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Configuring memory for playing certain games

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    #16
    It will ask you some questions at the beginning. It asks about reserving memory for windows 3.1, and I think that is rarely really needed, and it wastes memory for DOS programs.
    It just edits those two files, it takes a couple of reboots to make the calculations and lets you confirm everything seems to be running.
    If you back them up first, you should be good to go. It rarely completely clobbers anything, but a back up is always a good idea.

    Comment


      #17
      MEMMAKER did its job pretty well and harmlessly. It copied AUTOEXEC.BAT to AUTOEXEC.UMB and CONFIG.SYS to CONFIG.UMB, and edited AUTOEXEC.BAT and CONFIG.SYS.

      For AUTOEXEC.BAT it added a switch to the lines to which I added "LH", and added what looks to me like a memory block pointer. So for example,
      • LH c:\util\explosiv\explosiv.com m5
      became
      • LH /L:1,15264 c:\util\explosiv\explosiv.com m5
      For CONFIG.SYS it added those likewise and some other things. Here is the output from MEM /C. It looks significantly higher. It added EMM386 as well.

      Modules using memory below 1 MB:

      Name Total = Conventional + Upper Memory
      -------- ---------------- ---------------- ----------------
      MSDOS 17,917 (17K) 17,917 (17K) 0 (0K)
      HIMEM 1,168 (1K) 1,168 (1K) 0 (0K)
      EMM386 3,120 (3K) 3,120 (3K) 0 (0K)
      COMMAND 2,928 (3K) 2,928 (3K) 0 (0K)
      CD1 28,912 (28K) 0 (0K) 28,912 (28K)
      WORKGRP 3,136 (3K) 0 (0K) 3,136 (3K)
      EXPLOSIV 5,696 (6K) 0 (0K) 5,696 (6K)
      MSCDEX 27,952 (27K) 0 (0K) 27,952 (27K)
      GMOUSE 9,408 (9K) 0 (0K) 9,408 (9K)
      Free 695,072 (679K) 627,968 (613K) 67,104 (66K)

      Memory Summary:

      Type of Memory Total = Used + Free
      ---------------- ---------- ---------- ----------
      Conventional 653,312 25,344 627,968
      Upper 142,208 75,104 67,104
      Reserved 0 0 0
      Extended (XMS) 7,197,824 226,432 6,971,392
      ---------------- ---------- ---------- ----------
      Total memory 7,993,344 326,880 7,666,464

      Total under 1 MB 795,520 100,448 695,072

      Largest executable program size 627,872 (613K)
      Largest free upper memory block 66,928 (65K)
      MS-DOS is resident in the high memory area.
      It asked me if any of my programs require EMS memory. I gave the default answer of no since I didn't know.

      MEMMAKER did ask about Windows 3.1, but I don't know what it did regarding that. I wish I did, because I just don't like knowledge of my own vintage computer's setup being obscured/taken away from me, after I've spent months setting up everything myself so that I know what is what and where it is.
      Attached Files
      Last edited by Bill-kun; October 14, 2021, 04:46 PM.
      Sattinger's Law: “It works better if you plug it in.” Corollary: “It works even better if you plug it in correctly.”
      "The simplest solution is the most likely solution." --My paraphrase of Occam's Razor
      "You can get [a computer] like yours at a garage sale for, like, fifteen dollars," --Strong Sad, sbemail #33

      Comment


        #18
        memmaker does okay.

        But when you really need every last ounce of conventional, there is nothing better than QEMM (Quarterdeck Expanded Memory Manager) You can find it online with a quick google.

        Runs through thousands of permutations to get you every byte of memory free. Adds a nice quickboot feature too. I can't live without it these days. Works for Dos and Win9x
        Twitter: @adambrisebois
        Discord: YesterGearPC#0001
        Youtube: YesterGearPC

        Comment


          #19
          Originally posted by Bill-kun View Post
          Before I start using MEMMAKER, what exactly does it do? Is it just a really user-friendly way to automatically get CONFIG.SYS and AUTOEXEC.BAT files that allocate memory optimally? Or does it change stuff that would take a lot of trouble to undo?
          It finds unused memory blocks in the upper 384k memory region and makes them available for use for TSRs and such so you can have as much free conventional memory as possible.

          In FreeDOS, it can go further and actually give you more than 640k of conventional memory. I have it running on my 486, and I have 736k of free conventional memory.

          Comment


            #20
            It asked me if any of my programs require EMS memory. I gave the default answer of no since I didn't know.

            MEMMAKER did ask about Windows 3.1, but I don't know what it did regarding that. I wish I did, because I just don't like knowledge of my own vintage computer's setup being obscured/taken away from me, after I've spent months setting up everything myself so that I know what is what and where it is.
            I'm think the Win3.1 question determines whether to load part of dos in the High Memory Area (HMA), or leave it vacant for Windows to use. According to your mem/c/p, DOS is using the HMA, which is what you want unless you spend your time 100% in Windows.

