Using Voodoo 2 emulation with PCem / 86Box

I’ve never had a Voodoo card before, I had was the Sierra Screamin’3D Rendition Verite 1000, which came with it’s own drivers that set the whole thing up. As always work got in the way of fun, and I missed out on the whole Direct X thing on Windows 95, as I was busy working on MS SQL on Windows NT, where hardware OpenGL cards were the way to go.

But thanks to emulation we can re-live the pain!

I setup emulation for an Intel Advanced/EV board, with an Intel Pentium Overdrive CPU at 166Mhz (my machine can handle that easily with the new builds!), 32MB of RAM, and a Phoenix S3 Trio32 video card set as Fast VLB/PCI.  After that toogle Voodoo Graphics, set the card model to the Voodoo2 , and bump up the RAM to 4MB, because we live in the future!

Also I should mention, that much like real hardware, it is best to go into the BIOS (F1 to enter BIOS setup) and make some changes, disable the built in audio card, serial and parallel ports.

And make sure the board is set to use the ICU with Windows 95 Plug & Play support.

To go from old, I installed Windows 95 from virtual floppies.  Its the oldest/smallest retail version of Windows 95, so I know if it’ll work here, it’ll work on much newer versions.

For me the S3 card is picked up by Windows on it’s own.  Now for the fun with better graphics.  As a test I’m using Wipeout 2097 / XL for the PC.  Although the game comes with Direct X version 3, I have found that the video emulation has major issues with the updated Direct X v3 drivers.  I did find that the Direct X 7a drivers work fine, along with the last reference  driver for Windows 9x.  Now I know you’ll want to know where to find ancient software like this, and it’s all on this great site falconfly.de

In my case, I found it easier to install Direct X 7, then expand the Voodoo driver, and in the hardware manager, find the ‘unknown’ device, and point it to the voodoo driver, reboot and you should be now set!

You can verify the installation by running dxdiag

3dfxV2.drv

One thing of note, is that all 3D accelerated options are “full screen”.  Which I don’t think really matters as by default PCem runs in a window.  If you are multitasking odds are you aren’t trying to multitask with Windows 95….

Wipeout XL

And I have to say, it looks GREAT!

20 years of Windows 95

Windows 95

Windows 95

It’s hard to believe that it has been 20 years since the release of Windows 95.  But here we are.

Windows 95 started it’s life as a 32bit upgrade from Windows 3.1 code named ‘Chicago’ to compete with the 32bit version of OS/2 for the desktop.  Chicago is more famous for it’s incredible delays as the project suffered from feature creep, along with a complete UI redesign.  It’s also worth noting that even back as far as October of 1992, just after the release of Windows 3.1 Microsoft was already hard at work on Win32s, the Win32 subset and compatibility layer for Windows 3.1 to run Windows NT Win32 applications.

Windows 1.x didn’t make much splash on the market.  Windows 2.x added much needed features like overlapping windows, and of course the 386 version included a 386 v86 mode hypervisor.

In my opinion, Windows 3.0 was the most significant piece of software that Microsoft has ever shipped.  This was the point where they broke away from IBM, and went their own way.  And it showed that they were capable of launching a major environment without the support of their biggest partner.  Although sadly, OS/2 paid the price.

95 launch

95 launch

Windows 95 would be a close second as to what would be Microsoft’s most significant software, as it brought 32bit computing to the masses, along with a completely different user interface, one that remains popular to this day with the start button.  Even the marketing used to Rolling Stones song ‘Start me up’.  Windows 95 is also the first time (and last) that I can ever recall there being a Microsoft release party where actual users showed up, but were enthused.  Back when OS X shipped on physical media, you would see Apple fans camping out for the latest release, but for Microsoft this was the one time where the next release was going to be so significant with a whole new generation of applications like Office 95, and a much more easier to use interface people really were excited about it.  As much as Windows 10 is a great improvement on Windows 8, I don’t see anywhere near this kind of enthusiasm compared to Windows 95.

Program Manager

Program Manager

Before Windows 95 people had to fight the Program Manager, which was a MDI application which means it has windows inside of windows.  And it’s easy to obscure and lose place of programs.  I’ve seen users re-install applications because ‘they lost them’ not realizing the program group was hiding behind another window.  To many average users Program Manager was a nightmare to work with on a daily basis.

