Category Archives: Linux

Improved Guide To Burning Dreamcast Discs From Linux

Here is my attempt to rewrite the guide to burning dreamcast discs from Linux.

It is an updated and enhanced version of this post:

Burning Dreamcast CDRs from Linux

Which is stolen from here:

Using mkisofs and cdrecord to Burn a Dreamcast CD-R

My plan is to break down the guide a little more and give better explanations about what is happening at each stage. This was done on an Ubuntu desktop machine running the development release of Hardy Heron on 2 March 08.

Continue reading

Dual Boot DOS and Debian Toughbook

Dual Boot DOS and Debian

From DougMcIntosh

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The Debian DosBook

Why ?

I wanted all the software that was better on the linux system. Particularly xmame, xmess and ScummVM. I also wanted to be ble to play many of the original DOS games at full speed. Sites like abandonia and Home Of The Underdogs has lifted my desire up to a frenzy.

My plan was to install Debain linux onto a large partition, leave some space on the drive, then install MS-DOS 7.10.

Easy Peasy.

Finding Stuff

Debian is *very* easy to find.

Search for MS-DOS 7.10 on torrent sites, or just google for it. Download the CD ISO image and burn it to disk.

I also used FreeDos CD ISO image.


Debian Installation

Read about it here

I installed Debian using the guide above. I used manual partitioning and set up a 3.9 Gig partition with about a 350 Meg swap partition. /dev/hda1 and /dev/hda2/.

I then set up the rest of the space as a vfat partition and set it to be mounted on /dos.

DOS Installation

This is from memory. I sadly was not taking notes.

  • MS DOS

I initially tried just booting up with the disk installed. Booted up fine. Told me it could not find any suitable disks to install on. I dropped down to a dos shell. It dropped me at the A: drive, which I suspect was some kind of RAM drive. The D: drive was the CD. All the files on the CD seemed to be compressed and not really accessible.

The A: drive did not contain the fdisk or format commands.

  • FreeDOS

I booted up with FreeDOS in the CD. And installed it. I can’t remember if I actually had to drop to the shell and go for the FDISK followed by FORMAT C:, I may well have done. The FreeDOS 1.0 release works very well. Is currently what I am using. Sound card was awful to set up though. Nick the relevant lines from my autoexec.bat file

I chose NOT to overwrite the Master Boot Record.

  • Debian

I booted into Debian and changed the /boot/grub/menu.lst to let me boot into DOS.

  title DOS
  rootnoverify (hd0,2)
  chainloader +1

It booted fine. For some reason I didn’t like FreeDOS though. I *wanted* MSDOS 7.10.

  • MS-DOS 7.10

Booted again. This time I ignored the message about failing the drive check. Just skip it and install to C:\DOS.

Install all the supplemental stuff. Except the chinese add on.

Away you go.

Toughbook lsmod

Module Size Used by
ipv6 229892 6
ds 17796 4
af_packet 20872 2
parport_pc 33348 0
parport 37320 1 parport_pc
pcspkr 3816 0
rtc 12088 0
8139too 23936 0
8139cp 19072 0
mii 4864 2 8139too,8139cp
yenta_socket 19200 1
pcmcia_core 63028 2 ds,yenta_socket
joydev 9536 0
snd_ymfpci 58180 0
snd_ac97_codec 59268 1 snd_ymfpci
usbhid 28864 0
snd_pcm_oss 48168 0
snd_mixer_oss 16640 1 snd_pcm_oss
snd_pcm 85384 2 snd_ymfpci,snd_pcm_oss
snd_opl3_lib 9728 1 snd_ymfpci
snd_timer 23300 3 snd_ymfpci,snd_pcm,snd_opl3_lib
snd_hwdep 9092 1 snd_opl3_lib
snd_page_alloc 11144 2 snd_ymfpci,snd_pcm
gameport 4736 1 snd_ymfpci
snd_mpu401_uart 7296 1 snd_ymfpci
snd_rawmidi 23204 1 snd_mpu401_uart
snd_seq_device 7944 2 snd_opl3_lib,snd_rawmidi
snd 50660 11 snd_ymfpci,snd_ac97_codec,snd_pcm_oss,snd_mixer_oss,snd_pcm,snd_opl3_lib,snd_timer,snd_hwdep,snd_mpu401_uart,snd_rawmidi,snd_seq_device
soundcore 9824 1 snd
uhci_hcd 29328 0
usbcore 104164 4 usbhid,uhci_hcd
tsdev 7168 0
mousedev 9996 1
evdev 9088 0
capability 4872 0
commoncap 7168 1 capability
psmouse 17800 0
ide_cd 38176 0
cdrom 35740 1 ide_cd
ext3 109544 1
jbd 54552 1 ext3
ide_generic 1664 0
piix 12448 1
ide_disk 16768 3
ide_core 125028 4 ide_cd,ide_generic,piix,ide_disk
unix 26036 80
font 8576 0
vesafb 6688 0
cfbcopyarea 3840 1 vesafb
cfbimgblt 3200 1 vesafb
cfbfillrect 3712 1 vesafb

