How-To Geek

Play Your Favorite DOS Games in XP, Vista, and Windows 7

Want to take a trip down memory lane with old school DOS games?  D-Fend Reloaded makes it easy for you to play your favorite DOS games directly on XP, Vista, and Windows 7.

D-Fend Reloaded is a great frontend for DOSBox, the popular DOS emulator.  It lets you install and run many DOS games and applications directly from its interface without ever touching a DOS prompt.  It works great on XP, Vista, and Windows 7 32 & 64-bit versions.  

Getting Started

Download D-Fend Reloaded (link below), and install with the default settings.  You don’t need to install DOSBox, as D-Fend Reloaded will automatically install all the components you need to run DOS games on Windows.


D-Fend Reloaded can also be installed as a portable application, so you can run it from a flash drive on any Windows computer by selecting User defined installation.


Then select Portable mode installation.


Once D-Fend Reloaded is installed, you can go ahead and open the program. Then simply click “Accept all settings” to apply the default settings.


D-Fend is now ready to run all of your favorite DOS games.


Installing DOS Games and Applications:

To install a DOS game or application, simply drag-and-drop a zip file of the app into D-Fend Reloaded’s window.  D-Fend Reloaded will automatically extract the program…


Then will ask you to name the application and choose where to store it — by default it uses the name of the DOS app.


Now you’ll see a new entry for the app you just installed.  Simply double-click to run it.


D-Fend will remind you that you can switch out of fullscreen mode by pressing Alt+Enter, and can also close the DOS application by pressing Ctrl+F9.  Press Ok to run the program.


Here we’re running Ms. PacPC, a remake of the classic game Ms. Pac-Man, in full-screen mode.  All features work automatically, including sound, and you never have to setup anything from DOS command line — it just works.


Here it’s in windowed mode running on Windows 7.


Please note that your color scheme may change to Windows Basic while running DOS applications.


You can run DOS application just as easily.  Here’s Word 5.5 running in in DOSBox through D-Fend Reloaded…


Game Packs:

Want to quickly install many old DOS freeware and trial games?  D-Fend Reloaded offers several game packs that let you install dozens of DOS games with only four clicks…just download and run the game pack installer of your choice (link below).


Now you’ve got a selection of DOS games to choose from.


Here’s a group of poor lemmings walking around … in Windows 7.



D-Fend Reloaded gives you a great way to run your favorite DOS games and applications directly from XP, Vista, and Windows 7.  Give it a try, and relive your DOS days from the comfort of your Windows desktop.

What were some of your favorite DOS games and applications? Leave a comment and let us know.


Download D-Fend Reloaded

Download DOS game packs for D-Fend Reloaded

Download Ms. Pac-PC

Matthew digs up tasty bytes about Windows, Virtualization, and the cloud, and serves them up for all to enjoy!

  • Published 03/12/10

Comments (81)

  1. cowgod

    i always knew about dosbox, but not d-fend. this looks sweet. i can’t think of just one favorite game, so i’ll name a few:
    wolfenstein 3d
    battle chess

  2. Sean Patterson

    An old buddy of mine and I were just reminiscing this past weekend about the Space Quest games we used to play, as well as some of those older PC games and wondered how we could bring life to them again.

    This is perfect timing! Bookmarked and forwarded! Thanks!

  3. Alec S.

    Yeah, Microsoft Word/Works for DOS in an emulator under Windows! Hey, not everyone has a copy of—the expensive—Office for Windows. ;)

  4. Cristhian

    Great stuff :) I designed the little pixel ghost for the project, glad the program is getting the recognition it deserves, it’s a wonderful project

  5. George

    Some of my Favorite DOS games were Star Trek Next Generation, Lemmings, Myst, X-Wing Fighter, and Tie Fighter. I’m not sure if I still have the media, but I might try this out later this month.

  6. Grant

    Unfortunately, DOS is too new for most of my favorite old games. I had to use VICE.

  7. HydroKirby

    Yay, the perfect excuse to hunt down Scorched Earth again.

  8. Roberta

    Superb article!
    Love Lemmings, & now I can play it again…
    Thank You Very Much.

