Why can’t my DOS and Win-OS/2 sessions see more than 2GB of free space?

This is a known issue for DOS and 16-bit Windows sessions (Win-OS/2) under OS/2, eComStation, and ArcaOS (and probably more). It is not a defect in ArcaOS, and is in fact due to a number of limitations in DOS itself (which can’t normally see disks larger than 2GB, anyway).

The workaround is to install a small TSR in your AUTOEXEC.BAT which limits the amount of free space exposed to DOS to 2GB. The file is 2GBFIX.COM, and is available from the excellent Hobbes file repository:


Download the file, unzip, and read the very simple directions in the included 2GBFIX.TXT.

While you’re downloading that file from Hobbes, be sure to browse other great software available there, and consider donating. Hobbes is a true resource for any OS/2 user, and is completely free for all.

An alternative solution is to download and install the V2GB.SYS driver in CONFIG.SYS:


The advantage of this solution is that it does not take up additional space in the VDM (Virtual DOS Machine).

Note that neither of these solutions is developed nor supported by Arca Noae. References here are for convenience, only. Unintended side-effects may occur with the use of either of these suggested workarounds (e.g., in the case of V2GB.SYS, running “dir” in a DOS session while this driver is active will close the session once the command completes). Be certain to disable any workarounds for this before opening a trouble ticket for the DOS subsystem itself.

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