A brand new version of Icaros Desktop is finally ready for everyone. What you have under your eyes is the result of a very long work of analysis and revision, which covers different aspects of the distribution, in its native soul and in the hosted one. We wondered what users would love and how we could make Icaros Desktop more useful and, thanks to the work of third-party application programmers, today we can offer you an operating environment that’s more useful and more beautiful than ever. The novelties to talk about are many: from the Leu spreadsheet to the SilkRAW image reader, from the incredible RNOPublisher DTP to new games, but, above all, the hosted version of Icaros Desktop is the one which has taken a decisive step forward, both for Linux and Windows. The news are so many that, this time, we will list them in different sections.
Icaros Desktop is effectively an AROS distribution, and AROS is the Amiga Research Operating System, an open source reimplementation of the Amiga operating system, version 3.x.
I am wondering which of the three systems is the most likely to have a future.
1. AmigaOS 4 obviously has the advantage of the brand name, but it seems like there hasn’t been any updates for a few years now, plus Hyperion Entertainment insolvency, so it looks like this OS is pretty much dead unless another company continues the work? Besides that, it only runs of exotic PPC hardware.
2. MorphOS seems to be a mature OS that works well, however it also has the disadvantage of only running on old PPC Macs, which very much limits the amount of users. I would think that unless they port it to x86 (or maybe ARM?) there is no long-term future for this system, because the hardware will just disappear over time, and is obviously limited in its capabilities. Even if MorphOS might run fast on 20 year old systems, browsing the web with a modern browser might be too much for the hardware.
3. AROS at first looks like the best choice, as it runs on multiple architectures including x86 and it’s free and open source software. However, from what I’ve heard it is actually less mature than the other two. Indeed I tried running Icaros Desktop in Virtualbox, which works well on the Live CD, but once installed the mouse movement is very slow and a right-click will crash the whole system. Meanwhile, MorphOS works fine in qemu (ppc emulation – so should be much slower than x86 virtualization).
I know there’s no objectively right answer, just wondering. What OS do you think is still around in 10