This is how Jim Hall used to build the FreeDOS distributions. These steps should still be (mostly) correct for recent versions of the FreeDOS Installer.
In general, the steps to create your own FreeDOS distribution are:
- Print out a list of all the FreeDOS programs that are part of the FreeDOS distribution. Refer to the FreeDOS Software List.
- Download every FreeDOS program (both exe and source). Check them off your list as you go.
- Ensure the programs are in correct package format.
Source code and all documentation is stored in a SOURCE\program directory, binaries should be in a BIN directory. A copy of the help page goes in HELP, and copies of other documentation go a DOC\program directory.
To make a package file, zip up the BIN, HELP, and DOC directories as the binary package. The SOURCE directory is the source package.
- Make sure all the package zip files have an 8.3 name, and that the exe packages end with ‘x.zip’ and the source packages end with ‘s.zip’. You may try to encode the version number in the name, too, although this will be tricky using 8.3 names. For example, for version 1.1 of the Foo program, you might have an exe package of FOO11X.ZIP and source package FOO11S.ZIP. However, for version 1.6g of Emacs, you may need to shorten this to EMAC16GX.ZIP and EMAC16GS.ZIP.
- Make sure all the package zip files in all the disk series have unique 8.3 names. This is so someone can put all the disks series into a single hard drive directory and install from there.
- Write an LSM file based on the package information, for any packages that don't already have an LSM file.
- Divide up your zip files and LSM files for each disk series into disk sets.
- Create DAT files for each disk in each of the disk sets for the distribution.
- On the last disk in each disk set, create an END file. For example, the last disk in the "Base" disk set should have a BASE.END file.