Dos application in 32 bit and/or 64 bit environment

I need to create a DOS application which will run in the 32 bit and or 64 bit environment.

The application will use dBase files.

What I need to know is what programming tool can I use? What are my options? We are considering C++ but will consider all suggestions.
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IdaracAsked:
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JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
If you mean DOS (not a command shell), then you have NO options for 64-bit systems. DOS will not and will never run natively in a 64-bit system.

In Windows 7 you can get and use XP Mode. That will work.

In Windows 8, you need VMware Workstation or equivalent and run an XP machine.

... Thinkpads_User
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Gary CaseRetiredCommented:
DOSBox runs fine in both x32 and x64 Windows systems

http://www.dosbox.com/

MSDOS also runs fine under VMware Workstation (or the free Player) in either environment.

The problem, however, with ANY virtualized machine is likely to be the sharing of data with the host.    This is much easier if you run the application under XP, and simply enable shared folders under VMware.
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JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
It is easy to share across XP and any 64-bit host.

However, my DOS 6.3 machine won't share with a 64-bit host whereas it will share with a 32-bit host machine.

Better to stick with XP than trying to run DOS all by itself.

... Thinkpads_User
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Gary CaseRetiredCommented:
Agree -- that's why I said it's best to use an XP VM ... provides several easy ways to share data; whereas a DOS VM is nowhere near as simple.
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RincewindwizzCommented:
All of which is true but I have to wonder why you are going down this route? I can think of no good reason to use dBase files under DOS if you are not going to run a DOS version of dbase.

If that is what you plan to do, there are so many decent tools for upgrading DOS dBase to a variant that will run under windows (16/32/64 bit) for relatively minimal effort (I know, I've just been through the process)  that I am surprised you dont opt for that route.

Just my 10c
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IdaracAuthor Commented:
Yes bu my client wants the application created as a DOS application. No exceptions. I was a DOS programmer back in the 90s but I have been away from it.

So regardless of the programming tool my DOS app will not run natively under 64 bit but it run under 32 bit. Is that correct. I will need a multiuser in the sense we will have more than one user accessing the data files.

The app is replacing an existing one so it will have to access the existing dBase and index files.

So 2 issues

1. A programming tool to create a DOS app that is multiuser and will access dBase data and index files.

2. Being able to run the app in 32 or 64 bit environment with data sharing.

Will a DOS app run natively in XP?
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JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
For certain, true DOS will not run in 64-bit or share a network drive to a 64-bit machine.  

With respect to XP, true DOS will normally run in 32-bit XP but you need to test.

Multi system? 64-bit host and sharing DOS out to 64-bit via XP? I have not tried that but I expect you will have problems.

Either move the application out of DOS or restrain its use to an XP guest machine alone.
.... Thinkpads_User
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Dave BaldwinFixer of ProblemsCommented:
A "true DOS" application often printed directly to the printer.  In XP or anything newer, the printers that are USB / GDI printers are not going allow that.  You will have to print thru the Windows Printer drivers to get any output.

If your client wants software that will work for another 10 years, it will need to become real Windows 32-bit software that is compatible with the current 64-bit systems.  Nobody at Microsoft cares whether his DOS software ever runs on a newer system.  Actually, since they want him to buy new software and computers, they would prefer that it can not run.
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RincewindwizzCommented:
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IdaracAuthor Commented:
Rince I may have missed something here. Can you explain the process you went through?

"If that is what you plan to do, there are so many decent tools for upgrading DOS dBase to a variant that will run under windows (16/32/64 bit) for relatively minimal effort (I know, I've just been through the process)  that I am surprised you dont opt for that route."
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IdaracAuthor Commented:
Thanx everyone for your input.

The client has decided he wants to use FoxPro for DOS 2.6.
Has to run in XP and work something out for 64 bit.

Don't know why don't care. Just another project.
Just have to get at it
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JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
@Idarac - Thanks for the update and I was happy to help.

... Thinkpads_User
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