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86Box v4.1

February 21, 2024 - written by richardg867

This is the February 2024 update to 86Box, bringing new emulated machines, new hardware and bugfixes.

The work-in-progress build currently available to our Patreon supporters will be updated accordingly. We hope to have its Local Switch feature for easy plug-and-play networking between emulated machines ready for public release soon.

Main features

Matrox video cards

Through the second half of the 1990s, the PC industry was in an all-out 3D accelerator war. Several companies tried their hand at producing hardware solutions to bring more advanced 3D games and applications to PCs, and some were more successful than others. It was a game of survival where only NVIDIA and ATI emerged victorious in the grand scheme of things.

Matrox sat right in the middle: they weren’t as big as the then-undisputed market leader 3dfx, but weren’t among more obscure names such as 3Dlabs either. The company, originally specializing in professional CAD cards, made its entry into the broader 3D market in 1995 with the MGA Millennium, followed up by the Mystique in 1996 and Millennium II in 1997. 86Box now emulates these three cards, available on the PCI bus.

Network cards

The single most popular PCI network solution of all time is now represented in 86Box, with Realtek RTL8139C+ emulation based on code from QEMU. This 100 Mbit controller first seen in the late 1990s has drivers available for a wide array of operating systems, often universally supporting the numerous revisions this chip has received over the years, including our C+ from the early 2000s.

This release also brings several PCI network cards from Digital Equipment Corporation, collectively known as the DEC Tulip family: the 21040, 21140 and 21143, also based on QEMU code. The 21040 is a 10 Mbit controller, while the 211xx models are 100 Mbit capable.

Generic compatible variants of the NE1000 and NE2000 are now available, addressing a common pitfall when setting up a Windows machine, where the network drivers provide different options on Novell and compatible cards. The D-Link DE-220P was also added as a second ISA Plug and Play NE2000 clone.



User interface