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  1. Too bad 2.88MB floppies weren't more common (I've never seen one), one of those plus some compression and a RAMdisk should easily be able to handle Shareware DOOM. (I'm not sure if 2M floppies are bootable, they can fit around 1.8MB so if I get a chance I'll try one this weekend.) I have a 32MB USB drive I bought about 15 years ago (for $50!) that more than once I've considered putting DOOM on. I think the main reasons I haven't is that: Systems that can boot DOS from it generally won't have a sound card compatible with the original DOOM executables. Linux or another OS, even stripped down with buildroot or something, won't leave enough space for the IWAD. But I never considered just using the shareware IWAD...
  2. CODOR

    Does DOS MBF use mmx instructions?

    Assuming the release binaries were compiled using the Makefile in the source, they're probably optimized for a 486. There's some Pentium Pro optimized code in assembly language, but they don't appear to be using any MMX instructions (mostly some 8087 instructions to perform 64-bit moves). DOSDoom 0.653 from 1999 has some MMX column/span drawing routines. (I had a Pentium MMX at the time but I don't remember if these helped or not. I still have that machine, I should benchmark some of this stuff sometime...)
  3. I tried that too. I was a bit disappointed upon learning how to noclip and discovering there was nothing there.
  4. CODOR

    What was your first PC game?

    My next door neighbour worked at Radio Shack and brought over a copy of the original King's Quest to demo on my parents' new Tandy 1000 SX in 1988 or so (in glorious 3-channel sound and 16 simulated colours on a green composite monochrome monitor). I didn't play for long and didn't actually acquire my own copy until a decade or so later, although I did get at least a couple of other Sierra AGI games (Mixed Up Mother Goose and Police Quest I)...
  5. CODOR

    EXE hacking

    So I finally tried this. The SoundScape worked immediately without any changes (other than snd_sfxdevice); it picks up the INI file from the directory pointed to by the SNDSCAPE environment variable. Sound effects were in stereo, which shouldn't be possible without using the SoundScape interface (as I mentioned earlier, it only emulates a Sound Blaster 2.0 which is mono only). I also have at least two WSS (CODEC) cards: a Yamaha Audician 32 (YMF718 based) and an Acer Magic S23A (CS4232 based). The Audician 32 worked once I set snd_sbport to 1332 (hex 0x534), although strangely it still gave the "CODEC. The CODEC ain't responding." message during startup. I used SETUPSA.EXE (Yamaha's configuration software) to mute the card's Sound Blaster Pro 2 emulation, yet sound effects were still audible. The S23A also said "CODEC. The CODEC ain't responding." but regardless of port, DMA, mixer settings or running/not running CS32WSS.EXE there was no audible output. For what it's worth, Tyrian 2000 gives the same results when using its WSS driver. The Audician 32 works, the S23A doesn't. (Presumably the S23A's WSS implementation sucks. I seem to remember having issues with it in DOS when it was my main soundcard in the late 1990s.) TL;DR: Doom has had Ensoniq SoundScape and (mostly) WSS/CODEC support since version 1.8...
  6. CODOR

    EXE hacking

    I've had a SoundScape for close to 15 years. Too bad I didn't discover this until recently. :-P (A friend got some surplus computers from a place he worked at and gave me a few of them, one of which was a big Gateway 2000 tower with what I assumed was a generic Sound Blaster clone in it. It's been sitting in my parents' basement until last Christmas when I finally decided to see what it was. I'm not sure exactly which model it is, possibly a SoundScape II; it's the same one linked to in this post on VOGONS.) Turns out I wasn't far off with thinking it was a "generic Sound Blaster clone"; while its native abilities (48kHz, 16-bit, stereo) are pretty much what you'd expect from a mid-1990s card and its wavetable MIDI is pretty good (see here for some recordings including E1M1), it only emulated an SB 2.0 (44.1kHz, 8-bit, mono) and it had no FM synthesis whatsoever. (It pretended that it did but it filled in the sounds from the wavetable synth. Imagine how bad that would sound, and then realize that it's not even that good.) So having SoundScape support in vanilla Doom would've been nice back in the day, if only for wavetable music and stereo sound effects. (Does vanilla mix sounds in 16-bit?) It's not in a computer right now but it's handy and I'll try it in one of my DOS boxes sometime this week. I also have at least a couple of WSS cards so I'll test those too, although one is a YMF718 and nukeykt already tried one of those and it didn't initialize (but other games seem somewhat flakey in their detection of these cards so you never know)...
  7. CODOR

