OS/2 Archive

eComStation, OS/2 Warp and WarpStock

The Warpstock annual conference was held on Oct 24 to 26 on St. Louis, Missouri. These conferences are related to the OS/2 and eComStation platform. Currently there are two reviews of the event online at OS2World and at WarpCity2 blog. Between the relevant news there is a new company called "Arca Noae" that will focus on software development for the platform. They are working on ACPI, USB, Network and other drivers for the platform. Additionally Mensys also gave some light why there haven't been activity on the last year. Arca Noae announced driver releases and software subscription products for the users of this platform.

Half an operating system: the triumph and tragedy of OS/2

It was now 1984, and IBM had a different problem: DOS was pretty much still a quick and dirty hack. The only real new thing that had been added to it was directory support so that files could be organized a bit better on the IBM PC/AT’s new hard disk. And thanks to the deal that IBM signed in 1980, the cloners could get the exact same copy of DOS and run exactly the same software. IBM needed to design a brand new operating system to differentiate the company from the clones. Committees were formed and meetings were held, and the new operating system was graced with a name: OS/2.

Fantastic article at Ars Technica about the rise and demise of IBM's OS/2. OS/2 is one of those big 'what-ifs' of the technology world, along the lines of 'what if Apple had purchased Be instead of NEXT' or 'what if Nokia had opted for Android' (sorry). Our technology world could've been a lot different had OS/2 won over Windows 3.x/95.

I reviewed OS/2 as it exists today (eComStation) six years ago.

IBM insider details OS/2 development

The Register is running a very interesting article by Dominic Connor, telling the insider story about OS/2 1.0/1.1 development in the old days. From the terrible management in IBM, to the hilarious coding practices of Microsoft, there's lots of stuff in here - and it's only part one. "The unholy alliance of IBM and Microsoft unleashed OS/2 25 years ago with a mission to replace Windows, Unix and DOS. Back then, I was a foot-soldier in that war: a contract bug hunter at Big Blue. Here's how I remember it."

25 years of IBM’s OS/2

"Co-developed by IBM and Microsoft, it was intended to replace DOS, the aging software that then powered most of the planet's microcomputers. It never did. Instead, Microsoft's Windows reinvigorated DOS, helping to end IBM's control of the PC standard it had created. By the mid-1990s, IBM had given up on OS/2 - a major step in the company's slow-motion retreat from the PC industry, which it completed in 2005 by agreeing to sell its PC division to China's Lenovo. But while OS/2 never truly caught on, it's also never gone away. Even if you believe that you never saw it in action, there's a decent chance that you unwittingly encounter it at least occasionally to this day." The last time I took a look at eComStation was way back in 2007.

RC2 Build of OpenJDK 1.6.0-b22 for OS/2, eCS

"The netlabs.org project to port Java to OS/2 has released an RC2 build of OpenJDK 1.6.0-b22; both JRE and SDK packages are available, including versions marked as 'single processor only' to avoid SMP crashes. This release improves system tray support and has other fixes, and can compile and run Java applications, including GUI applications that use AWT and Swing. It uses the Odin32 runtime libraries; a GA release is scheduled for mid-April, and future updates should include browser plugins and OpenOffice support. The project is still short on funding; you can help by sponsoring units via Mensys. There is also a review with some screenshots showing some applications running with it." He didn't test Minecraft, though.

eComStation and Breadbox Ensemble

"As a long-time fan of GeoWorks Ensemble (now Breadbox Ensemble), a DOS based graphical user interface and office suite popular in the 80s, I've run it under a variety of operating systems and emulators over the years. You see, Ensemble requires an underlying operating system to provide a DOS compatible file system, not unlike early versions of Windows that required DOS. With the release of eComStation 2.0 I thought I'd revisit the challenge of getting Breadbox Ensemble running under OS/2 again but to add a further twist, since I didn't want to do this on a dedicated machine, I chose to see if I could get things running under VirtualBox."

Java for OS/2, eComStation Project Started

"Previously, Java had been made available for OS/2 and eComStation by IBM, Golden Code and Innotek. However, new versions with many changes and improvements have been released since then and current applications require a current JVM implementation. The new project will port such a current JVM to OS/2 and eComStation. Dmitry Kumenov, who is well-known for his work on the Qt 3 and 4 ports, has been hired as chief developer. Funding is provided by several companies and individuals, with Mensys BV being the main sponsor."