Networking FreeDOS - MS Client
Where to find it
Microsoft's programs "LAN Manager" and "MS Client 3.0" can be downloaded from Microsoft's ftp-site and are free for "internal use", but not for distribution.
- MS LAN Manager Client (1998) can be found at: ftp://ftp.microsoft.com/bussys/Clients/LANMAN/
- MS Client 3.0 (1995) can be found at: ftp://ftp.microsoft.com/bussys/Clients/MSCLIENT/
There are numerous webpages about the installation and usage especially of MS Client 3.0:
- A general review and comparison of both Microsoft products has been undertaken by Dutch programmer Jacco de Leeuw.
- U.S. programmer Jonathan Young has created a nice looking MS Client installation walkthrough with many screenshots. James Hatridge wrote an article about MS Client for Linux Journal in 2002. Johnson Lam has also written an installation report.
- Ken from British website "DOS Solutions" gives a detailed overview over many resources related to MS Client .
- Installation guides in German language have been written by Gerhard Zeiser, by Gerd Röthig, by Michael Vogl and by Stefan Mayrhofer. The magazine "c't" published an article about MS Client in 1999. Volker Rüddigkeit wrote some howtos (german) about MS Client bootdisks (here and here),
MS Client as Server
It is possible (but not officially supported) to use a Microsoft update to add server functionality to MS Client. This Update is called
WG1049.EXE and can be downloaded here:
In effect this adds features comparable to those of the "Workgroup Add-On for DOS", which is not longer sold by Microsoft.
The integration of a DOS machine into a modern Windows XP or GNU/Linux SMB Workgroup is limited though. For instance it doesn't seem to be possible to access a DOS share from GNU/Linux using smbmount. And the use of TCP/IP as protocol in MS Client consumes much memory and may lead to an unstable DOS system.
Steven Baker critically remarks, that, while the core TCP/IP protocol remained stable over the years, Microsoft's SMB protocols changed from upgrade to upgrade and exist "in a dozen different dialects". So compatibility is an issue. Other problems can be caused by the authentication methods that are used by Windows or Samba.
Apart from that it can be considered a good thing that Microsoft still allows to legally download and use this software. Some files from the "MS Client" package are also essential for the use of TCP/IP applications over today's common NDIS drivers.
- You could use a FTP server on DOS which runs in the background (as Datalight Sockets, which is explained here and a tool to map a FTP server to a drive letter (for Windows f.i.: netdrive) to integrate your DOS machine into a network. GNU/Linux can even mount FTP servers without an extra tool.