People, this is an interesting thing to follow first-hand. Hyperion, the company behind AmigaOS4, has been talking about its "Most Ambitious Project" for a while now, but on December 31, they started teasing the Amiga community like crazy. They opened a site called a-eon.com, which is most likely about the MAP.
Amiga & AROS Archive
AROS distribution Icaros Desktop v1.2 has been released. AROS is a lightweight, portable and independent operating system aiming to recreate the original AmigaOS experience on any platform and, after many years of development, has finally reached a good degree of reliability. Icaros Desktop provides a full, already pre-configured Amiga-like desktop environment on any PC, packing it with many useful or entertaining applications, games and so on.
An effort is currently under way to port the Firefox web browser to the Amiga operating system. This effort goes by the name Project Timberworlf, and is the latest in a long line of efforts to port Firefox to alternative operating systems. This raises the question: is Firefox really suited for these small platforms?
Yes, we are continuing our new-found fascination with the Amiga platform, by reporting to you straight from the floors of AmiWest and Pianeta Amiga. Chris Handley consolidated all the information from these two Amiga shows into one handy post, and the future of the AmigaOS looks bright indeed! Update: More planned features have emerged. Read on for the update.
It's really been an Amiga week, hasn't it? As such, it seems only fitting to close this week off with some seriously epic news from the Amiga community. As most of you will know, Hyperion and Amiga, Inc. have been embroiled in a tough legal battle over the distribution and development rights of the AmigaOS, and all its associated trademarks. The epic news is that this situation is now completely and utterly resolved.
The port of the Amiga USB stack Poseidon, whose bounty was reached in May, to AROS is almost complete and today officially entered its beta-testing phase, which will last a week. If no show-stopping bugs appear during testing, Poseidon will be officially added to AROS and its sources will be opened under the terms of the AROS Public License, similar to the Mozilla one. The AROS team, however, needs volounteers to test the current version on a wider range of PC configurations.
So we finally meet! You can't imagine how hard I've tried to get my hands on a machine that could run AmigaOS 4 in all its glory. I've never used the Amiga before - not during its heydays, and not during its afterglow - so it meant an unexplored world for me. You can imagine my excitement when ACube Systems, makers of the sam440ep board that runs AmigaOS 4.1, offered a review machine to me, built around their own PowerPC sam440ep flex motherboard.
A new update for Icaros Desktop, the leading AROS distribution, has been released. It includes some new programs and features like the Protrekkr music tracker, the DosBox emulator, but this release is mainly a "mantainance one": it includes dozens of big and small bug fixes, a better desktop environment and improved support for Amiga Forever and 68K applications. Icaros Desktop 1.1.2 is available in two formats: the whole package on a Live DVD for new installations, and an update CD for Icaros 1.1.1 users. The update can be automatically downloaded, mounted, and installed directly from Icaros using the brand new LiveUpdater program, also available on the Icaros site.
While I'm still chipping away at my AmigaOS 4.1/sam440ep review (try writing a thesis and a large review at the same time), Cloanto released AmigaForever 2009. AmigaForever is a very full-featured AmigaOS emulation tool, packed with various different ROMs and AmigaOS versions (1.3-3.x), as well as tons and tons of included games, software, and demos. This new version comes with even more stuff.
Another important bounty quota has been reached in the Power2People website, and this time the result comes from a common effort of the whole Amiga/Morphos/AROS Community. The result of this bounty being reached is that the Poseidon USB stack will be ported to AROS, and released as open source under the AROS Public License.
It's been a really, really long time since the last status update from the AROS team - the last one dates back to before Christmas. AROS was still progressing nicely, as evidenced by the Icaros Desktop releases we've reported on, but it's still nice to hear it straight from the horse's mouth. The AROS guys have given another status update, and a long one to boot. There's also a computer for sale with AROS pre-installed.
Icaros Desktop 1.1.1 has been released. Icaros Desktop is a distribution of the AROS operating system. "This newer version provides the latest system files, including the newer ata.device from Neil Cafferkey, which fixes many incompatibility issues and should help people who couldn't try AROS before, to boot it on their computers. This new releases includes also an improved version of the OWB browser and fixes some system issues encountered with the 1.1 release. For this reason, this update is available in two versions: an update CD for Icaros Desktop 1.1 users and a complete full live! DVD for new users."
Some weeks ago the popular AROS distribution VmwAROS has changed name into Icaros Desktop, for two reasons: to avoid confusion with VMware-related products, and to better focus on the "Live" version, which runs on top of real hardware. This new release, Icaros Desktop 1.1, the first with the new name, has got many enhancements over the previous ones.
Despite the recent emergence of several new ways to actually run AmigaOS 4.0, the supply of machines is still extremely small, and not very future proof. As such, one of the most recurring questions within the Amiga community is why don't they port the darn thing to x86?
Stanislaw Sszymczyk accepted the AROS browser bounty last December, ten months after Robert Norris' work that provided a partially working Webkit port. Now, after just three months he delivers the first public beta of the AROS port of OWB.
Boys and girls, it's time to dust off your Pegasos II machine, or maybe to reduce the size of your MorphOS partition, because there's a new contender coming your way: ACube Systems Srl has announced the immediate availability of AmigaOS 4.1 for the Pegasos II. It's 01:40 here, so I can't check if the sky is falling, but I'm pretty sure it is.
The first "point release" of the AROS distribution VmwAROS has been published, and it's available on its website. This version introduces a lot of changes and many new features that make it visually different from regular AROS build. Ken Lester's double state icons, for instance, make VmwAROS look more Amiga-like, and former Amiga users can also continue using their applications thanks to AmiBridge, a poweful scripting system which allows launching AmigaOS programs straight from AROS. A big effort has been made to enhance VmwAROS useability and user-friendlyness.
Saturday November 8, I received an email from someone, inquiring if I would be interested in "doing a first interview/introduction into a new operating system". We get these emails and news submissions all the time, and most of the time, "new operating system" means Ubuntu-with-a-black-theme, so we don't bother. I figured this time things wouldn't be different, but after a bit of digging around, there's a little more to it this time.
Stanislaw Szymczyk has been working on the AROS self-compiling bounty since April. The job, according to its website, has been not a trivial task. Now that some issues with soft links and the SFS file format have been resolved, the job is almost finished.
AmigaOS 4.1, which recently finally got a whole lot more accessible, has been reviewed by Ars Technica's Jeremy Reimer. "Long after most people had given it up for dead, companies such as Hyperion Entertainment Inc. are hard at work improving and enhancing the operating system. I had a change to look at a preview copy of the latest release, AmigaOS 4.1, and it is an impressive piece of work." Hardware 3D compositing, memory protection, virtual memory, a modern browser, and performance improvements are among the new features of AmigaOS 4.1. As a sidenote, OSNews will review AmigaOS 4.1 on the Sam440ep in the coming weeks, so stay tuned.