File Manager

File Manager

And to say that it’s complimentary program, File manager was also a MDI nightmare to work with was an understatement.  Again windows get hidden behind windows, it is all inside of another window so it can be confusing moving things around, and trying to get a good view.  To an average user, it’s tedious to work with and to get two full screen views of files, requires two copies of the application to run, which in the days of 4MB of ram or less was a luxury when you figure they were running an application as well.  Not to mention since there is no task bar, it was also common for people to launch multiple copies of an application since it would be hiding behind a window they didn’t know about.

Windows 95 Desktop

Windows 95 Desktop

The Windows 95 UI solved all of these problems by showing us what is running, and by unifying Program Manager, and File Manager into one.  Now we can see what is running, we have a desktop to move things around, and we can open up multiple file windows and move them around at will.  Even in this simple screen shot with multiple applications running, it’s trivial to see what is going on, and how to navigate it.  We take it for granted today, but compared to the old Program Manager, File Manager paradigm this was simply an upgrade to get enthusiastic about!

Windows 95 launch

Mikol Furneaux proudly shows off his Windows 95

And just look at this picture, isn’t this the look of excitement?  Over a piece of software?  From Microsoft?  The transition from 16bit to 32bit was so great, I really wonder if they ever again will have this kind of appeal.  Going from 32bit to 64bit has been so seamless I suspect many 64bit users don’t even know they are.

32bit applications promised (and delivered) on greater stability, and of course being able to actually use RAM that people had bought.  It was the end of segmented 64kb segments, and the use of 32bit flat memory models, that even in the game industry everyone had been flocking to 32bit MS-DOS extenders.  Now 32bit was going mainstream on the desktop.  Even though Borland had captured so much of the developer mindshare on MS-DOS, they just couldn’t achieve the same success level on Windows, and especially with Windows 95, it started the rise of Visual C++ and Visual Basic everywhere.

Networking was another strong point of Windows 95, as it included not only LAN support for TCP/IP, IPX and NetBEUI out of the box, but it also included dialup PPP support for all three protocols.  This is basically where other consumer OS really blew it, and why Microsoft not only ended up owning the desktop, but also the server space in corporations.  It was a common practise to sell the networking stack, and applications separately making a networked machine quite expensive.  SCO Xenix charged for the OS, Streams, and TCP/IP.  IBM charged separately for their TCP/IP as well.  By 1994 IBM started to see this as a mistake, and included DIALUP ONLY networking for Warp.  This stop gap measure was barely acceptable for 1994, but as the PC world got more and more connected this meant LAN connections along with wide area which IBM dropped the ball by charging yet even more for Warp Connect.  Where Windows for workgroups, Windows 95, and Windows NT included all of this, and multi-protocol support.

Microsoft also was busy creating their own online service, MSN, a competitor to AOL, CompuServe, Prodigy et al.  There is a better writeup on winsupersite than I could do, since I never did use it.  But the upshoot is that Microsoft was late to the internet party, and did not include any browser with the first retail version of Windows 95.  Later versions of course did include Internet Explorer.

The most significant early version of Internet Explorer has to be version 3, which is when Microsoft finally started to take it serious, and included things like SMTP/POP3 and USENET clients.  Back then, USENET was actually big.  This is before the rise of every website being a forum, instead we had a global distributed database that everyone could post onto.  It wasn’t instant though, so it could take days for a reply.  The kind of thing we take for granted now with many AJAX enabled websites able to alert you right away, or you can check the status with a simple refresh.

A worker packs the shelves of PC World, Croydon, with copies of the Microsoft Windows 95 upgrade computer package. The package will go on sale at midnight across the country.

A worker packs the shelves of PC World, Croydon, with copies of the Microsoft Windows 95 upgrade computer package. The package will go on sale at midnight across the country.

I may have to touch on the rise and fall of Internet explorer at a later date, but check out the exciting back of the Windows 95 box that included Internet Explorer:

Windows 95 box SE, back

Windows 95 box SE, back

For those who want to remember, the Windows 95 start sound!