  9. milogert

    hey are all of these demos in the sense that they aren’t a full game?

  10. Matthew Guay

    @milogert – Some of the games are demos, but there are many DOS games in the gamepacks that are full-length free games.

  11. milogert

    @Matthew Guay oh ok thank you!

  12. andy

    I was not aware of this until today. Well, I guess that blows my afternoon. Thanks!

  13. Hawk

    Great article! Congrats.

    D-Fend Reloaded data package run fine in portable versions of D-Fend?

  14. Matthew Guay

    @Hawk – I believe it should work fine … just choose your D-Fend folder on your portable drive when you’re installing the pack. Give it a shot, and let us know how it works! Anything that runs portable is awesome ;)

  15. Versatile

    I have an old school game Dungeon Keeper. How do I install the game and have it run from D-Fend in Windows 7?

  16. passerby

    Does it support What about pharlap memory manager?

  17. passerby

    Does it support pharlap memory manager?

  18. dave rade

    Cant even download the fuckin program

  19. mike

    Will this work with 64 bit?

  20. Matthew Guay

    @mike – Yup, it runs great on 64 bit editions of Windows … in fact, when testing it for this article I ran it on Windows 7 Professional x64.

  21. Allaya

    Thanks so much! I wanted to introduce my boyfriend to two of my all-time favorite games: Master of Magic and Princess Maker 2. Now I can play them again! Hello, magical empire; goodbye, life…

  22. oliver sayers

    i have everything running but theirs no sound any help

  23. Kelben

    Fantastic program! One question: When I save my game progress, where is that being stored? I loaded the game up again today and none of my game saves were there.

  24. Rich

    I’m trying to play the old DOS version of x-wing. The game runs great but I can’t get it to recognize the joystick (usb joystick)
    Running Vista 32 Home Premium 32 bit OS
    I’ve gone into thje DOSBOX config file and set joystick to AUTO, but still no luck. Any suggestions

  25. gill

    This is just perfect, thanks very much

  26. theboov

    Hi all. A little disappointed because I couldn’t get anything to work, even the Dos game packs and Ms PacMan. When I tried to run the games, Dos started then turned itself off almost immediately without warning. Anyone know the reason for this? Also, the one game I could get to work – TV Sports Boxing – seemed fine but didn’t recognise my USB joystick, which made the gameplay very difficult. Anyone know how to get the joystick working (it’s all calibrated, etc and there’s no way within the game to select joysticks). Thanks!

  27. Fleppenstein

    Hi, This seems to be a fantastic utility.
    I want to use it with Word 5.5 (Dos). Now I use a dedicated PC with DOS and a special old printer (HP Laserjet 1100) to print documents. Can I use a printer in windows, or better a network-printer in windows to print with this utility ??? Is there a need to install aditional drivers, as this is also needed in DOS ?? Thanx !!

  28. Sagar

    Hi, I cannot run my MS-DOS 5.0 Version or Higher compatible game called ” Ultimate Domain “.
    Dos started then turned itself off immediately without warning

  29. Bud

    Going to give it a try with redneck rampage have the whole series and been useless til now

  30. maddog

    a good old game was super space invaders. be good to get it for dfend.

  31. danny beckwith

    where do you find these games on the internet . I would love to play some of the great classic’s

  32. saneyetcrazy

    I installed the original Warcraft and it runs fine but only on a small screen. Is there any way to enlarge the screen? Thanks.

  33. ddthesm

    Alt-Enter runs the game in fullscreen, same to get it back to a window, happy gaming!

    Good choice in a game too

  34. Rocky Ray

    MM4 plays for a minute and then locks up. Any suggestions?

  35. Ken

    Has anyone used this for Redneck Rampage and have it work correctly?

  36. Ken

    Redneck Rampage on Windows 7 – I forgot to give the operating system.

  37. George

    I can’t get it to work with RAR files. Any advice?

  38. George

    the game packs wont work either. D-fend.dat not found ?!?

  39. AbyCodes

    I can play Hocus Pocus again with ease :D. Nice find HTG.

  40. Mike

    This note is intended for RICH:

    I’m looking for X-Wing one of my 3.5 floppies went bad and I tried to save it but it didn’t work, you think you can send me a copy of X-Wing to my email?

