Difference between revisions of "TOOLS:DOS32A"

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'''DOS32A''' (DOS/32 Advanced DOS Extender) is a free and open source software that can be used to replace the DOS4GW.EXE DOS Extender file that many DOS games use.
 
'''DOS32A''' (DOS/32 Advanced DOS Extender) is a free and open source software that can be used to replace the DOS4GW.EXE DOS Extender file that many DOS games use.
  
Once a game uses this, it is expected to run faster and better in DOSBox.
+
Once a game uses this (although [[#Note|see note]]), it is expected to run faster and better in DOSBox.
  
 
==Usage==
 
==Usage==
 
===Games that use DOS4GW.EXE externally===
 
===Games that use DOS4GW.EXE externally===
It is much easier if games just call DOS4GW.EXE externally. All you have to do is in this case is:
+
It is much easier if games just call DOS4GW.EXE externally. If the game is launched by a .BAT file, you can edit it to call DOS32A instead of DOS4GW. This way, you do not need to backup and rename the executables.
 +
 
 +
If not, all you have to do is in this case is:
 
# (Optional) Backup DOS4GW.EXE in the game folder. For example, '''rename''' it to DOS4GW.BAK
 
# (Optional) Backup DOS4GW.EXE in the game folder. For example, '''rename''' it to DOS4GW.BAK
 
# Copy over dos32a\binw\dos32a.exe to the game's folder in which DOS4GW.EXE was located
 
# Copy over dos32a\binw\dos32a.exe to the game's folder in which DOS4GW.EXE was located
 
# Rename that local copy of dos32a.exe to DOS4GW.EXE
 
# Rename that local copy of dos32a.exe to DOS4GW.EXE
 
That's it! The game will run it instead. If something goes wrong, just rename DOS4GW.BAK back to DOS4GW.EXE.
 
That's it! The game will run it instead. If something goes wrong, just rename DOS4GW.BAK back to DOS4GW.EXE.
 
Alternatively, if the game is launched by a .BAT file, you can edit it to call DOS32A instead of DOS4GW. This way, you do not need to backup and rename the executables.
 
  
 
There's no need to do this through the command prompt, but it may make the above instructions easier to understand:
 
There's no need to do this through the command prompt, but it may make the above instructions easier to understand:
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C:\>cd\games\mygame
 
C:\>cd\games\mygame
 
C:\games\mygame>ren DOS4GW.EXE DOS4GW.BAK
 
C:\games\mygame>ren DOS4GW.EXE DOS4GW.BAK
C:\games\mygame>copy "c:\program files\dosbox\dos32a\binw\dos32a.exe" .\DOS4GW.EXE
+
C:\games\mygame>copy "c:\program files\dosbox\dos32a\binw\dos32a.exe" DOS4GW.EXE
 
</pre>
 
</pre>
  
And if the game complains:
+
Then if the game complains, you can easily undo everything:
  
 
<pre>
 
<pre>
 
C:\>cd\games\mygame
 
C:\>cd\games\mygame
 +
C:\games\mygame>del DOS4GW.EXE
 
C:\games\mygame>ren DOS4GW.BAK DOS4GW.EXE
 
C:\games\mygame>ren DOS4GW.BAK DOS4GW.EXE
 
</pre>
 
</pre>
  
===Games that embed DOS4GW.EXE inside the the game's own EXE file===
+
===Games that embed DOS4GW.EXE inside the game's own EXE file===
 
Some games embed DOS4GW.EXE inside the game's own EXE file (e.g. mygame.exe). It is a little more complicated in this case to make the game use DOS32A instead, but it is still well worth it. What you need to do in this case is:
 
Some games embed DOS4GW.EXE inside the game's own EXE file (e.g. mygame.exe). It is a little more complicated in this case to make the game use DOS32A instead, but it is still well worth it. What you need to do in this case is:
 
# (Optional) Backup the file that has DOS4GW.exe embedded in it. This usually means the game's main EXE. For example, '''copy''' mygame.exe to mygame.old (make sure you use copy and '''not''' rename).
 
