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I need to access an old VLB (before PCI controllers) SCADA card with a 16 bits application that controls the data and processes. I do have only the DOS driver for that card and I need to install a 32 bits OS on that host machine to allow me remote access (Teamviewer or VNC) to the application from smart devices. As a solution I was thinking of installing a VM with Windows 98 (where I am sure the application works on the host machine), but I am not sure if the VM may access the VLB controller on the host machine, where the card is installed. Anyone had any experience with non-standard devices installed on host machine to be accessed by the Virtual Machines running on it? What VM solution do you recommend? Thanks in advance

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I don't think any hypervisor can provide passthrough to such antique hardware. I really hope the purpose of this project is to decommission it. –  Michael Hampton Jan 16 '13 at 15:59
    
Another way could be using a linux live cd with wine (for the app software) and gain access to the SCADA card. –  patricks Jan 16 '13 at 16:11
    
Windows 98 is already a 32-bit operating system, and there are VNC server versions that will run on it. If you need further compatibility with newer versions of Windows, try using KernelEx, which will allow you to run a lot of XP-only code. –  trlkly May 15 at 7:52
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This won't work. You can install and run Windows 98 with old 16 bit apps just fine. The problem is that VM software creates a specific virtual environment, and that simulated computer will not include support for your special capture card. There are some virtual environments that support USB pass-through for VMs, but I'm not aware of any that will do this for PCI (or older) devices.

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PCI most definitely works, if motherboard supports VT-d (I've used PCI network cards and video capture cards in KVM VMs), but VLB is too old for sure. –  haimg Jan 16 '13 at 16:40
    
The hyervisor knows how to take any network adapter and present it to a VM in a generic way... that's not PCI passthrough. Video capture is nice, though. Which VM product did you use? –  Joel Coehoorn Jan 16 '13 at 16:47
    
Nope I'm talking about direct PCI path-through, not generic virtualized network card (e.g. I had to install the original hardware's drivers inside the VM). KVM is the platform: fedoraproject.org/wiki/Features/KVM_PCI_Device_Assignment –  haimg Jan 16 '13 at 16:51
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