TimeSys Linux GPL is a full Linux distribution for all supported embedded boards that includes everything needed to develop, deploy, and maintain an embedded platform, including not only (according to the company) the world's lowest-latency Linux kernel, but also all the libraries, tool chains, utilities, drivers, scripts, and documentation, all distributed under the GNU General Public License (GPL). TimeSys Linux GPL consists of a powerful, fully featured, preemptible Linux kernel and all other components needed to extend a standard Linux distribution to support predictable, extremely low-latency response. The fully preemptible capabilities mean the kernel has bounded, mutex-based kernel locking with a new fixed priority scheduler, schedulable (meaning the developer sets the priorities) interrupt handlers, and schedulable extended interrupt handlers, including the IP stack.
Many computer users who want to try out Linux or Linux users who only access the Internet via dial-up, resort on buying cheap, Linux or FreeBSD, CDs from CheapBytes, UnixCD, Walnut Creek etc. Most of these cheap CDs are based on well known Linux distributions. This business is extremely common and perfectly legal so far, as it is going on since 1994 without any problems. You could buy, let's say, the latest version of Red Hat Linux for less than $5. But Red Hat now puts an end in these deals regarding their software.
Linux, the BeOS, Solaris, QNX, AtheOS... the list of "alternative OSes" seems ever-growing, and an increasing amount of computer users want to keep their options open. Meanwhile, sitting quieting on millions of servers --very likely on your ISP's servers-- is FreeBSD, originally developed at University of California Berkley, based on the same core as the new MacOS X, currently at version 4.4. FreeBSD is a complete, free, stable, multi-user, Unix-based Operating System available for download at freebsd.org. While FreeBSD has come a long way of late, it's far from ready for the average user, however, as it matures, it has great promise in becoming a serious player in the OS market next to Linux.
Microsoft has released a document titled: "Why Microsoft Windows XP Embedded and Not Embedded Linux?" The Linux crowd did not find it very objective so the embedded-related LinuxDevices web site is organizing a response to this document via talkbacks.
More than 1.5 years has past since the last release of the BlackBox window manager, and its development seems to have stopped. However, based on the latest version of BlackBox's sources, FluxBox was born. The FluxBox X11 window manager fixes a number of problems found in the original BlackBox and it introduces some new GUI concepts like the use of the tabs along with the addition of some more tradititional functionality like iconbar, keygrabbers and more.
"Windows XP is much more than flash and color. Turn it into a stone cold performance machine with these tweaks and tricks." An in-depth ExtremeTech article on how to optimize your WindowsXP. If you are interested in such tweaks for your system, the ultimate web site for this kind of job is of course TweakXP.
"Like dueling superpowers, Sun Microsystems and Microsoft appear to be facing two choices in promoting their respective Web security initiatives: detente or a state of constant conflict. Sun CEO Scott McNealy on Thursday renewed his push for the Liberty Alliance Project, a multi-company attempt to counter Microsoft's Passport identity-authentication system. In a keynote address at the Oracle OpenWorld conference in San Francisco, McNealy trumpeted the recent addition of major partners to the alliance." Read the rest of the story at ZDNews.
"I'm going to be honest. For this article, I was planning to show you how to get ext3 up and running on your system. Although that's what I said I'd do, I'm not going to do it. Andrew Morton's excellent "Using the ext3 filesystem in 2.4 kernels" page already does a great job of explaining how to ext3-enable your system, so there's no need for me to repeat all the basics here. Instead, I'm going to delve into some meatier ext3 topics, ones that I think you'll find very useful." Part 8 for this great series of articles. Get links for the previous articles here.
"I recently got my test copy of Elx (Everyone's Linux), which made it almost certain to me that Linux is going to be on everybody's desktop much sooner than I ever expected. The complete system is so well crafted for users of Windows that it took my friend, who is a hardcore Windowsian, quite a while to figure out that its not just "another" version of his favorite Windows." Is it some XP or something" came the reply before he could find out that it was Elx." Read the rest of the editorial at DesktopLinux.com. However, NewsForge reviews a 29-pages .pdf file (228 KB) published at DeveloperWorks, written by an IBM Technical Writter. Mr Chapman says that "desktop Linux is good but not for everyone".
