Home > Apple > An Open-Source Opening for Apple An Open-Source Opening for Apple Eugenia Loli 2003-02-26 Apple 32 Comments With Microsoft buying Virtual PC, which lets Macs run Windows wares, Apple’s independence may well rest with programs such as Bochs. Read the article at BusinessWeek. OSCast has a similar editorial as well, in Mpeg4 audio format. About The Author Eugenia Loli Ex-programmer, ex-editor in chief at OSNews.com, now a visual artist/filmmaker. Follow me on Twitter @EugeniaLoli 32 Comments 2003-02-26 7:26 pm That’s what I’ve posted several times…. “we’ve still got Bochs”. But did anybody stop to listen? NOOOOO! 2003-02-26 7:32 pm There’s is a guy named Aaron Giles (one of the Gods of the arcade emulation community) who works for Connectix, who had this to say on his website: I won’t say anything more about the deal for the moment, except this: turn your paranoia meter down a few hundred notches, all of you. Nobody’s going to “kill” any of the Virtual PC products. Most of the engineers who worked on the products over the past few years will continue to do so. And with the greater resources available to us, we will be able to expand the teams and make the products even better and more solid. Personally, I’m really excited about the whole thing! Check it out for yourself (See the comment on 2/20/2003): http://www.aarongiles.com/ 2003-02-26 7:36 pm Yup, I also believe there is this paranoia going on and lots of FUD (especially in the OSCast article), while both Connectix employees and MS said that the products will continue as is. As for Bochs, Bochs is YEARS behind VirtualPC’s advancements. Even if Apple use Bochs (which is a better bet than VMWare which is NOT an emulator, therefore can’t run on PPCs), it will take at least 2 years to bring Bochs at the same state and ease of use and optimizations as VPC is today. In other words, a pretty dead deal for Apple, who need something NOW. And VPC will thankfully be still HERE, so there is no reason for overeactions. 2003-02-26 7:39 pm There are many tantalizing possibilities with this, and I have no doubt that Apple could work on not only broadening the support of Bochs (it currently doesn’t claim support for the upper Windows 4.x series or any of the Windows NT 5.x series) but making it fly as best as any such software can be done so. But there is a strategic question-mark on this already. Virtual PC for MacOS X is still available and will likely be so for some time, and Apple wants people to write Cocoa applications. With acceptable emulation/simulation environments available on MacOS X, Linux-distributions and BSDs, software can be developed without targeting a virtual platform that will run on ~ 99% of market-share systems. This is not particularly condusive to developers writing to alternate platforms than Win32, and that is a concern even to Microsoft! I’ll just be waitin’ and seein’… 2003-02-26 7:51 pm Bochs is not that great a program it suffers from the same thing most Open Source programs do, its a hobby for the programmer it does not have the features or the polish virtual PC does. I personally do not see why people are so scared about Microsoft and Virtual PC, Microsoft is not going to kill it. Its exciting stuff, but you will always have someone, who no matter what, will always be calling doomsday for the Macintosh. Microsoft has long stated that it will not cut Macintosh support as long as the Macintosh products remain profitable, and they have. so all you macheads put up the torches and the pitchforks, calm down, take deep breaths and repeat after me ” Microsoft will not kill Virtual PC “ 2003-02-26 8:11 pm When Internete Explorer came in, many idiots claimed that Internet will be over, Microsoft will take over Internet. It turned out that Internet Explorer was better than Netscape, and actually it followed and implemented standards better than Netscape. Now, I don’t know what happened to those idiots, maybe they are the same guys who claim that Virtual PC for Macs is over. This is complete idiocy, I can’t give a different name to it. It is stupid to think that a company with a huge Mac development team will stop producing a profitable product. It may of course stop it, if it becomes unprofitable, and in that case you have to look at what Apple does to increase its market share, not Microsoft. 