# FreeDOS Beta9 errata

9/29/2004

Eric Auer writes:

Hi, I started collecting some errata / comments about the FreeDOS beta 9 ISO image and the readme.txt file in the download directory. Unless our fileserver gets confused again, you can find it at: Eric's web site.

Summary: the docs/kjdavis/ files, in particular programs.txt, would be pretty useful but are outdated. Some updates seem to be missing on the ISO, according to the LSMs. The readme.txt has some outdated points, too. I hope we can fix the latter before mirrors catch up, and fix the SMALL ISO which I recommend to upload (5 MB ISO without source codes). In addition, I suggest to add the contents of ODIN to a directory on the BIG ISO (10 MB, will be 12 MB with ODIN) and to the PATH, to allow people to use most of FreeDOS simply by booting the CD-ROM (will have to use DEVLOAD if they want to load drivers manually, as config/autoexec are of course not easily editable), even if they do not install on harddisk.

Apart from that, I am quite happy to have a pile of almost all updates in a single ISO.

Maybe we should have taken some more time, even if that meant missing the "magic" date of "at age of 10 1/4, FreeDOS became beta 9"...

Eric later adds:

Hi again, I tried to install beta 9 without a CD-writer, and I ran into some problems...

The boot image contains:

• command.com kernel.sys fdconfig.sys
• driver - atapicdd.sys cdrcache.sys eltorito.sys DEVLOAD.COM udma.sys SHSUCDHD.EXE himem.exe lbacache.com shsucdx.exe tickle.com
• freedos - FORMAT.EXE APPEND.EXE CHOICE.EXE FDISK.EXE LOCALIZE.COM LOCATE.COM textinst.exe OSCHECK.COM METABOOT.BIN META-ALL.BIN INSTALL.DAT HDD.BAT getargs.com SYS.COM fdauto.bat
• freedos/en - copyr.txt oem.txt base.txt src_base.txt
• ... and freedos - fdisk.ini, but not moresys :-P .

The problem with this: The files written in UPPERCASE are - as far as I can tell - needed by the batch files on the CD-ROM. So copying only the CD-ROM files will not be enough to run the installer after booting a plain FreeDOS (e.g. ODIN) boot floppy :-( .

Apart from that, menu1.bat explicitly searches localize in a:\freedos, as does menu2.bat ... textmenu.bat searches OSCHECK explicitly in a:\freedos, and FORMAT and SYS in the same directory. The main autorun.bat file searches localize in a:\freedos, and I had to modify the first few lines in a special way:

set fdosroot=d:\beta9\freedos\setup
(old value was something like %cdrom%\freedos\setup)
rem *** added hardcoded value above. should change
rem *** itself to %_CWD% if this file is found in %_CWD%...
set path=%fdosroot%\bin;%fdosroot%\install;%path%
rem *** removed A: stuff and added %path% to the above...


I also had to modify the language stuff:

rem *** if exist A:\freedos\localize.%lang% goto optmenu1
rem *** if exist %fdosroot%\nls\localize.%lang% copy /y ...
rem *** if exist A:\freedos\localize.%lang% set nlspath=A:\freedos
set nlspath=%fdosroot%\nls;%nlspath%
rem *** above added


That SHOULD have enabled me to run the installer manually, but I did not have access to some of the abovementioned tools, as they were only on the 360k floppy image (okay, I could have used EXTRACT).

Would somebody be willing to create a ZIP file which you can drop into a directory tree like d:\beta9 (which contains the %cdrom%\ tree) and which allows the user to get SIMPLE access to the installer without having to extract tools from the floppy image and without having to tune batch files manually? After all, more people than you think will even DOUBLECLICK all the batch files from within Windoze during their first attempt to install FreeDOS! (Luckily a nonzero %windir% can be detected in such cases, and can trigger a batch file abort then...)

Other problems which I noticed:

• CHKDSK detects wrong LFN entries even after fixing all LFN errors with DOSFSCK (I selected "drop LFN" when prompted - looks like newly created dir entries got mixed up in non-stylish way with old LFN chunks... not really dangerous or anything but dosfsck complained). There is no easy to access 2035.dev (e.g. 386 OpenWatcom FAT32 would be nice?) kernel on the CD, but plain 2035 does not even have working VERSION=... afaik.
• HASFAT32 seems to be obsolete/unused. UNZIP in setup\bin is newer than the UNZIP which (should get?) gets installed by the installer. PG/LABEL could be UPXed, as could be several COM/EXE/SYS files in the packages (but you have to exclude TDSK/BITDISK; the HIMEM/EMM386 binaries will, luckily, not be UPXed, as they are already compressed by a special sys-exe packer). I used attrib /s -r . after copying the CD-ROM contents.
• The setup\bin directory contains both display.exe and old display.com ...
• On the other hand, SHARE now is a .com ... I think the installer binaries should not be put in %freedos%\bin (e.g. as there already is pkginst which helps to install single zips, more useful for everyday use). I noticed that there are now TUNZ and UDMA, but still no MORESYS ;-) .
• The %freedos%\instbase directory contained 127 small log files after install - would be an idea to zip them away in postinst (created by GUI installer).
• Because I had no LOCALIZE, many batch files displayed no output, scary.
• Updates of kernel / command / cutemouse / metakern / metaboot do not seem to have happened properly, postinst does not seem to like "precopy" install style. But I did not want to boot from CD (no writer) nor did I have a spare box of floppy disks...

When trying DOSLFN and the L (LFN) tool, LFN DIR always behaved as if findnext was broken, strange. But LFN /? or LFN DIR /? is not implemented :-( .

At least all FreeDOS programs now got a big nice update. In the end I just ran the GUI installer and typed d:\beta9\freedos\packages and c:\freedos for the source / dest paths (as far as I remember - pity that there is no picker, but luckily I knew the right paths by heart) and whoosh... :-)). (after some simple further clicks, that is)

Happy FreeDOSing!