DOSBox doesn’t support SHARE.EXE

Software

You must exit Windows and load SHARE.EXE in order to run Microsoft Excel.

I may have finally pushed the limits of DOSBox’s capabilities! For what its worth, it performed admirably up until this point :).

Upon installing Microsoft Office 4.3 in Windows 3.11 to allow my old man access to some old files he’d created from the mid 1990s, Word and Excel both return a SHARE.EXE error.

The virtual Z: drive contains no such utility, but I was able to copy SHARE.EXE from my PC DOS 2000 qemu machine into DOSBox’s mounted directory. Problem is, it didn’t like its new environment:

C:\>C:\DOSSHARE.EXE
Incorrect DOS version.

I did some quick research and ascertained the reported version can be altered by using the VER command, in a similar way to SETVER in retro DOS.

C:\>VER
DOSBOX version 0.74. Reported DOS version 5.00
C:\VER SET 7.0
C:\>VER
DOSBox version 0.74. Reported DOS version 7.00

Then I was able to launch SHARE.EXE:

C:>C:\DOS\SHARE.EXE
SHARE installed

After loading this in DOS, then firing up Windows 3.11 however, it made no difference. Both Excel and Word from Office 4.3 returned the same errors. According to the DOSBox devs, this higher end DOS functionality is not currently supported.

Oh well, I suppose it’d be easier to just use one qemu VM than using it and relegating DOSBox to some tasks. Better install Homebrew on my dad’s Mac ;)

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Ruben Schade is a technical writer and IaaS engineer in Sydney, Australia who refers to himself in the third person in bios. Wait, not BIOS… my brain should be EFI by now.

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