Linked by Michael Saunders on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 18:21 UTC
Syllable, AtheOS Tired of endless Windows security problems? Intrigued by Linux's power but discouraged by its complexity? Tempted by Mac OS but not thrilled with the hardware cost? If so, you might want to investigate the growing bunch of hobbyist OSes -- Syllable, SkyOS, Haiku, MenuetOS, Visopsys, ReactOS and others. Syllable is perhaps the most promising of them all; it's a maturing open source desktop OS with an evolving kernel & device driver range, and is targeted at the home/small-office user.
Order by: Score:
Targetted at small office user?
by RideEmPony on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 18:50 UTC

More like targetted at OS developers. I can't imagine anyone else being remotely interested.

sounds interesting
by linuxgeekintraining on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 18:51 UTC

does it have a linux or freebsd based kernel or something totally different?

RE: Target, sounds interesting
by Vanders on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 18:56 UTC

The target is what you're aiming at, not where you are now. Of course only developers are going to be interested right now, but our target is to create something that a SOHO user would be comfortable with.

Syllable is a fork of AtheOS and has it's own unique kernel which is SMP capable, multithreaded and re-entrant. It is slightly more modular than Linux and can handle devices and device drivers in a slightly more sane mannner. Because Syllable is released under the [L]GPL the kernel uses some code from Linux (E.g. the slab allocator, device driver code).

1 Thing
by John DeHope 3 on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 18:58 UTC

Will my Linksys WMP54G wireless car run with less hassles setting it up than Linux? If so, let's talk. Otherwise, what's the point? That is linux's solitary problem as far as I am concerned.

v Meh.
by Anonymous on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 19:03 UTC
v OSes without apps...
by Anonymous on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 19:06 UTC
v Name-Brand Titles
by Me on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 19:06 UTC
Emphasizing
by xJulian on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 19:07 UTC

For instance, if you write an IRC client for Linux, chances are it'll get lost among the sea of similar apps on Freshmeat. If you write an IRC client for Syllable, though, it'll receive far more attention -- and could even become an official app...

That's undoubtedly true for most of the hobby operating systems mentioned at the beginning of the article. Amazingly, if you're a developer, developing for such a small OS could help you very much at getting your software out to people - even if it's a somewhat smaller userbase compared to Linux, Windows or even BeOS, you might reach more people than if you go for mainstream operating systems, simply because you have little to no competition.

This is definitely the case for Syllable and for SkyOS. Haiku and ReactOS have completely different goals and aim for compatibility, and I don't know the goals for MenuetOS or Visopsys, but alternative operating systems are worth at least a look. ;)

Well
by Emil Oppeln Bronikowski on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 19:15 UTC

Im Linux geek, yet I'll try to put it on my box, just to test it. Are binary prepraed i386, i586? Im asking, because I like to test new OS-es on my ol' trusty P250MMX. ;)

My favorite potential OS
by spikeb on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 19:35 UTC

Heh, look at all the SkyOS nerds saying Syllable is pointless ;)
As of right now, there's no real point to using syllable on the desktop, but in the future, there will be. I doubt major commercial applications will ever get ported, but I do think we'll see a thriving OSS community for this little OS that could.

People always complain about the lack of an OSS desktop operating system, or how the linux DE's just do not do the job - well here's your solution, get involved!

SkyOS
by jonas on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 19:55 UTC

I think it's really nice that Syllable finally gets some publicity.

Now I'd really like to hear Kelly's (of SkyOS fame) point of view. I'd like to know whether he still thinks that SkyOS is superior ( http://osnews.com/comment.php?news_id=7748&limit=no#262323 ) ...

Looks cool
by Smartpatrol on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 20:01 UTC

It begs the question of how it will compete in such a crowded OS market place. Don't get me wrong choice is good but I just don't see a need for yet another proprietary operating system. Kudos to those who are working on it though. Hopefully they can obtain their goals with it.

syllable and skyos
by M^2_77 on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 20:10 UTC

as emerges from the syllable site (and the related forum), major apps wont exist, unless they're coded for the native API: mainly because the native api is considered far superior (especially in terms of low resource occupation and bloat- well the lack of it)
so porting a foreign tollkit (gtk, not to say QT) wouldnt be worth the effort , because it wouldnt let appreciate the personality of a what appear to be a light weight OS

more or less the same for SkyOS: the SkyOS team has ported gtk+, but mainly to get GIMP and abiword to run, otherwise development for the native skyos toolkit is recommended

>>does it have a linux or freebsd based kernel or something totally different?
syllable is a fork/evolution of the Atheos project: this in turn is an OS completely on its own:
the kernel is multithreaded/smp capable and has some posix compatibility , but it's not freebsd or linux derived (as proven by the approach to multithreading, without Global Kernel Locks, and the cleaner separation between the kernel's internal structures and device driver routines, via APis)
then the kernel is "tightly coupled" with a X11-free ( unintentional pun :-) ) desktop UI (btw, no text only consoles, only full screen CLI windows for those who "cant live without the shell")

v RE: SkyOS
by SkyOS nerd on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 20:14 UTC
Syllable...
by Shapeshifter V.90 on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 20:19 UTC

...looks pretty sweet. One question: why the hell aren't these images in the screenshots gallery of the Syllable homepage?! Either that or the compression is wonky, cuz the last time I stepped into the image gallery there, my eyes started to burn like you wouldn't believe.

