The ReactOS project has released version 0.3.5 of their ambitious operating system. ReactOS aims to be a “ground-up implementation of a Microsoft Windows XP compatible operating system. ReactOS aims to achieve complete binary compatibility with both applications and device drivers meant for NT and XP operating systems, by using a similar architecture and providing a complete and equivalent public interface.” This new version comes packed with improvements.
The most important changes are summed up as follows:
- Updated bootloader (FreeLdr), with some parts rewritten for better compatibility and better code maintenance
- Memory (heap and pools) corruptions fixes throughout the whole system
- Kernel: a number of critical bugs fixed over the whole kernel, and rewrite of an early initialization part of the Memory Manager
- Win32 subsystem: overall improvements in the subsystem, involving both user and kernel mode components
- Base CRT library had key parts reworked in favor of better compatibility
- Command shell (cmd.exe) improvements, especially in interpreting batch scripts
- Font changes for better metrics compatibility
- Internationalization support improvements with a keyboard layout switcher, working Regional Settings Control Panel Applet, 1st stage setup localization into quite a few languages, and more keyboard layouts added
- Almost all kernel mode drivers and user mode applications, control panel applets, DLLs were worked on, resulting in improvements, bugfixes and more functionality
The new release can be downloaded from the project’s download page.
Can someone explain why anyone would use ReactOS to completely mimic Windows 2000/XP … instead of just installing XP? And with “windows validation” how could you ever get any security updates?