Inspiration

I was told of this new fad called the internet of things that involved throwing unnecessary things on the internet. So I thought what would be more useless then having a computer that struggles to run even the most basic window managers, run a crude web server.

What it does

It serves a web page that is running off of an IBM-PC compatible PC from 1983

How I built it

Due to hardware limitations a cacophony of solutions had to be taken. While the computer had a modem, actually dialing into a server is not possible as dial-up has largely faded into antiquity. This means that getting onto the computer now has to be done through the serial port of the computer. The IBM-PC is wired into a secondary computer which can act as a bridge to get the computer on the network. Unfortunately for me, I don't have a computer with a COM port and wi-fi, so a third computer had to be used such that connections to and from the IBM-PC was routed as IBM-PC->Computer with com port->computer with wifi. All this work had to be done just to get it an IP address. The next step was to get it serving a response when requested. To accomplish this a set of tools available on the internet was used called mtcp that simplified the process. These would be used to transfer data to and from computer when trying to reach the internet.

Challenges I ran into

The biggest challenge I ran into was transferring data to the computer. I had to transfer files to it by USB from a modern computer to a less modern computer with a floppy drive to the ancient computer. Hardware was also unreliable. Sometimes floppy discs would become corrupted, and the hardware is showing its age, such as when my monitor went out on the old computer. Luckily a capture card could be used to view output through a composite video signal.

Accomplishments that I'm proud of

It sends data when you connect to it. Implements blinking text.

What I learned

Modern systems have largely shielded people from the lower lever aspects of computers. In general when working with these older computer some knowledge must be had on the exact location of registers for which components are located. I also learned more about some of the network tools in linux.

What's next for DOS on Dog Sleds

The next step for Dos on Dog Sleds is logical step for all web servers, adding support to view and share pictures of cats.

Built With

  • 8088
  • c
  • dos
  • ibm-pc
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