Screenshots from IBM DOS J4.06/V

This is IBM DOS Version J4.0/V (5605-PNA) for IBM PS/55. "/V" stands for VGA (Video Graphics Array) because it runs in VGA's 640 x 480 graphics mode. It has three minor versions, J4.05/V, J4.06/V and J4.07/V. Basically, they can run on IBM-compatible PCs, though something goes wrong.

Install Program

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The basic configuration of Japanese DOS doesn't have any Japanese input method. You can input hiragana and katakana. But for kanji, the only way to input them is by the IBM Kanji code or JIS Kuten code, so you have to look it up in a kanji dictionary. Prior to DOS J5.02/V, the installation program copies $IAESKK.SYS driver. It has a simple method of the kana-to-kanji conversion that you have to type the pronunciation of kanji and choose a correct kanji one by one. For example, if you want to input "日本語" (nihongo) in romaji, you have to type "nichi", [Convert] key, "honn", [Convert] key, "go", [Convert] key. This is easier than the code input, but still a complex and ineffective way to input sentences for native Japanese speakers.

This version comes with IBMMKK (IBM Multi-phrase kana-to-kanji converter) that you can directly convert pronunciation of a sentence to a mix of kana and kanji characters like in modern Japanese input method s. You have to run installation program from the third setup disk. This driver uses 224 KB of expanded memory through the EMS driver or the non-standard bank memory.

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The greeting message of the installation program showed "Thank you for purchasing Multi-phrase Converter V3.0" because it was sold separately (priced at ¥30,000) for older versions.

DOS Shell

Main Group

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Command Prompt

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File System

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BASIC interpreter

This version has poor graphics compatibility with DOS J4.0 BASIC. It can run on IBM-compatible PCs. However, in later versions, it checks the string "IBM" in the BIOS ROM, and prevent it from running on non-IBM machines.

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In PS/2 (English) mode

Switching from PS/2 (English) mode to PS/55 (Japanese) mode

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DOS Shell

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inserted by FC2 system