FreeDos suspended development – nevermind



The Freedos has suspended development. It’s been a 12 year project and really, Freedos has become THE free DOS implementation around. It’s been shipped with “blank” pc’s, integrated into several other projects that use a dos’ish boot environment and the 1.0 release has not officially come. (I think the most recent is a Beta9 Service Release 2…) The site has been moved to freedos.sourceforge.net although, freedos.org will redirect to this eventually (DNS settling right now.) On many sites I’ve seen it reported as “freedos is dead”… and the comments are post-mortem style – however this is open source…. –UPDATE– OSNEWS had the original story and it seems like it was a joke of sorts as the dns had been moved to point to the new VHOST at sourceforge. In other words – no one was meant to see the Freedos is dead message at freedos.org… But still the following thoughts on the “death” of an open source project in general still apply….


What that means is the lead developer has walked away from it, but the source code is still there. If it’s really NEEDED by someone, someone can “adopt” the project and make it their own and pick up and move on from here. It doesn’t matter if that happens today, tomorrow or in 10 years. But, that’s one of the things that’s really gratifying about open source – it’s NOT dead. Unmaintained at the moment, but still there and accessible.

Ok – I see very few implementations where a DOS environment is needed, but I do see some. Here’s their homepage text….

FreeDOS aims to be a complete, free, 100% MS-DOS compatible operating system (mostly achieved.) Today, FreeDOS is ideal for anyone who wants to bundle a version of DOS without having to pay a royalty for use of DOS. FreeDOS will also work on old hardware, in DOS emulators, and in embedded systems. FreeDOS is also an invaluable resource for people who would like to develop their own operating system. While there are many free operating systems out there, no other free DOS-compatible operating system exists.

I’ve seen many closed source software projects go out and leave people high and dry, but this is a completely different scenario – as long as a copy of the code is out there. So, I guess freedos is dead…. long live freedos?

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