Small install onto 64 meg flash disk?

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Small install onto 64 meg flash disk?

Gregg Eshelman
I want to install FreeDOS onto a 64 megabyte Apacer IDE flash disk for use in a Wyse Sx0 thin client. It has to be done outside the box because when booted off USB the thin client tells the booting OS that the IDE controller is disabled.

It's not actually disabled. The flash updaters for WinCE, Linux and XP Embedded ignore that and various compact Linux distros have been configured to ignore the IDE controller being "disabled". How it's done for TinyCore http://www.parkytowers.me.uk/thin/wyse/s10/tc_kernel.shtml

Is there a way to install FreeDOS to a drive from Windows?

Hardware specs
CPU = AMD Geode GX 366 Mhz. Does not have PAE.
Chipset = AMD Ceode Companion CS5536 (The original Sx0 used a CS5535)
Audio = Realtek ALC655 AC97 codec
Ethernet = Realtek RTL8100 (Not the RTL8139)
RAM = One slot for PC2700 CL 2.5 SODIMM up to 512 megabytes.
Storage = One 44 pin header for 2.5" IDE devices, supports some level of UDMA.
Ports = Four USB 2.0, one DE-9 RS232C, one VGA, one 3.5mm stereo audio, one 3.5mm microphone, one 10/100 Ethernet, one 12V 2.5A power input.

What I want to do with this is use it for a tiny PC to run DOS control software for an early-mid 1990's benchtop CNC milling machine. 366Mhz is *plenty* enough power since the GCODE processing is actually done by the Animatics servo controller in the mill. These machines could be run off an 8mhz IBM 5150PC with EMS. The mill only needs a single RS232C connection to its control computer, making an Sx0 ideal, if it can be setup right.

I have downloaded the Panasonic universal USB Mass Storage drivers for DOS and VIA's DOS AC97 drivers. Don't know if Realtek's AC97 implementation matches up with VIA's. I've read that the VIA drivers do work with some other brands but found no mention of Realtek. I also have the Realtek 81xx Ethernet drivers for DOS.

Sound and networking aren't essential to operating the mill, but I'd like to get them to work since I have three of these WYSE boxes. One would make an ideal DOOM machine, probably would even run DN3D and some other old DOS games. I got a 1 gig Apacer flash module off eBay and one of the three had a 128 meg, I also bought a couple of 512 meg SODIMMs. All three originally had 128 meg RAM. The hardware supports up to 1 gig in two banks, but the Sx0 has only one slot. Unless it can take a dual bank / double sided 1 gig and read it as though it's in two slots, 512 meg is the upper limit.

The operating environment I'd like to setup for the CNC needs to have USB mass storage support for loading GCODE files from USB flash drives. It needs as much of the low 640K free as possible and as much EMS as possible. XMS is not needed. There's an environment variable to set for allocating the number of 16K EMS blocks

SET LMCEMS=number of blocks or use All, A or -1 to allocate all available EMS. The software first uses all available conventional memory for GCODE, then moves to EMS. If available memory is too small, the GCODE file can be chunked with a split utility that adds a command to end of each chunk to load the next sequentially named chunk. Having to split a code file can be a problem because branching and looping routines cannot go outside of a single chunk.

With 512 meg RAM I'd like to setup part of it as a RAM disk to copy the CNC software to as part of the startup process. Total size, after removing the example GCODE files, install.exe and setup.exe is around 550K so there should be plenty of room.

What I don't know is the memory map of the thin client, how fragmented it may be. I've run the mill from an old laptop but its memory space is so chunked up with ROM code from all the peripherals that it's impossible to come up with the 64K window to run EMS through.

I did find an old French website where someone installed an older version of FreeDOS onto an Sx0 with 64 meg flash and provided an image of the drive. I copied the image over and it boots up, in French. I also found out that AOMEI Standard Edition 6.1 instantly destroys the formatting on the Apacer flash module when it's launched. (Bug report filed, AOMEI is *not* supposed to be writing *anything* to storage devices unless the user clicks Apply.)

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Re: Small install onto 64 meg flash disk?

