Real-mode meaning

An operational state in Intel CPU chips starting with the 286 in 1982. It makes the CPU function like the original 16-bit Intel 8086/8088 chip, which was limited to 1MB of memory. DOS applications running native (not under Windows) run in Real Mode. See Protected Mode and Virtual 8086 Mode.
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(computing) The default operational mode of x86-compatible CPUs, offering direct software access to all memory and peripherals but without the advanced features of protected mode.
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