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PSA - Free42 no longer supports Windows XP
04-13-2020, 05:44 PM (This post was last modified: 04-13-2020 11:03 PM by Michael de Estrada.)
Post: #1
PSA - Free42 no longer supports Windows XP
For those of you that have the Free42 HP 42S emulator installed on a Windows computer, it no longer supports the Windows XP operating system. This is due to Microsoft dropping XP support from the Visual Studio build tools in version 2019 that are now used in Free42. So, the most recent version of Free42 that will run on a Windows XP machine is 2.5.17. The oldest Windows OS that will run the latest version of Free42 is now Vista.
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04-13-2020, 08:29 PM
Post: #2
RE: PSA - Free42 no longer supports Windows XP
That is correct, and to add a bit of background...

I've been working on "compensated dot products" for DOT, INVRT, DET, SIMQ, and matrix multiplication and division. The algorithm I'm using requires FMA support, which the compiler I was using, Visual C++ 2008, does not provide. So I had to upgrade, and as I usually do in cases like this, I went all the way for the latest version, Visual Studio 2019.

The runtime for VS2019 does support Windows XP, since it's the same as the runtime for VS2015 and VS2017, but the VS2019 build tools turn out not to support XP, unlike VS2015 and VS2017. I only found out about this last weekend, but I decided to stick with VS2019 anyway. I don't usually like dropping support for older platforms, but this is what makes me think I'm not putting Windows users through any great hardship:

Oldest supported OS version for each of the platforms supported by Free42:
Android 4.0, first released in October 2012
iOS 8.0, first released in September 2014
Windows Vista, first released in November 2006
MacOS 10.7, first released in July 2011
Ubuntu 12.04, first released in April 2012

I wouldn't even be writing to defend that decision if it weren't for this email that someone saw fit to send me, and send again when I didn't respond:

Quote:De: xxxxx@hotmail.com <xxxxx@hotmail.com>
Enviado: domingo, 12 de abril de 2020 0:44
Para: thomasokken@gmail.com <thomasokken@gmail.com>
Asunto:WINDOWS XP...???

windows XP, abandonado...UFFF...con 2.5.18...UFFFFFF

I thought I'd head any additional complaints off at the pass.

The great irony is that the compensated dot products ended up not making it into 2.5.18 because they're still too buggy. No telling when they will get done at this point. C'est la vie. Smile
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04-13-2020, 08:37 PM
Post: #3
RE: PSA - Free42 no longer supports Windows XP
This has me nervous about the chances of getting an MS-DOS version for running on my 200LX.
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04-13-2020, 08:43 PM
Post: #4
RE: PSA - Free42 no longer supports Windows XP
Funny you should mention that. I've been toying with the idea of a console version at times, for running on Unix or Linux in a terminal, but I finally abandoned it because I just don't see how to create a decent UI in text mode.

Of course with MS-DOS there would be the additional challenge of fitting the executable in RAM. Big Grin
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04-13-2020, 08:44 PM
Post: #5
RE: PSA - Free42 no longer supports Windows XP
Free 42 decimal version does not use hardware FMA, which suggested it still compile on old VC++ 2008.

If true, is it possible to have that available for download ?
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04-13-2020, 08:55 PM
Post: #6
RE: PSA - Free42 no longer supports Windows XP
I don't keep old versions around, and I'm not about to start now, to support an OS that Microsoft stopped supporting six years ago... But I assume you can find it in various mirrors on the Internet, and of course you can get any version of the source code you prefer from GitHub...
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04-13-2020, 08:59 PM
Post: #7
RE: PSA - Free42 no longer supports Windows XP
(04-13-2020 08:43 PM)Thomas Okken Wrote:  Funny you should mention that. I've been toying with the idea of a console version at times, for running on Unix or Linux in a terminal, but I finally abandoned it because I just don't see how to create a decent UI in text mode.