2003-02-26 8:22 pm Other than the huge headache, and the fact that you’d have to pay MS, any reasonably sized company could have one server that held critical MS applications like Sony’s SNAP and had people access it via terminal services. Of course it is also possible that I currently have an excellent view of my prostate. 2003-02-26 8:30 pm I recently made the switch from an old Intel / Microsoft box to an Apple PowerBook G4 with 1 GB of RAM and a 1 GHz processor. What made the switch possible for me was the knowledge that I could run Windows XP if necessary by purchasing Connectix Virtual PC 6. Without getting into the pros and cons of using Windows software, my experience with running Virtual PC 6 on my top of the line PowerBook is that it is so slow that I have ordered a new Intel / Microsoft box. Having said that, my first thought about MS purchasing the Virtual PC lineup was “do they know how slow it is?” Assuming that it will be used to move slow to upgrade customers to the latest version of Windows, what “slow to upgrade their software” shop is going to be happy with this “time it with a calendar” emulator? I don’t know if MS plans to kill it, modify it so it runs faster on Intel hardware, or to just have something to hold over Apple’s head lest Apple gets the daring idea of bundling an open source office application with an Aqua look and feel, but my experience with Microsoft is that they are happiest when they can benefit themselves and hurt someone else at the same time. 2003-02-26 8:53 pm Yup, I also believe there is this paranoia going on The problem is that people are soooooooooooooooooooo absorbed on their conspiracy theories that a reality check is not enough. Microsoft bought Connectix PRECISELY for Virtual PC technologies, not only virtualization but also emulation. If they dump Virtual PC for Mac (remember that x86 emulation can be uber useful on future iterations of the Itanic), why they bought Connectix? 2003-02-26 8:59 pm … because even with bochs you need to BUY Windows (yuk!) 2003-02-26 9:15 pm It’s in Microsoft’s best interests to not kill off Virtual PC… it’s the only way they get windows running on Macs. They don’t care what hardware you’re using to run it, they just want you to pay the Microsoft tax… not like they sell computers or anything (yet anyway). 2003-02-26 9:22 pm If a Windows app was compiled for PPC with no code modifications, would it run on WINE on PPC Unix ( OSX ) ? ( assuming the WINE code could be compiled for PPC – it probably can’t ) 2003-02-26 9:48 pm Remember… Longhorn is supposed to be non backwards compliant with older versions of windows. Maybe they bought connectix to use their technology in a compatability lair within Longhorn… like Apple did in OSX with “classic” just my 0.02$ canadian. 2003-02-26 9:49 pm The funny thing now is that Mac zealots who hate Microsoft but still need to use Windows has to pay twice to Microsoft to run Windows on their machines once for Virtual PC once for the Windows PC. )) Now that’s funny. 2003-02-26 9:51 pm People say don’t be paranoid, Eugenia says “Bochs is YEARS behind VirtualPC’s advancements,” and I agree with both. Odds are VPC will continue for some time to come (although I doubt if it will be sold with non MS OSs), but in the mean time why not prep Bochs as its sucessor? Don’t be paranoid, just be smart. Bochs is a fantastically capable program, and an amazing acheivement. Bochs may be “YEARS behind”, but it is “YEARS” ahead of anything else out there. Some polish and speed ups (PPC native as well as general) would help to make Bochs a better alternative, and if your business depends on it (Apple, for example), then lending some support would be smart. 2003-02-26 10:01 pm Wine on Linux/PPC works, but as you guessed you must recompile it as a WineLib app. Wine on MacOS X is quite possibly years away, if it ever happens at all. There are one or two projects trying to make it happen, the issue comes up on wine-devel every few months, but the fact is that for all the claims that “MacOS is UNIX”, in reality it’s so different to Linux/FreeBSD in terms of architecture and capabilities it might as well have no UNIX similarities at all. Porting it would be a huge amount of effort, and as the vast majority of Windows code is not open sourced, pretty pointless without a CPU emulator. 