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Posts posted by idisjunction

  1. I very rarely install my programs in "Program Files". I have my own Apps folders, and almost all applications accept being installed into it. In Linux, applications do not except being installed where I want them. They have the linux folder system built-in and hard-coded.

    Wrong. You can install programs any **** place you want them. The reason that they are ALWAYS placed in a certain place is so that other programs will ALWAYS know where to look for them. Same as what happens when a program looks for, say, GDI32.dll. If it isn't in a specified directory, or in the same directory as the program, it won't be able to find it. Nothing stops me from installing Firefox in /boot except the fact that that is a stupid place for it.

    C:\										/boot

    Last I've checked, you can't create "/boot/Apps", or "/boot/setup".

    You are making a fundamental mistake here, which I will address in a moment. There is NOTHING that stops me from creating a folder in that location. mkdir /boot/Apps. mkdir /boot/setup I called C:\ similar to /boot because it contains files analogous to autoexec.bat, command.com, etc... are located.

    To me, the equivalent of "C:\" is "~/", which is actually a shortcut to a much deeper folder on the system.

    And that's where you make your mistake. "/" is not "C:". C: is a partition. /, and all folders "in" it, are actually representations of where to look for files in a partition-independent manner. I can have /home on one partition, and /usr on another, and /bin on another, and /boot on another. "/" needn't exist at all, except for a place to copy the kernel after booting. I believe even that is completely optional.

    That Linux insist on controlling the root of the file-system on my drive is my #1 grief with it. An OS is supposed to give me control of the computer, a sort of a middle-step between the MBR and the programs I really want to run, so that I can select the latter, preferably with a comfortable UI. It is not supposed to use my computer for its own needs, forcing all of my files into a sub-folder. It should have as minimal a foot-print as possible.

    If you want to make a folder there, put a folder there. Nothing, except root permissions, stops you. Some distributions will even allow you to have root permissions off the bat, should you really insist.

    This is why Linux is more suitable for server use. It doesn't need server software, it is server software. On a personal computer, the OS should not be a program on its own. A personal computer is much like a gaming console, with the files being the CDs/cartridges, and the OS should simply be the equivalent of the BIOS (or at most of a swap disk).

    And it does. Launch the program already.

    Now that's just completely the wrong way to go about things. It's like "my driver for this hardware is not fast enough, let's switch an OS". Oh wait...

    Whatever partitions have to with drivers for different operating system...

    Seriously, though, a second partition is quite the massive step. It's not exactly comparable with, say, changing a registry key. It seriously impacts low-level work, in terms of file position on the drive, available space, ability to use other OSs, thrashing potential, etc etc etc.

    No, it makes for an easy recovery should you screw something up. It sounds like you are well on your way there, anyway. I can and have used other OS's while using a separate /home directory. In fact, it makes it even easier. A /home partition of it's own can be used by several Linux distributions. Should you choose to format it as FAT32, it makes it much easier to share files between Windows and Linux.

    Besides, I'm willing to hack a bit to get extra performance and stability, but not to get basic functionality.

    Translation: I'm willing to use Linux, but not if I might have to spend 20 minutes learning something new, because I'm stubborn.

    Also, the home folders is also used as a "My Documents", and most programs don't allow configuring an alternate default folder (or an alternate folder at all). In other words, this "replacement root" will contain most of your documents, settings for all of your programs, your mail, junk files, and pretty much anything random programs throw in there. Not exactly a place I could put my installed programs in. The only times I have that issue is when using programs originally made for Linux(e.g. GnuCalc placing its history in the root).

    No, the nice little package manager doesn't allow that. You can configure most programs to run and store their files anywhere you want. I did that testing Seamonkey, since Ubuntu doesn't offer it in their package manger. The package manager's job is to make sure you have the necessary libraries installed for your programs, such as

    So let me get this straight: you want each program in it's own folder on the C: drive, but you can't tolerate the same chaos in your home directory.

    Um... Oxymoron?

    No. Notice the quotation marks? That is because they aren't really "accounts." They don't have their own files, and unless the daemon that is controlling them is running, they draw no resources or do anything.

    Besides, that each individual file has a user associated with it, well, that's a huge foot-print right there. Even if "root" is your [i]only[/i] use, it's still there. That's one hell of a foot-print, you must admit.

    No. Because files have absolutely no footprint at all on system performance unless they are being accessed. Even when they are being accessed, they are only attributes, just like "hidden" or "archive."

    I'll accept giving certain specific folders special permissions, ones saved in a separate file (e.g. System.dat in Windows), but per-file permissions as part of the file-system? Can you say "overkill"?

    And what, exactly, is the difference in performance between a permissions system that checks "Is this a system file? No? Then he can touch it." vs, a system that says "Is this a root file? No? Then he can touch it"?

    Not that these actually give better security, mind you, usually they create more holes than they plug, with all the workarounds they end up requiring.