            Comment


              #21
              Originally posted by Bill-kun View Post
              MEMMAKER did ask about Windows 3.1, but I don't know what it did regarding that. I wish I did, because I just don't like knowledge of my own vintage computer's setup being obscured/taken away from me, after I've spent months setting up everything myself so that I know what is what and where it is.
              You're being a little paranoid about what it (or any memory-manager) does. It's only probing higher memory (above 640K) that isn't being utilized for anything significant to relocate other things to it. A lot of space between the 640K to 1MB section is wasted in an "unoptimized" system. Only issue I've ever had with it was some older VGA drivers for Win3.1 (easily solved). And as for all the other config.xxx and autoexec.xxx files you've got...once you determine your system is fine, get rid of them. They're just sitting there eating up HDD space---and on small drives, that's always a concern. If you're running a slower system, run a defragmentation utility after everything checks out and you've deleted files you don't need... especially if you're not using a permanent swapfile for Windows.

              Comment


                #22
                The next game I want to get running is The Dagger of Amon Ra, CD-ROM. I tried running it, and even with MEMMAKER doing what it did, the game says it cannot run because it needs 12K more of memory. Preventing GUEST from loading will provide that. GUEST.EXE is the program for interacting with the Zip drive; I don't know why Iomega called it "Guest."

                Anyway, The Dagger of Amon Ra was advanced enough that its installation program includes the option of making a boot disk for memory allocation during booting to make the game runnable. Unfortunately, when I try to use that option it keeps saying it fails after it formats the floppy.
                Sattinger's Law: “It works better if you plug it in.” Corollary: “It works even better if you plug it in correctly.”
                "The simplest solution is the most likely solution." --My paraphrase of Occam's Razor
                "You can get [a computer] like yours at a garage sale for, like, fifteen dollars," --Strong Sad, sbemail #33

                Comment


                  #23
                  Another question though. As a side note, I also have the Dell 286 at my parents' house. Here is the output from MEM /C from it. It says there are 0 total bytes in upper memory. What piece of hardware determines that number? If I get XMS memory chips for this computer, will that give it UMB as well?



                  Modules using memory below 1 MB:

                  Name Total = Conventional + Upper Memory
                  -------- ---------------- ---------------- ----------------
                  MSDOS 63,261 (62K) 63,261 (62K) 0 (0K)
                  COMMAND 4,992 (5K) 4,992 (5K) 0 (0K)
                  EXPLOSIV 5,760 (6K) 5,760 (6K) 0 (0K)
                  GMOUSE 9,376 (9K) 9,376 (9K) 0 (0K)
                  DOSKEY 4,144 (4K) 4,144 (4K) 0 (0K)
                  GUEST 25,472 (25K) 25,472 (25K) 0 (0K)
                  Free 542,208 (530K) 542,208 (530K) 0 (0K)

                  Memory Summary:

                  Type of Memory Total = Used + Free
                  ---------------- ---------- ---------- ----------
                  Conventional 655,360 113,152 542,208
                  Upper 0 0 0
                  Reserved 0 0 0
                  Extended (XMS) 0 0 0
                  ---------------- ---------- ---------- ----------
                  Total memory 655,360 113,152 542,208

                  Total under 1 MB 655,360 113,152 542,208

                  Largest executable program size 542,032 (529K)
                  Largest free upper memory block 0 (0K)
                  Attached Files
                  Sattinger's Law: “It works better if you plug it in.” Corollary: “It works even better if you plug it in correctly.”
                  "The simplest solution is the most likely solution." --My paraphrase of Occam's Razor
                  "You can get [a computer] like yours at a garage sale for, like, fifteen dollars," --Strong Sad, sbemail #33

                  Comment


                    #24
                    Originally posted by Bill-kun View Post
                    As a side note, I also have the Dell 286 at my parents' house. Here is the output from MEM /C from it. It says there are 0 total bytes in upper memory. What piece of hardware determines that number? If I get XMS memory chips for this computer, will that give it UMB as well?
                    Not directly. On an 8086/8088 or 286, you have to provide memory between 640K and 1M to get any UMBs. It depends on your mainboard and BIOS settings whether this is possible at all and how much you can gain. It is not trivial to set up, and not always possible.

                    It is always possible to use XMS to provide EMS and/or UMB memory using EMM386.EXE or QEMM, but this relies on hardware features or the 386 (or newer). Older processors simply cannot do this on their own, they require the hardware (i.e. mainboard or expansion card) to provide these features.

                    Comment

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