I was trying to play multiplayer doom, and not chocolate doom, where one of the machines is a dosbox and the other is a computer I built after a few months of collecting parts from recycling places. The specs:
- Pentium MMX 233 (I found this one taped down to a harddisk in a pentium 4 machine I was looking at)
- 32 MB SDRAM
- Some motherboard with socket 7 (I really have no idea what it is, no markings at all, just that it had the jumper pinouts silkscreened onto the board so I used it without a manual)
- S3 Savage4 Pro (I got this on ebay, but I found a triov64+ I used before this, as well as a ViRGE DX)
- A USB floppy emulator (one that goes from usb host to floppy device, a very cool idea)
- An AWE32 PnP which I quickly replaced with an ESS audiodrive
For two player doom I simply used a null modem cable and passed it in through to dosbox. But for 3 or 4 players I need a network card.
Getting old DOS machines on the network
I found an ancient unmarked network card, and I could see the chip itself was a Digital 21041-AA DC1017BA.
After a little searching I found two drivers, one was a dos packet driver, and the other was a ndis driver. I plan to use windows for workgroups as well as native dos applications, so I decided to use the ndis driver and use the dis_pkt9.dos shim to get netwokring working.
After transferring the files, I started windows 3.11, and followed the procedure described in the zip file from which I got the dis_pkt9.dos shim. Search around, you'll want the one describing win3.11 compatibility
TAP VPN for online fun
On some machine on my network, I setup a simple openvpn server without any authentication:
cat /etc/openvpn/tap.conf port 9988 proto udp dev tap0 status tap.log verb 3 # END
And I connected to this from a client (obviously over a more secure VPN), to get a tap0 device on that client.
After I got that device, I could spawn a dosbox directly onto the network interface. You will of course need a version of dosbox patched with NE2000 support (search around for a few builds)
Key parts of the dosbox config for me:
[ne2000] ne2000=true nicbase=300 nicirq=9 macaddr=AC:DE:48:88:99:AA realnic=tap0
I found a generic ne2000.com driver for dosbox, TSR'ed it, then IPXPD.COM (easy to find somewhere), and finally doom's ipxsetup for some doom fun.