Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 18th Jan 2010 16:06 UTC, submitted by fireball
ReactOS The ReactOS project aims to be an open source Windows NT-compatible operating system which can run Windows applications and utilise Windows drivers. Obviously, this is quite a daunting task, and as such, progress has been relatively slow. As a result, project coordinator and kernel developer Aleksey Bragin has proposed a rather drastic solution.
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joshv
Member since:
2006-03-18

I guess my confusion was that I thought ReactOS was basically already doing what this announcement proposes to implement. But I guess they'd started out with their own Win32 user land and hacked in Wine code on an ad hoc basis.

But this brings up the question - why not go further? What's the benefit of having your own custom NT-like kernel if the Wine Win32 API runs just fine on top of the Linux kernel? I guess you couldn't run Windows drivers for your hardware - but if, as the announcement states, all anybody cares about is apps - who cares? And doesn't their windows driver model implementation pretty much suck anyways?

Perhaps this will just allow them to focus on hardware driver support and kernel tweaking, and leave the userland stuff mostly to Wine.

Reply Parent Score: 2

bhtooefr Member since:
2009-02-19

Actually, people do care about drivers for their weird-ass legacy hardware that the manufacturer went out of business 5 years ago, and there's not enough demand for porting the drivers to Linux.

And, I was under the impression that the Linux driver interfaces weren't stable (by stable, I mean not changing, and I don't mean not crashing.)

Reply Parent Score: 1

boldingd Member since:
2009-02-19

Exactly so: I think a large part of the expected pay-off is being able to use all those existing, well-supported Windows drivers, and having hardware support on the same level as Windows.

I think the designers also have a few (possibly legitimate) gripes with the way POSIX-OS's do things: at least, that's what I recall their FAQ saying. So, "fixing many of people's gripes about Linux" may also be something of a goal.

Reply Parent Score: 2

Laurence Member since:
2007-03-26

But this brings up the question - why not go further? What's the benefit of having your own custom NT-like kernel if the Wine Win32 API runs just fine on top of the Linux kernel? I guess you couldn't run Windows drivers for your hardware - but if, as the announcement states, all anybody cares about is apps - who cares? And doesn't their windows driver model implementation pretty much suck anyways?

Perhaps this will just allow them to focus on hardware driver support and kernel tweaking, and leave the userland stuff mostly to Wine.


There's more to an OS than the kernel and toolkits.

You only have to look at the number of Linux distros that behave differently despite all running a Linux kernel and all having QT/GTK+ installed.

<rant>

Quite frankly I'm getting a touch sick of everyone heralding Linux as the saviour to all FOSS. I mean, one minute people are complaining about a Windows monopoly and the next they're trying to create a Linux one in the FOSS world.

The reason I love ReactOS is because it's different from every other open source OS.

So surely this merits more praise than those that just repackage Linux with a blue GNOME desktop instead of a green one and then try to pass it off as a whole new OS?

</rant>

Reply Parent Score: 2