Bit of a delayed response, but try this. This does manually what the front end programs do, avoiding needing one, and producing a game start-up from a desk top shortcut.
1. Install dox box v0.74. Make a shortcut to the exe on your desk top. Have a look the target line in the properties. It has a switch on the end: -userconfig pointing to a default .conf file.
2. The default configuration file is automatically created the first time you run DOSBox. Make an appropriate dosbox config file, WiR.conf or some similar name, specifically for WIR. (Edit with a txt editor such as notepad). *See below on how you do that. You can make one for each dos game, then set up separate desktop shortcuts to the dosbox exe for each game that will engage that game's config file in the target line of the shortcut. The config file includes the mount and run instructions for the game. I suggest putting the WIR.conf file in a separate folder on your C drive, which is recommended because there were problems with win7 /vista getting it to run correctly out of subdirectories of the Progam Files (x86) location.
3. Go to the shortcut, and change the switch in the target line from -userconfig, to -conf. I suggest typing it to make sure you get the short dash. Leave a space, type a “ mark, then type the complete directory path to the special .conf file you made to run WiR, then close the quote.
EG – The target line should end up looking something like this, with the location paths corrected to what you have:
"C:\Program Files (x86)\DOSBox-0.74\DOSBox.exe" -conf "C:\Conf files\WIR.conf"
Then you can change the name of the shortcut, and its icon, to WIR if you like. Now the shortcut opens dosbox, mounts as the operative drive the path to your WIR folder, and starts the game - in one hit. My pacwar shortcut works every time. My SP III shortcut sometimes needs a couple of goes, probably because it has to look for the CD in the drive to run the security check. If your mouse pointer doesn't activate by clicking, hit ctrl-F10.
4. Repeat the process for any other dos games so you have unique desktop shortcuts for each.
As to how to set up the instructions in the config file, dosbox has a sample file with #comments that you can leave there, and you copy the instruction and then put your config instruction in. You get the sample file by clicking on DOSBox 0.74 Options.bat file. You amend it to what you want, and save it with a suitable name, eg WiR.conf
This is what my dosboxPW.conf file looks like, I suggest you start by amending the path and file names in the bottom few lines to whatever is appropriate and seeing if the settings work for you. I was given these particular settings by Rich Dionne, credit where it's due.
# fullscreen -- Start dosbox directly in fullscreen.
# fulldouble -- Use double buffering in fullscreen.
# fullfixed -- Don't resize the screen when in fullscreen.
# fullresolution -- What resolution to use for fullscreen, use together with fullfixed.
# output -- What to use for output: surface,overlay,opengl,openglnb,ddraw.
# hwscale -- Extra scaling of window if the output device supports hardware scaling.
# autolock -- Mouse will automatically lock, if you click on the screen.
# sensitiviy -- Mouse sensitivity.
# waitonerror -- Wait before closing the console if dosbox has an error.
# priority -- Priority levels for dosbox: lower,normal,higher,highest.
# Second entry behind the comma is for when dosbox is not focused/minimized.
# mapperfile -- File used to load/save the key/event mappings from.
# language -- Select another language file.
# memsize -- Amount of memory dosbox has in megabytes.
# machine -- The type of machine tries to emulate:hercules,cga,tandy,vga.
# captures -- Directory where things like wave,midi,screenshot get captured.
# frameskip -- How many frames dosbox skips before drawing one.
# aspect -- Do aspect correction.
# scaler -- Scaler used to enlarge/enhance low resolution modes.
# Supported are none,normal2x,advmame2x,advmame3x,advinterp2x,interp2x,tv2x.
# core -- CPU Core used in emulation: simple,normal,full,dynamic.
# cycles -- Amount of instructions dosbox tries to emulate each millisecond.
# Setting this higher than your machine can handle is bad!
# cycleup -- Amount of cycles to increase/decrease with keycombo.
# cycledown Setting it lower than 100 will be a percentage.
# nosound -- Enable silent mode, sound is still emulated though.
# rate -- Mixer sample rate, setting any devices higher than this will
# probably lower their sound quality.
# blocksize -- Mixer block size, larger blocks might help sound stuttering
# but sound will also be more lagged.
# prebuffer -- How many milliseconds of data to keep on top of the blocksize.
# mpu401 -- Enable MPU-401 Emulation.
# intelligent -- Operate in Intelligent mode.
# device -- Device that will receive the MIDI data from MPU-401.
# This can be default,alsa,oss,win32,coreaudio,none.
# config -- Special configuration options for the device.
# type -- Type of sblaster to emulate:none,sb1,sb2,sbpro1,sbpro2,sb16.
# base,irq,dma,hdma -- The IO/IRQ/DMA/High DMA address of the soundblaster.
# mixer -- Allow the soundblaster mixer to modify the dosbox mixer.
# oplmode -- Type of OPL emulation: auto,cms,opl2,dualopl2,opl3.
# On auto the mode is determined by sblaster type.
# oplrate -- Sample rate of OPL music emulation.
# gus -- Enable the Gravis Ultrasound emulation.
# base,irq1,irq2,dma1,dma2 -- The IO/IRQ/DMA addresses of the
# Gravis Ultrasound. (Same IRQ's and DMA's are OK.)
# rate -- Sample rate of Ultrasound emulation.
# ultradir -- Path to Ultrasound directory. In this directory
# there should be a MIDI directory that contains
# the patch files for GUS playback. Patch sets used
# with Timidity should work fine.
# pcspeaker -- Enable PC-Speaker emulation.
# pcrate -- Sample rate of the PC-Speaker sound generation.
# tandyrate -- Sample rate of the Tandy 3-Voice generation.
# Tandysound emulation is present if machine is set to tandy.
# disney -- Enable Disney Sound Source emulation.
# Nothing to setup yet!
# xms -- Enable XMS support.
# ems -- Enable EMS support.
# modem -- Enable virtual modem emulation.
# comport -- COM Port modem is connected to.
# listenport -- TCP Port the modem listens on for incoming connections.
# directserial -- Enable serial passthrough support.
# comport -- COM Port inside DOSBox.
# realport -- COM Port on the Host.
# defaultbps -- Default BPS.
# parity -- Parity of the packets. This can be N, E or O.
# bytesize -- Size of each packet. This can be 5 or 8.
# stopbit -- The number of stopbits. This can be 1 or 2.
# ipx -- Enable ipx over UDP/IP emulation.
# Lines in this section will be run at startup.
mount C "C:\Pacwar32"
< Message edited by Ian R -- 3/19/2016 5:35:02 AM >
"You may find that having is not so nearly pleasing a thing as wanting. It is not logical, but it is often true."
- Cdr Spock