Toughbook xf86config

# XF86Config-4 (XFree86 X Window System server configuration file)
# This file was generated by dexconf, the Debian X Configuration tool, using
# values from the debconf database.
# Edit this file with caution, and see the XF86Config-4 manual page.
# (Type “man XF86Config-4” at the shell prompt.)
# This file is automatically updated on xserver-xfree86 package upgrades *only*
# if it has not been modified since the last upgrade of the xserver-xfree86
# package.
# If you have edited this file but would like it to be automatically updated
# again, run the following commands as root:
# cp /etc/X11/XF86Config-4 /etc/X11/XF86Config-4.custom
# md5sum /etc/X11/XF86Config-4 >/var/lib/xfree86/XF86Config-4.md5sum
# dpkg-reconfigure xserver-xfree86

Section “Files”
FontPath “unix/:7100” # local font server
# if the local font server has problems, we can fall back on these
FontPath “/usr/lib/X11/fonts/misc”
FontPath “/usr/lib/X11/fonts/cyrillic”
FontPath “/usr/lib/X11/fonts/100dpi/:unscaled”
FontPath “/usr/lib/X11/fonts/75dpi/:unscaled”
FontPath “/usr/lib/X11/fonts/Type1”
FontPath “/usr/lib/X11/fonts/CID”
FontPath “/usr/lib/X11/fonts/Speedo”
FontPath “/usr/lib/X11/fonts/100dpi”
FontPath “/usr/lib/X11/fonts/75dpi”

Section “Module”
Load “GLcore”
Load “bitmap”
Load “dbe”
Load “ddc”
Load “dri”
Load “extmod”
Load “freetype”
Load “glx”
Load “int10”
Load “record”
Load “speedo”
Load “type1”
Load “vbe”

Section “InputDevice”
Identifier “Generic Keyboard”
Driver “keyboard”
Option “CoreKeyboard”
Option “XkbRules” “xfree86”
Option “XkbModel” “pc105”
Option “XkbLayout” “uk”

Section “InputDevice”
Identifier “Configured Mouse”
Driver “mouse”
Option “CorePointer”
Option “Device” “/dev/input/mice”
Option “Protocol” “ImPS/2”
Option “Emulate3Buttons” “true”
Option “ZAxisMapping” “4 5”

Section “Device”
Identifier “NeoMagic Corporation NM2200 [MagicGraph 256AV]”
Driver “neomagic”

Section “Monitor”
Identifier “Generic Monitor”
HorizSync 28-38
VertRefresh 43-72
Option “DPMS”

Section “Screen”
Identifier “Default Screen”
Device “NeoMagic Corporation NM2200 [MagicGraph 256AV]”
Monitor “Generic Monitor”
DefaultDepth 16
SubSection “Display”
Depth 1
Modes “800×600”
SubSection “Display”
Depth 4
Modes “800×600”
SubSection “Display”
Depth 8
Modes “800×600”
SubSection “Display”
Depth 15
Modes “800×600”
SubSection “Display”
Depth 16
Modes “800×600”
SubSection “Display”
Depth 24
Modes “800×600”

Section “ServerLayout”
Identifier “Default Layout”
Screen “Default Screen”
InputDevice “Generic Keyboard”
InputDevice “Configured Mouse”

Section “DRI”
Mode 0666

Toughbook lspci -v

0000:00:00.0 Host bridge: Intel Corp. 440BX/ZX/DX – 82443BX/ZX/DX Host bridge (AGP disabled) (rev 03)
Flags: bus master, medium devsel, latency 64
Memory at (32-bit, prefetchable)

0000:00:02.0 VGA compatible controller: Neomagic Corporation NM2200 [MagicGraph 256AV] (rev 20) (prog-if 00 [VGA])
Subsystem: Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd.: Unknown device 831b
Flags: bus master, medium devsel, latency 128, IRQ 9
Memory at fd000000 (32-bit, prefetchable) [size=16M]
Memory at fe800000 (32-bit, non-prefetchable) [size=4M]
Memory at fed00000 (32-bit, non-prefetchable) [size=1M]

