This is a patch for the Dance
of the Planets (DOP) astronomy simulator.
DOP is a DOS-based program dating back to the 90's, but is still one
of the best simulators around. It will run in a command window under
Windows (XP & 7 work ok), but some 'modern' PCs are unable to handle the graphic
fonts resulting in corrupted or scrambled characters, specifically
numbers 1 to 9 and a few punctuation symbols. See screenshots below. There is some discussion in this DOP forum.
One solution is to run it under an emulator such as DOSBox, but this
patch allows you to fix the problem at source by overwriting the font table address used by DOP.
A few addresses are built-in to the patcher for convenience, but they may not work on all
PCs as it is BIOS-dependent. There
is no harm trying as the screen will just appear more/less scrambled.
If the built-in ones don't work, you can find the exact address
manually using tools such as FindFont and tell the patcher to use that instead.
Before the patch...
After optional 'zero' patch...
Minimum system requirements
Windows 98SE and later, tested on Windows XP & Windows 7.
Although the patcher only runs in a command window, once it's patched,
the Dance program can be run in either
Windows or DOS.
V4 adds an option to specify your own font table address; you can find these addresses yourself using tools such as FindFont
The program is free, but if you pass it on, please keep the
There is no
'installation' - the downloadable file is the main executable you run,
download & save it to the folder containing your Dance.exe file,
are several options when running the patcher so nothing will happen if
you just double-click it - it needs to be run from a command window.
Starting one of these varies according
your version of Windows;
some examples are:-
- click Start, Programs, Accessories, Command prompt
- click Start, Run, then type cmd then press
- click Start, Run, then type command then press Enter
- click Start, type cmd in the search box then press Enter (Windows 7)
In the command window, navigate to the folder containing the Dance.exe
Run the patcher by typing:
This will display various options for appling/removing patches. For more information, type:
Contact me if you have any problems.
Just delete the executable file you downloaded.
© Phil Tipping, 2011