Playing old DOS games on the Raspberry Pi

Retro Gamer

© Lead Image © lightwise,

© Lead Image © lightwise,

Article from Issue 261/2022

Play old DOS games on the Dosbian operating system, which turns the Raspberry Pi into an 80486 PC.

Many users still hold old DOS games dear despite, or maybe precisely because of, their blocky graphics, beeping sounds, and chiptune music. Of course, state-of-the-art PCs are not much use for installing games for the old 16-bit operating system. The installation will typically fail, the hardware is far too fast, and the systems no longer support numerous components such as Soundblaster 16 sound cards or floppy drives. DOS runtime environments and DOS emulators such as DOSEMU and DOSBox often require a complex setup on Linux to run old DOS games.

Because older computer systems that are still suitable for the 16-bit operating system from the 1980s and early 1990s are becoming increasingly rare, the Raspberry Pi is a great alternative platform for the old games. Paired with Dosbian [1], a development by Italian programmer Carmelo Maiolino, you get a mature and easy-to-deploy solution.


Dosbian on the Raspberry Pi does not take much in terms of resources. The operating system can be used on a Raspberry Pi 2B, although some modifications of the configuration are required to run games smoothly. All of the more recent generations of the small-board computer (SBC) will support Dosbian without problem. However, for old Windows games to run well on Dosbian, a Raspberry Pi 4 with added RAM is recommended because the software for these games requires fairly extensive memory capacities.


Use Express-Checkout link below to read the full article (PDF).

Buy this article as PDF

Express-Checkout as PDF
Price $2.95
(incl. VAT)

Buy Linux Magazine

Get it on Google Play

US / Canada

Get it on Google Play

UK / Australia

Related content

  • Lutris

    If you frequently play games on Linux, you are accustomed to dealing with many different installers and configurations. Lutris can help simplify the process of setting up all your games.

  • Kodi 18.0 and LibreELEC 9.0

    Thanks to Kodi 18.0, LibreELEC 9.0 now supports the DRM encryption used by many streaming services. However, integrating Netflix, Amazon, and other streaming services does involve some manual work.

  • Lakka

    With the right software, you can turn the Raspberry Pi into a versatile console for retro games.

  • KolibriOS

    KolibriOS, written in assembler, is especially suited to very old hardware – it even fits on a floppy disk.

  • Lutris

    Gaming on Linux has traditionally involved a complex installation and configuration procedure, until now. Lutris lets you enjoy games from different worlds quickly in a unified interface.

comments powered by Disqus

Direct Download

Read full article as PDF:

Price $2.95

Subscribe to our Linux Newsletters
Find Linux and Open Source Jobs
Subscribe to our ADMIN Newsletters
Find SysAdmin Jobs