    I have a very fun game called TURBO TREK (Dos based) that came with a disk of games, If anyone is interested I can send it to you.

    Also anyone ever play Kobiahi Alternative Star Trek, 1987 from Simon & Shuster? I couldn’t figure out the last mission. I kept getting blown away in like 20 seconds by 7 Romulan vessels.

    Hocus Pocus I remember playing that COOL

  41. Daniel

    Alec S. , perhaps you should instigate this instead of Office in a DOS-Box –> it’s totally free and much more compatible with today’s applications ;-)

  42. Chris

    Hey this is just the ticket to play your old favs it works without a hitch on all the packs you included but how do I who have probbably every dos version of pinball and other great arcade classics run this when all my games are on the original cd’s they came on. The instructions say a zip file must be dragged in the box you cant extract these into the box from CD ROM or can you?

  43. zarathustra

    Chris, I don’t think archives _have_ to be zipped – just that they _can_ be havdled by D-Fend.

    Try extracting the data out to the D-Fend Game folder…

  44. raj

    I am not able to play ‘claw’ game in windows 7 (64 bit).
    Any suggestions?

  45. john

    Help, Works great but can’t seem to get the joystick to work on any of the games. Profile>edit>joystick doesn’t work. I have a basic usb joystick. please help.

    any suggestions?


  46. Kevin

    Just downloaded program and Norton 360 stopped it running stating it had removed Heuristic virus has been removed. ???!??!

  47. Kimi

    I was going through hell trying to figure out how to play Kings Quest on my laptop. Once again you have saved me lots of time and hassle! I was able to play in ten minutes after reading this, as opposed to the 30 I spent just figuring out the weird files I downloaded. Love this site! <3

  48. Mark

    Hey, got Crusader running great! Only question is, where do I locate the file it places the zips in? I need to create a SAVEGAME file or else it cannot save…. :/ Thanks in advance!

  49. Ed

    Glad to hear that the files don’t HAVE to be zipped. I have a couple of games I would like to try and play, but they’re not zipped. I’m going to keep this on the back burner while I think about it.

  50. shahab

    i cant download fuckiiiiiiing d-fend reloaded……why…????
    please give us currect linkkkkk…..for download

  51. Billy Thorton

    Matthew Guay Can I Play Dinopark Tycoon Wich Came Out Around 1993 Using This MS Dos System?

  52. Dave

    I installed UAKM from cd. I am then prompted to either start playing it by typing enter or close dos out. If I go directly into the game it works fine, but if I close dos, then try to go to the game via D fend, dos starts but then closes right away, leaving me looking at the D fend screen again. The only way I can play the game is to install it every time I want to play it. The game saves work and everything. I just have to go back to the first cd every time and go through all that extra junk.
    What am I doing wrong? I am running xp by the way if it matters?

  53. me

    Hmm… I’m trying to get a game to work, but it only opens what appears to be a page with setup options and not much else. How do you actually get the game to start?

  54. Hadi

    wau, D-Fend cool, now i can play X-com terror from the deep via vista..
    but no sound, pls help!! I’m dying to play this game again…

  55. Lee Wood

    I have a friend who will help me through the rough spots in getting this program to work. I couldn’t even create a post without trouble

  56. Grubbysack

    Hey I cant seem to get Daggerfall to run. I keep getting asked to insert the Disk? Any help? Thanks in advance

  57. lwetzel

    Will Quake and Quake 2 work with D-Fend?

  58. Barfbag

    Dungeon Keeper 2
    Warcraft 2

    These are the games I will be trying to get to work on a intel quad core, win 7 home x64 SLI system, cross your fingers.

  59. Barfbag

    Warcraft 2 worked flawlessly
    Blood worked as well
    Dungeon Keeper 2 is a win32

  60. Flint

    I am trying to run a DOS accounting package called AccPac that is running on a XP Pro server on a Windows 7 64bit workstation. Dosbox seems to have major issues with mapped drives like J: is mapped as \\server\Accpac Then there is the issue of printers and the printers are on lpt ports So does D-Fend help in this regard? Also there is the issue of a large number of files=1000 any ideas on how to do all the above???