2003-02-26 10:08 pm At the top of OS cast’s news headlines (on their home page, a story reads: FUD from OS News 3 comments down, OSNews’s Eugenia Loli-Queru has this to say about oscast’s broadcast regarding VPC and Bochs: “I also believe there is this paranoia going on and lots of FUD (especially in the OSCast article), while both Connectix employees and MS said that the products will continue as is.” FUD?! This coming from woman that posts more anti-Apple and anti-Sun news articles on her site than any other multi-OS centric site on the web? Eugenia has a long history of seeking these flame-like njews articles, then posting them on her site and then saying that she proveds equal coverage for all OSes. Eugenia, take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s… Personally i couldn’t agree more… while I think that oscast might have stepped a bit off the deep end, to call it FUD is simply FUD itself… (and Eugenia… I know you hate this, but you do have a history of posting these types of articles… (Although things are starting to get better) 2003-02-26 11:06 pm Exactly what is the problem with Eugenia posting this article and her comments?? Is it any wonder why Eugenia isn’t doing this full-time anymore? She has taken shit from people who get their backs up simply because her opinion isn’t consistent with theirs about their favourite platform. For the most part her opinions seemed to be based on an informed objective perspective, unlike those who usually engage in ad hominem attacks against her. You want to know what the next killer app will be?…..a zealot/troll/trash filter that allows those of us who wish to engage in respectful and rational discourse about the topics we find interesting to do so without having to wade through the endless immature, name-calling, cry-baby bullshit that has become so pervasive on the internet. As far as the article is concerned, if the engineers are happy, and both Microsoft and Apple have said positive things about the deal, then I wouldn’t worry about it. Apple is not a threat to Microsoft anymore and Microsoft knows it. As others have said, I believe Microsoft’s reason for the purchase is to ease migration from one Architecture to another (x86 -> Itanium) and possibly even ease the migration from older versions of Windows to newer versions. Also, I have been using VMWare over the past year and I must say that having any kind of virtual machine technology integrated with the host OS would be great. For example, I just did my taxes with software from Intuit that reportedly caused serious problems with its activation/piracy mechanism. So instead of installing this very useful, but misbehaving software on my host OS, I installed it in a virtual machine. Problem solved! 2003-02-26 11:23 pm Apple is actually in a strong position here. It could cut a deal with MS to licence the Win32 APIs (Red box), and port the MacOS X 10.x to Intel/AMD, then be in a very strong position. Apple wins. 2003-02-26 11:58 pm “Apple is actually in a strong position here. It could cut a deal with MS to licence the Win32 APIs (Red box)” Red Bochs? 2003-02-27 12:01 am If you want to run windows binaries on a Mac W/O buying windows, you can install linux (an x86 ver) on Bochs and then set up WINE. No recompile and no money. Make sure the software you want works with wine and you are set. BTW I’m tring this on a PC version of Bochs with Debian as I write this just to test it. It takes overnight to install windows on bochs for some reason (this is not an indication of the speed of BOCHS) and I think installing linux/wine might actually be easier. 2003-02-27 12:21 am Yes, in microsoft’s compatibility lair they work on their compatibility layer… Sorry xtreme I couldn’t resist. I do that kinda spelling thing all the time. 2003-02-27 12:28 am While Amelio was still in charge (and Apple still made Newtons, but I digress), Red Box was the code name for the part of Rhapsody that allowed you to run Win32 apps. Plans were shelved… 2003-02-27 12:32 am hehe sorry i just came back from school im a little burnt out. anyways like i said.. ill bet 90% that we’ll see a compatability layer within longhorn…. ms wouldnt be able to hadle all the backlash of broken compatability… especially not when 95% of the market will be running the “older” windows. the compatability layer fits right into this scenario. just like classic did for OSX, also creating a smoother transition for new users. i guess we’ll have to watch n see… but my hunch is extremely strong on this one. 2003-02-27 12:56 am > FUD?! This coming from woman that posts more anti-Apple and anti-Sun news articles on her site than any other multi-OS centric site on the web? Eugenia