Joe Schmoe
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Windows on the Pi (Yes, again…!)

Sun Mar 01, 2015 10:22 pm

Let's start by saying that I know all the conventional wisdom on the subject - which always boils down to "Can't be done, don't even try".

But let's assume, for the sake of this thread, that I am willing to give this a shot. That I believe that the following things merit at least a shot at it:
  1. The increased speed/Ram of the latest Raspberry Pi (although I know that there will be no benefit from the increased cores)
  2. Using only Windows 95/98
  3. Only need to run one very lightweight Windows app.
My question is: What's the starting point for this? I.e., what emulator do I run? Do I need to compile it myself?
What do I download to get started?
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Re: Windows on the Pi (Yes, again…!)

Sun Mar 01, 2015 10:25 pm

Last edited by fruitoftheloom on Mon Mar 02, 2015 2:09 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Windows on the Pi (Yes, again…!)

Sun Mar 01, 2015 11:51 pm

I've read that thread, of course, and it is long and involved.

Can you reduce it to a cookbook for me? Thanks.
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Re: Windows on the Pi (Yes, again…!)

Mon Mar 02, 2015 12:01 pm

Irrelevent post removed
Last edited by fruitoftheloom on Mon Mar 02, 2015 2:08 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Windows on the Pi (Yes, again…!)

Mon Mar 02, 2015 12:22 pm

PeterO wrote:One wonders why you are even bothering to start to this thread!
Because I have a user who would very much like to run one simple Windows app on his Pi.

And because I strongly believe that eventually, a solution to this problem will be found, as some combination of:
  1. The Pi finally having enough processing power to do it.
  2. Reducing expectations sufficiently so that it is doable.
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Re: Windows on the Pi (Yes, again…!)

Mon Mar 02, 2015 12:28 pm

You should ask Dietmar by private message http://www.raspberrypi.org/forums/ucp.p ... ose&u=1507, clearly posting the word "Windows" on this forum isn't allowed and immediately ignites the flame war.
Note: Any requirement to use a crystal ball or mind reading will result in me ignoring your question.

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Re: Windows on the Pi (Yes, again…!)

Mon Mar 02, 2015 12:32 pm

DougieLawson wrote:You should ask Dietmar by private message http://www.raspberrypi.org/forums/ucp.p ... ose&u=1507, clearly posting the word "Windows" on this forum isn't allowed and immediately ignites the flame war.
+1 on that!

In fact, the other way to accomplish what I am trying to accomplish would be to get Flash working on the Pi. Here also, both of the following are true:
  1. Mentioning "Flash" here gets people riled up.
  2. There are glimmers of hope that Flash can actually be made to work on the new Pi. Note: I have a new Pi, but am not going to be able to test these things for another few days (waiting for a part).
And some folks need to stop being fanboys and see the forest behind the trees.

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Re: Windows on the Pi (Yes, again…!)

Mon Mar 02, 2015 1:16 pm

FFS. This was a perfectly valid question, sensibly phrased, and yet people still have to butt in with OS wars.

Get a grip, or go away. If you have nothing constructive to say, DON'T SAY IT. (and that includes answering this specific post)

Posts not relevant to the OP will be deleted without warning.
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Re: Windows on the Pi (Yes, again…!)

Mon Mar 02, 2015 1:21 pm

Here here!

Incidentally, I noticed that somebody moved this to Off-Topic (I had originally posted in General).

Such is life…
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Re: Windows on the Pi (Yes, again…!)

Mon Mar 02, 2015 2:22 pm

Anyway, to get back to topic…

I think I need QEMU, not Wine. In fact, I already know that my app doesn't work under Wine (running on x86 Linux). Note: It starts and sort of works, but not acceptably well.

So, I think I need to run QEMU on the Pi, emulating x86. I know that another user here, shortly after the Pi came out, said that he had done this - he was running XP on the Pi under QEMU. Not surprisingly, it was very slow. I believe he said that he compiled QEMU himself.

So, this all boils down to: Do I need to compile QEMU from source, or is there something I can download? I see that there are versions in the repository (via: apt-cache search qemu). Are these working? Are they up-to-date?
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Re: Windows on the Pi (Yes, again…!)

Mon Mar 02, 2015 2:26 pm

This is getting nasty again!!
I am only keeping this open because it is in the off-topic subforum, but any more hint of trouble and it'll be locked.
- other MOD's may not be so tolerant, so be warned.
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Re: Windows on the Pi (Yes, again…!)

Mon Mar 02, 2015 2:26 pm

I'll post this before this gets closed due to derailment...

If getting flash working could work then try searching for flash running on arch - some guy posted a while ago that he managed to get it to work.

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Re: Windows on the Pi (Yes, again…!)

Mon Mar 02, 2015 2:28 pm

Thread trimmed, as per the warning I gave in my last post. Last chance.
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Re: Windows on the Pi (Yes, again…!)

Mon Mar 02, 2015 2:40 pm

Given that Win-OS (at least up to XP) is build on top of DOS, perhaps you could start with compiling FreeDOS for the RPi2? Emulating a GUI is probably the biggest memory hogger that'll keep QEMU from successfully running x86 software, so starting with a cli would make sense. :ugeek:

Personally I wouldn't bother and stick to Linux or even a BSD on the RPi/RPi2, but for proof-of-concept purposes it could be very useful.

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Re: Windows on the Pi (Yes, again…!)