    I do appreciate any ideas . . .


  61. Andy

    Hey this is amazing…thank you. I own the resale rights to over 2500 DOS 386 & 486 games. Can I distribute this with my games package for free? Can I put a link on my website?


  62. Floppy

    Does anyone know how to properly install Princess Maker 2? I’m having trouble, it doesn’t have the “matching auto setup template” option available so I used both “auto setup template” and the “user template” (at different times of course) to install and it “worked” so I tried to run it and it brought me to a screen that says it’s already configured to run off of a hard-disk drive and the only option I have is to change the configuration data or quit, but even after I change the data, or attempt to, it only allows me to quit and I cannot play the game. Help please!~

  63. Bailey

    same prob as floppy. trying to play princess maker 2

  64. divya

    Will NFS II SE work with this?? Please reply

  65. Jacob Biedron

    When I open Princess Maker 2, a DosBox screen shows ups asking if I want to run the game on a CD-Rom or on a hard disk. No matter what I do, it doesn’t work, and hitting exit brings me back to my desktop.

  66. L1ght5h0w

    Anyone know of any abandonware repositories?

  67. SweetMonia

    Great program. It works perfectly, I was able to play Prince of Persia and many other games using it :)

  68. MasterL452

    Well, time to play SkyRoads again!

  69. PrincessKrei

    To all asking how to play Princess Maker 2, you have to edit by right clicking the profile and choosing Edit… the one with a pencil icon.

    The you go under Programs, then click choose file (folder icon) and change DOSINT.EXE into PM2.EXE.

  70. Monica

    Will Defend work without Dos Box? I have tried numerous times to get Dos Box to work on Vista, I am somewhat tech savvy, and never could… miss playing my dos based games.



  71. Paul

    have only just found out about this program and I think it’s good but how do I find out what the controls for the games are? 2, 4, 6, 8 are up, down, left and right, 5 is fire (on bust a move) enter is confirm (i think) but not sure if there are other buttons :s help greatly appreciated

  72. AmeriMike

    Hey – good call, CowGod. Battlechess was a good one. Love the STTNG games, but I was completely nerdishly addicted to Wizardry. Game V – Heart of the Maelstrom – was my favorite, but 1 through three were really good, and 6-8 were different but good.

  73. Stan

    I noticed several questions concerning USB joysticks. The most likely reason they don’t work is the fact that USB was not supported in dos. Usb didn’t even exist at that time. USB was first supported in Windows 98.

  74. Quintin

    when i double click on the game i want to play it gives me a message : The file “\users\Quintin\D-Fend Reloader\virtualHD\GTA\GTA-auto-installer.exe” is a windows executable.Dosbox cannot run this type of file! PLEASE PLEASE any help. it does it with all the games.

  75. Death Archangel

    can I play these game when I use this tools?
    These are few games I would like to play if it deserve my attention ^^:

    1.Startrek Invasion
    2.Resident Evil
    3.Yu-Gi oh
    5.Command and Conquere Red Alert Playstation 1

  76. Mandee

    Could you have any idea why dfend reloaded wouldn’t be coming completly of my computer after I do uninstall? and when I try to close it it won’t close and gives me an error message saying… Acess violation at address 0126B9B1 read of address 023DA980????? Any advice would be great

  77. alex

    Just downloaded the original Championship Manager 2 from another site. When you try to run the application it shows the dos window, starts loading up and then just goes back to Windows and nothing happens. Any ideas?

  78. mr stabby

    Is there much chance of it running Windows 1.0 – 3.1? I know DOSBox does, so this should, but you never know.

  79. hunglo

    will d-fend work on a PC game? I have the CD for it, it wont install in windows 7 normally. so do i just drag the CD files onto d-fend and I will be able to continue set up? the game is starfighter

  80. More Granularity

    Is there any way to print from a DOS program with DOSBOX or D-fend?

  81. mattdanison

    Same question as Hunglo on October 23, 2011. I have the CDs for Star Trek 25th Anniversary and Star Trek Judgment Rites, but it won’t install in Windows 7 normally. You’re making a lot of people very happy; thank you for your time!

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