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[Slashdot] - Bored Developer Creates 'DOS Subsystem For Linux'

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Long-time Slashdot reader Bismillah quotes iTnews: A software engineer in Melbourne is whiling away the city's lockdown by creating a tool that DOS users so far have lacked: an integrated Linux environment similar to what Windows 10 users enjoy... "I first started out just seeing if I could get Linux booting from the DOS command line, and that turned out to be straightforward enough so I thought it'd be fun to see if I could continue executing DOS once Linux was running," Charlie Somerville said. "I'm mostly surprised by how smoothly the whole thing works given how *dodgy* it all is haha," he added. DOS Subsystem for Linux runs a real copy of MS-DOS under the QEMU virtual machine, and starts up from that, Somerville said... "Helpfully Linux seems to leave the first megabyte of memory (where DOS lives) intact during its own boot process, so it's just a matter of jumping back to the right place to continue DOS execution," he added. Somerville had it pointed out to him that this approach of running DOS under vm8086 is actually how early Windows worked. "Kinda cool to rediscover the technique so many years later," Somerville said.

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