    So an insecure system is better than one where you have to put forward just a tiny bit more effort for assured security?"

    "X" is not a driver. Linux can start up without loading "X", but it can't startup without loading USB, PPP, sound-blaster drivers, graphics drivers (even if it remains in text mode), and hundreds of other drivers utterly useless in a console.

    Yes it can. If you want, a minimal kernel can easily be installed. USB, graphics, etc... can all be excluded from a kernel and loaded as modules at boot time as needed.

    The fact of the matter is, Linux has no "Safe mode". It either loads the entire kernel with all attached modules and services, or it loads nothing at all. There's no gray area in between.
    If you happen to have the wrong module installed, or the wrong component plugged in, the whole kernel will come crashing down, even if "X" isn't loaded.

    There is nothing that stops you from having a kernel with almost no drivers compiled into it and selectively loading modules in an interactive startup.

    Normally, Wine requires two months to configure. To run a single program, that is.
    Once that's done, all you need to do is type in a 300-characters command-line to get it started. Or write a really long shell script. Again, for one silly little program.

    No it doesn't. Almost every program I have ever used in Wine either worked without any configuration, or didn't work at all. All I had to do was double-click on the program's icon. A very few programs need a different Windows version specified. That's no different than what many people have to do to run programs under compatibility mode in Windows XP, or patch other things in Windows 98.

    Alternately, I could run Windows, use WinRAR to unpack the binary into a folder of my choosing (under the root, [i]not[/i] stuck in some "home" sub-folder forced upon me by the OS), then open Explorer, and go click the exe.

    WinRAR works beautifully under Wine.

    Linux isn't so comfortable even with its own native programs, let alone with ones meant for another OS. Only times installing and running something in Linux didn't require hours of messing with package managers, compilers, and general headache-makers, was when they were actually Java programs. Not that installing the latest VM was that easy.

    Is this an truly an issue of it not working, or just that you had no idea what you were doing? "sudo apt-get install program" is hardly a difficult process. Not to mention it is probably a lot faster than installing the Windows equivalent.

    Incidentally, it took me 5 second to get Windows to run JArs on a click as well, more than I can say about Linux.

    After you downloaded the Java installer and installed it. Downloading and installing Java took me far less time in Linux.

    Even if you put all of that aside, Wine still can't run the vast majority of my programs. I'm not talking multi-threaded debuggers here, just normal text editors, FTP programs, and the occasional DirectX game. It just doesn't work. It is still a decade too soon to be actively used.

    List them.

    Again, I place a high value on "it working". Linux DOS emulation is slightly better than its Windows emulation. The emphasis being on slightly. Quite frankly, until recently DosBox was also insufficient, but since a couple of versions ago it has proven to have all the compatibility I require.

    Then why bring it up, if it's not an issue.

    One could challenge that "equal or better" claim. Then again, one could mention games or specialty software - two classes where you can't claim an equivalent in Linux.

    Again, a large number of games CAN be run using Wine. And I would bet there is far more specialty software for Linux than Windows. Plus, how much "specialty" software do most people run?

     It either has a port, or doesn't, and more often it doesn't. But one would be better off mentioning how little the term "out-of-the-box" applies to Linux.

    That's your opinion. Let me tell you of the time I installed Linux and Windows for my little brother on a computer. I installed Windows first.Then I installed Linux. Then I used Linux to download all the drivers that Windows XP didn't bundle, but Linux supported "out-of-the-box."

    My experience with Ubuntu tells me Linux programs are either "bundled" or "too much of an effort to bother". That's probably why it can't be installed (in an intuitive manner, at least) without OpenOffice, even if I seriously don't want it. Sort of reminiscent of Windows and IE.

    And that's Ubuntu. Ubuntu is designed to include what the vast majority of people want. Other installers do allow you to pick and choose which software you want installed.

    Well, I've yet to find a Windows or Linux equivalent to Ripper5. Not that "games" isn't a sufficiently adequate reason.

    There are plenty of DVD rippers for both platforms. The fact that you desperately cling to one is an artificial limitation, not a practical one.

    There's a difference between files simply marked with a "hidden" flag (or starting with "."), and hiding actual system information, and hardware features, and basically anything a HAL does.

    Linux does not hide any hardware information. You just don't know where to look.

    had the half-brain required and switched to a Mac, as all non-geeks should.

    Macs have every single "problems" you have listed, and then some. File system structure, where programs are installed, etc...

    Linux, on the other hand, is still to much of a "niche" in itself. Even the distros aimed at end-users fall far short of ancient versions of Mac and Windows.


    It's great for IT professionals. It's crappy for John and Jane Smith, and there are thousands of really long articles explaining why using real-life use-cases to do so.

    Again, that's your opinion. There are also many non-technical users who easily switched. My brother is a non-techy, and he installed Ubuntu all by himself. In fact, he was the one who got ME to switch.