Dale E Sterner
Sounds like the IDE flash drive is removable. If it is then
you could find another IDE PC an install FREEDOS on it
and then plug it back to your machine. DOS will boot on
a wide range of old machines. You can install on one
then carry it over to another with few problems. That's
something windows can never do. You might want to clean
the drive with wipe Use fdisk/mbr to refresh the mbr and
then reformat the drive before installing. 64 megs is really
small you might try a new cf flash chip instead.

cheers
DS


On Mon, 20 Feb 2017 05:16:04 +0000 (UTC) Gregg Eshelman
<[hidden email]> writes:

> I want to install FreeDOS onto a 64 megabyte Apacer IDE flash disk
> for use in a Wyse Sx0 thin client. It has to be done outside the box
> because when booted off USB the thin client tells the booting OS
> that the IDE controller is disabled.
> It's not actually disabled. The flash updaters for WinCE, Linux and
> XP Embedded ignore that and various compact Linux distros have been
> configured to ignore the IDE controller being "disabled". How it's
> done for TinyCore
> http://www.parkytowers.me.uk/thin/wyse/s10/tc_kernel.shtml
>
> Is there a way to install FreeDOS to a drive from Windows?
>
> Hardware specsCPU = AMD Geode GX 366 Mhz. Does not have PAE.Chipset
> = AMD Ceode Companion CS5536 (The original Sx0 used a CS5535)Audio =
> Realtek ALC655 AC97 codec
> Ethernet = Realtek RTL8100 (Not the RTL8139)RAM = One slot for
> PC2700 CL 2.5 SODIMM up to 512 megabytes.Storage = One 44 pin header
> for 2.5" IDE devices, supports some level of UDMA.Ports = Four USB
> 2.0, one DE-9 RS232C, one VGA, one 3.5mm stereo audio, one 3.5mm
> microphone, one 10/100 Ethernet, one 12V 2.5A power input.
> What I want to do with this is use it for a tiny PC to run DOS
> control software for an early-mid 1990's benchtop CNC milling
> machine. 366Mhz is *plenty* enough power since the GCODE processing
> is actually done by the Animatics servo controller in the mill.
> These machines could be run off an 8mhz IBM 5150PC with EMS. The
> mill only needs a single RS232C connection to its control computer,
> making an Sx0 ideal, if it can be setup right.
>
> I have downloaded the Panasonic universal USB Mass Storage drivers
> for DOS and VIA's DOS AC97 drivers. Don't know if Realtek's AC97
> implementation matches up with VIA's. I've read that the VIA drivers
> do work with some other brands but found no mention of Realtek. I
> also have the Realtek 81xx Ethernet drivers for DOS.
> Sound and networking aren't essential to operating the mill, but I'd
> like to get them to work since I have three of these WYSE boxes. One
> would make an ideal DOOM machine, probably would even run DN3D and
> some other old DOS games. I got a 1 gig Apacer flash module off eBay
> and one of the three had a 128 meg, I also bought a couple of 512
> meg SODIMMs. All three originally had 128 meg RAM. The hardware
> supports up to 1 gig in two banks, but the Sx0 has only one slot.
> Unless it can take a dual bank / double sided 1 gig and read it as
> though it's in two slots, 512 meg is the upper limit.
>
> The operating environment I'd like to setup for the CNC needs to
> have USB mass storage support for loading GCODE files from USB flash
> drives. It needs as much of the low 640K free as possible and as
> much EMS as possible. XMS is not needed. There's an environment
> variable to set for allocating the number of 16K EMS blocks
> SET LMCEMS=number of blocks or use All, A or -1 to allocate all
> available EMS. The software first uses all available conventional
> memory for GCODE, then moves to EMS. If available memory is too
> small, the GCODE file can be chunked with a split utility that adds
> a command to end of each chunk to load the next sequentially named
> chunk. Having to split a code file can be a problem because
> branching and looping routines cannot go outside of a single chunk.
>
> With 512 meg RAM I'd like to setup part of it as a RAM disk to copy
> the CNC software to as part of the startup process. Total size,
> after removing the example GCODE files, install.exe and setup.exe is
> around 550K so there should be plenty of room.
> What I don't know is the memory map of the thin client, how
> fragmented it may be. I've run the mill from an old laptop but its
> memory space is so chunked up with ROM code from all the peripherals
> that it's impossible to come up with the 64K window to run EMS
> through.
> I did find an old French website where someone installed an older
> version of FreeDOS onto an Sx0 with 64 meg flash and provided an
> image of the drive. I copied the image over and it boots up, in
> French. I also found out that AOMEI Standard Edition 6.1 instantly
> destroys the formatting on the Apacer flash module when it's
> launched. (Bug report filed, AOMEI is *not* supposed to be writing
> *anything* to storage devices unless the user clicks Apply.)


