Author Topic: Time Travel - virtualization (AToF) makes it possible  (Read 395 times)


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Time Travel - virtualization (AToF) makes it possible
« on: July 10, 2024, 07:03:21 pm »
Time travel (sort of) is indeed possible ... from the flames of the Hobbes pyre, arise OS/2 Warp (3.0 thru 4.52), as in, the years those OS's were prevalent, and everything just worked (mostly). The OS, and the zillions of applications and utilities of the time!

With the shuttering of Hobbes 1.0, something amazingly beneficial came out of it ... a massive, 20gb collection of every single file and associated data for that file. If you were quick, and had the resources & time available, you downloaded that thing. It now sits on inexpensive mass storage (in my case, my Synology NAS). I didn't have to spend hours getting into Hobbes, going through it's i/f weirdness in finding/downloading things, and finding the gems within. I just d/l'd the whole mess, and now it's offline and much more accessible for my form of rummaging.

Note that many of these files, programs, whatever, could have a hard time running on today's (ArcaOS) OS/2 ... Martin and others do a heck of a job dragging these out, testing, updating notes and/or programs, and sticking it back into Hobbes 2.0

But, I enjoy time travel (that virtualization affords me), and specifically, I want to visit the years of OS/2 Warp 4.52. I may even want to go back as far as OS/2 3.0. While I'm at it, why limit myself to OS/2, as I can also go back as far as DOS, or even CP/M. Or sideways to other OS's entirely. It's the AToF system that allows this to happen, and easily at that. If you haven't AToF'd a system these days (and why haven't you, and what can I do to make it easier for you?), the details are in the virtualization subsection of the OS2World forum ... any of the articles with AToF in the subject, and numbered so you know where to start. With an AToF system, there are no issues with OS's, browsers, applications, etc. ... it all just works, and you can run the OS's you want.

This also means we can run the old stuff, and do new things with it. Including OS/2 Warp 4.52, or any of the earlier versions. In very short order, you can bring these OS's up alongside your production OS's, on an AToF system. And that is what enables the time travel magic.

In my OS/2 Warp 4.52 vm (one of many), and with a bit of rummaging thru the Hobbes archive locally (all 20GB's of it), I can run stuff as it was developed over 25 years ago or more. It is easy as pie to move things around, test them, figure out what was going on, and experience it the way it was back then! That is indeed "Time Travel"!

While many of these utilities might run on a modern ArcaOS system (or in my case, an ArcaOS vm), it has offered me endless hours of exploration (and enjoyment) to build up a 4.52 vm or three, and run many of the Hobbes apps in that vm. Exploring one app or utility usually leads to many others, and with the massive Hobbes archive at my fingertips, it's all right there, instantly available.

Don't limit yourself to just the exploration of the typical utilities and programs of that time period. You can use the same techniques to build up a *dev environment*, going back in time to a point where all of the IBM dev tools work, and work well together, just as they did back then (if you have access to the dev tools of those day, and with, who doesn't have access to them?). In no way is this a slight to all who have and continue to develop the tools to perform dev magic within ArcaOS today ... thank you for that incredible service. But, I can bring up a dev environment vm from back then, of any form (C, CPP, Basic, Rexx), using the tools of that time period, and amazingly, they all work like they did back then! Beyond Hobbes, this opens up the IBM Developer Connection CD's, and more! Massive amounts of information, and immediately actionable!

I hope this article helps others to enjoy the same kind of time traveling I've been doing ... no drugs needed to get warped, or go on a journey (of the mind); just an AToF system,, the massive Hobbes download, and possibly a hideout from the rest of the family where you can get some screen time.

You'll be time traveling in ... well ... no time!

I won't be attending this year's Warpstock ... I'm trying to automate wildfire suppression (yes, I'm a volunteer firefighter), and I have an entry (a method to autonomously detect and suppress a wildfire in early stages) in the XPRIZE Wildfire Challenge. I've been tied up for the past two years, and easily a few more into the future. While I got a Warpstock 2023 presentation out, I can't squeeze one in for 2024 ...

But, anyone else is welcome to take this article, and build a presentation out of it for the upcoming Warpstock! The virtualization message, and the form of time travel that it enables, needs to get out there! Many of the virtualization articles have 1000's of views ... if that isn't "interest", I don't know what is!

Post what comments you think will help in building this out into a Warpstock presentation!

Martin Iturbide

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Re: Time Travel - virtualization (AToF) makes it possible
« Reply #1 on: July 10, 2024, 11:54:54 pm »
Hello TJ

I'm trying to make it to Warpstock this year, but I won't talk about virtualization if I make it. But it is a good subject, and it is something I use everyday.

I use ArcaOS in VirtuaBox VM because I do some software testing organizing some old files that I want to upload to Hobbes Archive.

I use the VM to run and test software, and some of that are intrusive with changes on the config.sys, changing the boot dekstop, and it is software I just want to test, check it out if it works and sometimes just remove from my system since I don't like. In real hardware reverting the OS takes some time, in a VM is just a quick return to a previous snapshot and it is like nothing happened.
I also remember the old days of taking images of real hard drives, creating diskettes for drivers, etc. Now on a VM I just emulate the HDD and diskette drive, copy and backp the virtual HDD, if I need something.

So, I think that virtualization has helped me a lot with OS/2 and the hobbes archive reorganization.

Martin Iturbide
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Dave Yeo

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Re: Time Travel - virtualization (AToF) makes it possible
« Reply #2 on: July 11, 2024, 02:03:42 am »
Hi JTA, earlier versions of Hobbes existed, some were distributed in CD form by Walnut Creek such as, there's a couple of other ones floating around.
Most of this software will run on AOS, sometimes needing a simple recompile.