DOSBox-X

Cross-platform DOS emulation package
Complete, accurate emulation and more

About DOSBox-X

DOSBox-X is a DOS emulator derived from DOSBox that is designed to support different types of DOS software and systems, including serious DOS application usages (such as those requiring printing and SHARE functions) and East Asian systems (such as DOS/V and PC-98). It focuses on implementing accurate emulations (especially accurate reproduction of hardware behavior) and various ways to tweak and configure the DOS virtual machine, and also intends to be a great platform for emulating DOS-based Windows such as Windows 3.x and 9x/Me and software written for those versions of Windows. DOSBox-X implements various features needed by DOS programs and also to support the development of new DOS software (in combination with DOSLIB/DOSLIB2 and Hackipedia).

Goals

  • Implement DOS systems covering all pre-2000 DOS and Windows 9x based hardware scenarios, including all manner of hardware
  • Implement configuration parameters to configure the DOS virtual machine, whatever take to get the DOS game or program to run
  • Implement emulation accurate enough to help new DOS developments with confidence programs run properly on actual DOS systems
  • Implement features needed by different types of DOS software and DOS-based Windows (Windows 3.x/9x) for correction operations
  • Being a great platform for emulating Windows 3.x/9x/Me and software written for these Windows versions (with full acceleration)
  • Improve user interface and try to make DOSBox-X work consistently on supported platforms (especially Windows, Linux, and macOS)
  • Improve documentation and ensure stability of release versions with the help of CI builds, unit tests and other testing methods
  • Along with DOSLIB, help with continued DOS developments by supporting and encouraging developers to write new DOS games/programs

Non-goals

  • Giving the best experience to DOS gamers who desire good performance, or being the fastest DOS emulator on x86 hardware
  • Adopting changes that would clearly impair the emulation accuracy, or otherwise conflict with the project goals
  • Implementing features not necessary by the emulator, if they cause major issues or code maintainability concerns
  • Supporting Pentium 4 or higher CPU level emulation (unless desired by the DOSBox-X community in general)
  • Emulation of PC hardware after 2000, when the updated "PC 2001" specifications were published in 2001
  • Emulation of DOS systems other than IBM PC/XT/AT, AX, Amstrad, Tandy, PCjr, JEGA/AX, and PC-98 (with exceptions)
  • Windows guest emulation, Windows Vista or later (DOSBox-X focuses mostly on DOS-based Windows like Win3.x/9x/Me)
  • Acting as a standalone DOS operating system like FreeDOS, although you can run DOS images inside the emulator

Other DOS emulation projects

We wholy recommend the following projects, as each has a different focus and features:

  • DOSBox - The upstream project that DOSBox-X and other forks (such as DOSBox Staging) are based on.
  • DOSBox Staging - Fork of the DOSBox project that focuses on ease of use, modern technology and best practices.
  • DOSBox Pure - Fork of the DOSBox project built for RetroArch/Libretro aiming for simplicity and ease of use.
  • PCem - IBM PC emulator that specializes in running old operating systems and software that are designed for IBM PC compatibles.
  • dosemu2 - Emulator for running DOS programs under Linux.
  • FreeDOS - Open source DOS-compatible operating system for playing classic games, running legacy software and supporting embedded systems.
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