This is a patch for the Dance
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
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.
14-Dec-2011 - all programs are held on the
pCloud.com storage site. If there are problems downloading, check your
computer's access or contact me via email address at bottom of this
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 package
There is no
'installation' - the downloadable file is the main executable you run, so
download & save it to the folder containing your Dance.exe file, e.g.
There 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 to your version of Windows; some
- click Start, Programs, Accessories, Command prompt
- click Start, Run, then type cmd
then press Enter
- 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