And speaking of which next year will be 20 years of Windows NT 4.0, and how it utterly changed the server market forever.

PC Plus magazine reviews OS/2 2.0

June 1992

I thought this was cool, PC Plus magazine is doing a best of, 25 year retrospective, and up there is of course, the release of OS/2 2.0!

It really is an in depth look, and a great job for a magazine!  I’ve always like the UK based stuff, nice glossy photos, etc..

But even at the end it was the same old same old, installation issues, and speed..

I remember OS/2 2.0 on a 386sx 16 with 4MB of ram was unusable, while OS/2 1.3 was great… But like everything else that was involved at the time, keep in mind they had not reviewed NT yet… Although the pre-releases were floating around.. Naturally they have both Windows 3.1 & Windows 95 launches..

DEMOS on the PDP-11 in SIMH

DEMOS 3 on SIMH's PDP-11 / on Windows 95 Russian

While looking around again for more DEMOS stuff (not to be confused with ‘demo’ argh!) I found Serge Vakulenko’s ready to run DEMOS 3.0 for the PDP-11/SIMH package! And I think this is the corresponding source code. More information can be found on what I think is Serge’s blog.

Now on to running it.

The good news is that I only needed msvcrt.dll from Visual C++ 4.0 to get it to run under Windows 95.. The ‘bad’ news well for me is that I couldn’t think of a good telnet to do Cyrillic/KOI8-R properly. I’ll admit it’s probably me not knowing how to do it correctly. At the same time, I figured the ‘easy’ way out is to just install some Russian version of Windows. Naturally there is the ‘dual keyboard’ layout thing in Windows, which if you can’t read the default language… well. it’s too intimidating. But with enough mousing around I pulled the Russian keyboard out and it seems to operate fine.

There is of course some information here, but the mechanical translation is rought.. The wiki page still talks of 68020 and VAX ports of Demos (among others) I wonder if they’ll ever surface?

Demos Team in Moscow

The DEMOS team.

I’ve even found comprehensive documentation for both Демос and Xenix of all things here.

And to round things off, here is a mechanical translation (thanks google!) of the readme….

1. SETTING THE OPERATING SYSTEM DEMOS
====================================

This section describes the procedures to be you-
satisfied, as when you first install the system, and in the case
“Complete destruction” of the root file system or replacement
hard disk is described by the root file system and non-
which directories.

The process of preparing the system for operation can be separated by
pour into the following stages:
– The primary installation (or recovery) system
distribution set to floppy disks (FDD);
– Loading system and checking its integrity;
– Set up the system files.
If “partial destruction of the” filesystems recom-
is to try to restore the integrity of the program fsck
(See Annex 2).

1.1. Initial installation of the system
===========================
For the initial installation of the system must:
– Tumbler “NETWORK” to include personal computers;
– Insert a floppy disk with the number 0 (the starting disk) in the
top device (null);
– Received an invitation to “@”, press (b), and then
in response to an invitation, “$” (dollar) to introduce “MY0” (or “MY” and
press (VC));
– After a while the screen will receive invitations
of “BOOT :…”; in response to it, you must press
(VC);
– The query “installing DEMOS requires erasing infor-
tion on the hard disk … “to answer” Y “(YES) and on-
press key (VC); cancel mistyped character (up to
pressing (VC)) may be using the (BZ);
– On request “Enter the time …” necessary to introduce 10
digits and press (VC); time is given as follows-
Thus:
ggmmddchchmm,
where he – the last two digits of the year (eg, 90);
mm – month number (from 01 to 12);
dd – day of the month;
hh – hour (00 to 23);
mm – minute (00 to 59);
– The query “capacity hard disk drive …”
must enter the number – the number of drive type and press
key (VC); type of drive is defined as follows:

1. 5 MB 153 cylinder / 0-152 / – Set Database RUBIN impossible
2. 10 MB 306 Cylinders / 0-305 / – Set the database RUBIN impossible
3. 10 MB 306 Cylinders / 0-305 / – Set the database RUBIN possible
4. 20 MB 612 Cylinders / 0-611 / – Set the database RUBIN possible