I wish they'd port Mono or DotGNU or something, though. I signed a pact with the devil; I'm not allowed to touch C++ anymore. ;(

RE: Looks cool, Meh
by Vanders on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 20:20 UTC

It begs the question of how it will compete in such a crowded OS market place.

We'll compete just like anyone else. We're ahead of the competition and hopefully that can continue.

..I just don't see a need for yet another proprietary operating system.

Syllable is hardly proprietory. It is Open Source, it is POSIX.1, 2 and 4 compliant, it uses a lot of GNU userland and toolchain applications. It is about as proprietory as Linux. I suspect you mean "different" but that is the case for any new product. Different is not inherently bad.

Syllable is "Just Another OS."

You'll have to excuse my scepticism but this website is called "OSNews". Out of interest, what do you find interesting when you're looking at an OS?

Haiku
by M^2_77 on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 20:20 UTC

...Beos was a pleasure because of the window server's and kernel's low latencies, the system-wise "pervasive multithreading" and the low overhead of spawining threads ...

this allowed for a user side impression of responsiveness, even running 8 mpeg player windows at once, on a 600 mhz cpu..

the team will have to work hard if they want to fully recreate this kind of OS experience because it will imply creating and fine tuning another clean kernel (linux is hardly a solution imho) ... so the attempt is (imho) admirable ;-)

@Jonas
by Kelly on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 20:21 UTC

"Now I'd really like to hear Kelly's (of SkyOS fame) point of view. I'd like to know whether he still thinks that SkyOS is superior..."

I'd like you to please point out where I said that SkyOS was superior to Syllable, or apologize for misrepresenting my words.

I will do you a favor though, and give you some of my quotes from the posts in that thread:

"Both systems are nice and have strong points. Arguing who is better is silly..."

"Like I said, both OS's are good. Lets please leave it at that."

So please, point out where I stated that SkyOS was superior to Syllable, since you obviously think I said that. If you can't (which I'm assuming will be the case), please apologize for making up something I said, and then let this thread return to the topic at hand.

...
by Thom Holwerda on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 20:24 UTC

Heh, look at all the SkyOS nerds saying Syllable is pointless ;)

Mmm, I never heard anyone say it's pointless, I can only remember some saying SkyOS is more advanced on certain points. But anyway, this is a story on Syllable, not SkyOS.

Syllable really is just as interesting as SkyOS is, with the difference being that I, personally, see more potential in SkyOS, but that's just me. Time will tell which one has more potential. But, of course the success of one doesn't have to interfere with the succes of another.

Syllable uses a different development model, has different ideals, and therefore different goals. There's a place for both. Conclusion: no need to diss SkyOS or Syllable.

syllable is a gr8 project...
by Youlle on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 20:42 UTC

i'd love to see serious alternatives to *nix and windows on the x86 architecture, i am an avid fan of skyOS true, but i also enjoy seeing the development and progression of Syllable. it would be good if we could put to rest this Syllable Vs SkyOS, both have their strong points.

so what?
by smoerk on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 20:43 UTC

i'm missing innovation... if you want do a OS like many others, thats a goal, but not very useful. (if you have fun, who cares).

it's less bloated => it doesn'T have all the features other OS have.

It's skinnable => Most useless feature I can think off.

Has it's own GUI API => if there are no cross-platform GUI toolkits, it's only another hobby os nobody needs. port wxwidgets and gtk+ to syllable. If you don't have a HIG, don't talk about native GUI API. behaviour is much more important than look.

if you really want to convince developers to use the native API, develop bindings for python and other languages.

port Mono to Syllable.

you need a good software installation system. this sucks with linux AND with windows.

RE: Thom, Kelly
by Vanders on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 20:44 UTC

There seems to be a contingent on both sides of the Syllable and SkyOS debate who want to fight and flame each the other side whenever either Syllable or SkyOS is mentioned here on OSNews. I guess it's a sign of a fairly well established OS when you get your own trolls and flamers! In all honesty I think the arguments are silly and ultimately harmful to both projects. We have similiar goals but have chosen totally different paths. As time goes on I see Syllable and SkyOS diverge more than anything else. I don't see that trend reversing any time soon. I occasionally read the SkyOS forums and I know that Robert keeps abreast of Syllable. There is some overlap in the user base; someone recently said that anyone who wants to use SkyOS would never use Syllable and vice versa. That's rubbish.

Yes, in some way SkyOS and Syllable are in competition. One of us might "win", both of us might "win". Personally I don't care..just as long as Syllable wins!

