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DOS apps suddenly don't run in Win2k

Lee Most
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Hi, Computer Gurus!

The IT people insisted on putting Windows 2000 on this PC about a year
an a half ago when they couldn't figure out how to reinstall a font on
my "ancient" Win98 OS. After much reconfiguring I finally got
everything working, including the DOS-based Paradox database
application I've been using and updating since version 1.0. There's
over a megabyte of code in it and I don't have time to port it over to
a Windows databse engine. (I'm not a computer expert, I'm in
facilities maintenance, but there's no one around here who wants to
spend time or money to rewrite a complicated application that affects
only one person, me.)

Yesterday, for no reason that I can tell, Windows 2000 suddenly
stopped running Paradox and all other DOS apps. Windows programs will
still run, even while the DOS box is busy, and I can still get at my
data via my laptop running the same program over the network, but
that's awkward and slow.

Observations: The "command prompt" window opens fine and will run
basic DOS commands, but if I try to run any DOS either windowed or
full screen, it freezes. Just a blinking cursor on the left hand side
of the screen. One clue might be that when I click the X in the
corner and then the "End Now" button in the message box that comes up,
it takes forever to close the window, sometimes 10 minutes, sometimes
a couple of hours. Windows won't close while a DOS box is open, so
the only way to get rid of it (other than waiting sometimes forever)
is to turn off the machine and turn it on again. Since it took a long
time to shut down, I figured maybe it was just taking extra long to
start up, so I started Paradox last night hoping it would finally be
up when I got back here 16 hours later. Alas. Still a blinking
cursor when I got here this morning.

The only change I made to the system yesterday was remapping a network
drive. Changing it back the way I had it made no difference.

Any ideas why Win 2k would suddenly refuse to run any DOS program?

Thanks for any ideas.

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