LKBEN10908: Disable MS DOS (16 Bit) Subsystem in Windows


DOS and 16 Bit applications are not needed any more


16 Bit applications can be a risc to stability and security of the operating system


In local policies or through Group Policy (GPO) the 16 Bit Subsystem can be disabled. Open Policy with Group Policy Editor (gpedit.msc), navigate to

"Computer Configuration/Administrative Templates/Windows Components/Application Compatibility" and set "prevent access to 16 bit applications" to ACTIVE

This should disable the so called NTVDM (NT virtual Dos Machine), the 16 Bit Subsystem. 

This does not generally disable a "DOS Box" as a commandline shell, as long as it's the (32-Bit) CMD.EXE.


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About the Author

Author: Wim Peeters - Keskon GmbH & Co. KG

Wim Peeters is electronics engineer with an additional master in IT and over 30 years of experience, including time spent in support, development, consulting, training and database administration. Wim has worked with SQL Server since version 6.5. He has developed in C/C++, Java and C# on Windows and Linux. He writes knowledge base articles to solve IT problems and publishes them on the Lubby Knowledge Platform.