    The first is questionable, unless you're not talking about specific games, in which case it's not exactly a correct argument.

    How many does it take? 5? 100? 1000? Saying you can't play games on Linux is like saying you can't play games on a Wii, because Final Fantasy VII won't run on it. You make a general statement, and point out very specific examples as to why it's not true.

    As for the rest, so can my cell-phone. Or an XBox360. I'm not gonna throw away my computer to use those instead though.

    Since when does Linux count as "throwing out your computer?"

    The majority of people using their computer for just e-mails and surfing can just as easily switch to a cell-phone and not look back.
    Given that, the real reason to have a PC is the variety of programs - the ability to download, install, and run, any number of specialty or unique or lesser known programs. Unlike their cartridge and CD based siblings, PCs have the freedom of running whatever, not just what large companies made. The ones that use the PC for this, they are the ones who truly need it, and should truly care how it runs.
    Linux actually has a far greater number of "specialty' programs, as I mentioned earlier. And I know of several programs where the variety (or at least free variety) programs do not exist: audio workstations. There are far more programs for that than for Linux.
    Linux, despite being on the good side of the FSF, actually makes it quite difficult to use whatever is not available from the package manager. As mentioned in various "Linux will always be a niche" articles, making a program "compatible with Linux" is near-impossible at best, and ill-defined at worst.

    The FSF has nothing to do with either ease of use or the availability of programs. By and large, the programs that are not in the repository are either

    A. In another repository. Medibuntu, for instance, exists because Ubuntu legally can't bundle some programs due to copyright restrictions. Adding these repositories is rather easy.

    B. Alpha / beta software. You probably don't want it unless you're a developer, in which case you are assumed to be competent enough to install something.

    C. Non-existent.

    By contrast, Windows makes it very difficult to install something because it is either

    A. Shareware

    B. Infested with Spyware.

    C. Doesn't exist

    -An OS must run the programs of [i]my[/i] choosing. If I have happened to choose Windows programs thus far, then that's what my OS must run.

    I agree that you should be allowed to choose what software you want to run. However, I also think that you should be allowed to know alternatives exist, instead of perpetuating FUD.

    -An OS must have minimal foot-print. It should not proliferate my drive. It should not take over my system. It is merely a bridge between me and my programs, and just as I would not allow a program to place random files everywhere, nor would I allow the OS to dictate the structure of my harddrive.

    Linux has

    A. a minimal footprint in many cases. Although I'm sure Windows 95 fits into 3 MB of RAM and Linux does not, performance on 9x does not scale well, so an outdated machine of, say, 64 to 128 MB will perform just as well in most cases with Linux as with 9x. Plus Linux can easily utilize much more memory and partitions than 9x could ever hope to accomplish. The lack of overhead is negated by the fact that it can't do anything with the free resources.

    B. A flexible file structure. Your insistence that you are forced into /, /bin, /usr, etc... is completely flawed. Those aren't limitations of Linux, but rather an agreed standard. Why can't I install Windows on my Ɣ:\> drive?

  2. Oh dear, another flamer. Not a Vista/XP one, a linux fan!

    I don't know what that's supposed to mean. I'm not for operating system advocacy, I'm against operating system idiocy.I point the false information people have picked up on operating systems, and correct them. I don't give a s*** if if you use Windows, OS X, Linux, FreeBSD, Solaris, DOS, BeOS, etc... I simply care about whether or not you know WHY you use them. It annoys me when people give reasons that are A.) wrong "You can't play games on Linux" B.) irrelevant "Linux users are mean", or C.) subjective " Linux is too hard to learn how to use"

    If you read my reply to the OP above, you would see that I actually gave some reasons why people use 9x still, and some reasons why they simply couldn't switch to Linux.

    I'm not. I even like linux. I'm just stating it isn't a Win9x alternative.

    Somehow, I doubt that. And you haven't actually explained WHY it isn't. Can a user play games on Linux? Yes. Can they surf the internet on Linux? Yes. Can it run on my old computer? Probably, yes. Can I listen listen to music on Linux? Yes. So what is it, exactly, that makes Linux not an alternative to 9x, for at least some people? It isn't as though Linux doesn't have suitable replacements for most programs that everyday people use.

    Yeah right, most people who use computer for gaming are 12. That's exactly the kind of ideas shared amongst linux fans. And one reason why it will never become a popular desktop platform (unfortunatly)...

    And it is a correct assumption. Most people do NOT spend their entire time on a computer playing games. Even if someone older than 12 likes to play games occasionally (I do, and I'm 19), they would not be so immature as to make the decision to switch or not on that basis alone. How often does your mother fire up a copy of Halo 2 on her computer?

    Anyway, emulating Windows will never be as good as running Windows.

    A double fallacy.

