Getting DOS screen to full screen ....

Discussion in 'Dell' started by budgie, Nov 7, 2006.

  1. budgie

    budgie Guest

    A friend and I bought a pair of Latitude CPiA machines (PII-300) a while back
    for a particular task. They had the right mix of ports and enough grunt for
    98SE, which we needed for backward compatibility with legacy DOS apps that
    require direct port access.

    I set his machine up first (clean install), and everything went to plan. Mine
    however refuses to expand the DOS display to full screen, even though I am using
    the same settings.

    The only difference is that his machine is 1024*768 while mine is 800*600. In
    each case I sourced the appropriate NeoMagic video driver from Dell. They
    *were* different - his specified 96699A05.EXE while mine was NEOW9806.EXE.

    Now my machine has TWO service tags, as I mentioned in a much earlier post
    (June 14), and I was advised to use the one on the underside of the case rather
    than the number which comes up in the BIOS setup screen. If the BIOS tag
    reflects the mobo - which apparently is NOT the board that originated in the
    case - surely it would be the one to use for drivers for the motherboard.

    Most of the work is done in DOS and the 640*480 DOS screen in native 800*600
    resolution is annoying, especially as I know that the other machine did what was

    Any suggestions?
    budgie, Nov 7, 2006
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  2. budgie

    WSZsr Guest

    Why don't you just boot to DOS?
    WSZsr, Nov 7, 2006
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  3. budgie

    Tom Scales Guest

    There should be an option in the BIOS to 'stretch' when the resolution is
    less than the optimum for the panel. Has been on pretty much every laptop
    I've used.

    Tom Scales, Nov 7, 2006
  4. budgie

    budgie Guest

    I do. That gives me a 640*480 image on an 800*600 screen.

    On the other CPiA we get the DOS screen occupying the full screen, which is what
    we want on this machine too
    budgie, Nov 7, 2006
  5. budgie

    budgie Guest

    budgie, Nov 7, 2006
  6. budgie

    budgie Guest

    Not on this one - a CPiA300ST. Been through it many times.
    budgie, Nov 7, 2006
  7. budgie

    Basill Guest

    I think fn f7 toggles the stretch when in bios/dos mode, I dont think the
    function key you need is labelled with a blue icon to denote its function.
    I might be wrong so try fn with some of the others if necessary.

    Basill, Nov 7, 2006
  8. budgie

    JAM Guest

    Wish I did have some suggestions. I am currently using a DOS-based
    software for my work and am unable to use it for long-term projects due
    to the Windows XP operating system environment.

    Though I have tried suggestions and tweaked it, what happens is the
    screen FREEZES after a minute, 5 minutes, or 10 minutes, especially
    after I apply a WP5.1 for DOS macro, resulting in me having to do a
    hard boot. It really sucks when you're working on a document, racing
    against the clock, and have to start the doggone thing all over again.

    I don't know what you are even asking, as it is beyond my
    comprehension, but I recognize the word "DOS" which piqued my interest.

    As a DOS user, I am hoping to learn a thing or two from others in this
    NG who may feel compelled to share some wisdom. ;>)

    Today, so that I can shut down in a full DOS screen, with no problems
    of freezing, I elect to do my work on a Windows 98 operating system. I
    own several computers, and I do have a computer with Windows XP Media
    operating system now. I can access DOS on Windows XP, but, again,
    long-term usage results in hard boots and freezing screens. This is my
    third Windows XP operating system desktop computer, BTW; two Compaqs
    and now one Dell XPS-410.

    Because of my self-inflicted DOS handicap, refusing to work in a
    Windows environment, in order for me to enjoy the luxuries of a laptop,
    I had to purchase a used one which had a Windows 98 operating system.
    I cannot tell you how excruciating it is working on that laptop with
    Windows 98. Though I'm happy as a clam to be in full DOS, I do miss
    the Windows application advantages, like Google, printing with FAST
    printer, et cetera.

    If I understand the initial question of the thread, would it actually
    be possible for me to purchase a brand-new laptop and work in a full
    DOS screen with DOS software and no problems?

    Though I love DOS for my work-based applications, I am aware that the
    new Vista operating system is forthcoming, which will put an end to DOS
    users like me, as there will be no DOS prompt anymore.

    Thank you in advance for any and all responses.

    Washington, D.C.
    JAM, Nov 8, 2006
  9. budgie

    budgie Guest

    Reputedly you can operate DOS applications reliably and without problems in a
    "virtual machine environment" under XP, which claims to give you - literally - a
    virtual machine separate from XP and its issues. However, none of my associates
    who have tried their favourite DOS legacy apps have had any joy, and I'm afraid
    that like you I am too much interested in productivity to purchase XP on a

    I'm not sure why your Win98 experience has to be "excruciating". You can
    certainly have the benefits of all internet functionality (Google et al) and I
    see no reason why printing should be significantly different. This may in your
    case be attributable to your choice of hardware. A half-decent laptop suited to
    98 should be fine.

