Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 1st Aug 2017 23:09 UTC
OSNews, Generic OSes

Today, it hit me that iOS is already ten years old. I consider iOS a relatively new and fresh operating system, but can we really say that at ten years old? In order to figure that out, I quickly threw together a little graph to visualise the age of both current and deprecated operating systems to get a better look at the age of operating systems.

It counts operating system age in terms of years from initial public release (excluding beta or preview releases) to the last release (in case of deprecated operating systems) or until today (in case of operating systems still in active development). I've included mainly popular, successful, consumer-oriented operating systems, leaving out more server or embedded oriented operating systems (such as UNIX and QNX), which tend to have vastly different needs and development cycles.

As far as the nomenclature goes, Windows 9x includes everything from Windows 1.0 to Windows ME, and Mac OS covers System 1 through Mac OS 9.2.2. Windows CE is currently called Windows Embedded Compact, but its line also includes Windows Phone 7, Windows Mobile, and Windows PocketPC.

Red indicates the operating system is no longer being developed, whereas green means it's still under active development. The only question mark in this regard is Windows CE; its latest release is Embedded Compact 2013 in 2013, and while I think it's still in development, I'm not entirely sure.

This graph isn't a scientifically accurate, well-researched, quotable piece of information - it takes many shortcuts and brushes several questions aside for brevity's sake. For instance, looking at the last official release doesn't always make sense, such as with Windows Service Packs or Mac OS X point releases, and I haven't even been entirely consistent with these anyway.

On top of that, the graph doesn't take months or weeks into account, and just counts everything in terms of years. Linux shouldn't technically be included at all (since it's just a kernel), and you can conceivably argue that, for instance, Mac OS X is older than its initial release in the form of 10.0 since it's so heavily based on NEXTSTEP. Amiga OS is also a bit of a stretch, since its development pace is slow and has even died down completely on several occasions. You could maybe possibly argue that BeOS is still in active development in the form of Haiku, but I consider Haiku a reimplementation, and not a continuation.

In any event, I originally wasn't planning on doing anything with this, but I figured I might as well publish it here since it's an interesting overview.

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RE[6]: Some large inacuracies
by Drumhellar on Fri 4th Aug 2017 18:01 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Some large inacuracies"
Member since:

The Linux kernel is still dependent on the bootloaders to run.

Once the Windows kernel is loaded, there is no DOS code being executed anymore, in the same way as if you use LILO - once the Linux kernel is executed, there is no DOS code being executed anymore.

Strictly speaking, Linux is only the kernel, it is not the GUI. OR the command line.

Weird, that you'd be so nit-picky with Linux being only the kernel, but completely ignorant about DOS being only the bootloader.

Edited 2017-08-04 18:03 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[7]: Some large inacuracies
by sarreq on Sat 5th Aug 2017 12:00 in reply to "RE[6]: Some large inacuracies"
sarreq Member since:

I'm sorry, I was over-generalizing when I said that, to be fair, I said DOS acts like Windows' bootloader, not that it strictly was. The DOS bootloader is built into the FAT12/16/32 MBR.
IO.SYS and MSDOS.SYS comprise the kernel, and COMMAND.COM is the CLI.

from Wikipedia:
"In versions of MS-DOS from 1.1x through 6.22, the MSDOS.SYS file comprised the MS-DOS kernel and is responsible for file access and program management. MSDOS.SYS is loaded by the DOS BIOS interface, IO.SYS, as part of the boot procedure.

"In Windows 95 (MS-DOS 7.0) through Windows ME (MS-DOS 8.0), the DOS kernel has been combined with the DOS BIOS into a single file, IO.SYS (aka WINBOOT.SYS), while MSDOS.SYS became a plain text file containing boot configuration directives instead.

"With the release of Windows 95 (and continuing in the Windows 9x product line through to Windows ME), an integrated version of MS-DOS was used for bootstrapping, troubleshooting, and backwards-compatibility with old DOS software, particularly games, and no longer released as a standalone product.

"In Windows 95, MS-DOS 7 can be booted separately, without the Windows GUI; this capability was retained through Windows 98 Second Edition. Windows ME removed the capability to boot its underlying MS-DOS 8.0 alone from a hard disk, but retained the ability to make a DOS boot floppy disk (called an "Emergency Boot Disk") and can be hacked to restore full access to the underlying DOS.

"In contrast to the Windows 9x series, the Windows NT-derived 32-bit operating systems developed alongside the 9x series (Windows NT, 2000, XP and newer) do not contain MS-DOS as part of the operating system, but provide a subset of DOS emulation to run DOS applications and provide DOS-like command prompt windows. 64-bit versions of Windows NT line do not provide DOS emulation and cannot run DOS applications natively.

"Windows 9x used the DOS boot process to launch into protected mode."

Reply Parent Score: 1