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Old 19-06-2018, 02:05 PM   #6
Super Freak

Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Lerida, Spain
Posts: 152

Addendum: Installing sound drivers under DOS.

Frankly, I expected not having to write this section, but still I think it's the right thing to do. I posted this guide in Reddit and some redditors have mentioned this step as essential.

The reasons I omitted it are several. First of all, if you're emulating a Sound Blaster card, it's very likely that most programs will produce sound without installing any drivers.

The second one is that it's literally a jungle out there. Sound cards come in many different models, hardware revisions and versions. And so do their drivers. Websites like the VOGONS Vintage Driver Library are an enormous help, but you shouldn't expect all their files to work for you. Some will be for different hardware revisions, and others will just refuse to install because they've been extrated from floppy disks, causing new problems such as failure to detect floppy disk changes or the correct floppy label.

This said, here's a short list of drivers I've personally tested and found they worked:

CMS Game Blaster 720KB Driver Disk
AdLib Disk v1.63
AdLib Gold 1000 Drivers with Sound Blaster TSR
Sound Blaster 1.0 Drivers (1-8-1990) (5.25)
Sound Blaster 1.5 Drivers 8-02-1991 (3.5 & 5.25)
Sound Blaster 1.5 Drivers 8-15-1990 (3.5 & 5.25)
Sound Blaster 2.0 Drivers (5.25)
Sound Blaster Pro 1.0 Drivers (8-6-1992) (3.5)
Sound Blaster Pro 1.0 Drivers (9-8-1993) (3.5)
Sound Blaster Pro 2.0 - Installation Disks (3.5)
Sound Blaster 16 - AWE32 - Basic Disk for Installation DOS & Windows 3.X (Available from Creative Labs website)
Sound Blaster 16 - Advanced Signal Processing Upgrade (CSP.SYS v1.13) (Available from Creative Labs website)
Gravis UltraSound - Installation Disks v3.59

3.5 and 5.25 refer to the format of the floppy disk images. You'll need to setup your floppy drives accordingly in order to use them.

Our first step is to start our machine and install the software. If it comes in floppy images, we insert them once the command prompt appears. If they're just files, it's better to copy them to a temporary folder in our harddrive using WinImage.

In this guide, we are installing the drivers for a SB16. Therefore we need the following files:

Sound Blaster 16 - AWE32 - Basic Disk for Installation DOS & Windows 3.X
Sound Blaster 16 - Advanced Signal Processing Upgrade (CSP.SYS v1.13)

These also will work for an AWE32 and (I think) an AWE64. The SB16 is a pretty good card (16 bit sound, 44.1 Khz, stereo), but you may prefer to setup an AWE32 for its General MIDI support.

Anyway, the installation process is pretty straightforward. First we run INSTALL.EXE from a temporary folder and follow the onscreen instructions:

After a few checkups, the program will tell you your default soundcard values, which you will need to remember to setup your sound card in most games...

...and update your startup files:

Finally, the install program will ask you to reboot your machine. A few new messages will appear now regarding your sound hardware.

In this particular case, one of them will be an error message.

That's because the CSP driver doesn't match our hardware. This is when our second archive Sound Blaster 16 - Advanced Signal Processing Upgrade (CSP.SYS v1.13) comes into play.

After we install it as well, the error message will be gone:

And we'll also have a perfectly working sound card in our system.

NOTE: Don't forget, after installing ANY new drivers, to run MEMMAKER. MEMMAKER is a program included in later releases of DOS that will help you optimize your memory use.

Last edited by Neville; 22-06-2018 at 07:14 PM.
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