I have tried both
by David on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 20:46 UTC

I have tried both. While I really do like Syllable the development cycle is very slow. This isn't their fault, there arn't very many devs. It is really fast and reminds me of BeOS. SkyOS is much further along and has many strengths also. Honestly if both were usable right now and I actually had a choice it would be Syllable. But I think SkyOS is going to be the winner there. Higher profile, much, much farther along. If it really takes them 2-3 more years to get to Syllable 1.0 it will be like using Windows 3.1 by that time. Shame really. I hope that Mono can help bridge the software gap in the open source world. At least then we could all share the same apps but run them on whatever system suits us best.

v sky os, completly useless
by Anonymous on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 20:54 UTC
RE: I have tried both
by Vanders on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 21:06 UTC

Development is slow but it isn't that slow! Between the last release of Syllable and the next release the entire desktop will have been rewritten from scratch, a whole new bunch of GUI classes will have been added, applications will be translated, new drivers ported and bugs fixed. It's been two months since the last release so far; I don't believe that is a long time at all!

I don't know where the meme that SkyOS is "much farther along" has come from. SkyOS has more applications, Syllable has more drivers, but apart from that they're almost neck and neck. The majority of features are present in both. Syllable has some functionality not yet in SkyOS. SkyOS has some functionality not present in Syllable.

Now I'm tired of comparing Syllable to SkyOS, especially when we're not basing our arguments on solid facts. I'd much rather talk about what Syllable does and does not, can and can not, will and will not do.

RE: Shapeshifter V.90
by Michael Saunders on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 21:07 UTC

..."looks pretty sweet. One question: why the hell aren't these images in the screenshots gallery of the Syllable homepage?!"...

Some of them are, now -- a lot of the old screenshots have been removed. Also, a new, improved and cleaner website is in the pipeline too!

Regarding some of the comments about Syllable development being "slow" or "delayed": most of the work is going into the underlying subsystems, the foundations on which great apps can be built. Syllable already has a reliable kernel with a great range of drivers, and also has a very strong development toolchain.

The flashy apps will come; for now, though, the Syllable coders are concentrating on getting the basics right. Yeah, it's not sexy and cool, but it'll lead to a brilliant platform in the long-run. Lots of progress is being made!

...Hey...
by Gnomaniacal Perlmonger on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 21:13 UTC

...when the Linux came out, it was "just another dang unix-wanabe."

Somebody keep forgetting this....

RE: Vanders
by Thom Holwerda on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 21:14 UTC

I agree with you on the "skyos is much further along" thing. My experiences with Syllable are with earlier versions, and, in order to make a fairer judgement, I'm definitely gonna try out the latest release as soon as I find some time.

re: Hey...
by Bas on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 21:18 UTC

>..when the Linux came out, it was "just another dang
>unix-wanabe."

>Somebody keep forgetting this....

No you are forgetting that Linux was an Open Unix, actually the first kernel that was usable for the GNU tools (bash,gcc,etc) that why its actually could Gnu/LInux.
GNU was building on their own kernel (HURD) but that was not finished when Linux appeard.

Security
by Marcus Sundman on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 21:19 UTC

> Tired of endless Windows security problems?

That seems to suggest that Syllable would have decent security. Is this the case? More specifically, does its kernel support object-capabilities?

PPC Version
by Mac Geek on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 21:20 UTC

Is there a PowerPC/Mac Version or is it just X86?

RE: Thom Holwerda, and others
by Michael Saunders on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 21:26 UTC

Yeah, try out a recent Syllable release, particularly 0.5.4 (when it arrives) with the new desktop -- you might be surprised by the progress made! As mentioned before, it's understandable that a lot of people think progress is slow, but great progress is being made on the underlying stuff.

So yeah, Syllable doesn't have some cool stuff like a GTK port yet (maybe in time), but it does sport a great number of drivers, a mature kernel and increasingly impressive GUI.

Despite the flames, it's good to see some voices of reason on here about SkyOS and Syllable. There's no fight, no war, no battle for OS supremacy -- they're just hobbyist projects hoping to make the computing market a better place. Although I'm fond of Syllable, I also think that SkyOS is looking good and has potential; the two aren't mutually exclusive.

So let's quit the bickering and appreciate that they're both young but promising OSes, going in different directions but with a similar goal: to bring enjoyment and competition back to the OS market. Sure, many people will prefer one of the other, but at the end of the day they're both great projects to have. Let's fight the big problems in the industry -- not one another!

Mike

Kinda neat.
by oZ on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 21:26 UTC

This looks kinda neat.. Rather like a fusion of Amiga and Be in idealism. Might be worth checking out, and if it's easy enough to crawl into, then worth a look, or at least a few ports.

Does any of this OS developer understand windowing system from user perspective?
I am no big fan of Windows or lINux or any one, but as a system admin i have used Linux, solaris, hp, windows (probably all versions) from last seven years,

no doubt windows may the most buggiest stuff, but the user experinece, the minute details of every windows and their behaviour is still lacking by all other oses....

if os developers can't still in corporate the best of all world, then whats point in reinventing all stuff again and again under new name.!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Re: I have tried both
by David on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 21:29 UTC

You know I was going to give you a long disertation on what I did and didn't like about Syllable. But that really isn't necessary. Although it is fast and easy to navigate and generally easy to find setting etc. I found that the user expernce lacking. I find the SkyOS user experence much more to my liking at this time. I do however have a geat deal of respect for the devs as they were very kind to me when I was trying to test it out. I am looking foward to the next release so I can see all the changes. You seem think that I was bashing Syllable, I am not. I am looking for a desktop replacement. Linux is not that for me. SkyOS seems to promising and appears that it will fill my needs much sooner than Syllable. But like I said before if they were both sitting in front of me, ready to be used for daily work, I would use Syllable.