    First of all, Windows is not "emulated" to play games or run Windows programs. Wine catches calls from the program to Windows APIs, and translates them to Linux ones. The programs run much as they do on Windows, only instead of a Win32 subsystem on an NT kernel, they have a Wine subsystem on a Linux kernel. The average program runs as fast on Linux as it does on Windows. You might as well say that running Windows will never be as good as running Windows. Wine myth #1

    Secondly, even if you understood the first part, you assume that Wine can't have good compatibility. While it is true that Wine will have to evolve as Windows evolves, it doesn't necessarily have to fall behind. How many games use DirectX 10, for instance? Wine may well implement enough of DirectX 10 before it becomes a major issue, especially with the public backlash against Vista.

    ]If you think Windows is so bad, don't post on MSFN.

    It has nothing to do with me thinking that Windows is so bad as that I don't think that Windows is so good that Linux can't beat it. The arguments you made for keeping Windows are bad ones, mainly because they highlight what Windows does poorly. Try suggesting a reason that involves something that Windows does well.

    ]Then don't fu***** bother to reply and stop wasting our time. :realmad:

    I have wasted no one's time, except perhaps the time it takes to scroll past my post. No one has to read my post. I've probably spent far more time posting a coherent response to your anti-zealot post then you did to call me a "fanboy." If I can post an intelligent response to your complaints about Linux, and you can only answer with "You're a fanboy!", then I wonder who the REAL flamer is.

  3. I tested Kubuntu recently and I have to say I'm in the exact same spirit as you. It's stable, eye-candy, it includes nice programs... I even consider having a triple boot.

    However, switching to linux is out of question.

    Before I move on, what are you dual-booting with? XP or Vista? Then your complaints are unfounded, as they are even more "limited" than Linux.

    Linux lacks freedom. Partitions, files access... Everything is hidden from the user and requires password.

    Windows (any version) lacks freedom because they require partitions. In fact, any operating system you install to a hard drive lacks the freedom not to use a partition.

    Windows (all versions as far back as Windows 95, at least) lack freedom as they hide files. Hidden files can be shown in both Windows and Linux.

    Windows (all versions of NT, including 2000, XP, and Vista) lack freedom because they require a password to access a user's protected files. Linux is actually better in that it doesn't let you peek at other user's files without their permission. Windows will let you access them unless they are explicitly protected.

    I feel like beeing in a box : it's your PC but you need permission from the root... even when you ARE the root.

    Then you obviously are NOT the root. Try

    sudo su
    echo 1 > /dev/ram0

    and then tell me you don't have the ability to wreck your system at will (Seriously, do it from a LiveCD only).

    Moreover, Linux is not Windows and will never be.

    Correct. So stop insisting that it should be. Realize that that is what makes Linux unique. It doesn't have Window's problems.

    On the other hand, Win9x is a Windows OS, thus providing most compatibility with most software and games.

    Because games are everything to people over 12. Wine probably has almost as good compatibility with games as Windows 98, and allow you to use much more powerful video cards while you are at it.

    IMHO, there is no 9x alternative.


    There are lots of good OSes but none is a 9x clone that will let us do the exact same things we do now.

    Invade other's privacy and f*** up your system. There are lots of OS that will do that.

    And that's why we should fight to keep 9x alive for many more years.

    That's your choice, but don't make up things about Linux to justify it.

    Just my 2 cents! ;)

    And I probably just wasted a quarter of mine.

  4. To me, the "features" of Win98 are:

    1. System files contained in no more than 2 folders("C:\Windows", "C:\Program Files", though I wouldn't mind taking it down to just 1).

    The average person doesn't need to actually look in "C:\Windows", just for their Paint to work. C:\Program Files is further divided into folders for each individual folder, plus often some other ones for the program itself (C:\Program Files\StupidRPG\Maps\World 1). In Linux, all user executables are placed into one folder, with rare exceptions. /usr/bin. Libraries used for user programs are put into /usr/lib. Some programs do divide that up further, like Firefox, for instance. The kernel and ramdisk are put in /boot. The "system" programs are put in /bin.

    So let's compare:

    C:\ /boot

    C:\Windows /bin

    C:\Windows\System32 /lib

    C:\Program Files\StupidRPG /usr/bin

    C:\Program Files\StupidRPG\Maps\World1\1.map /usr/lib/StupidRPG/Maps/World1/1.map

    So, with the possible exception of where the user program stores it's stuff, how is Windows arranged any better than Linux? To me, it actually looks like far fewer clicks to get to the same stuff. And it would be a lot easier switching between them on your beloved command line.

    2. Root folder is otherwise free for my use(e.g. "C:\Docs" or "C:\Apps" instead of "/use/local/home/accessible_folder/computername/username/somerandomserialnumber/~usernameagain/~homefolder"). I can even have a "C:\random_stuff.txt" without issues.

    I can't see what difference this actually makes. If it means that much to you, put your /home/username on a seperate partition. Think of one partition as "C:\Windows" and your /home/username as "C:\", if it bothers you that much. Also, "your" stuff is at /home/username. Not hard to remember at all.