0000:00:07.0 ISA bridge: Intel Corp. 82371AB/EB/MB PIIX4 ISA (rev 02)
Flags: bus master, medium devsel, latency 0

0000:00:07.1 IDE interface: Intel Corp. 82371AB/EB/MB PIIX4 IDE (rev 01) (prog-if 80 [Master])
Flags: bus master, medium devsel, latency 64
I/O ports at fcf0 [size=16]

0000:00:07.2 USB Controller: Intel Corp. 82371AB/EB/MB PIIX4 USB (rev 01) (prog-if 00 [UHCI])
Flags: bus master, medium devsel, latency 64, IRQ 9
I/O ports at fcc0 [size=32]

0000:00:07.3 Bridge: Intel Corp. 82371AB/EB/MB PIIX4 ACPI (rev 02)
Flags: medium devsel, IRQ 9

0000:00:0a.0 Multimedia audio controller: Yamaha Corporation YMF-744B [DS-1S Audio Controller] (rev 02)
Subsystem: Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd.: Unknown device 831b
Flags: bus master, medium devsel, latency 64, IRQ 9
Memory at fecf8000 (32-bit, non-prefetchable) [size=32K]
I/O ports at fc40 [size=64]
I/O ports at fcec [size=4]

0000:00:0c.0 CardBus bridge: Ricoh Co Ltd RL5c478 (rev 03)
Subsystem: Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd.: Unknown device 831b
Flags: bus master, medium devsel, latency 168, IRQ 9
Memory at 10000000 (32-bit, non-prefetchable) [size=4K]
Bus: primary=00, secondary=01, subordinate=04, sec-latency=176
Memory window 0: 10400000-107ff000 (prefetchable)
Memory window 1: 10800000-10bff000
I/O window 0: 00004000-000040ff
I/O window 1: 00004400-000044ff
16-bit legacy interface ports at 0001

0000:00:0c.1 CardBus bridge: Ricoh Co Ltd RL5c478 (rev 03)
Subsystem: Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd.: Unknown device 831b
Flags: bus master, medium devsel, latency 168, IRQ 9
Memory at 10001000 (32-bit, non-prefetchable) [size=4K]
Bus: primary=00, secondary=05, subordinate=08, sec-latency=176
Memory window 0: 10c00000-10fff000 (prefetchable)
Memory window 1: 11000000-113ff000
I/O window 0: 00004800-000048ff
I/O window 1: 00004c00-00004cff
16-bit legacy interface ports at 0001

0000:01:00.0 Ethernet controller: Realtek Semiconductor Co., Ltd. RTL-8139/8139C/8139C+ (rev 10)
Subsystem: Surecom Technology: Unknown device 0428
Flags: bus master, medium devsel, latency 64, IRQ 9
I/O ports at 4000 [size=256]
Memory at 10800000 (32-bit, non-prefetchable) [size=512]

Debian Toughbook


Debian Linux On A Panasonic Toughbook CF-27

Flickr Photo Set Here


Listed On Tuxmobil

Why I Ask You, Why ?

I saw it cheap on eBay for only 99 GBP from icex plus a wee bit to boost the RAM.

I wanted to build a system purely for emulating older systems. 8 bit concoles and the old home computers, zx spectrum and commodore 64, as well as playing Scumm games.

I also thought I would try emulating DOS and running other classic games using dosbox. Turned out I did not read the man page for dosbox well enough. You still need a fairly powerful machine (Over 1 GHz) to emulate a very old PC. I may just purchase a bigger hard drive and simply install DOS on a partition.

Specifications (for Mk 1 )

  Intel Pentium 266mhz MMX processor # Mine was actually a Pentium 2 300 Mhz ! Whoo Hoo :)
  64MB RAM (sdRAM pc66mhz) # mines is 192 MB RAM PC100
  4.3 GB hd # The drive in my machine was 6.4 GB, Apparently BIOS limit is 30 GB
  12.1" TFT screen - 800x600 resolution
  Integral DVD/CD rom
  UK keyboard with touchpad # A very poor touchpad
  Soundblaster compatible sound
  2x type II PCMCIA (cardbus) slots
  serial, parallel, PS2, infra red, VGA ports
  USB port
  Li-ion battery & charger

I think there ae a few different model revisions of the CF 27. Please tell me if there are any significant differences.

Related Links

Toughbook Wiki

Toughbook Wikipedia Entry

Official Toughbook Site


In short. Debian 3.1 no problems. Under an hour.

