Author Topic: OS/2 - Graphic User Interface - Desktop - Personal Experiences ?  (Read 8395 times)

Martin Iturbide

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OS/2 - Graphic User Interface - Desktop - Personal Experiences ?
« on: December 19, 2023, 02:05:03 pm »
Hello

I want to discuss these for months, but I had been holding back, I don't know if it is for fear or lack of time to organize the thoughts.

Sometimes when we discuss about OS/2-ArcaOS we say: "The Graphical User Interface needs some love" (Figuratively speaking  ;D ).

1) The question would be, what features you think ArcaOS and OS/2 are lacking when referring to the GUI that you think will be useful?
- Since this is a personal option question, there are no right or wrong answers. I just want to know more about it.

2) Once you install ArcaOS or even OS/2, what utilities (or customization) do you use to improve the GUI as you like?
- For example, for me now it is must XWP 1.0.16 with xCenter big icons
- Or some others like X-It to have more function buttons on their desktop windows.

Again, this is not a discussion to impose a way to working with your machine, just to try to see what I (or We) may be missing while working with the ArcaOS GUI.

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Martin Iturbide
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JPM

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Re: OS/2 - Graphic User Interface - Desktop - Personal Experiences ?
« Reply #1 on: December 19, 2023, 02:23:49 pm »
A toolbar in windows for better navigation of folders (like in Win9x / Object Desktop).

More extensive menu of the X button like the start menu of Win9x.

Neil Waldhauer

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Re: OS/2 - Graphic User Interface - Desktop - Personal Experiences ?
« Reply #2 on: December 19, 2023, 03:20:47 pm »
I know a lot of people here are like me and have never really used Windows. If you say like Windows 95, it is not clear to me what you are referring to.

One think I'd like is for the password widget to have a button to show/hide the password.
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Martin Iturbide

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Re: OS/2 - Graphic User Interface - Desktop - Personal Experiences ?
« Reply #3 on: December 19, 2023, 05:33:03 pm »
Hello JPM

A toolbar in windows for better navigation of folders (like in Win9x / Object Desktop).

Is this what I call somekind of "folder navigator" on different OSes ?? (images attached) . The idea to navigate to different folders without opening new window and having the arrow icons to go back, the bar with the current path, etc.
Or I'm just projecting my needs ?  ;D

Regards
« Last Edit: December 19, 2023, 05:34:53 pm by Martin Iturbide »
Martin Iturbide
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David Graser

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Re: OS/2 - Graphic User Interface - Desktop - Personal Experiences ?
« Reply #4 on: December 19, 2023, 06:11:31 pm »
I myself use a program called X-it.  It is configurable.  I only use its first page under options since XWP does basically the rest.  Unfortunately this is shareware.  I am not sure you can buy it anymore.
« Last Edit: December 19, 2023, 06:18:01 pm by David Graser »

JPM

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Re: OS/2 - Graphic User Interface - Desktop - Personal Experiences ?
« Reply #5 on: December 19, 2023, 06:21:55 pm »
@Martin: Yes, thank you.

Object Desktop:



Win 3x


Win9x



Michael

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Re: OS/2 - Graphic User Interface - Desktop - Personal Experiences ?
« Reply #6 on: December 19, 2023, 08:28:07 pm »
I think it's less about functions than an overall fresher look. However, it is likely to be difficult without the source code.

I have been using OS/2 for exactly 30 years now. During the Christmas holidays I will take a closer look at adapting Arcaos to the look and feel from OS/2 2.1. It would also be nice to have a high-resolution icon set, corresponding adaptation of the color (probably the simplest part) and maybe a few smaller patches of the Pmmerge.dll.
Let's see what is feasible ...

Dave Yeo

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Re: OS/2 - Graphic User Interface - Desktop - Personal Experiences ?
« Reply #7 on: December 19, 2023, 08:52:23 pm »
From a different install, back up your ini files and then run "MAKEINI OS2.INI OS2_20.RC", then reboot to your install and have an OS/2 2.0 desktop.
There's also the scheme palette which doesn't seem to have an 2.1 scheme but does have Custom Scheme which can be edited to create a 2.1 scheme.
Both methods are missing large png icon support, which would take more work.
Edit: there is also OS2_13.RC if you want a 1.3 desktop

Martin Iturbide

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Re: OS/2 - Graphic User Interface - Desktop - Personal Experiences ?
« Reply #8 on: December 19, 2023, 10:04:39 pm »
Hi Michael
During the Christmas holidays I will take a closer look at adapting Arcaos to the look and feel from OS/2 2.1. It would also be nice to have a high-resolution icon set, corresponding adaptation of the color (probably the simplest part) and maybe a few smaller patches of the Pmmerge.dll.
I understand that you want to have exactly the same OS/2 2.1 icons but in high resolution? Maybe like a BIGICONS (Dynamic Icons) PNG theme, so it can be used in ArcaOS at high resolutions?
Too radical for me, but understandable from the point of view of a true OS/2 fan (I started with Warp 3) ;D It would be awesome to have that.