A new version, beta 3, of the gobeProductive 3 office suite (6 MB) was released yesterday containing a number of bug fixes. In related news, Ability Office 2002 (13 MB) was recently released and it features table support for Write, PDF creation, MS Access 2000/XP mdb compatible, merge cells for Spreadsheet and more.
Netscape has released their latest browser, Netscape 6.21 which is based on the Mozilla technology, containing a number of bug fixes. There is a version for Linux, MacOS and Windows. In the meantime, Opera released the second technology preview for Linux for version 6, while MacOS only recently got their second beta for Opera 5.
"Microsoft on Friday released its retirement schedule for NT Server 4.0 operating system. All sales will end by July 2003, and companies will start having to pay for support. The company stopped selling Windows NT Server 4.0 volume licences for both the Standard and Enterprise editions on 1 October this year. Client versions of NT 4.0 were also discontinued in October." ZDNews reports.
"Many 'gurus' teaching new users about Linux make it look harder than it needs to be, and apparently fail to explain that yes, you can make PowerPoint-style presentations in Linux, you can view Web Pages that use Flash animation and other "glitz" features, and that you can manage all your files though simple "point, click, drag and drop" visual interfaces. Could the biggest problem with Linux usability be that most of the people teaching newbies to use Linux are too smart and know too much?" Robert Miller's excellent editorial found on NewsForge.
A new source snapshot of RTMK was released today, the first in ten months. This new release includes a totally rewritten kernel and a PowerPC port as well. RMTK is still in early development stages, but the GUI for it is already underway. Crust is its name, developed by the same person who writes RTMK.
Apple has hired Taiwanese contract manufacturer to produce one million iMacs with built-in 15in LCD screens, the United Daily News, a Chinese language newspaper, has reported." Get the rest of the story at TheRegister. Our Take: I just wish Apple could also upgrade the iMacs to a low-end G4, with 512 MB RAM (memory is so cheap these days!), a better 3D graphics card and a CD-RW/DVD combo, all for $999. I would definetely get one of these!
Apple's CEO Steve Jobs said Thursday that Microsoft should give $1 billion in cash to help schools, instead of software and some money, to settle more than 100 consumer lawsuits. Jobs' statement came one day before Apple plans to file a supplemental legal brief further contesting the legitimacy of the proposed settlement of the suits.
A new version for the MenuetOS project. Version 0.62 came out today and it features a new memory model and free-form window shapes (non-rectangle windows). In the meantime, RootLinux 1.3 is ready for its prime time, but its developer needs some FTP space where he can upload the ISO image (around 650 MB) and asks for people who can provide such FTP space.
"After more than two years, Motorola Inc., late last week revised its road map for the company's PowerPC processors, the chips that lie at the heart of many embedded devices as well as Apple Computer Inc.'s Macintosh computers. Though the new information is slight, for many it reinforces speculation that Apple will release new desktop computers based on Motorola's "G5" family of processors, perhaps as early as January's Macworld Expo/San Francisco trade show, sources said." Get the rest of the story at ExtremeTech.
Borland released a new Interbase version. New features include VLDB Support (Very Large Database: 64 bit I/O), enables the creation of large files without creating a multi-file database and XML Data-generation, allows InterBase developers to generate XML documents directly from InterBase. In the meantime, Sleepycat Software released version 4.0 of the Berkeley DB just a few days ago. This version adds support for replication, so apps can survive single- or multi-node hardware or software failures without interruption in service.
Apple released today MacOS 9.2.2 and the upgrade is available fo download. The new version improves Classic application compatibility in MacOSX and delivers updated support for Macintosh systems that are based on the PPC G3 or G4 CPUs. MacSlash also reports that "John Siracusa, author of many great in-depth articles on OSX at ARSTechnica has begun a petition to try to convince Apple to continue using metadata in the filesystem. Basically, without the metadata OSX relies on file extensions to know what type of document each file is, just like Windows. For a more in-depth explanation read John's 'Metadata, The Mac, and You'..." Sign the petition.