|I always thought that MS-DOS is the precursor to the ubiquitous Windows and, hence, both OSs would share some common grounds.|
A [incomplete and extremely simplified] history of Microsoft Desktop OS's:
Windows (a la, Win 3.11)
Windows 9x (a la, Windows 95, 98, ME)
Windows NT (a la, Windows NT, 2k, XP, 7)
Each of these could be seen as a "generation" with each "generation" consisting of several different versions.
While there are some similarities shared between each of these generations... in many cases, the differences outweigh the similarities. In some cases, many core workings like the kernel and file system structure are totally different. To say nothing about how they manage memory and external hardware.
Modern Windows (NT family) is 3 generations removed from MS-DOS. It shares practically nothing with it any more.
|Going back to the cmd.exe simulator, would you say a complete and masterful grasp of this simulator suffices for all command-prompt memory data access/processing in any Windows-OS application?|
the command prompt. So you're basically asking "does a masterful understanding of the command prompt suffice for understanding the command prompt?"
So the answer is "yes". But the question doesn't really make sense.
|It sounds like you're implying that DosBox is better than cmd.exe; right?|
No. You're comparing apples and oranges. They're completely different.
cmd is a [series of] tool[s] used for command prompt functionality on Windows.
DosBox is a program that emulates an entirely different operating system on Windows (similar to how NES emulators simulate a Nintendo system on Windows... or how Wine simulates Windows on *nix)
Again... cmd and DOS have literally nothing to do with each other
. The only similarity is that they use command prompts. EDIT: And some of the same commands might be available on both of them /EDIT.
|Is it beneficial to even learn the MS-DOS in this age? If yes, what are the likely spheres of application? |
It's never harmful to have more information. And understanding older OS's might give you insight into OS design and lower level system mechanics. So I can't say it's totally useless.
But it's not really practical, no. Practically nobody runs DOS anymore. It probably wouldn't even run on most modern hardware.
EDIT: That said... it IS VERY
beneficial to learn how to use the command prompt.
|If some of my questions sound trivial, I apologize! I started programming in C++ not too long ago.|
No need to apologize! You seek knowledge. There is nothing wrong with that!
Though this has little/nothing to do with C++ ;)