OS News Archive

Qube 2p Released With DOS and Windows Support

Qube 2p by InteractiveStudio was released on September 19th, and it is the same as Qube but by supporting two platforms this time. There is Qube for Windows and Qube for MS-DOS. Qube for Windows runs under DirectX and all applications or libraries are compatible with DOS version. Michal Stencl, the Qube developer, says that "It took some time for the Windows port, because of some incompatibility of Microsoft Visual C++ with GNUC. But now, Qube for Windows supports Windows2000/NT/98/ME without problems. You need to have already installed DirectX to run Qube for Windows." The SDK for Qube will be released imidiately after the release of the Linux version. Michal has to be sure first of clear out any compatibility problems with all versions so the developers will be free to copy their applications from System to System and run unmodified. Qube 3p will be available for three platforms soon - Linux, Windows and DOS with LAN support, not just modem. You can also refer to our exclusive interivew we held with Michal a month ago regarding this Qube project.

Operating Systems Scene Back to Full Activity

The release of WindowsXP does not seem to discourage the coders around the world to code the operating system of their dreams. Lots of new, simple and complex, embedded and desktop OSes grow like mushrooms very often these days. Not all of the OSes we found by searching the web are active, but we will link to the ones with more activity.

Introducing the Rebol IOS

Rebol is a very interesting internet-oriented programming language (for example, you can create a brand new instant messaging application with only 5k of source code) but they are now extending their language even more. From the Rebol web site: "REBOL/IOS is an enabling technology, consisting of protocols, concepts, APIs, hierarchies, modules, security models and algorithms etc.  REBOL/IOS (Internet Operating System) is not a traditional computer operating system. It is an Internet-wide operating system, providing Internet-wide services and a common framework for distributed, platform-independent applications. IOS is to the Internet what an OS is to a PC. IOS does not replace existing operating systems, but augments them, providing some OS-like services across networks. Products using IOS still need an operating system (or at least some BIOS or other kernel) on whatever machine they run on. IOS is independent of the OS in the sense that it is a separate layer, i.e. it can run on any OS and thus any type of machine, all the way down to hand-held devices with minimal kernels."

First Operating Engine Without a Kernel

Unununium 111 is a completely new approach to OS developement. Using 100% x86 assembly code and the VoiD architecture, the system is completely hot-pluggable to any system and without a kernel of its own which makes it extremely dynamic. The unununium project is an effort at creating a highly dynamic environment, that can be molded into various systems capable of sharing parts, thus simplifying and reducing the time needed to develop many closely related, but not identical, specialized operating systems. Their goal is to develop a set of tools with related documentation that other projects will be able to use.

VMware Launches VMware Workstation 3.0 Beta

VMWare today announced the availability of a Beta release of VMware Workstation 3.0, the latest generation of its award-winning desktop software for technical professionals. Workstation 3.0 delivers significant performance and usability improvements over previous releases, the company says. Workstation 3.0 provides support for the latest operating systems including WindowsXP and the latest Linux distributions, supports additional peripheral devices, and provides significant enhancements in networking and better overall performance. VMware will ship Workstation 3.0 in the fourth quarter of 2001. New features include: Host and guest OS support for WindowsXP Pro and Home Edition, USB device support, DVD-ROM support, CD-R/RW support, CD-ROM ISO image support, generic SCSI device support -- makes devices available directly to the guest OS, large virtual disk support, now up to 128 GB per IDE virtual disk and 256 GB per SCSI virtual disk, improved CPU, networking, disk and interactive performance, completely new Windows style user interface (Windows host version), built-in NAT for easy connection to networks, more flexible and easier to configure virtual networking, improved support for laptops and more. Our Take: No word for BeOS support as a Guest OS. Update: I downloaded the latest beta version and BeOS loads this time, without crashing. While it is loading very fast in the beginning, when it is going to graphics mode, because the VMWare virtual graphics device does not expose the VESA standard, the performance falls so much that hits the disk pretty hard. Normal BeOS boot time is 12 seconds when launched natively, under VMWare it takes up to 5 minutes on a dual Celeron 533 under Win2000 and of course it is so slow (please remember that all this slowness is just because of the unsuported gfx subsystem that makes the rest of the launching process and the OS to be unresponsive) that it is completely unusable. Screenshot here.

Miscellaneous OS-Related News

The new AMD CPUs won't be specified by its clock speed anymore. Future Athlons will be specified by 'MODEL' numbers not by Mhz. For instance, a Palomino-Athlon that runs at 1.4 GHz will be MODEL 1600, because AMD considers Palomino 1.4 GHz to be at least as fast as a Pentium 4 1.6 GHz. The printing on the chip will be 'A1600 .....', even though its a 1400 MHz part only, Tom's Hardware is reporting.
An interesting interview with the Sun developers who are working on Gnome for Solaris 9, can be found here.
A new version of KDE's Office, KOffice ver 1.1, was made available for download yesterday.
And speaking about office suites, Gobe Software today announced Gobe Productive 3 for the Windows and Linux OSes, and that it will be available this fall. The app will be selling for $124.95 USD, while existing BeOS users will be able to upgrade for less than $40. Gobe will also be introducing the Family License scheme, allowing owners to install Gobe Productive on every computer in their home, as well on one computer where they work.
In the meantime, Apacabar emailed us with more information about their BeOS sellout: "This offer is exclusively available from the retailers called SoftLine in France for everybody interested in the world. As our webmaster is on holidays, the web site has not been updated with new prices. Meanwhile, we suggest you to order quickly by email, by contacting Mr Sylvain Todeschini who's in charge of International Sales".
An interesting clarification (Editor's note: and also an affirmation of my personal opinion as to why Palm purchased Be's IP) is now clear: Palm bought Be for the (brilliant indeed) engineering force and not so much for the BeOS/BeIA technology (some elements from the Be technology may appear in the new PalmOS though). The interview is with the David Nagel, the CEO of the new software subsidiary that Palm will be creating after the Be engineers join them (and where Steve Sakoman will be the CTO).
Also, a very interesting chat topic regarding multithreading being BeOS' sore spot (a result from BeOS messaging system) has popped up. If you are a BeOS developer, it is a must read.