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Martin Iturbide
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Dariusz Piatkowski

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Re: OS/2 - Graphic User Interface - Desktop - Personal Experiences ?
« Reply #9 on: December 19, 2023, 10:45:25 pm »
Martin, everyone...

1) The question would be, what features you think ArcaOS and OS/2 are lacking when referring to the GUI that you think will be useful?
- Since this is a personal option question, there are no right or wrong answers. I just want to know more about it.

WPS is extremely extensible and configurable. From my perspective XWPS has been able to deliver the right mix of enhancements. Therefore, there are no obvious/blatant functionality gaps that cause me lost time, or are a major hinderance to getting things done.

2) Once you install ArcaOS or even OS/2, what utilities (or customization) do you use to improve the GUI as you like?
- For example, for me now it is must XWP 1.0.16 with xCenter big icons
- Or some others like X-It to have more function buttons on their desktop windows.

X-It for me had a bunch of "nice-to-have" things in it that XWPS never had, or perhaps didn't include in its roadmap.

I still miss the easy stuff like:
- window roll-up/down titlebar quickie
- folder sort titlebar quickie
- text field COPY/PASTE quickies (yes, XWPS has some of it, but not quite in such an easy-to-use way, and not everywhere)

The one thing that bugs me though, and this is very specific to my setup (which is a dual panel SNAP) is the lack of ability to make applications 'sticky' to a particular screen. Basically, I really want my apps and all of their dialogs to open up on the 'parent' window, as opposed to always jumping to the HEAD_0 (vs HEAD_1 - as the parent) window.

Clearly, this is not an issue if I'm starting stuff on HEAD_0, but than again what's the point of doing dual-head displays if I am always "defaulted" to HEAD_0??? lol

Parallel to this is the concept of having various pop-ups (think lSwitch task-picked window) showing in the currently active HEAD, as opposed to be centered between both of them. But these kind of things are usually app specific, and without deep diving into something like SNAP (which as best as I can tell has been basically 'put out to the pasture') it's hard to imagine this going anywhere.

Martin Iturbide

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Re: OS/2 - Graphic User Interface - Desktop - Personal Experiences ?
« Reply #10 on: December 20, 2023, 12:38:15 am »
Hello

What I was thinking that maybe WPS-Wizard can be in some way adapted to became that "Navigator / Toolbar" file explorer tool that is very common in other OSes. But I'm not sure if the source is complete.
- https://github.com/OS2World/UTIL-WPS-wps-wizard

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Martin Iturbide
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SoundChaser

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Re: OS/2 - Graphic User Interface - Desktop - Personal Experiences ?
« Reply #11 on: December 20, 2023, 02:01:59 am »
the one thing that annoys me the most is the way outdated font rendering. there were attempt to modernize that. I understand the PM and font IFF thing might be in the way. it's the #1 visual thing for me.

otherwise  the more we extend the WPS, the more likely we are to unstabilize it. food for thoughts.

Michael

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Re: OS/2 - Graphic User Interface - Desktop - Personal Experiences ?
« Reply #12 on: December 20, 2023, 06:27:37 am »
@Dave
I didn't even think of that. Thanks for the tip.
But after a first short test, not much has changed, except for a few additional objects on the desktop. Unfortunately, the colors were not taken over. Styler is of course deactivated.
So these are then adapted via the scheme palette.

Martin Iturbide

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Re: OS/2 - Graphic User Interface - Desktop - Personal Experiences ?
« Reply #13 on: December 23, 2023, 02:52:32 pm »
Hello.

I get it, Object Desktok has this "window" that has the path and the up arrow to act like a "navigator" or "explorer". So you don't have to go opening a lot of windows to navigate between directories.

I haven't used OD in ages, is there any brave one that had installed it on ArcaOS ? is there any other GUI feature that may be interesting?

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Martin Iturbide
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JPM

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Re: OS/2 - Graphic User Interface - Desktop - Personal Experiences ?
« Reply #14 on: December 23, 2023, 07:20:50 pm »
Hi Martin, that's exactly what I mean. Or better yet, an “address line”. This makes navigating to folders using the keyboard even easier. In addition, it looks good too.