Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 11th Nov 2013 00:19 UTC

This is a quick demonstration of the QNX 1.4 megabyte floppy disk demo.

QNX is an advanced, compact, real-time operating system. This demo disk, released in 1999, fits the operating system, the "Photon MicroGUI", and the HTML 3 capable Voyager Web browser all on a single 1.4 meg disk!

So far no emulator or virtualizer I have tried will run this QNX demo 100%, so this is running on real hardware. The video is captured with a VGA capture device.

QNX is one of the most intriguing operating systems of all time. This demo disk is one of those things that, even today, blows my mind. Be sure to watch through the whole video, especially the part where extensions are downloaded and run from the web, all on a single 1.44 MB floppy.

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RE: Comment by The123king
by BlueofRainbow on Mon 11th Nov 2013 03:05 UTC in reply to "Comment by The123king"
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The only Windows sort of fitting on a CD is WinPE which is only used for installation and executing a number of utilities.

As far as I remember, none of the "lite" after-market tools to shrink the Windows XP or Vista install got below a 2 GB recommended USB flash drive.

And for the Linux distributions, there are few which can still fit on a mini-CD (135 MB) and one of the better known is Puppy Linux.

There are a number of hoppy OS projects which pack much functionality within a floppy disk. MenuetOS is one which has been discussed on OSNews a few times.

Could it be that the installed disk requirement of an OS is exponentially proportional to the number of programmers in the team?

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[2]: Comment by The123king
by henderson101 on Mon 11th Nov 2013 13:23 in reply to "RE: Comment by The123king"
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BeIA could live in a 16MB image with only file ystem compression and give a fullish OS experience when booted to the Desktop. I believe it could be made a lot smaller when crushed (which is what Be Inc called the process of creating compressed ELF binaries by removing common Symbols in to a common dictionary loaded by, IIRC, the kernel.) Crushing the ELF binaries to CELF (magic symbol in binary header goes from ELF to CEL), and using the CFS file system, I think one could get the entire OS down to circa 8MB. If more was stripped out, I think it was possible to get it under 8MB total, i.e., you'd have the OS and actual disk space left in the image file.

IIRC the QNX4 disk (which I used back in the day, circa 1998/1999, when it was pretty new still) was not writeable in any way. Every boot the user had to set the OS up. No data was saved to the disk.

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RE[3]: Comment by The123king
by Temcat on Mon 11th Nov 2013 15:27 in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by The123king"
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Was writable LiveCD technology common then at all? What OSs allowed that?

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