******************************************************>>>>
>From Dale Sterner - MS organic chemistry
http://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/jo00975a052
*******************************************************>>>>

____________________________________________________________
No Diet Or Gym - "Burn" Fat While You Sleep (Try Tonight)
by-blog.com
http://thirdpartyoffers.juno.com/TGL3141/58ab0119c11201197ec2st03duc

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Re: Small install onto 64 meg flash disk?

Karen Lewellen-2
In reply to this post by Gregg Eshelman
From: Dale E Sterner <[hidden email]>

Sounds like the IDE flash drive is removable. If it is then
you could find another IDE PC an install FREEDOS on it
and then plug it back to your machine. DOS will boot on
a wide range of old machines. You can install on one
then carry it over to another with few problems. That's
something windows can never do. You might want to clean
the drive with wipe Use fdisk/mbr to refresh the mbr and
then reformat the drive before installing. 64 megs is really
small you might try a new cf flash chip instead.

cheers
DS


On Mon, 20 Feb 2017 05:16:04 +0000 (UTC) Gregg Eshelman
<[hidden email]> writes:

> I want to install FreeDOS onto a 64 megabyte Apacer IDE flash disk
> for use in a Wyse Sx0 thin client. It has to be done outside the box
> because when booted off USB the thin client tells the booting OS
> that the IDE controller is disabled.
> It's not actually disabled. The flash updaters for WinCE, Linux and
> XP Embedded ignore that and various compact Linux distros have been
> configured to ignore the IDE controller being "disabled". How it's
> done for TinyCore
> http://www.parkytowers.me.uk/thin/wyse/s10/tc_kernel.shtml
>
> Is there a way to install FreeDOS to a drive from Windows?
>
> Hardware specsCPU = AMD Geode GX 366 Mhz. Does not have PAE.Chipset
> = AMD Ceode Companion CS5536 (The original Sx0 used a CS5535)Audio =
> Realtek ALC655 AC97 codec
> Ethernet = Realtek RTL8100 (Not the RTL8139)RAM = One slot for
> PC2700 CL 2.5 SODIMM up to 512 megabytes.Storage = One 44 pin header
> for 2.5" IDE devices, supports some level of UDMA.Ports = Four USB
> 2.0, one DE-9 RS232C, one VGA, one 3.5mm stereo audio, one 3.5mm
> microphone, one 10/100 Ethernet, one 12V 2.5A power input.
> What I want to do with this is use it for a tiny PC to run DOS
> control software for an early-mid 1990's benchtop CNC milling
> machine. 366Mhz is *plenty* enough power since the GCODE processing
> is actually done by the Animatics servo controller in the mill.
> These machines could be run off an 8mhz IBM 5150PC with EMS. The
> mill only needs a single RS232C connection to its control computer,
> making an Sx0 ideal, if it can be setup right.
>
> I have downloaded the Panasonic universal USB Mass Storage drivers
> for DOS and VIA's DOS AC97 drivers. Don't know if Realtek's AC97
> implementation matches up with VIA's. I've read that the VIA drivers
> do work with some other brands but found no mention of Realtek. I
> also have the Realtek 81xx Ethernet drivers for DOS.
> Sound and networking aren't essential to operating the mill, but I'd
> like to get them to work since I have three of these WYSE boxes. One
> would make an ideal DOOM machine, probably would even run DN3D and
> some other old DOS games. I got a 1 gig Apacer flash module off eBay
> and one of the three had a 128 meg, I also bought a couple of 512
> meg SODIMMs. All three originally had 128 meg RAM. The hardware
> supports up to 1 gig in two banks, but the Sx0 has only one slot.
> Unless it can take a dual bank / double sided 1 gig and read it as
> though it's in two slots, 512 meg is the upper limit.
>
> The operating environment I'd like to setup for the CNC needs to
> have USB mass storage support for loading GCODE files from USB flash
> drives. It needs as much of the low 640K free as possible and as
> much EMS as possible. XMS is not needed. There's an environment
> variable to set for allocating the number of 16K EMS blocks
> SET LMCEMS=number of blocks or use All, A or -1 to allocate all
> available EMS. The software first uses all available conventional
> memory for GCODE, then moves to EMS. If available memory is too
> small, the GCODE file can be chunked with a split utility that adds
> a command to end of each chunk to load the next sequentially named
> chunk. Having to split a code file can be a problem because
> branching and looping routines cannot go outside of a single chunk.
>
> With 512 meg RAM I'd like to setup part of it as a RAM disk to copy
> the CNC software to as part of the startup process. Total size,
> after removing the example GCODE files, install.exe and setup.exe is
> around 550K so there should be plenty of room.
> What I don't know is the memory map of the thin client, how
> fragmented it may be. I've run the mill from an old laptop but its
> memory space is so chunked up with ROM code from all the peripherals
> that it's impossible to come up with the 64K window to run EMS
> through.
> I did find an old French website where someone installed an older
> version of FreeDOS onto an Sx0 with 64 meg flash and provided an
> image of the drive. I copied the image over and it boots up, in
> French. I also found out that AOMEI Standard Edition 6.1 instantly
> destroys the formatting on the Apacer flash module when it's
> launched. (Bug report filed, AOMEI is *not* supposed to be writing
> *anything* to storage devices unless the user clicks Apply.)