    3. No built-in users system, except for SMB usage. I'm one guy, and this is my personal computer, I don't need a 3-user minimum on this thing, and I don't need nor want to set ownership and permissions on each individual file.

    I have one "user" on my computer. Me. I can assume the rights of a superuser at will. All other "accounts" are nothing more than daemons that have far fewer rights than I do.

    4. Built-in mandatory real-mode command line, for all of my fall-back needs. It's the perfect dual boot I don't need to install, nor configure. Linux can't even open a text console without first loading all drivers.

    What the hell are you talking about? Linux can start up just fine, without ever loading "X."

    5. Runs Windows programs. (With no more than a click. Or double-click, depending on configuration)

    That's exactly what Wine allows you to do.

    6. Runs Windows games.

    See above

    7. Runs Dos games(although with the advents of DosBox this is somewhat less of an issue).

    And DOSEmu, and BHole, and ...

    If there was a Linux distro or some other OS that provided all(or at least most) of that, I would go for it right away. But currently, Linux is better suited for dedicated servers, or generic toy-boxes, than to act as my main OS.

    A lot of distros do come with Wine, or make it easily available. Same with DOSEmu. I highly dispute the idea that Linux is a "toy" because it can't run Windows programs out-of-the-box, even though there are plenty of equal or better software for Linux. And for what reason do you need DOS compatibility, other than games?

  5. I just discovered an old discussion @ Computing.Net about "Windows files replaced with EOSLX", and the relative OpenWINDOWS project page that claims:

    If claims were code and mouths were compilers, this thread would have already created what you are looking for out of sheer verbosity.

    Of course it's just a try around Windows 3.1, but hey, here's the prove: it's possible !

    No it's not. Look more closely. It requires several files from Windows 3.1. That's no different than jaclaz's minimal Windows. Go snoop around the OS Dev Wiki and find something that resembles an actual free kernel, instead of someone's 15-year-old rescue disk. And I mean that in the nicest way possible. ;)

    Blue screens and other crashes in Win98 are the result of faulty kernel functions, or use of kernel-mode drivers. For example, you can get a blue-screen from ejecting a CD while files are open, due to faulty error-handling in the CD drivers.

    Blue screens are far more often the fault of buffer overflows and segmentation faults that the operating system is simply not equipped to deal with. It isn't just drivers that can cause a crash, it's almost any DLL that a program can call.

    "cmd.exe" does not qualify as a "command line". It's a terminal, a program emulating a command line in an existing graphic environment. It depends on the presence of Windows to back it up. It is not fully compatible, either, as some programs which may run in DOS cannot run in it. The only way I can run a full-compatibility command-line in NT is with a boot-disk.

    Of course it depends on Windows. All other command lines depend on a kernel behind it. CMD.EXE isn't a DOS emulator. It is a true command line, as pure 32-bit applications can be run from it, just like on Linux, Solaris, OS X, etc... How would you quantify the recovery console on a Windows CD, if it doesn't require the GUI to start up? I think your complaint is that it doesn't have enough DOS compatibility for you, not it's actually usefulness for scripts or commands.

    I'll have to test that. Too bad VMware in 98 is still an issue. Guess I'll look for work-arounds.

    It also runs in QEMU.

    There are plenty of "sandboxing" paradigms possible.

    Except that none of them work. All of them create some sort of "user-unfriendliness."

    Incidentally, a kernel-sponsored "would you like to access this directory", or "would you give elevated permissions to this program" need not require a password. The Java VM is a perfect example of that. Java Applets can run sandboxed, or they can request permissions as appropriate. More widely controllable permission setting interfaces on a per-program basis could also be an advantage.

    One of the biggest problems people have with Vista is it's "User Account Control" that demands people approve almost every single action a program takes.

    The Linux sandboxing and permission system, on the other hand, is draconian. It has per-file per-user permissions ingrained into the very file system. To install something you must either log out and log in as the root(which, mind you, opens up the system to more than just that one installation so that's really a hole rather than an advantage),

    Like what? iptables aren't switched off when you log in as root. Programs that you haven't previously installed can't install themselves.

    or use sudo, which is essentially an elevated-rights program to begin with(a concept which also reeks of holes).

    The only "hole" is the one in the idiotic user's head. How hard is it to create an executable that silently installs itself and modifies system files in 9x? At least if the user was prompted for a password, he'll have enough time to think and say "Hey, wait! Text documents don't need to install anything! And if you think that can be fixed by just having a box pop up that says "Ok" and "cancel", then let me tell you that most users just click "Ok" for everything automatically. If they associate passwords with installing programs, though, there will be far less risk (except from trojan horses, but there are other ways of dealing with those).

    Additionally, despite the granularity and partition of permission settings it forces on the file system, it still applies an "all or nothing" paradigm in allowing privileged access.

    Different programs and users can be given different rights.

