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Difficulties with Arachne web browser

by Trevor 42 / August 1, 2005 9:58 AM PDT

Hello All,

I am trying to get the Arachne web browser installed and configured on an IBM notebook computer.

IBM Thinkpad 760L (circa 1996 vintage)
133 Mhz Pentium 1 processor
48 Mb RAM
865Mb Hard disk drive
Internal Floppy disk srive
US Robotics PCMCIA sportster 28.8 modem on Com 4
(which is recognised by both browser & O/S)

MS-DOS version 6.22
Arachne version 1.70

I have configured it using the both the PPP Wizard and manually (neither of which were particularly difficult with the ISP information readily to hand)and using the modem initialization string quoted in the manufacturers handbook.

However, I either get the message PPP fault - driver not installed - - (Both the modem and the default packet driver are installed).


on a previous occasion - Cannot get a carrier

Before anyone asks - Yes I have checked that both the cable and modem are securely attached. I have also checked there are no resource conflicts and that the base addresses were correctly listed.

I can hear the modem dialling and trying to connect.

I tried configuring it to work with my trusty BCM external hardware modem on COM2(which I have used with every M.S o/s & Linux)but to no avail.

I have configured it to connect directly to the net rather than through a LAN but I verified that its default packet driver (DOSPPPD)was installed in the initial set up.

I have connected around one hundred PCs to the internet in my time using all of the microsoft operating systems (except DOS)and a variety of Linux distros but I am totally stuck with this problem.

Whilst the browser interface is very attractive and gives the appearence of a good utility I do wonder if this problem originates with me or is a software bug or similar?

I did consider installing the lynx webrowser but it is too large to fit on a single floppy.

Net tamer looked interesting (and ideal for my requirements) but the unregistered version has limited functionality and when I e-mailed to register they did not seem to understand what I wanted to do (you cannot register via the website)

Although I could purchase Windows 95 on floppy disk via eBay and load an early version of internet explorer or similar I don't really want all of the unecessary (for me) utilities/ fonts etc that it comes bundled with. In fact Windows 3.1 had a lot of things I don't need or want. I have a desktop running XP so from the notebook all I wanted was an e-mail client and (occasionally) a web browser utility plus some other DOS tools that I like.

Apart from this problem I am really pleased with the notebook (and MS-DOS 6.22).

I understand that DOS (PTS-DOS) is used on the international space station. I only hope they have more luck than me if they try to '''phone home'' using Arachne (which I think has a lot of potential).However I do wish Commander Collins and her crew a safe return to earth.

As usual my thanks for reading this rather long post.

Kind regards,


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I wonder if this really ...
by Kees Bakker / August 3, 2005 1:26 AM PDT

is an Arachne problem or that it's located somewhere deeper in the OS.

I did some googling yesterday for a MS-DOS ping program (that would come in handy) and all I could find was an unreadable site to download it from and a comment from someone who did that he couldn't get it working because of DNS-problems.

There's a lot of software involved (modem drivers, PCMCIA interface, network software and TCP/IP) and I'm afraid you'll find it rather difficult to get it working.

Older versions of browsers are hardly usable nowadays. There's a lot of html and javascript and png and CSS they don't know about, and quite a lot of sites will be rather unusable, I'm afraid. Mail, of course, will work.
So if you can't get at least Windows 95 on diskette (that did exist!) I would suggest you invest some bucks in another laptop. Any 8 year old secondhand will do, I think, and that won't be so very expensive.

This one will be perfect to play old DOS games on, if you like that, and WordPerfect 4.2 and Lotus 123 of course, and a lot of other software.


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Thanks Kees
by Trevor 42 / August 4, 2005 8:33 AM PDT

I think that I may follow your advice and go down the route of Windows 95 (and remove the stuff that I don't wnat).

Also I have noted that IBM OS/2 seems to sell very cheaply on eBay so I might invest in that as Windows 95 on floppy can sell for up to

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