Installing Process Commander on ArcaOS, MCP or Warp4 FP13+

Last updated: October 25, 2016

As you know, IBM made changes to DOSCALL1.DLL and KBDBASE.SYS in FP13 that broke the PC installer and the PC enhanced keyboard driver. These changes have carried forward to ArcaOS and the Merlin Convenience Pak (MCP) so the same failures continue to occur and the same workarounds continue to apply.

The workarounds allow you to install Process Commander (PC) and use most of its original functionality. You lose the ability to trap the Ctrl-Alt-Del key and to use the other keyboard hooks that depend on the enhanced driver. However, all the kill methods and monitoring features still work as before.


You're going to need some tools.

Get C. W. Rose's EXEPATCH. You need EXEPATCH to create the patched DOSCALL1.DLL. The name EXEPATCH is a bit misleading. EXEPATCH is not a general purpose utility. It is a replacement for a broken part of the PC installers. What EXEPATCH does is make a copy of DOSCALL1.DLL and patches the copy exactly as the PC installers would have done, if they still worked.

Make sure EXEPATCH is easy to access. You probably should put it in a directory in the PATH. Once you have PC installed, you might wish to keep a copy in the \pc\bin directory.

If you don't already have Stardock Process Commander FixKit #1, get it now. It is also available at Process Commander FixKit #1 from Hobbes.

Uninstall Process Commander

If you don't have PC installed or if you are doing a full reinstall of ArcaOS, MCP or Warp4, skip this section.

If you have PC installed, you must uninstall it before applying any updates to base OS/2 components. This has been true since PC was first released and applies to any update that might replace base OS/2 components. This includes OS/2 Fix Pak's and Device Driver Fix Pak's. If you don't do this, the FixPak install might unexpectedly archive and replace PC's version of the base driver or DLL rather than Warp's.

If you don't have FixKit#1 installed, install it now with the command:

This will enable you to use PCINSDLL and correct some latent Process Commander defects. The Fix Kit installer may complain that it can't patch DOSCALL1.DLL. Ignore this. DOSCALL1.DLL will get patched later.

Uninstall PC with the command:


This removes all references to PC from CONFIG.SYS and the WPS without deleting the installed PC application code.

If you already had PCKBD.SYS installed, PCINSDLL will report this. If so, edit CONFIG.SYS and find the line that reads:

where x: is the PC install drive and REM it out.

Once PC is uninstalled, apply the planned OS/2 updates. When you are ready to reinstall PC, continue from here.

Installing Process Commander for the First Time

This section is for those doing a first time Process Commander install on a post FP13 system. This section is also for those that did an ArcaOS, MCP or Warp4 reinstall that deleted the installed PC code. I recommend installing PC to the boot drive since it so tightly coupled to the operating system.

Reinstalling Process Commander after updating OS/2

This is for those that uninstalled Process Commander to apply an OS/2 update. The PC application code is still available, so you don't need to do a full reinstall of PC. This will include those that did a full reinstall but had the PC code installed a drive other than the boot drive.

Finishing Up

When Process Commander starts, it will always complain that it can not find the enhanced keyboard driver and will prompt you to reinstall it. Ignore the message. You not do not want the enhanced driver installed. I know of a creative soul that patched PC.SYS and changed the message to something less disturbing.

If you want to use some a key combination other than Ctrl-Alt-F12, modify the KEYB: value and try it. Most values other than Ctrl-Alt-Del will work.

When you are done, most of the original PC features will work. The known exceptions, which all depend on the enhanced keyboard driver, include:

Page last changed Tue Sep 20 10:08:52 2011