Author Topic: OS/4 Team: Developments in 2013  (Read 3429 times)

ff4

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OS/4 Team: Developments in 2013
« on: January 04, 2014, 01:50:55 pm »
In the middle of August 2013 the OS/4 Team had the chance to Test the latest available developments (krnl & driver) on the fresh released Intel Core i4xxx CPU Series in a desktop system. The tests revealed several issues in different components on this new hardware. First of all the hardware was not SMP 'friendly', the current acpi.psd (and older ones) driver was always crashing with Trap 14 in different configuration sets. The latest available OS/4 kernel had a problem at init time thus the machine was just rebooting itself. After a week of debugging the Team could fix the reboot issue with the kernel, next step was to get acpi and smp mode running.
The Team introduced its own new acpi driver to work with the ACPI BIOS: acpi4.sys. The driver is not a PSD driver like the acpi.psd from eComStation, it is standard system driver that is loaded in the base driver set at init stage. Just like other base system drivers they don't show up in the config.sys - they are automatically loaded by the kernel. After the first basic tests it was clear that the new acpi driver had no problem with the BIOS/hardware so the last step was to enable the APIC mode along with SMP to enable all 4 cores of the CPU. This was done by using the os4apic.psd which is already available for some time. By using exactly this configuration set it was finally possible to boot the system in APIC mode with all CPU cores enabled to the OS/2 Desktop. This was the only way to boot the system at all. The OS/4 Team works hard on different components of the Operating System to be able to run OS/2 on current hardware. The developers of the Team work in their spare time so its welcome to get donations from the people to support the projects and the current developments.

The OS/4 Team wishes all OS/2 & eCS user a Happy New Year 2014!

Cheers



Thomas M.

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Re: OS/4 Team: Developments in 2013
« Reply #1 on: January 04, 2014, 03:48:54 pm »
Hello,

>The developers of the Team work in their spare time so its welcome to get donations from the people to support the projects and the current developments.

Although I already did not test the OS/4 Kernel I really would like to dp in the near future. Where can I get more information on installation and configuration and how can donations be made?

Cheers

Thomas

Martin Iturbide

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Re: OS/4 Team: Developments in 2013
« Reply #2 on: January 05, 2014, 03:39:21 am »
Hi ff4.

I appreciate the work of the OS/4 and it is very interesting the path you are taking.

From what I know you define the development as a group of friends developing it for fun, and making it free to use for individual users. But I will like to insist  to walk the open source path for this project, and define an open source license for it, and make your source code and development open in the public.

I also understand that some members of the OS/4 team thinks that open source is "evil capitalism" or "works for corporation to make money and screw to poor single developer". This is a miss interpretation. You need to understand copyleft on that case, which can keep the source code open forever, no matter if the contribution is from a corporation or a individual, the source code is open for all, and everybody can use the software under that conditions.

If the OS/4 don't believe  in open source at all, I ask you at least to make the OS/4 development on the open. Make the source code available and write your own user license, where you can put that the source code can only be used for non-commercial use, or not used by an evil capitalist company. Even that I don't like that kind of license (since it is against open source), at least you will do development on the open that will generate more collaborative work.

Regards
Martín
Martin Iturbide
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Eirik Romstad

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Re: OS/4 Team: Developments in 2013
« Reply #3 on: January 05, 2014, 07:17:24 am »
I follow up on Martin's recent comment - if you just let the new kernel "float" without any form of licensing, you actually run the risk that someone else may take the code, license it, and your work is not available the way it appears you want it to be.  In brief, intellectual property rights is a difficult area.  Open source and copy left are two ways of navigating in these murky waters.

I agree with Martin that licensing the new kernel as open source (and making the code available) is the route that is most likely to promote further development as it may attract new programmers into your group.  The disadvantage with open source is that you may loose some control because others may further develop your work - that is the nature of open source.  As long as the new developments clearly build on your source, however, such groups cannot just make modifications to your work without letting the enhanced version remain open source.

The second approach also suggested by Martin - to "copy left" your code means you retain more control over it, but at the expense of not attracting (so many) new developers.

OS/2 is a small development environment.  One clear disadvantage with that is that there is not enough developer resources to simultaneously pursue multiple routes for solving problems.  I am not knocking the work done by Mensys on ACPI, but it appears to have been a more challenging process than envisioned at the start.  As all OS/2 users I hope they succeed to provide OS/2 more legs for modern hardware support.  However, if the early promises of your work pertains, it may be that it is your approach that solves the suspend/resume and function key issues that are not yet or (worst case scenario) cannot be fixed by the Mensys approach for some modern hardware.  In such a framework, copy left is a very good option if you want to retain control over your work while making it available at the same time.

Maybe in not too distant a future, OS/2 users may have multiple ACPI solutions at their disposal with possibilities of replacing one with the other to see what works best for their needs.  Truly exciting.

Keep up the good work :-)
Eirik

ff4

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Re: OS/4 Team: Developments in 2013
« Reply #4 on: January 05, 2014, 01:47:41 pm »
Some updates on the given answers above. The type of license will be and is a long time issue, however open source != GPL, there are other type of open source software licensing that will better match the handling  of the code for 3rd parties.
The acpi4.sys or other compatible acpi drivers can be only exchanged if the kernel is a non retail/debug IBM kernel. The IBM kernel simply cannot load acpi4.sys.
About the documentation, we will try to supply a better readme and documentation for the installation and configuration as time permits there should be also a note about donations. Just now everybody is on vacation so updates on this will be in the next few weeks.

Martin Iturbide

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Re: OS/4 Team: Developments in 2013
« Reply #5 on: January 05, 2014, 01:58:27 pm »
thanks for the reply.

I understand that open sources is not only the GPL license, but any open source license the OS/4 team chooses will be good to make the rules clear on how to use the source code.

I prefer the GPL since it is one of the licenses that will maintain the source code open for derivative works, that means that software will snowball and grows with the contributions of everyone. While there are other licenses that allows to create derivative works as close source (like BSD), but I think that it is not out goal on this days, since we need to have a 100% people-company independent source code for the platform.... we learned that the tough way, when IBM dumped the platform.

Regards
Martin Iturbide
OS2World NewsMaster
... just share the dream.