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 Post subject: New USB drivers for DOS (regularily updated)
PostPosted: Sun Aug 02, 2009 4:31 am 
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Joined: Fri Jan 11, 2008 2:52 pm
Posts: 1278
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DOS USB Drivers (New as of July 1, 2009 -- Last Update August 1, 2009)

THIS downloads a zip file containing the complete set of DOS USB drivers (545 kB, UPDATED August 1, 2009 ).

The programs are all still in a testing phase (alpha/beta), so do not yet include complete documentation. Read the included USBINTRO.DOC file for documentation and information on how to use the programs.

The zip file contains more than 20 different programs, and includes drivers for keyboards, mice, joysticks, printers, disk drives, and hubs, as well as several different test and support programs. Unfortunately, the only type of host controller currently supported is UHCI (full-speed controllers made by Intel and Via Technologies). Support for additional host controllers (OHCI, EHCI, WHCI, XHCI) and devices will be added in the future.

I fully expect there to be several updates over the next couple of months, as everyone tries these out on their systems and begins to discover all the bugs that I didn't find. Hopefully, there won't be very many bugs and they will all be relatively easy to locate and fix. Check back here every once in a while to see if there are any updates. Usually, updates will be initiated from something in the Forum . That is the best place to keep up to date about the current status.

Some people are confused when I say that it only supports UHCI controllers, and assume this won't work for them because they have an EHCI controller. If you have an EHCI (USB 2.0 / high-speed) controller on your computer, you also are GUARANTEED to have a USB 1.x (low-speed / full-speed) controller, which will be UHCI (if it is made by Intel or Via) or OHCI (if it is made by anybody except Intel or Via). You need to do some testing on your computer before you dismiss this "out-of-hand" and just assume it will not work for you.

THIS downloads a zip file containing the source code for all of the programs in DOS USB driver package above (1.7 MB, UPDATED August 1, 2009 ). Most of the programs are written in Assembly Language, but some are written in C++.

http://bretjohnson.us/
http://bretjohnson.us/forum/

FreeDOS also did seem to have a problem with some FAT32 drives. The last builds of the FreeDOS kernel should have this problem fixed:
http://bretjohnson.us/forum/viewtopic.php?f=5&t=98&sid=b720cff83e660641c4091a9c56222f75

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Download Ultimate Boot CD v5.0: http://www.ultimatebootcd.com/download.html
Use Parted Magic for handling all partitioning task: http://partedmagic.com/


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2010 12:58 pm 
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Joined: Mon Feb 21, 2005 10:59 pm
Posts: 1284
I finally found some time to work on 5.0rc2. For the past week, I have been playing with USB driver under DOS.

There seems to be two nextgen branches of DOS USB drivers:

- USBDOS
- DOSUSB

My experience wasn't too great, and reminded me of the time when I was trying to get NTFS working under DOS. None of the drivers I tried would let me reliably mount a 1GB USB memory stick under various machines (assorted Dell notebooks, NEC Versa notebook, an oldish Compaq desktop, a self-built Intel desktop etc.). Common problems include hang during scanning, invalid opcode etc.

At first, I thought it was due to FreeDOS. Upgrading to the latest kernel didn't help. So I replaced it with MS-DOS 7.0 but got the same problems.

In contrast, Parted Magic let me access the USB memory stick with 0 problems on all these machines. I think a common use case for UBCD is to rescue files from a bad system to a USB storage device, and for that I think DOS USB doesn't meet the requirement at the moment. Having to fiddle with all the driver parameters is bad enough when you already have one problem on your hand (to rescue files from a bad system). Not able to get it to work after all this effort is just too much!

I would like your opinions on this, but I think DOS is really _not_ suitable for more complex tasks like NTFS access or USB support. I am sure it can be done on some systems with some parameters, but it is just too much trouble to get it working (if at all)! As such, I think I'm not going to pursue further on DOS USB support, but leave it to Linux (i.e. Parted Magic) like the case of NTFS.


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