PalmDosBox – the resurrection

Almost 2 years ago I was trying to port DosBox to Palm OS but couldn’t catch the crashes inside the emulation core after compiling it with CodeWarrior. In the mean time another guy, called voda, was able to port it using the gcc toolchain. Unfortunately he likes to give up its work before it runs on a broad selection of modern Palm OS devices. Also he isn’t the fastest in releasing the source code.

Some weeks ago he finally released the source of his porting attempts at A week ago I picked it up to make it more usable: on Treo devices adding a support for the keyboard, on other devices adding an on-screen keyboard, support for joystick, screen moving (for higher resolutions) and stuff. The keyboard stuff is working. there is support for left and right mouse button (hardware button 1 and 2). You can cycle (hardware button 3) between screen moving, cursor moving or joystick support for the 5-way navigator. Hardware button 4 is at the moment reserved for entering “Exit” at the DOS prompt. Later I will remove it and hopefully add a way to exit the emulator directly with save state creation. I was able to remove the crash on exit and make it runnable on my T3 too.

Be warned: your device might crash.

Download is here. Please don’t link directly but only to this post.

How-To setup your DOS games/apps on card: here

How-To entering special characters using the Treo keyboard:

You don’t enter characters in DosBox, but you send keypresses which then are translated into characters using the given DOS code page. On Treo you have the normal keys, you can press shift in parallel for caps, you can access the number using the option key and use option + shift to access the special characters on the number keys on a standard keyboard. Also option + k is used for the ; (semicolon) key. Means shift + option + k brings you the : (colon). Check it out, you can always popup the on-screen keyboard for a more standard keyboard layout. Currently, there is no way to access the Function-keys (F1-F12, numerical keypad and page up/down).

Enjoy and leave a comment,

BTW: If you want me a favor (apart from donating ;-)) you might go to the comment section of and tell them that 2Cool4U doesn’t set hardware buttons on its own. The user still has to click on the appropriate button… Resetting the button to its default value is of course a problem, which I will address in the next update. Until then one might use the tool at

Januar 28, 2008 · admin · 18 Comments
Posted in: Developing, Palm

18 Responses

  1. admin - Februar 16, 2008

    Hi voda,

    thank you for the comment. Ok, it wasn’t meant to insult you. Sorry. But I still remember when I asked you about the source of PalmUAE (which was called differently to this time) and never got an answer. It forced me to port my own version, as I really wanted to have it working on my T3. Anyway, I’m glad you’re still around and maybe I can bring PalmDosBox into something usable once.

  2. LinG - April 14, 2008

    Hi~~Great MetaView,

    I really appreciate your new palmdosbox! To run some old Dos games in my palm is my dream~~ and now, it will become truth!

    New palmdosbox can work on my treo650 with the help of UDMH (I can get 5M RAM)! I run a old game with dos/4gw successfully, although it seems very slow.. Then I downloaded Dos/32a to replace Dos/4gw, but the speed did not up.

    So, I began to try some small games and I got a Mario.exe (only 61KB). Unfortunately, it still run slowly.

    But I believe next version will become much more faster!

    Thank you for your great job!

  3. jackkoho - Mai 29, 2008

    Tried this on my Centro. Unfortunately, instead of a : my keypad produces a ;, making it impossible to mount any drives. Looking forward to an update for Centros.

  4. jackkoho - Juni 11, 2008

    Dumb me, didn’t read about shift+action+k to make the :.

    Is there any way to send a tab? Centro’s dont have the on screen keyboard.

  5. admin - Juni 11, 2008

    Why can’t you open the on-screen keyboard? It’s the Message-button on my Treo 680.

  6. bigsupersquid - Oktober 7, 2008

    Working on getting this to full function on my Centro as well. The onscreen keyboard works fine, I’ve run Arkanoid and a Tetris clone (slow but functional, I’ve not tweaked anything yet really), but so far I can only boot from floppy images and only mount directories from my SD card (the method I used for the games mentioned). I can boot from win98 floppy boot or the dos 5.0 floppy boot just fine, but then system cannot see any drives mounted with ‘mount’ command before the ‘boot’. ‘imgmount’ will run numbers at the bottom of the screen when trying to mount or boot from 30mb hard drive image, then prints the ‘mount’ iso and ‘imgmount’ instructions after hiding the image file from further access until reboot.
    Am using these two commands to mount and boot from HD image file in desktop Dosbox 0.72:
    imgmount c \60cyl.img -size 512,63,16,60 -fs fat
    boot \60cyl.img -l c
    Made the image file with bzimage, and partitioned/formatted with dos 5.0 in desktop dosbox. Works there but no matter what I try I cannot get imgmount to work on my Palm. Can I get a hint as to what I’m doing wrong? Mount command works great on the Palm…
    Thanks, Henk, for all your awesome freeware I keep stumbling upon, and keep up the good work! If I ever get any money I’ll send you some 😛

  7. parpar0312 - Juli 7, 2009

    I have port 0.73 to palmos, anybody still interest?