has a long history of seeking these flame-like njews articles, then posting them on her site and then saying that she proveds equal coverage for all OSes. Eugenia, take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s… Personally i couldn’t agree more… while I think that oscast might have stepped a bit off the deep end, to call it FUD is simply FUD itself… You both don’t get it then. Sorry. Our articles are not negative, it is whatever is just relevant every day. Today we have two good atricles about Apple, tomorrow we might have two bad ones. Same goes for ALL companies. Depends what we have every day. OSNews is in a VERY DIFFICULT position and we have these problems with people misunderstand us BECAUSE we are multi-OS centric. There are no other sites on the web reporting on ALL OSes, including the hobby ones. This drives MANY DIFFERENT people over here, and they EXPECT us to include stories as the sites of their favorite platform do: biased articles. We are not a fan site sweethearts. Put that on your skull. The very reason being multi-OS reporting, creates all these problems, because Mac people EXPECT us to be a new macslash.org, while the linux people expect us to be a newsforge and the beos people expect us to be Benews. Sorry, but WE ARE NOT. And this is why you feel uncomfortable and you shoot the postman everyday (that’s me). –>Think<– about it and how difficult is to deal with all these different opinionated people over here. Personally, I don’t give a RAT’s A$$ about Apple, MS, or Linux. None of them are giving me food to eat and water to drink. 2003-02-27 2:17 am …could be a solution. Willows is abandoned but it had a CPU abstraction (I don´t remember it well). So it could be possible run the binaries under emulation and using the win32 calls native using wine. 2003-02-27 4:13 am Arent macs so super fast that they will have no probs running bochs.. isnt OSX so complete and functional you dont ever have to use windows? Isnt apple marketing a lot of bull that even apple users dont believe anymore? 2003-02-27 4:28 am Ive been around the web to slashdot and macslash.. maybe some winging (poms?) should get a grip that life is good and bad. IF u want to keep on pretending theres no such thing as bad news, go to somewhere conducive to the missreporting of the truth. Try slashdot or macslash.. Im so sick of ppl complaing about negative apple reviews.. my pc is so obviously more advanced than any mac system around and windows is soo much more complete reliable consistant and useful than osx, youd think id complain about every negative pc/windows story. I dont so get over yourselves.. The truth? U CANT HANDLE THE TRUTH so go away 2003-02-27 10:58 am after this phrase: ¨Bochs is open-source software that functions as a Windows emulator on Unix machines.¨ I don´t think the author of the article has ever run Bochs, much less on a Mac. Bochs is an x86 PC emulator. Testing it on any Mac will quickly reveal that whereas Bochs is fine for OS debug and other experimental applications, it is not able to run any Windog application. Another piece of misinformation junk… 2003-02-27 10:58 am Whebever M$ buys something they’re out to bugger someone. There’s not a chance in hell that M$ will remain idle while Apple is trying to increase its marketshare. By havin VirtualPC M$ got yet another trigger to pull whenever they want to. Anyone sleeping with the devil thinks it’s “a great oppertunity” right up until the moment they realize it’s all to late. Paranoia? Perhaps, but it’s hardly unfounded given what M$ has pulled off before. Unless you like to be completely, utterly, and thoroughly buggered stay clear of the Beast in Redmond. 2003-02-27 11:00 am Bochs is nowhere near a state where it can replace even a fraction of VirtualPC. ATM it’s a mere toy for hobbyists (like myself I might add). 2003-03-01 12:39 pm I believe Microsoft is planning to integrate Virtual PC technology into their server OS to allow LPAR-like functionality. As big frames like 64-way Compaq servers appear and are running Windows, customers will want to scale them down into multiple “partitions.” Connectix announced their Virtual Server product fairly recently… this technology is crucial to domination of the server market. Customers would rather maintain several single-purpose partitions on a giant Intel server than try to mix database server, app. servers, web services, email servers, etc. on one instance of Windows.