DOS code in CP/M? Revisited...

Liam Proven lproven at
Fri Jul 15 12:22:51 CDT 2016

On 14 July 2016 at 19:50, Swift Griggs <swiftgriggs at> wrote:
> I have some foggy memory of Caldera using the "Digital Research" name, at
> least internally and on some documents. However, it's been a long time and
> the SCO-connected legacy left a terrible taste.
> You know the history well, obviously, after reading your post. Do you
> happen to know if the "Digital Research" you mention and the use of the
> name by Caldera were related to the same original entity? IIRC, I could be
> wrong but I even seem to remember downloading "DR-DOS" from Caldera before
> FreeDOS was fully baked to get a hold of nice free-as-in-beer version of
> DOS... but it could just be the drugs.

Novell bought DR for DR-DOS, which became Novell DOS.

It also sponsored development of Linux under the codename "Corsair" as
a Windows-killer.

When it eventually became clear that Linux wasn't ready to rival
Windows on the desktop yet and wasn't going to be for quite some years
to come, they spun off the Linux division as Caldera -- including the
former DR, notably including the UK R&D centre that had created much
of DR-DOS.

Caldera was focussed on desktop Linux, though. (It's the first distro
that I personally adopted, and it was a good one, too.) E.g. before
WINE existed, Caldera licensed and ported Sun's WABI to Linux -- where
it ran better than it did on Solaris because it was on native x86 &
didn't have to do CPU emulation.

Caldera didn't inherit source code for *all* the old DR products, e.g.
many of the apps, but it looked at what it had got, and the bits that
couldn't realistically be sold commercially any more, it open-sourced:
DR-DOS and PC GEM, mainly.

Then it discovered that actually there was still interest in DR-DOS,
took it back in-house again and span off that division as Lineo.

Some bits had been sold off or licensed separately -- e.g. Concurrent
DOS (to Concurrent Controls and IMS), & FlexOS to IBM -- so they
couldn't be open sourced.

Later Novell realised that the best use of Linux for them was to
replace Netware as a server OS, and bought SUSE.

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