    In general, its various design flaws would encourage a general user to just run in root all the time. However, even if you automate as much as the log-on process as possible, the multi-user system still leaves too large a foot-print on your system to ignore.

    And how is Windows any different? Most Linux distributions will warn right off the bat never to log in as root. Windows actively encourages it by making the default user an Administrator, instead of giving him a normal account and have him specify a separate system password. And no, a multi-user system does NOT create enough of a performance overhead that can't be fixed by efficient coding. There were multi-user systems long before the average individual could afford their own computers.

    My current 9x runs programs for 9x just fine. Installing KernelEx doesn't change that. Replacing a single dll and developing it to the point where it does everything the original did would take far less time than creating an entire OS, and once it is done it can be used immediately with full compatibility with what the system had before. So, contrary to your claim, by using the existing OS as a base, and focusing on plugging-out one file at a time, usable results with full compatibility can be arrived at much faster than ReactOS possibly could.

    Name ONE operating system that was developed in the way you describe. All free operating systems in existence have been developed primarily by starting with a kernel and developing the APIs around it.

    Okay, maybe compatibility with a few quirky programs would be hard to get at first, but major programs, like Explorer, Office, or common games, would be sure to fully work quite early in the development process.

    You really think Wine wrote one DLL to its entirety, then moved on to another? No. They started with several of them, and worked on all of them to get even one application working.

    The key word is "clone". ReactOS, from the get-go, tried to be "from the ground-up". Open-sourcing Win9x could start from the existing system and work one file at a time.

    No you can't. The different DLLs are entertwined. They rely on each other. Different versions of DLLs even from Microsoft cause problems when used together.

    This gives much better short-term results, and the solid basis gives a clear-cut "it can't get any worse" compared to the system currently present.

    No it doesn't. The code necessary to make a free and open source DLL work well with a proprietary one is a lot more than is necessary to have a working program. Wine's DLLs are good enough to run a vast majority of programs, yet they can't be used as drop-in replacements.

  6. I see posts on here calling for Win 9x to be open-sourced, and even to build a totally open source Win9x. Well, Puppy Linux is open source and completely free now, so why struggle developing to sustain 9x? Or why struggle as a user to keep applying fixes to 9x?

    Hi, darrelljon, I seem to keep bumping into you, either on Yahoo! Answers or the Linux wiki on Wikia. We must frequent the same circles a lot.

    I think the reasons for people using Windows 95/98/ME are as varied as Linux distributions. I might as well ask you why you use Puppy Linux and not something fancier, like Kubuntu. Is it because you like that instant snappiness of running a "light" desktop environment on modern hardware? That's why some try to run 9x on modern hardware. Do you have an older computer that can't handle a more featurful distro? Many people with 9x can't afford new computers. I know I couldn't, when I used 9x regularly (about a year and a half ago). My computer didn't have a CD burner; I had to use dialup to access the internet, my computer had a whopping 32 MB of RAM, etc... Linux was a completely alien concept to me then. Sure, it's easy now to download a new distribution, burn it to a CD, and boot it, when you've got a broadband connection, a fast (enough) computer, and a CD burner. Luxuries to me just a couple of years ago. Don't you find it ironic that the people who "need" Linux most are those unable to obtain it? Linux is an attractive option, ironically, when you are rich. Not when you use dialup (and a Winmodem at that).

  7. The "stability" issues are fact of design. It cannot be fixed without a complete overhaul of the system. At which point, it would most likely more resemble NT than 9x.

    What part of the design, exactly, implies instability? Starting up in a console? Try telling that to any linux distribution.

    More like the separation of user-mode and kernel-mode code. A crash of a program can easily bring down the system, which very seldom happens on NT systems. Usually the problem in that case is a bad driver trying to do something.

    Where did you get the idea I didn't like the command line? If anything, that implies more stability and power than anything else to me. I've seldom ever seen something crash at the command line.

    NT's console-less-ness is an issue for me

    NT has one, albeit it is not an initial interface, nor can you kill the and return to the command line. Most people in the later days of 9x weren't playing DOS games on it anyway. Why do you think they disabled it in ME?

    which is one of the reasons I keep to 9x. From the moment the GUI starts up, though, I have no qualms about it having certain NT-like features, such as extended Win32 API support, etc...

    A goal more likely attainable with ReactOS. It had a command line for the kernel before it had a GUI.

    I also dislike trying to force multi-user paradigms regardless of actual usage. The P in my PC still stands for Personal, and I don't think it should have the same OS as a public library or a university computer lab.

    90% of the problems people have with security on their computers is that they think just like you. If people had to log out and log in as an Administrator, or at least enter a password every time they had to install something, they would think twice before installing something. The security of Linux, Mac OS X, etc... is built around this very simple fact.

    Not that there is anything to stop you from running as an Administrator on XP, root on Linux, etc... But I think it is good to have the distinction available.