******************************************************>>>>
>From Dale Sterner - MS organic chemistry
http://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/jo00975a052
*******************************************************>>>>

____________________________________________________________
No Diet Or Gym - "Burn" Fat While You Sleep (Try Tonight)
by-blog.com
http://thirdpartyoffers.juno.com/TGL3141/58ab0119c11201197ec2st03duc

------------------------------------------------------------------------------
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Re: Small install onto 64 meg flash disk?

Karen Lewellen-2
In reply to this post by Gregg Eshelman
From: Rugxulo <[hidden email]>

Hi,

On Sun, Feb 19, 2017 at 11:16 PM, Gregg Eshelman <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> I want to install FreeDOS onto a 64 megabyte Apacer IDE flash disk for use
> in a Wyse Sx0 thin client. It has to be done outside the box because when
> booted off USB the thin client tells the booting OS that the IDE controller
> is disabled.
>
> Is there a way to install FreeDOS to a drive from Windows?

Perhaps RUFUS is what you want? "Create bootable USB drives the easy way"!

http://rufus.akeo.ie/

Obviously the embedded default bare bones "FreeDOS" from there isn't
much, so you'll have to either use the full FD .iso instead or
manually copy over your files (which is probably simpler to customize,
obviously).

> I have downloaded the Panasonic universal USB Mass Storage drivers for DOS

Why not Bret's (UHCI only) drivers?  http://www.bretjohnson.us/

> and VIA's DOS AC97 drivers. Don't know if Realtek's AC97 implementation
> matches up with VIA's. I've read that the VIA drivers do work with some
> other brands but found no mention of Realtek. I also have the Realtek 81xx
> Ethernet drivers for DOS.
>
> Sound and networking aren't essential to operating the mill, but I'd like to
> get them to work since I have three of these WYSE boxes.

Networking is usually dependent upon the app, e.g. mTCP uses its own
stack embedded in each app (e.g. FTP), and others (DJGPP-built)
usually use Watt-32 (e.g. Links2 or Wget).

> One would make an ideal DOOM machine, probably would even run DN3D and some
other old DOS games.

Doom (vanilla or Chocolate) can use PC speaker, even. But anyways, you
may wish to use DOS32A with it for better stability (no hang upon
exit) or use a newer source port (e.g. Boom with FreeDoom data).
Though there aren't many (if any) ports that still actively support
DOS, AFAIK.

> The operating environment I'd like to setup for the CNC needs to have USB
> mass storage support for loading GCODE files from USB flash drives.

Does your BIOS not recognize USB flash drive as quasi "hard disk" at
bootup? Of course you can't remove it then, will have to reboot to
change it, but that seems easier than expecting full USB support
(which is not well-supported in DOS, to say the least).

> It needs as much of the low 640K free as possible and as much EMS as
possible. XMS is
> not needed. There's an environment variable to set for allocating the number
> of 16K EMS blocks

Doing without XMS seems unwise. In fact, using "XMS only" is usually
pretty frugal, so you should still have plenty of free low RAM.
Anyways, my point is that (unless you direly need UMBs), just "JEMM386
LOAD X=TEST I=TEST" at cmdline when EMS is needed, don't keep it
enabled all the time.

> With 512 meg RAM I'd like to setup part of it as a RAM disk to copy the CNC
> software to as part of the startup process. Total size, after removing the
> example GCODE files, install.exe and setup.exe is around 550K so there
> should be plenty of room.