hobby OS or not hobby OS
by Anonymous on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 21:32 UTC

mike,

first you talk about skyos and syllable as hobby os anf then you're write: "Let's fight the big problems in the industry -- not one another!"

is there a bigger goal than just a hobby os?

v
by Anonymous on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 21:33 UTC
v RE: proprietary
by Michael Saunders on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 21:46 UTC
RE:...
by spikeb on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 21:54 UTC

I'd argue syllable, as an OSS project, has more chances of success, but that's me. I have to agree that I hope there is room for both of 'em, because they're both really cool.

@BIGZERO
by BigZaphod on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 22:16 UTC

I used to agree... until I used MacOS. Now Windows feels lame and clunky in the same ways most OSS GUIs feel to me. If they want something to model, it should be MacOS and not Windows, IMHO. However, the LOOK need not be cloned. Just the functionality. The look can change and be whatever. I don't care as long as it isn't too ugly. Its the FEEL that is important.

Getting SkyOS
by Dr.Whiz-Bang on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 22:23 UTC

In terms of the syllable/skyos comparison debate, I would like to evaluate them both, except when I go to the SkyOS site it tells me version 5 is not available yet, and version 4 is not available anymore. Am I missing something here? How does one get SkyOS?

re: Getting SkyOS
by Youlle on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 22:29 UTC

the beta program is a pay for use program, you pay to join, if you go to http://expert-zone.vze.com you can get a link for skyOS 3.9.8 which is a very old and doesnt reflect skyOS 5.0

v re: Getting SkyOS
by Shapeshifter V.90 on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 22:30 UTC
Is it usable?
by scsimodo on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 22:40 UTC

Well, I love those alternative OSes (Haiku, SkyOS, Syllable), but what makes them usable for every day use?

Haiku? Takes at least 2 more years to have a copy of an OS from 1996
SkyOS? Nice piece of SW, but no serious apps
Syllable? Didn't have a closer look at it, but the same as SkyOS, I guess.

Even Linux, which has tons of apps, nice DEs, lots of advantages over Windows, has a hard time to be the everyday desktop for non-geeks.

Would love to see e.g. SkyOS gaining market share, but who would develop (commercial) software for a hobby OS? You? No! Me? No! Adobe, Macromedia, (fill in a major software company)? Bah, don't ever think of it!

Conclusion: Very nice pieces of Software, great hobbyist OSes, but not more (sad, but true)

RE:Is it usable?
by spikeb on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 22:47 UTC

No, neither skyos nor syllable are what you seem to mean by usable, yet. Give 'em time and/or help. Neither may reach the status of apps that linux has, but i think one or both will, plus haiku will have at least beos level apps.

RE:Is it usable?
by spikeb on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 22:49 UTC

Another thing to keep in mind, is that with open source it's possibly to write applications that can at least partially fill the void of commercial applications/plugins

RE scsimodo
by Thom Holwerda on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 22:52 UTC

You are making a very common mistake there. The fact that Linux has only like 2-3% of the desktop market now is because Linux wasn't designed with the desktop in mind. Comparing Linux to Syllable/SkyOS is like comparing apples to oranges.

Linux only seems to be a desktop OS because og all the patchwork and KDE's and Gnome's built around it; integration between various parts of the OS is practically zero. The fact that X, for example, runs on Kernels ranging from BSD to Linux to QNX to Windows kind of says it all: Linux' GUI (the defining component of a desktop-oriented OS, together with apps) wasn't made specifically for Linux. That's what kept Linux so long.

Syllable and SkyOS, on the other hand, are designed with desktop in mind. Integeration between the various elements of the OS's are good, there's an eye kept on usability, and therefore it will take Syllable/SkyOS far less time to get to the point where Linux is now.

Also software companies are more willing to develop for an OS backed up by a single "company", then for an OS that hasn't. Look at BeOS: Commercially backed applications everywhere, even though it's marketshare was and is neglicable. Then number of apps on BeBits and BeZip are huge.

Looks great
by Anonymous on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 22:58 UTC

It's an Open Source OS. How could anyone complain about it being "another OS"? This really is in the open source spirit. They can take pieces from other systems, and if they develop any interesting bits, other OSs can adopt it.

Their work helps us ALL out. Technically they may not be the best, but their values and goals are just as good as any OS out there.

So basically, how can you insult a fun project like this? You don't have to use it, and no one is saying you should, but to HOPE the project fails (that's the feeling I'm getting) is just stupid.

RE: scsimodo
by Michael Saunders on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 23:02 UTC

..."SkyOS? Nice piece of SW, but no serious apps
Syllable? Didn't have a closer look at it, but the same as SkyOS, I guess."...

There's more to it than that, though. Yeah, the apps for both may be limited at present, but they're coming -- and it's better to have two or three good email apps than fifty average ones, for instance.

Over Windows, Syllable can offer low price (free) and open source. Over Linux it offers easier configuration, a saner way to load drivers, much faster boot. Of course there are other things too.