    You might as well go for ReactOS at that point.
    I couldn't track down sufficiently detailed information on ReactOS's file-system, user, and boot-up models. "A cross between unix and WinNT" leaves alot to the imagination.

    Well, you could have just tried it. ReactOS is focused on building a GUI (what is Windows without it?), but it does have a command interface.

    File system:FAT16 / FAT32; development on NTFS and ext3 in progress. And yes, it uses your archaic drive obfuscation, instead of much more sensible device nodes.

    User:Currently it is single-user only. Of course, that is going to change, for reasons I cited above.

    Boot process: Same as Windows. Older versions were limited to a console; I'm sure someone will port an X server to it and forgo the traditional Windows method.

    Still, last I've checked, ReactOS was far from being ready to use, and still doesn't have sufficient compatibility to even run programs that run just fine on 9x.

    Of course it isn't. But it is a lot farther along than this "project" will be in any reasonable amount of time. As far as compatibility goes, even Microsoft can't guarantee that, and neither could this "project" of patchwork's.

    We've already found that there are no simple drop ins for anything at a lower level.
    The missing operative word is "yet". The point would be to create them, rather than just gather existing, usually pointless, software. If you would instead spend some effort on gathering developers, such a task would not be impossible.

    A point I and others have already made. But the makers of ReactOS set out long ago to clone Windows 95, and came to the same conclusion: it just isn't worth it.

  8. The Mozilla foundation and Firefox project authors did not code Firefox B3 for Win9x OSes, and the EULA / License for the beta was a gray area on whether or not this is allowed (other projects, like Debian, have run into similar issues).

    No they didn't. The "problem" with Debian was not including Firefox or running it on their system, but Debian's stringent (some would say draconian) requirements about software being free. The name "Firefox" cannot be used if the source code is modified significantly; Swiftfox is an example of this. Hence, Iceweasel, Debian's version, was simply compiled with different graphics and name. Debian's version isn't even really modifed; they just didn't like the idea that you couldn't

    See the pages on trademarks and community edition branding.

  9. Sorry for the double posting, but I'm almost there!! Anybody know any free apps out there that can dedect what drives I'm missing for unkown devices?

    Wouldn't it be easier to just download the drivers from their support site? All hardware that Windows 98 doesn't include drivers for should have drivers on the site.

  10. Stability and compatibility?

    At least if you focus on system files rather than useless side-utilities.

    Also, rather than trying to keep 9x drivers working, it would be nice if the 9x kernel could be replaced with something that support linux drivers, but still runs Win32 software(both 9x and NT), without losing the 9x desktop and its file-system model.

    Still, the more I read, the more it seems a bit OT for this thread. Too bad...

    The "stability" issues are fact of design. It cannot be fixed without a complete overhaul of the system. At which point, it would most likely more resemble NT than 9x.You might as well go for ReactOS at that point. Besides, the "system" files he and I were referring to are non-critical bundled apps like Notepad or Solitaire (I refer to anything in the "Windows" folder as a system file). We've already found that there are no simple drop ins for anything at a lower level.

  11. Windows detects IRQ 7 because that is what the card actually runs at. The driver for DOS emulates a Sound Blaster at IRQ 5. Thats why there was a discrepancy.

    I don't know why the sound isn't playing properly. I had a similar problem when exiting from Windows into DOS: sound would play, but it would be just random noise. I think Windows may be doing a TSR that is interfering. If you can, see if you can start DOS without launching Windows first.

  12. Port is 220, IRQ is 7, DMA is 1. The code I'm currently using is SET BLASTER=A220 I7 D1 H7 P330 T6, though I've tried it without the H7 and P330 as well. Just going off sample autoexec.bat codes. I can't find anything really informative that tells me what it SHOULD be, just a lot of examples.

    Try configuring it so that it uses a lower IRQ, like 5. Some games don't like such high IRQs. The setting SHOULD be whatever your card follows.

    And I still need to tell it where to find the dos drivers. Help?

    A true Sound Blaster doesn't need drivers, unless it is a PCI card.

  13. You might need to configure your BLASTER variable. Boot from a plain DOS disk with a diagnostic program on it, and find out what IRQ and DMA your card uses. Then edit AUTOEXEC.BAT to say something like

    SET BLASTER=A220 I5 D3 T6

    "A" is the address range, almost always 220. "I" is the IRQ. "D" is the DMA channel. "T" is the type of card, usually at least 3 or higher should work. I would suggest configuring the BIOS so that your card doesn't use an interrupt higher than 5. Otherwise, some games might not sound right.

  14. Ok, but this is a "substitution" project not an evolution one...

    If the person ends up with exactly the same thing afterward as they had before, whats the point of all the effort to get it working in the first place?

    I believe that one you've substituted any "standard" component you can start to add features.

    If "evolution" is not the process by which something is made better and gains new abilities / features, then pray God, tell me what it is.

