Older BASICA and GWBASIC - Printable Version

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Older BASICA and GWBASIC - os2fan2 - 05-25-2008


I have been from a link on http://deger.republika.pl/Download_MS_Basic_versions.htm

I notice there the site has some antique versions of basica and gwbasic.


Apart from the listed versions, the oldest version i have found is 1.12. 


This is IBM basic.  I have managed to get most of these to work under Windows 2K, PCDOS 5.02 etc.  The current list of versions are

A1.00, A1.10, A2.00, A2.10, A3.00, A3.30, A3.31, A3.40, A4.00 basica.com
D1.00, D1.10, D2.00, D2.10, D3.00 = basic.com

D3.10 is the last version of diskbasic, the newer versions are just loaders for basica.

A3.10, D3.10, and A3.20 test for DOS version.

A3.40 and A4.00 are identical, except for the version number and the copyright date.  A3.40 is from OS/2 and DOS 5.x, A4.0 from DOS 4.0.  A3.31 is from OS/2 1.2.

All of these are converted by using PCE and Movbasic v5, the latter being modified and recompiled.  The result is similar to what produces IBMBASICA210 that is circulating on the net.

Re: Older BASICA and GWBASIC - LPG - 05-26-2008

What does the "GW" in GWBASIC stand for?

Re: Older BASICA and GWBASIC - os2fan2 - 05-26-2008

There are several stories for it.  Here is some comment for it, with discussion.


The original basic was casette-basic.  This was usually in ROM.  IBM computers typically had Basic C1.10 in rom.  Disk Basic (basic.com) allowed one to run cassette basic with DOS.  Then there was 'advanced basic'.

Microsoft responded with 'gee-whiz', a kind of reponse to advanced technology.

Graphic Workstation

The idea here is that GW Basic was written for workstations that had replaced rom-basic with graphics.  This is unlikely: the graphics area is A0000 - AFFFF, while GWBasic is at F6000. 

Still, it gives the product a kind of respectability.  Basic itself is not graphical.

People's initials

The name here is for eg Gates, William (ie Bill Gates), or another programmer who did the code.

Microsoft typically did not do this, but it is noting in passing that the Bootsector for IBM DOS 1.0 has a person's name in it.