Syllable and SkyOS aren't going to take big chunks out of the Windows and Linux market overnight, but given a few years they could make small (but significant) inroads.

Oh, and here's something else to consider -- something I didn't cover much in the article, but still worth attention. Syllable runs quite a few CLI UNIX tools, such as Emacs, ViM and BitchX, and others can be ported without much hassle. So (like SkyOS) the fully native apps may be lacking at the moment, but ports are available to fill the gaps -- SkyOS has some great GTK ports and Syllable has a number of CLI apps. No doubt as Syllable progresses, we may see software such as Firefox ported too.

Closed source
by Fangorn on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 23:18 UTC

Is it true that SkyOS or even Syllabe will change their licence agreement, when echieved a certain degre of maturity, to become commercialy closed source products, or is it simply a lack of imagination ?

RE: Closed source
by Vanders on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 23:22 UTC

Syllable is forked from AtheOS under the terms of the GPL and LGPL. Kurt still owns all Copyrights to the code he wrote. There have been many contributors to Syllable who retain their Copyright to code licensed under the GPL and LGPL. We would never, could never and will never change the license terms of Syllable.

Where's innovation?
by Anonymous on Mon 2nd Aug 2004 23:31 UTC

I would surely be interested in trying Syllable out some day even though I'd prefer a working flash plugin and a somewhat updated webbrowser (preferably Firefox).

However, I don't wanna be an evil critic and play down on you coders, you do an excellent job. But isn't the "Windows alike" top on the windows something that you could consider completely turning away from? For some reason all hobbyOSes seems to be really scared of doing something different tm.

Howabout just eliminating the top bar completely and trying to figure something else out or place it on the side or whatever just to stand out a bit????

Besides from "looks", I sure hope you guys get more people onboard...

RE: "Closed source" & "Where's innovation?"
by Kelly on Tue 3rd Aug 2004 00:01 UTC

"Is it true that SkyOS or even Syllabe will change their licence agreement, when echieved a certain degre of maturity, to become commercialy closed source products, or is it simply a lack of imagination?"

SkyOS is already closed-source, so it would be pretty hard for us to change from a closed-source model to a closed-source model. Outside of that, we have no plans to change anything in our license as of the time of this writing.


"Howabout just eliminating the top bar completely and trying to figure something else out or place it on the side or whatever just to stand out a bit????"

I can't speak for Syllable here, I'll let them cite their reasons. For SkyOS though, we had a contest to determine which GUI people wanted. Over 40 designs were submitted. Some were duplicates of Windows, some were very different than Windows, and some (like WindUI, what our current GUI is based on) had similar features, but looked different. In the end, this is what was chosen. We had the contest for this exact reason. We did not want to dictate to our users what design they should have. We let them decide. On top of that, SkyOS supports full theming, much like the effect you might get with something like Litestep for Windows (what I mean is, not simply changing colors, but completely re-designing the interface). The WindUI design is what will ship by default. It is close enough to Windows not to scare people, but different enough to make it interesting. Most importantly, it is what the users chose. More than likely, new designs will pop up, and we fully encourage users that would like to try new UI layouts to use these designs.

some OS will replace windows
by Anonymous on Tue 3rd Aug 2004 01:56 UTC

i can't wait to see windows die, the worthless POS that it is. it's great to see all these new OS's coming out. if BeOS had survived i'd be running that, and the OSS rewrites of beos are just no where, so i've written them off.

so bring on the new generation! both SkyOS and Syllable look promising, welcome guys!

and just to bring up my own personal interest: midi and digital audio. does either OS have any goals (like beos did) of becoming a multimedia workstation? cos the one that does is the one for me.

Why I don't use Hobby and OSS OS's...
by The Lone OSer on Tue 3rd Aug 2004 02:33 UTC

Could well be the same reason why ALOT of folk don't use hobby or OSS (Linux, *NIX) software alternatives..
SoftModems... drivers are hard to find and generally not that great for Linux (Connexant have licensed the specs to a Linux company who currently provide Connexant SoftModem drivers for Linux, but alas, not yet for my chipset).
SoftModems come bundled with motherboards like 99% of the time now, so masses of people have them, hardware external modems are getting harder and harder to find, and indeed, some countries no longer can get them, so thats not a viable option for alot of people... esp. just so they can check out a different OS to have a play with.
So, to put it bluntly... If you can't provide the Internet under your OS to a vast majority of people, imho it's NOT Desktop ready ;)

OS perplexity
by Stevo on Tue 3rd Aug 2004 02:48 UTC

OK, <scratches his head> this article doesn't make much sense, the conclusion doesn't support the premise:

[QUOTE]
_______________________________________
"you might want to investigate the growing bunch of hobbyist OSes. Syllable is perhaps the most promising of them all~~~~~All things considered, Syllable isn't currently suitable for newcomers to use day-in day-out"
_______________________________________
[/QUOTE]

Well, maybe its a new twist to writing style, but who am I to judge, hehehhe ;)


I agree with the original statement that Syllable holds promise, but if you are ready to use Linux now, then there are plenty of unbloated and fast "finished" distributions available today. A quick tour of http://www.distrowatch.com will enlighten most people.

