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Re: Aging custom DOS/Windows applications

  • Subject: Re: Aging custom DOS/Windows applications
  • From: Roy Schestowitz <newsgroups@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Sun, 01 Oct 2006 10:31:07 +0100
  • Newsgroups: comp.os.linux.advocacy
  • Organization: schestowitz.com / ISBE, Manchester University / ITS / Netscape / MCC
  • References: <1159650005.246896.283590@m73g2000cwd.googlegroups.com> <NELTg.43832$8V4.38139@newsfe5-win.ntli.net>
  • Reply-to: newsgroups@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • User-agent: KNode/0.7.2
__/ [ Jim ] on Sunday 01 October 2006 10:13 \__

> larry@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx came up with this when s/he headbutted the keyboard
> a moment ago in comp.os.linux.advocacy:
>> Over the past few years I have been taking notice of the applications
>> used at various business and many of them are pretty ancient.
>> --I've read some fast food places have some sort of BASIC (QBASIC,
>> Visual BASIC) thing that powers all ther resgisters and tracking
>> systems.  (check out the order queue screens at many fast food places
>> and you usually see a text screen.)
>> - At one doctor office had an app that looks like it was developed
>> wioth a Win a 3.1 circa tool and is currently running on windows 95
>> - A lumberyard I noted thier system was piing through a text console on
>> a window in a 95/98 type desktop. (probably a DOS app, though I know
>> there are some legacy COBOL ones still floating around.)
>> Many of these people are prefectly happy with the programs, though as
>> Windows evolves these will be unusable on newer hardware.  As microsoft
>> pushe updates there will be many forced into upgrading, and some of
>> those vendors are long gone since when they developed these apps in the
>> 90s.
>> Of course I think that is whyvirtualization is becomming a big issue at
>> MS, but with it comes added complecity and also additional glitches
>> from being another layer away from the hardware (not to mention
>> outdated drives or devices that connot interface to modern systems).
>> So it seems Linux is at the right place and we are at the right time,
>> all there needs to be is the developers to take on these tasks.
>> With modern networking, web-centric platforms and FOSS development
>> environmants. such jobs may not be as hard as they once were.
> There is a CNC sawmill control program called GDrive, with which you can
> program the sawmill to make cuts in sheet materials to a tolerance of
> +/-2mm. It's DOS based, won't work in a 9x or NT command console, and being
> as how MS-DOS is long unavailable for "purchase", the only modern
> equivalent with which it does actually work is FreeDOS. Which, thankfully,
> works fine on the hardware required for the sawmill (a 386 or 486 processor
> with minimal RAM - 1 or 2 Megabytes is all that's needed - 2MB is probably
> overkill). The software itself has issues with Pentium class processors.

FWIW, the other day I read the following:


        In short, installing FreeDOS in/under Linux

I think it would be nice to run all these classic games right here on Linux.
In fact, I keep a large lump of old games that remind me of my childhood.
Many more are available online. Of course, there are also various emulators
for Linux, e.g. Palm, Megadrive, MAME, Super Nintendo, etc. FreeDOS will be
a nice addition. It proves that accumulation of programs and games while
waiting has been worthwhile (some data likewise). WinE is making similar
progress which makes Windows applications worth keeping (at least the
installers). Today you may have some uninterpretable binary blobs. But
tomorrow they might have value... with the physical equivalent of one's
garbage being somebody else's trove.

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