Of course with MS-DOS there would be the additional challenge of fitting the executable in RAM. Big Grin

Maybe Free32 would be a better fit. Smile
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04-13-2020, 10:18 PM
Post: #8
RE: PSA - Free42 no longer supports Windows XP
If you log into my site (in other words, create an account rather than browsing it anonymously), you can download old versions of any program. You can get Free42 2.5.15 that way (unfortunately I missed 2.5.16 and 2.5.17), along with lots of other versions. With an account you can also download individual files from most archives without having to download the full archive, plus vote and comment on programs.
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04-13-2020, 11:34 PM
Post: #9
RE: PSA - Free42 no longer supports Windows XP
(04-13-2020 08:44 PM)Albert Chan Wrote:  Free 42 decimal version does not use hardware FMA, which suggested it still compile on old VC++ 2008.

If true, is it possible to have that available for download ?

Would you like me to email you the download for version 2.5.17 (ZIP file) ? I can tell you with certainty that it will work on Windows XP, but that the decimal or binary programs for version 2.5.18 won't.
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04-13-2020, 11:51 PM
Post: #10
RE: PSA - Free42 no longer supports Windows XP
(04-13-2020 11:34 PM)Michael de Estrada Wrote:  Would you like me to email you the download for version 2.5.17 (ZIP file) ?

Thanks, but I had a hunch Thomas Okken is moving away from VC++ 2008, and downloaded 2.5.17
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04-14-2020, 03:10 AM (This post was last modified: 04-14-2020 03:11 AM by Sylvain Cote.)
Post: #11
RE: PSA - Free42 no longer supports Windows XP
(04-13-2020 08:43 PM)Thomas Okken Wrote:  Of course with MS-DOS there would be the additional challenge of fitting the executable in RAM. Big Grin
Remember EMS (Expanded Memory Specification) ?
Back in the 80's, I was writing C program that had to run on several flavors of Unix and MS-DOS.
The way to run a 2MB executable on a 8088/8086 was to use the bank switching scheme of EMS.
For sure the program has to be designed from the ground up for that constraint, but still it could be done.
Later on it became easier with the 286/386 DOS Extenders to run flat executable.
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04-14-2020, 07:00 AM
Post: #12
RE: PSA - Free42 no longer supports Windows XP
(04-14-2020 03:10 AM)Sylvain Cote Wrote:  
(04-13-2020 08:43 PM)Thomas Okken Wrote:  Of course with MS-DOS there would be the additional challenge of fitting the executable in RAM. Big Grin
Remember EMS (Expanded Memory Specification) ?
Back in the 80's, I was writing C program that had to run on several flavors of Unix and MS-DOS.
The way to run a 2MB executable on a 8088/8086 was to use the bank switching scheme of EMS.
For sure the program has to be designed from the ground up for that constraint, but still it could be done.
Later on it became easier with the 286/386 DOS Extenders to run flat executable.

Unless you had a 386, however, you needed dedicated memory boards.

Greetings,
    Massimo

-+×÷ ↔ left is right and right is wrong
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04-14-2020, 11:39 AM
Post: #13
RE: PSA - Free42 no longer supports Windows XP
(04-14-2020 07:00 AM)Massimo Gnerucci Wrote:  
(04-14-2020 03:10 AM)Sylvain Cote Wrote:  Remember EMS (Expanded Memory Specification) ?
Back in the 80's, I was writing C program that had to run on several flavors of Unix and MS-DOS.
The way to run a 2MB executable on a 8088/8086 was to use the bank switching scheme of EMS.
For sure the program has to be designed from the ground up for that constraint, but still it could be done.
Later on it became easier with the 286/386 DOS Extenders to run flat executable.

Unless you had a 386, however, you needed dedicated memory boards.

Fortunately the 200LX has just such a chip, and can do EMS. I use it with Lotus Agenda and Turbo Pascal on mine. Sadly they removed the EMS support from the built-in 1-2-3.