I apologize if I sound condescending, it's not my intention, I'm just hoping to provide some insight ;)
...on those lines I would like to introduce you to my "almost finished" speedy OS of choice: http://www.cobind.com It's only in beta release, but it beats the pants of many "completed" OS's.

Good luck with Syllable ;)

RE: Why I don't use Hobby and OSS OS's...
by helf on Tue 3rd Aug 2004 03:38 UTC

Simple : Don't use software modems ;)
They suck anyways, get a real modem and be done with it.

@helf
by The Lone OSer on Tue 3rd Aug 2004 03:56 UTC

>Simple : Don't use software modems ;)
>They suck anyways, get a real modem and be done with it.

As I mentioned.. alot of people don't get the choice anymore. hardware modems arn't made like they used to be, and are increasingly hard to find.
And to be honest, They USED to suck... under a good processor, you don't get any difference in speed between software and hardware based modems.

RE: OS perplexity
by Vanders on Tue 3rd Aug 2004 06:45 UTC

..this article doesn't make much sense, the conclusion doesn't support the premise:

This is a website called OSNews, where a lot of people who are interested in OS development hang out. The article is targetted at that audience. People looking for an interesting OS to try out and hack on are encouraged to try Syllable. People who just want an OS for everyday use are going to have to wait a little while longer.

@scsimodo
by rain on Tue 3rd Aug 2004 07:12 UTC

Haiku? Takes at least 2 more years to have a copy of an OS from 1996

Oh, so they are trying to replicate BeOS DR7 now? nice.

re : The Lone OSer
by eric on Tue 3rd Aug 2004 08:10 UTC

Exactly.

All these new hobby os's need X support.

I don't want to hear any arguments !

If you want to be USED and not forgotten then use X or die.

United we conquer divided we fall. The common theme of OSS.

RE: The Lone OSer
by Vanders on Tue 3rd Aug 2004 08:33 UTC

All these new hobby os's need X support.

I don't want to hear any arguments !


What a silly thing to say. No one should attempt to provide a replacement to X, and no one should even debate the merits of different systems? Why don't we all go back to UNIX v7 while we're at it?

United we conquer divided we fall.

Someone forgot to CC the Linux distributers, Gnome and KDE developers, BSD developers and DotGNU and Mono developers on that one.

I'd say it's more like "United we end up with something it almost, but not quite, entirely unlike tea. Divided we have a thriving ecosystem of different designs and implementations, some of which are better than others."

RE: Stevo
by Michael Saunders on Tue 3rd Aug 2004 09:05 UTC

"OK, <scratches his head> this article doesn't make much sense, the conclusion doesn't support the premise:"

Uh, that's why I said "you might want to investigate some hobbyist OSes" and not "you should switch to a hobbyist OS right now". Besides, I mentioned others as well...



too many new OSes are unix-like
by tech_user on Tue 3rd Aug 2004 09:34 UTC

too many new OSes are fearing to break the mould by being unix/posix like. they have bash and gnu compilers.

this twists the mode of working to be like .. .well .. unix and linux. so you may as well use unix and linux.

this is not a comment on the underlying tevchnology - for example bash running over BeoS.

but i don't see that many new OSes brave enough to offer an alternative user and coder interface - a new way of doing things. take VMS - not like unix.

t

re: too many new OSes are unix-like
by tech_user on Tue 3rd Aug 2004 09:36 UTC

and other fresh alternatives include RiscOS.

RE: too many new OSes are unix-like
by Kaj on Tue 3rd Aug 2004 11:55 UTC

"too many new OSes are fearing to break the mould by being unix/posix like. they have bash and gnu compilers.

this twists the mode of working to be like .. .well .. unix and linux. so you may as well use unix and linux.

this is not a comment on the underlying tevchnology - for example bash running over BeoS.

but i don't see that many new OSes brave enough to offer an alternative user and coder interface - a new way of doing things. take VMS - not like unix.

t"


I beg to differ. There are quite a few OS projects that take a fairly different or even very different approach. They're just not very popular. And that's to be expected, because by the same token, there's very little support for them. Porting existing applications would be hard, making use of existing system components wouldn't make sense, and users and developers wouldn't be able to use their knowledge from other systems.

A project has to formulate a goal to aim for, and draw a line in the sand between how novel they want to be and how popular they want to become, and how fast. To my mind, Syllable strikes an excellent balance here. Not everything we do is world-shattering, maybe not even most things. But they have never been done properly in an open-source OS, and we have a roadmap that gives us a fighting chance to bring these improvements to more people. If we succeed, we will be raising the bar for open-source operating systems, and for desktop operating systems in general.

I'm all for trying more advanced concepts, but I'll see about that next decade - this decade I'm occupied with Syllable. :-)

Kaj

the close gadet
by Johan Krüger-Haglert on Tue 3rd Aug 2004 12:13 UTC

is on the wrong side.

RE: the close gadet
by Kaj on Tue 3rd Aug 2004 12:24 UTC

"is on the wrong side."