Right I have had to reinstall from scratch after my dos and win2k experiments. I had some problem with the installer not finding my network card (pcmcia). I had to use the following line to boot the debian installer :

  linux26 acpi=off noapic nolapic pci=usepirqmask

I have no idea how many of them are needed.

  The linux 2.6 kernel seems to be need to work with the pcmcia slot, if the pci=usepirqmask
  option is not used the system hangs when I try to use my network card. I think the noapic and
  nolapic options may be entirely superfluous. I am currently running Puppy Linux with just the
  pci=usepirqmask option. It works very very well.

Dual Boot DOS and Debian

A brief guide on how I got them both working on the same system.

Dual Boot DOS and Debian

Dapper Drake

I tried using the Dapper Drake release of Ubuntu, it was a no go. The installer hanged. I never actually tried the boot options above, please leave feedback if you have any info.

Installed Software

Sega Master System – Osmose


  Here is the final version of Osmose. I will be absent from October 2005, for more than one year, 
  with no possibility to write a single line of code (*cough*). That why i do this final release. 
  Writing this emu was really a funny experience, especially with the help of SMSPOWER guys :-)

Have changed to running Meka on the DOS partition, for that instant gratification. Osmose worked well for the time I used it.

Sega Genesis – dgen

I use dgen to emulate the Sega Genesis (or Mega Drive). As it is easily installed via apt-get. It no longer seems to be supported though so I will include links to other emulators. Feel free to leave comments about how good they are, or are not.


In the bad old days before OS X and cheap Macs, I used Linux. The operating system isn’t exactly known for its wide library of games, so back in ’98 I took the open-source DGen Sega Genesis emulator for Windows and ported it to the SDL library, bringing the joys of Genesis emulation to Linux, FreeBSD, BeOS, and other minority platforms.

DGEN Config File

Other emulators

Generator – The Sega Genesis Emulator

his is a modified version of Generator by James Ponder based on version 0.35. It is known to work on FreeBSD, NetBSD and Linux.

Have gone over to using generator on the DOS partition.

Super Nintendo Entertainment System – ZSNES


  ZSNES is a Super Nintendo emulator programmed by zsKnight and _Demo_. On April 2, 2001 the ZSNES project was GPL'ed 
  and its source released to the public. It currently runs on Windows, Linux, FreeBSD, and DOS. Remember that this is 
  a public beta so don't expect this to run on your machine.

ZSNES Config File

ZSNES also runs on DOS. There don’t seem to me and many graphical fripperies, but it works well.

Visual Boy Advance – VisualBoyAdvance

Visual Boy Advance

Can play GB and GBC games without any problem. Not quite powerful enough to play GBA games. Not that I tried particularly hard.

VBA Config File

Gone over tousing KIGB on the DOS partition. I think it only plays GB/C games.

ZX Spectrum – FUSE

Pictures Here

Fuse is by far the best spectrum emulator I used. You need to do some extra work to get the binaries. Links are provided in the download section.

Fuse – the Free Unix Spectrum Emulator

  Fuse (the Free Unix Spectrum Emulator) was originally, and somewhat unsurprisingly, a Spectrum emulator for    
  Unix. However, it has now also been ported to Mac OS X, which may or may not count as a Unix variant depending
  on your advocacy position.

Have gone over to RealSpec on the DOS partition.

xmame and xmess


Xmame and Xmess

Xmame Config File

Xmess Config File

Plays the older games and systems without much trouble. Anything too recent runs into problems. I strongly suggest using AdvanceMenu as a frontend. It makes life much much easier.



  AdvanceMENU is a frontend for AdvanceMAME, MAME™, MESS, RAINE and any other emulator.

Advance Menu Config File

Interactive Fiction – Gargoyle

Gargoyle And City Of Secrets

Gargoyle and Magnetic Scrolls

I am about to start using Gargoyle as it is so pretty. From the site:

  "Gargoyle cares about typography! In this computer age of typographical poverty, 
   where horrible fonts, dazzling colors, and inadequate white space is God, Gargoyle dares to rebel!"

I was also using zag though this requires Java

  Zag 1.06, a fully featured implementation of Glulx 2.0.0
  in Java, by Jon Zeppieri. Requires Sun JRE 1.4 or better.
  Archive includes source and compiled class files.

Work on the original gargoyle has stopped. It is beng continued here:

Gargoyle Mod

I currently can not get it to run on Debian stable. There again I have not tried that hard 🙂

Configuration Files

Toughbook lsmod

Toughbook xf86config

Toughbook lspci

Burn Dreamcast CDR from Linux

Dreamcast Linux