Is it considered on topic to ask about non-supported (legacy) operating systems on modern computers (like a computer manufactured a few years ago)?

For example, this question:

Recently, I installed MS-DOS 6.22 and Windows 3.1 in a virtual machine. The install went perfectly.

However, after making the .vdi a .img and booting from it, I can't open WIN.COM. I get the Windows logo, but after that, it returns to MS-DOS: no error codes or messages.

What can I do to make Windows 3.1 launch? I can still use MS-DOS, even though it freezes after a few minutes.

My computer is an HP Pavilion 10 TS Notebook PC.

The computer mentioned is very not retro (it's about 5 years old, instead of, perhaps, 20 or 30 years old), but MS-DOS 6.22 and Windows 3.1 are retro (they were both made at least 25 years ago).

Would that question (and similar ones) be on topic?

  • "they were both made at least 25 years ago". A better measure of legacy would be when they were last supported, not when they were made. If something is officially supported, it must be because it is still being used for serious purposes. May 4, 2021 at 0:13

1 Answer 1


Combinations of old and new are always a critical source. A general guideline is to look where the problem asked is originates.

  • When it's on the 'classic' side a question is perfectly on topic (like when in above configuration a your Assembler produces unlinkable output).

  • When it's due to some emulation software it might be on topic, as these are tools within the RC scope.

  • When it's about modern environment/OS or modern non RC specific tools it's clearly off-topic.

In case of the example mentioned, I would at first sight go for off topic, as it seams to be about the vitual machine process to save a configuration and restore it. THere are other SE areas that might be more aropriate for that than RC.

The killing point here is less the computer (though it adds) but the OS that hosts the virtual machine - the one you forgot to mention :))

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