Using overlays is another option, if you have reasonably independent pieces of code that won't thrash the disk competing for attention.
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04-14-2020, 11:43 AM
Post: #14
RE: PSA - Free42 no longer supports Windows XP
(04-14-2020 07:00 AM)Massimo Gnerucci Wrote:  
(04-14-2020 03:10 AM)Sylvain Cote Wrote:  Remember EMS (Expanded Memory Specification) ?
Back in the 80's, I was writing C program that had to run on several flavors of Unix and MS-DOS.
The way to run a 2MB executable on a 8088/8086 was to use the bank switching scheme of EMS.
For sure the program has to be designed from the ground up for that constraint, but still it could be done.
Later on it became easier with the 286/386 DOS Extenders to run flat executable.
Unless you had a 386, however, you needed dedicated memory boards.
Agreed.
Sorry I did not mention the needed hardware, it was obvious to me but I understand that it may not have been so for everybody.
Thanks!
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04-14-2020, 01:14 PM
Post: #15
RE: PSA - Free42 no longer supports Windows XP
(04-14-2020 11:43 AM)Sylvain Cote Wrote:  
(04-14-2020 07:00 AM)Massimo Gnerucci Wrote:  Unless you had a 386, however, you needed dedicated memory boards.
Agreed.
Sorry I did not mention the needed hardware, it was obvious to me but I understand that it may not have been so for everybody.
Thanks!

I could afford EMS only after my first 386 and Qemm... ;)

Greetings,
    Massimo

-+×÷ ↔ left is right and right is wrong
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04-14-2020, 01:24 PM
Post: #16
RE: PSA - Free42 no longer supports Windows XP
Windows XP was released in 2001... 19 years ago! Time flies by so darn fast.
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04-14-2020, 01:57 PM
Post: #17
RE: PSA - Free42 no longer supports Windows XP
(04-14-2020 01:24 PM)Eddie W. Shore Wrote:  Windows XP was released in 2001... 19 years ago! Time flies by so darn fast.

That may be the case, but IMHO it was and still is the best OS that Microsoft ever released. While my new Windows 10 64-bit computer refuses to run any of my 16-bit software (no NTVDM is available), my old Windows XP 32-bit computer happily runs 16 and 32-bit software. It runs DOS as a true virtual machine, allowing me to set up expanded/extended memory, ram disks and hardware drivers during a DOS session. Frankly, were it not for the fact that Microsoft killed it off in favor of a more restrictive OS in the name of security, I would still be using it today for all of my computer activities.
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04-14-2020, 02:42 PM
Post: #18
RE: PSA - Free42 no longer supports Windows XP
(04-14-2020 01:57 PM)Michael de Estrada Wrote:  
(04-14-2020 01:24 PM)Eddie W. Shore Wrote:  Windows XP was released in 2001... 19 years ago! Time flies by so darn fast.

That may be the case, but IMHO it was and still is the best OS that Microsoft ever released. While my new Windows 10 64-bit computer refuses to run any of my 16-bit software (no NTVDM is available)

You can still run the 32-bit version of Windows 10 on your machine and it's a simple change (Microsoft approved) to run 16-bit software on it.

Tom L
...other than that, Mrs. Lincoln, what did you think of the play?
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04-14-2020, 03:11 PM
Post: #19
RE: PSA - Free42 no longer supports Windows XP
(04-14-2020 02:42 PM)toml_12953 Wrote:  
(04-14-2020 01:57 PM)Michael de Estrada Wrote:  That may be the case, but IMHO it was and still is the best OS that Microsoft ever released. While my new Windows 10 64-bit computer refuses to run any of my 16-bit software (no NTVDM is available)

You can still run the 32-bit version of Windows 10 on your machine and it's a simple change (Microsoft approved) to run 16-bit software on it.

Yes, I know that, but not necessary since I have another computer running 32-bit Windows XP that does everything that the 64-bit Windows 10 computer can’t. Also, I don’t believe that a 32-bit Windows 10 NTVDM offers full DOS capabilities in the same manner that Windows XP does.
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04-14-2020, 03:36 PM
Post: #20
RE: PSA - Free42 no longer supports Windows XP
My laptop were on Win7.
It is almost impossible to benchmark any code, because the machine were never quiet.

On the other hand, my Pentium 3 (Win XP), benchmark numbers is accurate to msec.
Also, no virus can attack it, since it is not linked to the internet.

This machine still work after 20 years ! (FYI, it is a Dell)
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