– More on request “format the hard drive?” necessary-
necessary to introduce a “Y”, if you want to reformat the drive or
enter “N”, if not required;
– After loading the mini systems on the hard drive would you-
given a message to her perevyzova from this disc;
after a while you will be prompted “@”;
– In response to this invitation must type “B”, and
then, in response to an invitation, “$” (dollar) to introduce “DW0” (or
“DW” and press (VC));
– After a while the screen will receive invitations
of “BOOT :…”; in response to it, you must press
(VC);
– After the system is triggered, it will ask for a floppy disk from the N1
basic set, it must be inserted into any drive
on floppy disks, enter the number of drive and press
key (VC);
– After reading the floppy disk system will ask the following;
necessary to remove the floppy disk with the number 1 from the drive
and insert a floppy disk with the number 2, then number 3 and
so on;
– After the floppy will be read by all base
set, the system will automatically reboot and check the File
lovuyu system on your hard drive (this can happen
Re-Boot);
– After rebooting the system will prompt “Name:”;
enter the name of the root user to perform
administrative functions in the DEMOS.

If you are logged on for the first time after the initially-
initial installation or complete restoration, it is necessary-
necessary to do the following:
– Set a password for the root user command
passwd;
– Duplicate the distribution set GMD.

To copy a floppy disk you can use cpfd
(See 4.6.2).
Before turning off the PC user must perform
command:
/ Etc / reboot-h (sure!)

Diskette distribution set should be pasted
markers of protection record. This is to ensure that due
equipment malfunction or careless use is not
destroy information on floppy disks.
During the boot from the floppy disk with the number 0, it
should be without a marker.

1.2. Download and check the integrity of the system
=======================================
To load the operating system must DEMOS:
– Turn the power on the PC;
– Received an invitation to “@”, press (b), and then
in response to an invitation, “$” (dollar) to introduce “DW0” (or “DW” and
press (VC));
– After a while the screen will receive invitations
of “BOOT :…”; in response to it, you must press
(VC);
– On request “Enter the time …” necessary to introduce 10
digits and press (VC);
– Further to the request “Check for file system?” need-
Dimo press (VC) (if you want to check file
system), or enter “N” and press (VC) (if not the friction
buetsya check file system);
– After checking the file systems will receive invitations
of “Name:”, enter the name under which the user
registered in the system after its processing realized
login.

Example Remark and e. When checking file systems
may happen to re-reboot.

If the answer to the query “Name:” enter “user”, a Loss-
zoydet login PRACTICE (system description PRACTICE
See Section 3 “Guidebook”).

After completion of the work in the system, on invitation of the
solution to enter commands to type “/ etc / reboot-h”; after
how the system responds “SYNCING DISKS … DONE”, can be switched off-
chit powered PC.

2. ADVANCED FEATURES DEMOS OS Version 3.0
===========================================
1.
Generating core demos contains the following items change
towards increased efficiency and optimality of the kernel:

a). A new, fastest, and very bright
in the hard disk drive such as “Winchester”, re-
presses of the program is configured rwset.

b). Adjusted and optimized driver floppy
disc.

c). A new superuniversalny printer driver
supporting the work of printers such as:
EPSON FX-800, EPSON LX-800, SM 6302, DZM-180, SM 6315,
SM 6900, ROBOTRON SM 6329, D100, D100M, etc.
full ob_eme their functionality
and taking into account the errors in the ROM EPSON FX-800. Modes of Operation
driver software is configured lpset.
For details, see READ_LP file in the root directory.

d). This version of the kernel supports the controller KTSGD
as with ROM KR18101RE2-181 on the board KTSGD and with ROM
KR18101RE2-182, operating in 8-bit character mode.
(Note that the kernel version 2.0 is not capable of work-
a thief with KTSGD on ROM KR18101RE2-182). However, the supplied
graphic protocol / etc / graf, is loaded into RAM KTSGD
and designed for ROM KR18101RE2-181 will not be over-
gruzhatsya in ROM KR18101RE2-182. Currently,
developed a new graphics protocol
latest ROM.