  8. admin - Juli 7, 2009

    yes, I am. Where ca nI try it?

  9. parpar0312 - Juli 7, 2009

    It’s for my T3 so it may not work on other model. It emulate 512k svga_s3 card, up to 800x600x16 resolution, support up to 8MB RAM, no cdrom/midi support. My T3 with 16MB free ram can launch it with 4MB RAM without UDMH, and 8MB RAM otherwise. At this moment it compatible with everything I tried including win31.

    -put my conf file to root of first SD card
    -pen for mouse, built-in soft keyboard/graffit for keyboard
    -Hard Button 4 to switch between keyboard/mouse/joystick input
    -Launch Button as short-cut to type “exit”
    -Select Button to toggle system mode (btn 1/btn 2 to change speed, btn 4 to force quit)


  10. andydam - Juli 15, 2009

    parpar0312, how do you use the pen as a mouse? Its impossible to control. How do I control it? And BTW, how do I get DosBox to stretch the image to cover the whole screen, or downscale it so 640×480 fits?

  11. parpar0312 - Juli 31, 2009

    sorry for late reply andydam, I haven’t follow this thread frequently after awhile.

    If you find mouse not positioned correctly, there are 2 ways to “calibrate” the pen,
    method 1: enter system mode (select button) -> tap on the mouse cursor -> leave system mode.
    method 2: enter “mouse mode” (use btn 4) -> enter “calibrate mode” (btn 3) -> move the cursor to upper-left corner with navigation button -> tap on mouse cursor -> move cursor to lower-right corner with navigation button -> tap on mouse cursor.

    Depends on how the apps handle mouse input, one of the 2 methods MAY work. You can also alter the mouse input handling inside the apps if it provided.

    There is no screen scaling in your version, I do have an unreleased version with simple up/down scaler, but I don’t think that do anything good as it is very slow and doesn’t help much on readability. Let me know if you really want it.

  12. roberval - August 27, 2009

    parpar0312, can you please send me your 0.73 dosbox for palm ?

  13. roberval - August 28, 2009

    Well, admin, if you have the file (v 0.73), can you send it to me ? My e-mail is . Tks in advance.

    I’ll try to run it on my Palm TX, and boot Win95 – (which I have a very very old original cd)…

    I wasn’t able to do this on the current version (based on 0.65 I guess), but even on DosBox for Windows it didn’t work. On the 0.73 for Windows it worked, and probably this version will run in PalmTX, with UDMH and WarpSpeed. Tks again.

  14. admin - September 9, 2009

    Added to the downlaod section.

  15. orr721 - September 12, 2009

    hi admin, the link in the download section gives 404.

  16. admin - September 12, 2009


  17. Dab07 - September 23, 2009

    parpar0312, admin, or any one else testing and or running .73,

    Roberval told me he had this on his TX running good enough for at least booting Windows 3.1. I’d like to see if I can get it do run here as well.

    I received a copy of the .73 version mentioned above, including the dosbox.conf file that came with the .rar package.

    I ran through all the steps listed at:

    I have run through these steps several times double checking every thing, though I am not sure if the DosBox folder mentioned is supposed to be in the “CDRIVE” folder, or just on the card root. I tried it with the folder named just “C” as seems to be mentioned in the dosbox.conf that came with the .rar. I have tried it with the actual program PalmDosBox on the SD card, and in the internal memory, but still can’t get it to fire up. It still only comes up with the message:

    Can’t Load Module, exiting.
    Tap the screen to continue
    Loading, please wait…

    Loading Binary … Done.
    Unpacking … Done.
    Loading module…Done

    and that’s all I can get so far.

    I noticed that there are some steps in the instructions at the link, at the top of this page, that are not listed in the dosbox.conf that came with the rar. package for .73 from parpar0312. Should any of those, or other ones be included for this .73 version to work?

    Are there some other instructions and directory folder layouts, that work better with this .73 version?

    Any suggestions will be greatly appreciated.


  18. Tercio - April 24, 2010

    I would be willing to pay for a developer who enables the sony clie TH55 to work with WPA and WPA2 wifi encription. Please e-mail me

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.