Is MS-DOS, PC DOS and DR-DOS vintage enough to count?

Liam Proven lproven at
Sun Jul 31 18:48:54 CDT 2016

On 31 July 2016 at 20:21, jim stephens <jwsmail at> wrote:
> I used Windows 95 for dos multitasking.  Windows 95 booted the processors
> into real mode dos, then ran the windows system out of that base dos much
> like Windows 3.1 had.  As such, the dos boxes all shared actual access to
> the real mode assets of the processor.
> Windows 98 switched to protected mode almost immediately on boot, and all
> the dos boxes were synthesized in virtual 8086 mapped mode, and had no
> underlying booted dos environment.

Are you sure about this? Got any references?

Because I did a _lot_ of support and research work with 95, 95A, 95B,
98, 98SE & ME, and also of course with NT 3, 4, 2000, XP etc.

I am not aware of any differences such as you describe between 95 and
98. Both boot from actual MS-DOS; the GUI can be totally disabled. In
both, you can load drivers into DOS before the GUI boots and have all
the OS & apps access them.

Or, using an undocumented batch file called WINSTART.BAT, in
everything from WfWg 3.11 up to 98SE, you could load some things into
the Windows "system VM" and it would be accessible to Windows, but not
to DOS boxes started under Windows. I did this occasionally for
memory-management reasons.

But both 95 & 98 are DOS based and function near-identically.

WinME removed the ability to boot to a command prompt, it didn't
execute AUTOEXEC.BAT any more, nor much of CONFIG.SYS -- the DOS
"kernel" loaded Windows directly.

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