    Star Wars: Despecialized Editions

    I highly recommend them. Besides the improved visuals over the 2006 DVDs they include just about every subtitle and audio option possible (even edited versions of the DVD and Blu-Ray commentaries). Most notable are the original mono and stereo mixes and a re-creation of the 6-track mix. (Although I tend to go with the 1993 LaserDisc remix when I watch it because I'm pretty sure that's the one on the VHS copies I had. It's nice to have choices available.) I figured it was only a matter of time before Lucas had a bunch of CGI Jawas doing a dance number composited into the scene where Luke discovers the charred remains of his aunt and uncle. He'd probably say something like "I always intended for that to be there, but the technology just wasn't available in 1977. Or 1997. Or 2004. Or 2011." To be fair to Lucas, there's speculation that at least one of the changes (having Han not shoot first) was forced upon him to avoid a PG-13 rating. Speilberg had the same problem in E.T. and at one point digitally replaced some guns with walkie-talkies. Which is sort of ironic considering the two of them collaborated on Temple Of Doom which is cited as one of the reasons for the existence of the PG-13 rating in the first place... I was a bit leery of the Star Trek remasters when they were first announced, but was thoroughly impressed after seeing one on TV. Once BD-ROM drives came down in price I ensured that they were the first Blu-Ray discs I bought for exactly the reason stated above. (It's nice to have choices available.)
  8. It's the other way around: my PC can't handle recent games because I mainly play Doom. (Or more accurately: there's no need to update my PC because the games I play, even recent ones, already have their requirements satisfied by my current system...)
  9. CODOR

    Website should be WWW-compatible

    Does it at least display the text content, throw up elements it doesn't recognize, or does it error out completely? The main reason to use CSS is to separate the content from its presentation and unsurprisingly Freedoom's site works in this regard in both NCSA Mosaic and NN4 (i.e. the meaning is there, even if it doesn't look the same), at least in the versions on oldweb.today. (Sadly this site doesn't emulate WorldWideWeb. On the other hand, it also reminds me why we called a certain browser "Internet Exploder".) From what I understand, WorldWideWeb doesn't support the Gopher protocol either...
  10. CODOR

    when did you last use a floppy disk?

    Just about every day. Title searching software I use for work requires its login key files stored on removable media (in fact, I think one had to pay extra to even use USB drives until 2008 or so). Since the files are only a few kilobytes and I still have a ton of 3.5" floppies around it seems most efficient to use those. I've also been imaging my 5.25" floppies from the late 1980s and early 1990s. I note that they tend to be way more reliable than the 3.5" floppies used in the mid-1990s. I don't know if it's due to the lower data density or if manufacturing quality went down when demand went up. Probably a bit of both...
  11. CODOR


    Yes, there's a file called mt2gm.exe here that programs an MT-32 to resemble something vaguely similar to a GM device. I suppose using it depends on both the operating system and the source port, but generally you play MTGM.MID from the archive prior to running Doom. (On Linux with Crispy Doom I had to select "Pin Synth" in the QT version of Munt to keep it from resetting between running aplaymidi and Doom; this is probably unnecessary under Windows.) I've tried it with both the Doom and Doom II IWADs and it sounds pretty good, although there's the occasional song that's a bit too complex for the MT-32 to handle and notes get dropped. Those that use panning, fading, or pitch bending tend to sound a bit off, too. It's mostly a novelty on modern systems where there's better sound choices available, but it might be cool to show off a retro setup with a real MT-32 (I should do this)...
  12. This was my experience; one of these was my primary system from 1997-2002 and a backup of zdoom.cfg (last modified in 2000) shows that I was running at 800x600.
  13. CODOR

    Cmos battery not backing up bios setting

    It's from a P3-700 system. People who were born when it was new can probably drive by now. In related news, the CR2032 in my P-MMX-233 from 1997 finally needed replacing last month. It's probably been near death for like a year, but I'm lazy so re-entering the BIOS settings was easier than opening the case on the two or three occasions it was powered up. In other related news, I have a bunch of systems and other electronics that have batteries that could potentially leak. I really should open those up and make sure the boards aren't melting...
  14. I saw Hexen64 (cart only) at a pawn shop a couple of years ago, but didn't consider it distinct enough from the PC version to buy it.