Mon Mar 02, 2015 2:46 pm

Dutch_Master wrote:Given that Win-OS (at least up to XP) is build on top of DOS, perhaps you could start with compiling FreeDOS for the RPi2? Emulating a GUI is probably the biggest memory hogger that'll keep QEMU from successfully running x86 software, so starting with a cli would make sense. :ugeek:

Personally I wouldn't bother and stick to Linux or even a BSD on the RPi/RPi2, but for proof-of-concept purposes it could be very useful.
Trust me, no other "XY Problem" type solutions are possible.

Except possibly, that of getting Flash to work - which may be a workaround. To the most recent poster, Re: Flash: Yes, I know that there are several threads here about possibilities of running Flash (in some form) on the New Pi. I will follow up on those as soon as I get the part that I am waiting for - that I need in order to do any further testing on the Pi.
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Re: Windows on the Pi (Yes, again…!)

Mon Mar 02, 2015 2:48 pm

jamesh wrote:Thread trimmed, as per the warning I gave in my last post. Last chance.
Note well that it isn't me who keeps going off on these off-topic rants. I'm the one who keeps trying to steer this back on topic.

The problem is that if this thread gets killed (as seems likely), it will be me that suffers, since I'm the one who is seeking help.
And some folks need to stop being fanboys and see the forest behind the trees.

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Re: Windows on the Pi (Yes, again…!)

Mon Mar 02, 2015 2:52 pm

Dutch_Master wrote:Given that Win-OS (at least up to XP) is build on top of DOS, perhaps you could start with compiling FreeDOS for the RPi2? Emulating a GUI is probably the biggest memory hogger that'll keep QEMU from successfully running x86 software, so starting with a cli would make sense. :ugeek:

Personally I wouldn't bother and stick to Linux or even a BSD on the RPi/RPi2, but for proof-of-concept purposes it could be very useful.
fyi Windows NT4, W2K and XP ARE NOT built on top of MS-DOS.

To redeem myself it would appear that W95A is feasible in DOSBOX (Win95B/C appear to be slightly different due to the fledgeling USB support and using MS-DOS 7.01), but you will have to install W3.1 (the non WfW version) first

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Windows_95
Last edited by fruitoftheloom on Mon Mar 02, 2015 3:44 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Windows on the Pi (Yes, again…!)

Mon Mar 02, 2015 2:56 pm

Win95 on DosBox may be a possibility. I'll look into it.

Incidentally, do you know exactly how Win98 fails?
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Re: Windows on the Pi (Yes, again…!)

Mon Mar 02, 2015 3:07 pm

Joe Schmoe wrote:Win95 on DosBox may be a possibility. I'll look into it.

Incidentally, do you know exactly how Win98 fails?
This is from very ancient memory but Win95B/C had MS-DOS 7.01, Win98/98SE had 7.10 and ME had 8, which all had a revised base DOS system to take account of newer features like FAT32,USB, faster CPU's and extended IRQ BIOS

MS-DOS 7.00 was never released as a retail version and was the basis of W95/W95A afaiaa was just 6.22 updated to accept the NT style GUI, and no FAT32 support

DOSBOX I believe was coded on the earlier MS-DOS which only supported FAT12/16 (like NTVDM), that why I was led to believe later MS-DOS Windows fail

But then I could be totally wrong ;)
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Re: Windows on the Pi (Yes, again…!)

Mon Mar 02, 2015 3:27 pm

Out of curiosity, why is not a used desktop or laptop a better way?

It seems that it will take a lot of time, and effort, to get some early windows to run very slowly - would it not be way better to just run windows on a cheap x86 box?

Or go get a nice small mini itx motherboard... or shiny new celeron based sff computer etc.

Honestly, it seems a lot better use of time than shoehorning something that does not want to fit.

If you must use a Pi, the Flash option appears to be better... google "PepperFlash"
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Re: Windows on the Pi (Yes, again…!)

Mon Mar 02, 2015 3:28 pm

I would say you have a chance with qemu and/or DOSBOX.

Assuming the emulator is single threaded, and noting that a Pi 1 was supposed to be able to emulate a 66MHz x86, a Pi 2 should be capable of emulating a 100MHz processor.

The 100MHz 80486 was released in 1994. Of course Windows 95 was launched at the end of 1995.

It won't be fast, but it might be acceptable.

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Re: Windows on the Pi (Yes, again…!)

Mon Mar 02, 2015 3:33 pm

rurwin wrote:I would say you have a chance with qemu and/or DOSBOX.

Assuming the emulator is single threaded, and noting that a Pi 1 was supposed to be able to emulate a 66MHz x86, a Pi 2 should be capable of emulating a 100MHz processor.

The 100MHz 80486 was released in 1994. Of course Windows 95 was launched at the end of 1995.

It won't be fast, but it might be acceptable.
FastDosBox was compiled for the Pi1 so yes should fit the bill ;)

http://store.raspberrypi.com/projects/fastdosbox
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Re: Windows on the Pi (Yes, again…!)

Mon Mar 02, 2015 4:03 pm

I ran win 3.1 on Dosbox back when the Pi was very first released and I've seen others use dosbox to run win95, the question is is there anyway to conclusively know, outside time consuming testing, which dos emulator would run the fastest on the pi?
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Re: Windows on the Pi (Yes, again…!)

Mon Mar 02, 2015 4:10 pm

what app are you wanting to run ?
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