    For someone not aware of the intricacies, it can be difficult to pick a
    second-hand laptop which best suits an O/S like 98. Certainly my Latitude CPiA
    meets my requirements - serial/parallel/PS2/USB ports, PCMCIA etc. Not
    blisteringly fast, but no slug either. Supports Firefox/Eudora etc quite well.

    Basically any laptop of that era or later will run 98SE, subject to some
    caveats. The main one I have found is drivers. You need motherboard
    (chipset/video) drivers, and they may not be available to fly with 98SE on a
    much later machine. But from the sounds of it, your laptop is earlier.

    (I mentioned 98 Second Edition specifically in relation to USB ports. USB
    operation under 98 First Ed. can be problematic at best, while SE is far more

    Hang in there - if like me you are stuck with legacy DOS apps there is still
    life. And the advent of Vista doesn't signal the end of life as we know it.
    budgie, Nov 8, 2006
  10. budgie

    BillW50 Guest

    Did you get this problem solved? Some laptops require a driver to make
    the display full screen I think, if it isn't in the BIOS or a Fn key.
    BillW50, Nov 8, 2006
  11. budgie

    budgie Guest

    Yes and no. On the mate's machine, I managed to set up the DOS window AND the
    DOS screen to be full size without requiring any user intervention. Last night
    I went through the Fn-Fx combinations and F7 is labelled "Font". Fn-F7 toggles
    between native and full-screen. It's not the answer I had on the other machine
    but it's certainly a workaround.

    I'm planning on a "syncing" session via phone or 'net with the mate 600 miles
    away, to triple check every setting on the machines are identical.

    The subtlety may boil down to the different NeoMagic chipset drivers for his
    1024*768 screen and the 800*600 screen that I have, and that he may have an
    option not provided in my chipset driver.
    budgie, Nov 9, 2006
  12. budgie

    JAM Guest

    Thanks for your response! :>)

    I can't get DOS to respond properly in the Windows XP environment. It
    will work, but it just doesn't work for a long period of time without
    My used Windows 98 laptop works great for DOS, but if you want to
    connect to the Internet and use Google or any other Windows
    application, it is slower than a turtle. That is what I meant by
    excruciating. When you click onto Google, as an example, the wait time
    is brutal. I could go make a cup of coffee, come back, and it is still
    trying to pull up Google. LOL
    Thanks for that suggestion about Windows 98SE. I have read and heard
    that it is much more dependable than the original Windows 98 operating

    Printing in DOS is problematic, depending on the printer. Because
    WP5.1, as an example, can only recognize certain functionalities, if I
    were to purchase an all-in-one printer, a color printer, or anything
    that plugs into my computer without a parallel port, I cannot print in
    DOS. I can print in Windows, but not in DOS. I have one software that
    I use from time to time in which I have to convert a WP5.1 file to
    ASCII and then use this software to produce a different-looking end
    product. I would NEVER be able to do this in Windows. This software
    only works in DOS.

    When my HP LaserJet 4000 broke down recently, I ended up purchasing the
    HP LaserJet 1320. It prints only in black and has the option of the
    much-needed parallel port plug. In DOS, I need a faster printer to
    print only in black. So this choice, for 300 bucks, was ideal. In
    DOS, it isn't so much the printer driver that one needs to download, as
    in times past, but today it is the port hook-up which is important.
    Color printers and all-in-one printers do not work in DOS for me.
    I sure do hope you are right! I'm dreading Vista. I read on the
    Microsoft website that the DOS prompt will not be included in Vista and
    is being replaced by something I do not understand. What's worse is I
    do not think I will be able to even load up WP5.1 in Vista without a
    DOS prompt.

    As one who does the majority of my work in DOS, I use a Windows 98SE
    desktop, and when I have to utilize the Internet, I get up out of my
    chair and walk over to my Windows XP desktop. It is a pain.

    The majority of folks in my industry work in a Windows applications,
    and I may be the Last of the Mohicans as a DOS user. However, the way
    I see it, why do I need a car that drives 150 miles per hour (Windows)
    when I only need to go 60 miles per hour in WP5.1 (DOS).

    It reminds me of a logo from a used car salesman I once knew, Mickey
    Flynn Used Cars: "I don't say they're good, but it sure beats
    walking." ;>)

    Washington, D.C.
    JAM, Nov 9, 2006
  13. budgie

    Jay B Guest

    i'm thinking you have some kind of spyware/malware or something going on
    in your computer. everything you describe is not normal for a win98 system.
    Jay B, Nov 9, 2006
  14. budgie

    budgie Guest

    Certainly agree something is amiss. I've used 98SE without that sort of
    behaviour on P1-133's with 32M of RAM, and while they weren't blindingly fast
    they were far better than Jennie's description.
    budgie, Nov 10, 2006
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