# (Optional) Backup the file that has DOS4GW.exe embedded in it. This usually means the game's main EXE. For example, '''copy''' mygame.exe to mygame.old (make sure you use copy and '''not''' rename).
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C:\games\mygame>copy mygame.exe mygame.old
 
C:\games\mygame>copy mygame.exe mygame.old
 
C:\games\mygame>set dos32a=c:\progra~1\dosbox\dos32a
 
C:\games\mygame>set dos32a=c:\progra~1\dosbox\dos32a
C:\games\mygame>%dos32a%\binw\sb /r test.exe
+
C:\games\mygame>%dos32a%\binw\sb /r mygame.exe
 
</pre>
 
</pre>
  
And if the game complains:
+
Then if the game complains, you can easily undo everything:
  
 
<pre>
 
<pre>
Line 58: Line 59:
  
 
==Conclusion==
 
==Conclusion==
* If a game uses DOS4GW.EXE, be sure to use this, but always backup the hacked file.
+
* If a game uses DOS4GW.EXE, be sure to try using DOS32A instead, but always back up the original file first.

Revision as of 00:16, 15 October 2008

DOS32A
Homepage http://dos32a.narechk.net
License Free
Abandonware Yes

DOS32A (DOS/32 Advanced DOS Extender) is a free and open source software that can be used to replace the DOS4GW.EXE DOS Extender file that many DOS games use.

Once a game uses this (although see note), it is expected to run faster and better in DOSBox.

Usage

Games that use DOS4GW.EXE externally

It is much easier if games just call DOS4GW.EXE externally. If the game is launched by a .BAT file, you can edit it to call DOS32A instead of DOS4GW. This way, you do not need to backup and rename the executables.

If not, all you have to do is in this case is:

  1. (Optional) Backup DOS4GW.EXE in the game folder. For example, rename it to DOS4GW.BAK
  2. Copy over dos32a\binw\dos32a.exe to the game's folder in which DOS4GW.EXE was located
  3. Rename that local copy of dos32a.exe to DOS4GW.EXE

That's it! The game will run it instead. If something goes wrong, just rename DOS4GW.BAK back to DOS4GW.EXE.

There's no need to do this through the command prompt, but it may make the above instructions easier to understand:

C:\>cd\games\mygame
C:\games\mygame>ren DOS4GW.EXE DOS4GW.BAK
C:\games\mygame>copy "c:\program files\dosbox\dos32a\binw\dos32a.exe" DOS4GW.EXE

Then if the game complains, you can easily undo everything:

C:\>cd\games\mygame
C:\games\mygame>del DOS4GW.EXE
C:\games\mygame>ren DOS4GW.BAK DOS4GW.EXE

Games that embed DOS4GW.EXE inside the game's own EXE file

Some games embed DOS4GW.EXE inside the game's own EXE file (e.g. mygame.exe). It is a little more complicated in this case to make the game use DOS32A instead, but it is still well worth it. What you need to do in this case is:

  1. (Optional) Backup the file that has DOS4GW.exe embedded in it. This usually means the game's main EXE. For example, copy mygame.exe to mygame.old (make sure you use copy and not rename).
  2. You must now "set" a path ("8dot3" style!) for DOS3A (e.g. set dos32a=c:\progra~1\dosbox\dos32a)
  3. Run c:\progra~1\dosbox\dos32a\binw\sb /r mygame.exe

That's it! DOS32A is now embedded in the game's EXE file instead of DOS4GW.EXE! If something goes wrong, just rename mygame.old to mygame.exe.

Due to the requirement to "set" a path, it's best to do all of this through the command prompt:

C:\>cd\games\mygame
C:\games\mygame>copy mygame.exe mygame.old
C:\games\mygame>set dos32a=c:\progra~1\dosbox\dos32a
C:\games\mygame>%dos32a%\binw\sb /r mygame.exe

Then if the game complains, you can easily undo everything:

C:\>cd\games\mygame
C:\games\mygame>ren mygame.old mygame.exe

Note

Some games do not work with DOS32A at all. For example, Shadowcaster is incompatible with it because RAVEN.EXE run with DOS32A is unable to find the A32SBDG.DLL file that is in the same directory, while with DOS4GW it can.

Conclusion

  • If a game uses DOS4GW.EXE, be sure to try using DOS32A instead, but always back up the original file first.