Open source vDos. Run 16-bit DOS programs in any version of Windows


Software developers like me sometimes need to be able to run ancient 16-bit DOS programs in 64-bit Windows. vDos allows these old programs to be run by booting into an open source version of DOS. It is an improvement upon Dosbox, which was meant for gaming. vDos adds a live file system, record locking, Windows printing, scalable fonts, and more.

I have a niche business converting ancient Clipper and FoxPro database programs to modern Windows. I also support a few mission-critical Clipper apps (which were written in 1992.) I am now compiling and running 16-bit Clipper database apps on my Win 8.1 laptop, which sure beats vpning into a dinosaur Windows 2000 Server to get work done.

From the comments on SourceForge.

Incredibly easy to install and configure. Since most of the gaming-specific stuff has been removed, it’s MUCH faster and more stable for running business apps than standard DOSBox (for example, re-indexing a 225MB cTree data file went from taking approximately 3 hours to just over 20 minutes – on the same hardware). I had previously been struggling with another DOSBox customization (0.73MB with file/record locking); even with “cpu=max”, it was incredibly slow and not very stable. So far, vDOS is darn fast and appears to be rock-stable.

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