See, we're not even allowed to change the position of the close button, even if it conforms to age-old conventions of less popular systems. ;-)

For your information, you can change to a window decorator of your choice with the close button in the opposite position. In fact, the Windows 98 decorator just got an overhaul to make it conform to your expectations almost pixel for pixel. But you would have to actually try the OS instead of trying the screenshots.

Kaj

RE: some OS will replace windows
by rain on Tue 3rd Aug 2004 12:42 UTC

it's great to see all these new OS's coming out. if BeOS had survived i'd be running that, and the OSS rewrites of beos are just no where, so i've written them off.

So why don't you just use BeOS? It's way ahead of Syllable, especially when it comes to applications.
Don't let the "deadness" of the OS fool you.

As for Haiku, it's still moving forward. An OS isn't written in a week you know. Take a look at their CVS before you say that "they are nowhere".
It will take a while before it gets there. But then again, it will take a while for Syllable to get as mature as BeOS and get a decent application base.

RE: the close gadet
by bogomipz on Tue 3rd Aug 2004 12:50 UTC

is on the wrong side.

Of the three screenshots in the article, only the BeOS inspired one has the close button on the left side. Who says that it has to be on the right hand side? Take a look at NeXTstep. It even had the scrollbars on the opposite side because the designers felt it made more sense (and they had valid reasons to).

RE: Why I don't use Hobby and OSS OS's...
by Matt Fogel on Tue 3rd Aug 2004 13:54 UTC

"SoftModems come bundled with motherboards like 99% of the time now, so masses of people have them, hardware external modems are getting harder and harder to find, and indeed, some countries no longer can get them, so thats not a viable option for alot of people"

This may have been true two years ago, but the OSS projects to port the winmodems have come a long way. In Linux for example, the trickiest part is realizing you need to treat a winmodem as software. Once that clicks it's as simple as finding the appropriate package or deb for your distro. My Lucent winmodem actually runs BETTER in Linux (I get consistent 56k connects in linux but I top out at 48k in Windows when connecting to my ISP on the exact same machine-YMMV)

<A href="http://linmodems.org/">Linmodems.org

Point is, if there is enough support for either of these hobby OSes, the winmodem manufacturers may hand over the binary component of the driver, and in the case of those that are uncooperative, the existing Linmodem projects could contribute

Cheers

i know!
by :: MR. BIG! ::: on Tue 3rd Aug 2004 17:55 UTC

Woooh!, the last hour...

New flavor in alternative OSe's will be come popular!

Congratulations to Syllable Team!

port Mono to Syllable
by Howie S on Tue 3rd Aug 2004 19:45 UTC

Isn't it possible that Mono will be ported to Syllable, and (by that time), enough apps will be able to use the Common Runtime? That would seem to solve much of the 'lack of apps problem', no?

What need a usable desktpop
by djeang on Tue 3rd Aug 2004 19:49 UTC

A usable desktop must have :
- a decent browser (firefox) with most commons plug-ins
- a decent mail manager (thunderbird)
- a decent office suite (Open Office)
- a good media player (like windows one) with most codec
- an easy to easy software install/delete (a la beos)
- a java implementation (with swt)
- responsive interface
- easy systeme management

Today none of the Hobbist OS or Linux dist have all those. Linux package management is hell (just want to have a folder for an application). Don't bother why Windows still so hegemonious !

RE: port Mono to Syllable
by Shapeshifter V.90 on Tue 3rd Aug 2004 19:57 UTC

No. Check out their forums (there are several C#/.NET threads floating aroudn the top.)

Short answer: They're not interested in doing it, but someone else can.

RE: some OS will replace windows
by Anonymous on Tue 3rd Aug 2004 20:33 UTC

So why don't you just use BeOS? It's way ahead of Syllable, especially when it comes to applications. Don't let the "deadness" of the OS fool you.

i do use beos, but only for fun. what i NEED is a desktop os that has a professional midi sequencer with VST plugin support so that i NEVER have to see windows again. here's hoping steinberg ports cubase to linux or some other os. and i know the mac is out there, and it's ok, but there's no way in hell i'm paying 3x to 10x for hardware - apple might as well not even exist cos for me, at those prices, they don't exist.

Re: What need a usable desktpop
by DeadFish Man on Tue 3rd Aug 2004 20:43 UTC

- a good media player (like windows one) with most codec

Sorry! I stopped reading your posting after this statement. If you REALLY thinks that resource hog WMP is a capable media player, you surely need to spend a couple of minutes at http://www.dvd.box.sk. Choose between the myriad of players available in there that beats hands down WMP anytime. And while you're at it, install the Nimo Codec Pack also. This way, you'll be able to play almost everything available in this planet... :-)

Or avoid all this hassle and just apt-get mplayer for you. It is arguably the best media player ever and its codecs packages includes almost everything available under the sun, too. Oh! And Xine is my favorite for watch DVDs (CSS encrypted or not, with OSD, proper menu support and everything that you would expect from a commercial DVD player app).

If you are fond of those cute "media manager-like" interfaces, look for kaffeine, kplayer or kmplayer.