In order to save memory parameters changed
The kernel configuration:

e). Number of I / O buffer.

f). Number of processes in the system.

g). Number of concurrently executable programs.

h). Number of file descriptors.

i). Number of simultaneously open files.

j). “Trapped” statistics on I / O buffer, the sub-
pumping at boot time, for the teams.

k). Reduced the number of overlay core demos.

l). And other stuff …

2.
Fix bug in the loader boot, which allowed
work on different types of hard drives.

3.
Fix bug in intermediate loaders
rwuboot, fduboot.

4.
The new version 4.1 of multiscreen editor red
contains the following changes and additions:

a). (PF1) (i) (VC) set / reset insert mode.

b). (PF1) (b) (VC) set the 132 characters on the screen.

c). (PF1) (l) (VC) set the 80 characters on the screen.

d). (PF1) (g) (VC) set the drawing symbols
pseudographics. Press the (F4) (F5), (F6) (F8)
You can “draw” and “erase” vertical and horizontal
tal solid lines.

e). (PF1) (^ 0) set / reset mode drawing / erasing pseudographics.

f). (PF1) (n) (VC) Exit from the pseudo-graphic.

g). (F1) move the cursor on the word forward.

h). (PF4) move the cursor to end of line.

i). (F5) delete word to the right of the cursor.

j). (PF1) (2) (right arrow) move the cursor
in the right extreme position of the current window.

k). (PF1) (2) (left arrow) move the cursor
in the leftmost position of the current window.

l). (PF1) (2) (up arrow) move the cursor
the upper extreme position of the current window.

m). (PF1) (2) (Down Arrow) move the cursor
the lower extreme position of the current window.

n). (PF1) (octal) (2) (^ 0) input specials. characters
where the number has three digits.

o). Optimized output to the screen with
use shortcuts (F7) (PF1) (F7), (2) (F7) (PF1) (2) (F7)

p). Undo the (FI), as the tab back

5.
Corrected program graf (file etc / graf).
Graphics protocol can now be downloaded as
in compatibility mode (VT52), and in the extended
pulsed mode (VT100) displeya.V file etc / termcap include
Chen esc-sequence installation of roll band from 2
at 22 lines screen, which improves the visibility of pa-
Editor’s red boots, and other minor changes.

6.
Make a convenient initial installation of OS DEMOS on your hard drive
(See above point 1), taking into account their different types and database RUBIN.

7.
Minor changes to the index.html file etc / rc
(Associated with the programs of fsck, mount).

8.
Graphics library libgraph.a is
directory usr / lib and a functional analogue of graphite
cally Library Company “Borland International”. The file
READ_GRAF describes the graphics functions.

* * * * *

9.
Opint program determines the optimal interleaving of sec-
tori, surfaces, cylinders and formats vinchester.Kontrol-
Noe testing after formatting the hard drive with an optimal
interleaving shows that the efficiency of working with hard drive
increased on average by 25-30%. opint program should be run
from floppy disks (the OS is loaded at the same time as floppy disks of numbers under-
rum 0). opint program has the following items keys:

Usage: opint {-i [N] |-f [-q] [-bN] [-lN] [-sN] [-cN]} [-r]

-I [N] to calculate the optimal interleaving factor of
Sector / surfaces / and the cylinders. N-number
working cylinder, the cylinder is also used N-1
(Default N == 152)

-F format the hard drive

-R does not store information on your hard drive (in the informal
matted hard drive, this key is mandatory!)

-Q no questions asked

-BN set the start formatting with the N-cylinder
inclusive (the default cylinder N == 0);
this cylinder (and previous) is used in
as working to find the optimal Interlachen
Ving by a key-b0, or any absence
exists at all, then the worker becomes a 152 cylinder.

-LN set end of formatting to N-cylinder
inclusive (default to the cylinder N == 152)

-SN set interleaving factor N by sektoram/po-
surfaces, (default N == best)

-CN set interleaving factor N in the cylinders
(Default N == best)

10.
Rwset program is used to adjust operating modes
hard disk drive and has the keys:

Usage: rwset [-cN] [[-] w]
-CN – enable precompensation to the N-cylinder
w – include checking account
-W – disable checking account

11.
Lpset program is used to adjust operating modes
printer driver. All inforamatsiya Printing
contained in a file READ_LP.