Setting up a RAM drive should be easy (e.g. Shsurdrv or Srdisk or
similar). Then again, I'm used to "XMS only", so I'm not sure how
reliable it is to use EMS only. (Tdsk maybe bugs out if you have "too
much" RAM, AFAIK.)

> I did find an old French website where someone installed an older version of
> FreeDOS onto an Sx0 with 64 meg flash and provided an image of the drive. I
> copied the image over and it boots up, in French.

It's unlikely that such an image is "French only" (although maybe it's
using a modified FreeCOM shell). It should be easy to revert back to
English ("set LANG=" alone should do half the work). Oh, and remove
"COUNTRY=" from FDCONFIG.SYS.

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Re: Small install onto 64 meg flash disk?

Rugxulo
In reply to this post by Gregg Eshelman
Hi,

On Sun, Feb 19, 2017 at 11:16 PM, Gregg Eshelman <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> I want to install FreeDOS onto a 64 megabyte Apacer IDE flash disk for use
> in a Wyse Sx0 thin client. It has to be done outside the box because when
> booted off USB the thin client tells the booting OS that the IDE controller
> is disabled.
>
> Is there a way to install FreeDOS to a drive from Windows?

Perhaps RUFUS is what you want? "Create bootable USB drives the easy way"!

http://rufus.akeo.ie/

Obviously the embedded default bare bones "FreeDOS" from there isn't
much, so you'll have to either use the full FD .iso instead or
manually copy over your files (which is probably simpler to customize,
obviously).

> I have downloaded the Panasonic universal USB Mass Storage drivers for DOS

Why not Bret's (UHCI only) drivers?  http://www.bretjohnson.us/

> and VIA's DOS AC97 drivers. Don't know if Realtek's AC97 implementation
> matches up with VIA's. I've read that the VIA drivers do work with some
> other brands but found no mention of Realtek. I also have the Realtek 81xx
> Ethernet drivers for DOS.
>
> Sound and networking aren't essential to operating the mill, but I'd like to
> get them to work since I have three of these WYSE boxes.

Networking is usually dependent upon the app, e.g. mTCP uses its own
stack embedded in each app (e.g. FTP), and others (DJGPP-built)
usually use Watt-32 (e.g. Links2 or Wget).

> One would make an ideal DOOM machine, probably would even run DN3D and some other old DOS games.

Doom (vanilla or Chocolate) can use PC speaker, even. But anyways, you
may wish to use DOS32A with it for better stability (no hang upon
exit) or use a newer source port (e.g. Boom with FreeDoom data).
Though there aren't many (if any) ports that still actively support
DOS, AFAIK.

> The operating environment I'd like to setup for the CNC needs to have USB
> mass storage support for loading GCODE files from USB flash drives.

Does your BIOS not recognize USB flash drive as quasi "hard disk" at
bootup? Of course you can't remove it then, will have to reboot to
change it, but that seems easier than expecting full USB support
(which is not well-supported in DOS, to say the least).

> It needs as much of the low 640K free as possible and as much EMS as possible. XMS is
> not needed. There's an environment variable to set for allocating the number
> of 16K EMS blocks

Doing without XMS seems unwise. In fact, using "XMS only" is usually
pretty frugal, so you should still have plenty of free low RAM.
Anyways, my point is that (unless you direly need UMBs), just "JEMM386
LOAD X=TEST I=TEST" at cmdline when EMS is needed, don't keep it
enabled all the time.

> With 512 meg RAM I'd like to setup part of it as a RAM disk to copy the CNC
> software to as part of the startup process. Total size, after removing the
> example GCODE files, install.exe and setup.exe is around 550K so there
> should be plenty of room.

Setting up a RAM drive should be easy (e.g. Shsurdrv or Srdisk or
similar). Then again, I'm used to "XMS only", so I'm not sure how
reliable it is to use EMS only. (Tdsk maybe bugs out if you have "too
much" RAM, AFAIK.)

> I did find an old French website where someone installed an older version of
> FreeDOS onto an Sx0 with 64 meg flash and provided an image of the drive. I
> copied the image over and it boots up, in French.

It's unlikely that such an image is "French only" (although maybe it's
using a modified FreeCOM shell). It should be easy to revert back to
English ("set LANG=" alone should do half the work). Oh, and remove
"COUNTRY=" from FDCONFIG.SYS.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------
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engaging tech sites, SlashDot.org! http://sdm.link/slashdot
_______________________________________________
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