DOSBox emulates an Intel x86 PC and its components, and can successfully run DOS games and some applications, making it a savior for fans of retro games. DOSBox won’t run every DOS game known to man, but it can run a long list of games that should keep you busy in your free time. Once the game or application is good to go, it will not hog your system’s memory; it can run in a small window. Besides Windows, DOSBox can also be ported to other platforms, such as MacOS and Linux. Best of all, it’s free to download.
Soliciting the help of DOSBox to play your old games is not that difficult. Before you install the emulator, you should set up DOSBox game folders on your computer. Find your Computer icon and double-click it. In the new window, double-click on your C: drive. Find a blank area, right-click, and from the drop-down select “New” and then “Folder.” Type in “DOS_Games” as the folder name.
Once created, right-click on the “DOS_Games” folder and select “New” and “Folder” from the drop-down. Name the new folder “Game1.” You can also name the folder whatever you’d like. Game1 is just an example. If you are using a downloaded copy of the game and not a CD, find the game’s executable file. It will have an .exe extension. Copy the executable file into the “Game1” folder. You can repeat the process by creating folders for “Game2” and any other games you may want to play.
Now that your game folders are ready, it’s time to download and install DOSBox. Visit http://www.dosbox.com/download.php?main=1 and click on the Windows link. Click Save on the dialog box and save the file. Once downloaded, locate the installation file and double-click it. Follow the installation wizard’s on-screen directions until DOSBox is installed completely.
Once installed, you can use DOSBox. Go to your Windows 7 Start menu. Type DOSBox and hit enter. Two windows should appear. One window will show status messages, and the other can be used to type in commands. To play the game you placed in your “Game1” folder, go to the Command window and type:
mount c c:DOS_Games
That’s if you are using an executable .exe file. If your game is on a CD, you will instead go to the Command window and type:
mount d d: -t cdrom
Once you type your command, hit Enter. Next, type “c:” and hit Enter. Then, type “cd Game1” and hit Enter. The last step is to type in the name of your game that was copied into the “Game1” folder. For example, if its name is “dune.exe,” type in “dune.exe” and hit Enter. Your game should now load and be ready to play.