* * * * * * *

3. OPERATING SYSTEM DEMOS/306
==============================

DEMOS/306 operating system designed for installation and
operation on a single hard disk drive (“HDD”, 20MB) with
operating system RT-11. Hard disk capacity of 20MB
between the two operating systems is as follows:

RT-11: from 0 to 305 cylinder (10Mb)
DEMOS: from 306 to 611 cylinders (10Mb)

Initially (power-on) are loaded OS RT-11,
and hard disk drive must be configured to work with
10 MB free disk space (the cylinder to 305 inclusive).
After downloading the RT-11 operating system called DEMOS/306 team DEMOS.

Initial OS installation DEMOS/306 from installing OS DEMOS different
only a single boot floppy N0; the other five disks
distribution N1-N5 are identical for both operating systems.

User tired of two-wheeled scooter RT-11
pressing five keys is transplanted into a strategic
Bomber DEMOS/306!

OS DEMOS/306 – THIS IS A BREAKTHROUGH IN THE FUTURE!
OS DEMOS/306 – just fantastic!

POSTCRYPTUM 1.
————– The directory / TEST contains kontolno-demonstration
tional tasks and tests that are run co-
executing / TEST / main.

POSTCRYPTUM 2.
————– In the supplied distribution into a directory bin /,
usr / bin /, etc / contains utilities and files
(In particular:

c7t10 nroff autoconfig termcap
chgrp pp clri timstat
chown pstat cron ttys
dump restor dostat utpm
dumpdir rline getty wall
edit rmail graf
egrep setcolor group
false smbl group.std
fgrep startcode init
gets starttext iostat
login su lp_daemon
lpf tfd0 mknod
lpset wermit psdatabase
lx accton savecore
mix admclean shutdown

and others …), which are not descriptions of documents
orientation, because description on the tools and files that need-
dimye system administrator or system programming
Misty and not directly related to the work of Paul
transducer outside the scope of this documentation, I have-
ing goal is to give the most relevant information for the user-
converter. Descriptions can be found in various literature
on UNIX operating systems as Most utilities and service
Files are generally accepted in the family of UNIX names.
On the other hand, not all utilities (in particular:

ardos from mkmf splineg
banner hier mm strings
blank hostname prmail sum
checkobj ident rab unifdef
ckdir indent rcs units
colcrt install rcsdiff uptime
ctags last rcsintro uucpc
cxref lastcomm rcsmerge uuxc
ddutok lex rev whoami
error lint rlog badsect
expand look script ncheck
fold merge spell

and others … ) Described in the documentation contained
in the distribution, because documents constitutes a
taking into account further developments.

POSTCRYPTUM 3.
————– The distribution is not included and are available
otdelno:

a). DBMS “RUBIN”. / With complete documentation /

b). Integrated envelope “Demos Commander” –
analogue of the “Norton Commander”.

POSTCRYPTUM 4.
————– On a version 3.0 OS DEMOS worked:

Yudin, KE
Sudakov AV
Ryzhonkov KS
Bragin, DN

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~~
Copyright 1991 by Research Institute “Scientific Centre”,
lab 462 / 2. All rights reserved.

PHONE: 536-56-42.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~~
Moscow, Zelenograd, Research Science Center (lab.462 / 2)

Phone: 536-56-42.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~~

Windows 95 2.1Ghz CPU limit broken!

This is great news to some of us! Unless you’ve been hiding in a cave, Windows 95 had issues running on CPU’s running over 300Mhz. Any attempt to do so will yield the following error:

While initializing device IOS:
Windows Protection Error. You need to restart your computer.

Then there was an “AMD” fix (that worked fine on intel cpu’s) that would raise the bar to 2.1 Ghz. However beyond that point, the networking would break, and cause Windows 95 to fail with the following error:

While initializing device NDIS:
Windows Protection Error. You need to restart your computer.

Well it seems that the device drivers from the Dial-up networking update 1.4 actually address this issue, however it’s hard to install an update that gets bound into a ‘blob’ when you can’t boot.

