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Here's a list of old DOS programs that I used and that very successful in their heydays. Some of them are still available in some corner of the web...




  Maintenance Programs      Productivity Programs      Games   


Maintenance Programs

Archive Programs:

  • OldDOS.org               A good collection of old DOS archivers: ARC, ARJ, LHA, PKARC, PKZIP, ZOO; plus drivers, bootdisks, history of DOS.

Antivirus and Recovery Programs:

  • F-Prot                    F-Prot Antivirus for DOS is the classic antivirus software that has been available for downloading for over 10 years. Combining the long experience with the latest technology F-Prot Antivirus for DOS is the ideal second defence antivirus protection. F-Prot Antivirus for DOS is free for personal use and comes included in F-Prot Antivirus for Windows.
  • F_Secure                  F-Secure Anti-Virus for DOS (free for home use). Only the DOS version of F-Secure Anti-Virus is free.
  • Viruscan for DOS          VIRUSCAN, from McAfee Associates, scans and removes viruses in the Master Boot Record, the DOS Boot Sector, and executable files on the system.
  • Ultimate Boot CD          Free download. Tons of antivir, test and recovery tools. Can be run from USB stick, too.


  • BTTR Software            A german site with some free useful DOS programs and a good links page.
  • FIPS                     The FTP server of the german Hochschule Niederrhein has a very good collection of DOS archivers, comm programs, utilities, antivirus software, and games.
  • Lightspeed's            Very large link list for 16-bit programs, tools, drivers and whatever.


Productivity Programs

  • Vetusware                 For programs you don't find here, or that you cannot download here, search the Vetusware site. They have one of the biggest (and largely illegal) abandonware collection.
  • Acrobat Reader for DOS    Dos version of the well-known reader.
  • Chiwriter 4.0             ChiWriter is a scientific word processor. Abandonware by Horstmann Software Design Corporation. There are still a few helpful sites, e. g. here.
  • DBase III+                Ashton-Tate�s fameous database, which set the db standard in the pc world for a long time. - by Ashton-Tate. See Wikipedia
  • FoxPro 2.6                FoxPro 2.6, the latest (and abandoned) version for DOS. Foxpro started out as a dBase database clone by Fox Software, later bought by MS. See Wikipedia
  • Framework                 Produced by Ashton-Tate in 1984 Framework  was a very popular suite for DOS including a wordprocessor, a database (dBase compatible), a spreadsheet, basic graphics and telecommunications, all held together and programmable by FRED, a 4th generation language. Bought by Borland, who let it nearly die. Then Selections & Functions bought the source code and still carries on development. Heavily recommended as an Office environment for small DOS laptops. - now by Selections & Functions Inc. See Wikipedia
  • Lotus 1-2-3               A DOS spreadsheet program by Lotus Corporation in 1982. Lotus 1-2-3 was the first publicly available program to combine graphics, spreadsheet functions and data management (three functions, hence the name). Its relative ease of use and flexibility made it an enormous success and contributed to the acceptance of personal computers in business. See Wikipedia
  • Quattro Pro               Popular spreadsheet launched in 1988 under the name Quattro (from the Italian word for "four" meaning "one step further than 1-2-3"). Borland changed the name to Quattro Pro for its subsequent 1990 release. When version 1.0 was in development, it was codenamed "Buddha" since it was meant to "assume the Lotus position.". By now owned by Corel and part of Wordperfect Office.
  • Sidekick 1.56b            DOS TSR PIM with calendar, calculator, dialer, ascii table. Practically the mother of them all. Commercial product, long abandoned. - by Borland
  • Symphony                  "Integrated" program, combining the five most useful business applications: electronic spreadsheet, business graphics, data management, word processing, and communications - by Lotus. See Wikipedia
  • Visicalc                  The first spreadsheet application, introduced in the late 1970's by Dan Bricklin and Bob Frankston. Sold to Lotus Development Corporation, which developed Lotus 1-2-3 in 1983. Free to download after agreeing to license. Rename file to VC.com
  • Word 5.5                  English MS WORD for DOS version 5.5.
  • Wordperfect 5.0 for DOS   WordPerfect for DOS is no longer marketed by Corel. Fully legal replacement and upgrade copies of WordPerfect 5.1+ for DOS and WordPerfect 6.2 for DOS may be purchased on CD-R discs from Carol Reese, who has permission from Corel to make these sales. New drivers, updates etc. here.
  • WordStar                  A full-featured word processing program for CP/M and DOS from MicroPro, later renamed WordStar International. Introduced in 1978 for the CP/M operating system, WordStar was the first program to give full word processing capabilities to personal computer users. Many WordStar keyboard commands became de facto standards for text manipulation. See Wikipedia
  • WORKS 3.0b                MS WORKS. See Wikipedia



  • Commander Keen            was one of Apogee's major successes. One of these was on every DOS computer I knew :-)
  • Leisure Suit Larry        Undying Hero of my youth :-)
  • Abandonia                 and
  • Classic DOS Games         and
  • Free DOS Games            and
  • DOSGAMER.COM              and
  • DOSGAMES.COM              and
  • DOS Games Archive         are a few of many sites offering old DOS games for free, something to kill productivity for good and all :-). Some want you to register, and some offer tips how to get these old games to run under XP.
  • Schrege Voegel            is a german site with many old DOS games like Psion Chess, Tetris, Pac Man, Leisure Suit Larry, and a few proggies like Norton, Xtree, Sidekick, to name a few.
  • Tetris                    There is only one first. There is only one original. A. Pajitnov and V. Gerasimov produced Tetris in ex USSR. It took away weeks of my time on an IBM PC AT, but finally I got into the high 9900s. Try it :-) Note: play this game only on *really* slow computers, or use it with some of the CPU slow programs (like Moslo).

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