    I don't have any obsession about system files: i suggested (true, these are just ideas) to substitute _everything_ with free alternatives.

    And, as discussed, that is technically infeasible. There are no simple drop-in replacements available, and to develop new ones would take years, providing you even found someone willing / able to do it.

    The basic ideas behind this project is to switch from closed to open, not to add more features. :hello:

    Like I said, of what value is replacing everything (were that even possible) if it doesn't help take it anywhere?

    BTW if you're interested in adding more features i suggest to check out other (barelly-legal if not warez) projects:

    Which is totally the opposite of the purpose of free software anyway.

    Note that almost all unofficial projects here are non legal too (of course MicroSoft is not interested in stopping them, but they can: do you remember AutoPatcher XP ?).

    Even more of a reason why such a project is a wasted effort. If Windows 95/98/ME were difficult to obtain, legally or otherwise, then it might be of at least some small value to recreate it, like EmuTOS. But since everyone can get, and Microsoft doesn't care how, very few would care whether or not you made a free and open-source alternative.

  15. Win 9x hasn't a default PDF viewer, so it's out of discussion.

    It also didn't have a chat client, and Windows 95 didn't ship with IE. It isn't about what you HAVE, its about what you WANT. I'm sure lots of people would love an alternative to Adobe's bloatware. I don't understand your obsession with replacing system files; we've pretty much already come to the conclusion that most system files simply cannot be replaced with a free alternative. Firefox (or K-Meleon) aren't replacements for everything IE does; Notepad++ cannot be used as an embeddable OLE object, etc...

  16. tracking down and managing the dependencies of (unspecified number) programs, making sure that they don't stomp each other's DLLs, and tell the user which programs he can't run at the same time, lest they BSOD starting up Pidgin while editing a photo in GIMP.

    Not having to climb Mauna Kea from the bottom doesn't make Everest look more inviting. :no:


    You haven't considered that we're in the "portable apps" era ! :hello:

    Being portable only removes the problem of programs overwriting each other's DLLs. It does not solve the problem of what happens when two similar DLLs are loaded into memory. Various applications, while listed as being compatible, have issues that make using them on 9x more work. For example:

    Pidgin - Needs an additional library installed to work on 98. Also needs a preference changed manually to avoid a crash.

    Firefox - Doesn't officially run on 95, but can be made to work. Are you planning this project for all "9x" users, or only 98/ME? If you are supporting 95 as well, you need to watch for issues and workarounds like these.

    Sumatra PDF - Listed on Portable Apps as being compatible with 95/98, despite it not working properly for many people. See this and this for details.

    It may sound like I'm nitpicking, but if you want your project to be successful in such a niche market, you need to watch for these things.

  17. Again, guys: this project idea has a different point of view/start !

    1. You *need* an installed version of MicroSoft Windows 9x;

    2. You *need* a fully functional internet connection;

    3. You must donwload/install a project package manager;

    4. Package manager downloads alternatives and substitutes official components.

    This approach means that we don't have to start "from scratch", but we just need the package manager, the "upgrades server" and the open source alternatives (and not all actually, the hunt could be dynamic...)

    Hope that is more clear now. :rolleyes:

    Well, that takes it from rewriting an operating system from scratch to tracking down and managing the dependencies of (unspecified number) programs, making sure that they don't stomp each other's DLLs, and tell the user which programs he can't run at the same time, lest they BSOD starting up Pidgin while editing a photo in GIMP.

    Not having to climb Mauna Kea from the bottom doesn't make Everest look more inviting. :no:

  18. Here's my idea (pls don't get nervous on me i don't know how do all the things work with this) why doesn't somebody try to make this :

    Freedos+Seal Gui or FreeGEM gui or Sword Gui = Some kind of an Windows Clone :)

    So what do you think bout this ?

    It wouldn't support 9x drivers, and would have only limited compatibility with 9x programs. If the SEAL GUI was still being developed, it might be an interesting tradeoff, but no one has done anything with it since 2002.

    Bottom line: Windows caters to different types of people, and it will be near impossible to address all of their needs. Software compatibility will never be 100% (even Microsoft can't guarantee that), it might not be possible to have open-source drivers for all hardware out there (as has been suggested), and someone will always be complaining that it is too slow on their AMD 386SX that they dragged out of their closet.

  19. Sorry for the plug but figured it was relevant to this. :)

    WINE - Win32 Binaries / DLLs


    Not sure what use they would be though other than extending what isn't on older windows OS's (win3.1 perhaps?)

    I've already tried the programs; most of those wouldn't even work. So I'd be leery of simply trying to drop in and replace them. kernel32.dll and ntdll.dll are nowhere near complete enough to be useful.

    Status of Wine dlls.

    Not to mention those are from a much older version of Wine, so they haven't even advanced that far.

    As far as Windows 3.1 goes, it might actually be easier to use some other free operating system, like FreeGEM, and run HX DOS Extender on it.

    HX DOS Extender

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