Category Archives: Software Hacks

XMVM Surgery

Last week I was prompted to take a look at the Intel Code Builder compiler from 1991, a 32-bit compiler targeting 386 extended DOS and shipping with its own DOS extender. It is what one might call an extremely obscure … Continue reading

Posted in 386, Development, Intel, PC history, Software Hacks | 10 Comments

LAN Manager 2.1/2.2 Registration

Anyone who spent a bit of time archiving software distributed on floppies probably knows this situation: There’s only one disk set of a given software release known to exist, and it’s not clean. That is, it’s been previously used to … Continue reading

Posted in Archiving, Debugging, Microsoft, Software Hacks | 18 Comments

More Fun with ISA DMA

A reader comment on a previous post on ISA DMA pointed out that UMBPCI (or rather the DMACHK utility distributed with it) does something unusual with regard to ISA DMA. There was a suspicion of somehow accomplishing the mythical memory-to-memory … Continue reading

Posted in PC architecture, PC hardware, Software Hacks | 8 Comments

The Sad End of Intel Desktop Boards

As previously discussed on this blog, Intel decided to quit the desktop board business in 2013. What has not been discussed is how Intel treated the buyers of the last generation (i.e. 8-series Lynx Point chipsets) of those boards. Since … Continue reading

Posted in Intel, PC hardware, Software Hacks | 14 Comments

Synology Strikes Again

Three years ago I ran into a problem with a Synology DSM update preventing vintage SMB clients from connecting to my NAS. Now I ran into a similar but different problem. The symptom was DOS and (at least old) OS/2 … Continue reading

Posted in LAN Manager, Networking, Software Hacks | Leave a comment

SCO UNIX 3.2.0f, Limping Along

For the purposes of ancient TCP/IP and NFS research, I wanted to run old SCO UNIX in a VM. I was able to run XENIX with TCP/IP earlier, but SCO’s NFS (provided, like the TCP/IP stack, by Lachman Associates Inc.) … Continue reading

Posted in NFS, SCO, Software Hacks, TCP/IP, UNIX, VirtualBox, Virtualization | 14 Comments

Fox in the Crypt

Some time ago I wrote a bit about examining the “branding” system which was used by XENIX and other SCO products and based on the crypt() UNIX library function. At the time I assumed that only SCO had used this … Continue reading

Posted in PC history, SCO, Software Hacks, Xenix | 3 Comments

Dumping Ensoniq Soundscape ROMs

Let us posit that one has a need to obtain an image of the instrument ROM of an Ensoniq Soundscape S-2000, Elite, or OPUS sound card. There are two basic approaches: A) Desolder or cut off the ROM chip, plug … Continue reading

Posted in Ensoniq, Software Hacks, Sound Blaster | 10 Comments

Tales From the Xenix Crypt

What does Xenix have to do with the Enigma machine? Perhaps surprisingly, there is a clear connection… When reconstructing 386 Xenix 2.2.3, the libmdep.a library proved to be a particularly tough nut to crack. That is because it’s one of … Continue reading

Posted in SCO, Software Hacks, Xenix | 17 Comments

Synology DSM 6 and Vintage Clients

I’ve been a Synology DiskStation NAS user forĀ four years now and used them as a SMB file server which is, among other things, accessed from various vintage clients (OS/2, DOS, Windows 9x, etc.). After upgrading to DSM 6, I found … Continue reading

Posted in Networking, Software Hacks, Storage | 9 Comments