Giulio Zambon's Website
Non-fiction - Books and manuals - MacDOS Manuals
MacDOS 1.0 and 2.0
by Giulio Zambon

ISBN: none
Publisher: Rainbow Hill Pty Ltd.
Publication dates: Oct 1993 / Sep 1994. Pages: 180 / 200.

List price: Delivered in digital form for free as part of the software package. Optionally available in printed form for AUD25.00 .

You can download the whole MacDOS 2.0 manual in PDF format (826 kb) by clicking here.

You will find additional information on the software product MacDOS and on Rainbow Hill in my personal website at giuliozambon.org/macdos. There, you will also be able to read the full source listings.

John Rotenstein, in his very positive review of MacDOS for "Australian MacWorld", said:
Credit should be given to the Western Australian company Rainbow Hill, maker of MacDOS, for creating such a professional product. The user guide, supplied on disk and available in printed form for an additional $25, is of very high quality and somewhat better than the DOS manuals supplied by many IBM-clone manufacturers. The manual very clearly explains the differences between MacDOS and standard DOS commands, most notably explaining how to cope with filenames which are much more expressive than the DOS "eight-dot-three" filenames.

What follows is the first subsection of the first chapter of the manual MacDOS 2.0.

Why MacDOS?

MacDOS satisfies the need of many Macintosh users to be able to avoid repeating particular sequences of mouse operations when working with files.

Normally, you handle documents on the Macintosh desktop through the Finder. It is the Finder that creates the desktop metaphor by drawing icons and responding to the mouse. Together, the Macintosh Operating System (MacOS) and the Finder have made computers accessible to all those who were intimidated by technical jargon and arcane commands.

Nevertheless, the ease of use of a Graphic User Interface (GUI) does not come free of charge: operations which [sic] require brief commands on another computer need sometimes an almost interminable repetition of clicking and dragging on the Mac.

People who have never used any other computer before do not realise it, but others, who have worked with DOS or UNIX, immediately see that limitation. This is partly why many computer professionals have seen the Macintosh more as a toy rather than as a system capable of doing serious work.

For the past few years, hundreds of software developers have worked hard at providing a Macintosh-like interface on every conceivable computer. The developers of Macintosh software, on the other hand, have found it difficult to respond to those potential users who would like to have a character-based interface to the MacOS beside the GUI provided by the Finder.

MacDOS goes against the current tide and satisfies the need of Macintosh power-users by providing a DOS-like interface on the Mac.