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May 2003

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Installing a hybrid WIN32S 1.25/1.30 extension in WinOS/2 on OS/2 Warp 4

By Jeffrey Race© May 2003

(Combining and detailing resources from Judy's Warped World, Charles Bradley, Phil Griffin-Allwood, Matt Ion, Eric W. Burgin and other anonymous OS/2 enthusiasts; thanks to all.)

This installation will allow operation under OS/2 of some Windows programs such as Acrobat Distiller and Acrobat Exchange V 3.

  1. Change C:\AUTOEXEC.BAT to remove PATH reference to C:\WINDOWS;C:\WINDOWS\SYSTEM temporarily (reference: Judy's Warped World 'Installing Win32s in WinOS2' at <> Download from <>
  2. Unzip into a temporary directory. This will give you two files -
  3. Open an OS/2 window, go into the directory containing the win32s files and unzip W32SPACK.EXE using the "create directory structure" option appropriate to your unzip utility. (For PKUNZIP use <execute W32SPACK.EXE -d>.) [Editor's note: Or you can run the INSTALL.BAT batch file and skip to step e.]
  4. Run the program .\DISK1\SETUP.EXE from within a WinOS2 Full Screen Session.
  5. Install Freecell and test.
  6. Verify WIN32S.INI reports Version=
  7. Temporarily backup \OS2\MDOS\WINOS2\SYSTEM
  8. If installing on a hard drive over 2 gb, install 2GBFIX.EXE in the AUTOEXEC.BAT file which loads the WinOS2 session, to fix the problem of faulty disk space report (necessary for Adobe Distiller 3.01 install which checks disk space and gets faked out by 10 gb drive).
  9. Install Win32s130 from disks supplied with HP1150C printer (or other Win32s Win3.1 application such as Adobe Acrobat Distiller 3.01) or from Microsoft at
  10. Temporarily backup \OS2\MDOS\WINOS2\SYSTEM
  11. Copy 1.25 \SYSTEM backup to \SYSTEM and 1.25 \SYSTEM\WIN32S backup to \SYSTEM\WIN32S
  12. From 1.30 \SYSTEM\WIN32S backup, copy these files only to \SYSTEM\WIN32S:
  13. Test Freecell--OK; Windows now reports Win32s Version 1.30.167
  14. Any new Win3.1 Win32 application install will destroy this hybrid 1.25/1.30 installation, resulting in 'Unexpected DOS Error 21' message. Therefore for future use:
  1. On WinOS2 sessions running Win32, set DOS settings DOS_FILES to 255

    If while a WIN32s application, you receive a message indicating that the application has run out of memory, change the DOS setting for DPMI_MEMORY_LIMIT to decrease the amount of DPMI memory. This change allows more room for WIN32s memory.

    To run Visual FoxPro, change DOS setting for DPMI_MEMORY_LIMIT to 16.

  2. Should a Win32s reinstall become necessary, it may be necessary to edit the file x:\OS2\MDOS\WINOS2\SYSTEM\WIN32S.INI with a text editor. You should see the following lines (along with others):


    Change the Setup=1 lines to Setup=0 and re-run the installation

  3. To reinstall Adobe Acrobat Distiller, change ACRODIST.EXE, DISSASST.EXE and ACROEX16.EXE file extensions to SAV because they may become locked.
  4. Warp 4.0 contains a file on the root named README. This file contains some information and troubleshooting tips for Win32s.
Please send reports of corrections or improvements to the author at <>.


   Win32s125 on Hobbes -
   Judy's Warped World -
   2GBFIX.ZIP on Hobbes -

Jeffrey Race has written a number of articles on a variety of subjects which can be viewed at

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