However, the LoneCrusader on MSFN has come up with a fixpack!

And it’s simple to apply, just start a normal Windows 95 install (I’m using Windows 95a, the first CD version) and then once it reboots, just boot off the provided floppy image, and it’ll slipstream in the fixed kernel, ndis handler and a bunch of other stuff. Then reboot again, and carry on.

It works so well, that I loaded it on my 3 Ghz P4, however I got this disastrous message:

Insufficient memory to initialize Windows.

Quit one or more memory-resident programs or remove unnecessary utilities from your CONFIG.SYS and AUTOEXEC.BAT files, and restart your computer.

Which after a little bit of searching, comes down to the fact that I have 1GB of ram in my P4. A lot of people talk about tuning the vcache as it’ll initialize far too big, and not leave enough memory for Windows 95 to actually operate. I had no luck there, but with more searching I found an easier fix..

Instead, just limit the amount of memory that Windows 95 will initialize. KB184447 talks about this, and I’ve found this works as an optimal setting for my system.ini:

[386Enh]
MaxPhysPage=39900

[vcache]
MinFileCache=65536
MaxFileCache=131072
chunksize=2048
namecache=4096

Using these settings, I’m limited to 921MB of ram, but honestly an environment that was built to run on 4MB systems, and comfortably in 8MB of ram, 921MB is just fine. So far I’ve installed Internet Explorer 5.5 on my P4, and all is well. In addition, it works great on Virtual PC, as even some emulators are fast enough that they too run into these old timing bugs.

Naturally, PCI bus users (is that everyone now?) will want this update from intel, which will update a bunch of core components in Windows 95 to allow it to function better. I should add that both on Virtual PC, and my p4, that once the PCI update is installed, I went into the device manager, and removed the default VGA adapter, and my graphics was running correctly. The only weird thing is the ATI Graphics Ultra Pro PCI (mach32) would crash Windows 95 if I ran it at 256 colors, however it works fine in both 16 color and 16bit (65536 color) mode.

Windows 95 921MB of ram

Windows 95 921MB of ram

Just remember to NOT overwrite the newer files, otherwise Windows 95 won’t boot anymore.

Windows 95 (Japanese) on Qemu

Well I ordered the Asian version of Windows 95 from retrosoftware.com . And the best part was the cover for the Internet Explorer 3.0 update:

 

Say what you will, but there is no doubt the Japanese always get more… interesting looking versions of our software…

Check out the additional pictures from the manual:

Don’t you feel bad for dear old dad?

Hmm what do I do with this RJ11??

Now we’re cruising on the internet!

Well, at least it’s not Peado bear..

Other then that, the box looks somewhat boring…

All the way from Japan!

 

Anyways I thought it would a good time to see if Qemu 0.10.5 can install Windows 95. So I started with a simple MS-DOS / Windows 3.1 install on a 1GB disk. Then I just mounted the CD-ROM (remember on a Win32/Win64 host to access your ‘D:’ drive you use the -cdrom \\.\d: to get access…)

Now the setup was SLOW, it reminded me of an old Pentium while it grinded away.. But the plus is that it actually WORKS… Unlike some other emulators with FAST machines.. I know it’s a trade off between slow emulation, or just not working at all. But Windows 95 will NOT run on physical machines with a faster then 1.5Ghz clock. (or so I remember).

Anyways with a little work you can come up with this:

Ok the good news is that it works, the ‘bad’ news is that the video & networking require drivers to run properly. Thankfully Natalia Portillo has provided all of this stuff on ONE EASY TO FIND SITE!!! I’d highly advise downloading a copy of what you need, using bzip2 to re-compress the files, and emailing them to yourself… That way you won’t lose them time & time over again!… As I just have.

Although to be honest it works better in ISA mode.. Remember the ne2000 is set for 0x300 IRQ 9 in the ISA mode.

If you want to try the PCI route, you’ll need an updated PCI driver which you can find on intel’s site here.

And one last thing I’d like to leave you Ted Stevens fans with. According to Microsoft Japan, the internet is NOT a series of tubes, but actually a bunch of trucks…. All labeled TCP/IP.

Was Ted Stevens right?