind the prompt you see lots of ansi commands. The question is in Dutch and is just the Dutch version of "Command". The other two are "Date" and "Directory". You need some set commands for pointing to the right directory. I forgot what's all about, that's the curse of OS/2. Do it once and never go back and it will run and run and run... My boot drive is H:. In drive D: I have DOS programs and is formatted as FAT. You can make a complete key driven menu with ansi if you want. Its faster than your mouse, but you need to write some batch files.
I don't run WIN3.1 as a standalone window. I have pictogram's all over in the drop down menu's between the OS/2 programs. Its working seamless, so once installing and tuning and never see it again. It is no problem to run more WIN3.1 programs concurrent in this way.

There is one problem with DOS programs and sometimes WIN3.1 programs. That is if those programs want the whole machine. This is not allowed in OS/2 as OS/2 is the captain of your ship so to say. Those programs can be run with DOSBOX, but in DOSBOX you will also have incompatabilities and you need to make a config.sys and an autoexec.bat. Said that, once done, it runs and runs and runs. My Psion 3a emulator runs in DOSBOX with the same speed as an Psion 3MX. Nice to know is that you can copy and past in DOS programs with OS/2, even if those programs doesn't know what this is.

Hope it helps.

Dave Yeo

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Re: ArcaOS - Retro Gaming Machine
« Reply #13 on: February 04, 2019, 01:40:01 am »
First of all, never run DOS or WIN3.1 full screen, it is possible, but your mouse won't work or in case of WIN3.1 only half screen. So always run in a windowed session. When you do that you have full control with your mouse.

My mouse works fine in a WinOS2 full screen and last I checked, same with DOS, which has to be started full screen here.
Most of those other settings seem to be for your personal setup.

Martin Iturbide

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Re: ArcaOS - Retro Gaming Machine
« Reply #14 on: February 04, 2019, 04:31:28 pm »
Hi

So, do I lose hope right now to make DOS sound with Uniaud? Is there any Sound Blaster emulation I can get into OS/2-DOS today by using UniAud on the OS/2 machine?

Regards
Martin Iturbide
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