I have a HUGE anime collection, encoded with several different codecs, so I know a thing or two about this subject... ;-)

dial-up and surf or forget it
by remember last year on Tue 3rd Aug 2004 22:47 UTC

I'll keep saying this every year, an OS needs to dial-up and surf. When it does you'll get all the supporters you need. Wasting time on skins and mp3 players when it can't dial-up and surf is ridiculous.

RE: some OS will replace windows
by rain on Tue 3rd Aug 2004 22:52 UTC

i do use beos, but only for fun. what i NEED is a desktop os that has a professional midi sequencer with VST plugin support so that i NEVER have to see windows again.

I personally think that Sequitur is a wonderful sequencer. However, there's no VSTi support that's right, but it's not impossible for someone to write a VSTi host. Though, you'd still have to compile every VST instrument for BeOS :/

However, BeOS is still far ahead in that department. It will take even longer to see commersial media support for Syllable than for Haiku or Zeta I think.

Change of direction
by Scyphe on Wed 4th Aug 2004 03:08 UTC

I have a feeling that sooner or later the use of alternative OS'es will grow a lot. There wasn't any mature alternatives except BeOS before, and BeOS failed not because of lack of interest but because it was a business model where money was the thing that kept BeOS going. Unfortunately Be Inc. got broke before BeOS had made a real impact. It was brewing, it was gaining, but Be lost the game. "Hobbyist" OS'es have a better future in that aspect since they're not completely dependant on money pouring in every day to keep the ship floating.

Money is still needed, every written driver need hardware to test on etc. but is not monumental to the further development. Money COULD buy advertising and increase interest a lot, but possibilities for a grass-root growth is great since Windows has lost a lot of face and Linux is STILL kinda complex for average desktop users.

I keep reading "reality" and "perspective" and comparing to the big 3... The only reality is that the more people that support it, the bigger it will get. I'm going to start develop for SkyOS, and perhaps Syllable as soon as a complete .NET-implementation and a good IDE for C# is available.

That's another point. Both Syllable and SkyOS need something like Mono/dotGNU (I'm leaning on Mono though) to grow. I believe .NET and any .NET supporting managed language will become THE developer standard on Windows and Linux, and by bringing it to Syllable and SkyOS, they'll suddenly have a thousand times bigger amount of possible developers that see a future in developing for SkyOS. Using C++ and programming purely native won't be done by but a few developers. C# is growing bigger everyday with some schools replacing c++ with it. And no, this is no judgement of which language is better (they're both powerful, C# is just the next step in application development).

All in all, ANYBODY interested in having more choices on the desktop market should support Syllable, SkyOS, Haiku and the rest, NOT put them against eachother in a boxing ring. Interoperability between different OS'es of development platforms and applications will be a key for success.

Perhaps the Syllable and SkyOS developers should think about seeing into those matters, and perhaps compare the differences of the systems when it comes to porting applications etc.

One thing they should do is share information about drivers (unless that info is already shared and open). Of course, any competition will probably hinder that.

re: Change of direction
by Youlle on Wed 4th Aug 2004 11:09 UTC

SkyOS already has a port of dotGNU, and with the next beta it supports API Bindings

Open Source
by Me on Wed 4th Aug 2004 13:52 UTC

For me, the big difference between Syllable and SkyOS is that SkyOS is closed source. I don't need another closed source OS. I already use one from a big Redmond company, and one is quite enough, thank you very much. If I'm going to play with an OS as a "hobby" you can damn well bet it's going to open source. So hello Syllable, and SkyOS can go to hell.

re: Open Source
by Youlle on Wed 4th Aug 2004 13:54 UTC

is it just because you can get the sourec or because you are going to contribute? as there is no point having source code if you're not going to contribute anything

RE:RE:Open Source
by spikeb on Wed 4th Aug 2004 16:00 UTC

Yes there IS a point to having the source even if you are not going to contribute - It prevents getting burned like Be,Inc burned many of us when they died and beos died with them - An OSS operating system will stick around even if company xxx dies. and THAT is my malfunction with skyos.

re :RE:RE:Open Source
by Youlle on Wed 4th Aug 2004 16:46 UTC

BeOS still survives, in the form of Zeta, and Haiku OS, remember AtheOS was closed it was only when it began dying it opened up and syllable became a fork, who's to say if skyOS began to die that it wouldn't be opened up?

Re: RE:Stevo @Michael Saunders
by Stevo on Thu 5th Aug 2004 02:00 UTC

Michael, sorry for the dig on your writing style ;)

I think my writing style needed work when I wrote that comment, lol...I meant to sound funny, but it just came out wrong and I was in a rush.

@ Vanders- You have a great website, keep up the good work, I couldnt live without this place =)

re: Open Source
by Scyphe on Thu 5th Aug 2004 05:48 UTC

It seems to me that people view Open Source as the "be all end all" in software, like it should be a civil right to get the source code to every single bit of software released. It seems it's a purely idealistic take on it. Comparing Windows with SkyOS is like comparing your local computer club with the Government. I seriously don't see why the OS Core should be Open Source or why it should be every users right to have access to it.

If Robert has decided that the Core shouldn't be Open Source, I'm all for it. The whole Open Source movement is good, but it doesn't fit everything, and bashing something on the sole reason it's not Open Source is very narrowminded.