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Public domain MAKE tool for DOS 16-bit (real mode) and 8086/88 CPU. Designed for Small C by J. Hendrix or any other languages.
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There is MAKE tool for Small C by J. Hendrix. Good compiler, but toolchain definitly must be enhanced.

The second reason to recreate this utility - absent free MAKE for DOS 16-bit (real mode). DJGPP offers just DPMI-based tools.

This MAKE does not support variables - smallest as possible. MAKE is real small - just 5KB on your hard drive!

Source code 100% wroten in Small C (with Assembler inlines).

Makefile format

Nothing new. This is standart makefile text-file.

target1: [dependency1] [.. dependency2]
       [.. build_command_2]

target2: [dependency2] [.. dependency3]
       [.. build_command_z]

By default, MAKE start build first target.

Empty lines between targets - optional and not required. Diffrence between buid command and targets - build commands lines starts from spaces (or tabs).

Notes about command execution in MS-DOS.

By default, MAKE start search EXE and COM in current directory and in PATH.

If found - run.

If not found (it should be BAT or built-in command like COPY or DEL) - try execute

 COMMAND.COM /C build_command

Path to COMMAND.COM will be received from COMSPEC env variable

So, if You wrote "cc mycool.c" it could start

 K:\SMALLC20\CC.EXE mycool.c


 K:\SMALLC22\CC.EXE mycool.c

depends to directory order in PATH.

How to build

Just type


Must be in PATH:

  • Small C 2.2
  • ASM (Small Assembler)
  • VAL (linker)
  • UPX (executable file compressor)

Some of this tools you can download for free from


By default, VAL-linker put 0xFFFF into max memory field (in exe-header). It is means - DOS will allocate all available memory for programm, when start it. It is bad choice, if you need start execute another child-program. DOS could not got free memory for new process and return "no memory" error (INT 21h, AX=4B00h will return CF and errcode 8).

So, I wrote exesize.exe - patch for MAKE's exe header, to avoid this problem. This patch must be applied to fresh make.exe after linking. Here is no sense apply this patch more then once (second time - it will change nothing).


Max target count - 1024

Max MAKEFILE size - 16KB


Public domain (The Unlicense

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