Author Topic: eComStation 2.2 Beta First Impressions  (Read 46355 times)

Roderick Klein

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Re: eComStation 2.2 Beta First Impressions
« Reply #75 on: April 03, 2013, 04:35:57 pm »
Just a couple of questions based on what I see here.

First, is the emphasis now for installing on notebooks?

Second, why is Intel video given a wide screen boost and not Nvidia?   Out of the several hundred machines we maintain for clients we have ONE with an Intel video - and it runs headless -  while the remainder are about 60% ATI and 40% Nvidia video based.  For those clients that want wide screen 1920x1200 (16/10) monitors we are scouring the second-hand sites and getting as many ATI PCIe cards as we can that are listed in the Snap readme.

As a supplementary question, did anyone ask what hardware support was actually required or is the support based on the hardware that a limited number of people have for testing?  If the later is the case, did anyone consider asking for volunteers to do testing - even if it was under an NDA - and if not why not?

I would love to be able to go to our clients and say with confidence that there is now available a version of OS/2 that will install on ANY computer they would like to purchase.

To answer your question about the Panorama  video wide screen enabler. Research to get Nvidia wide screen enabler to work has done. And in the test-lab it sort of worked. But we have not been able to figure what needs to be done to the Nvidia BIOS to get this work properly. Its currently on the backburner. So yes we worked on this but did not get the wide screen enabler for Nvidia to work yet duo to lack of documentation on Nvidia side partly. So its peaking at Linux code and debugging the old fashion way. This is pretty time consuming :-)

With this version that has not been an emphasis to install on notebooks. What do you base this question on ? 

If you want to be beta tester please send me an email rwklein at mensys.nl. No NDA needed, its very informal. See other posting about the beta testing.
If eCS 2.2 can run on an modern PC. We hope so. We have tried to combat as many problems as possible. We tested on very modern boxes we could get our hands on.
The new DB2 server running in the Mensys office with DB2 7.2 runs on a 6 core Xeon CPU box. Just get a system with an Intel gigabit controller.

Regards,

Roderick Klein
Mensys B.V.

Roderick Klein

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Re: eComStation 2.2 Beta First Impressions
« Reply #76 on: April 03, 2013, 04:38:12 pm »
Hello Eirik

I see people reporting the problems with eCS 2.2 we released.
People are free to call it anything they want.  All the components included in eCS 2.2 have received internal and external testing or have been around longer
and have not shown up eCS 2.2 out of the blue. Also different versions of the DVD ISO file since january of this year have tested by other people outside of Mensys (not people even on the development tested the ISO and have been giving feedback.

In fact if people want to call eCS 2.2 beta an alpha what would the should eCS 2.1 GA product be called ? When you look at the amount of bug reports that have been found with eCS 2.1 GA version. Systems without ACPI that would crash when screen01.sys loads. That is fixed now. The current problems realy reported are down 3 most irritating issue's.

* The danis506.add seems to have 1 regression that causes older laptops not to boot, analyses is already on the way.


* The problem with the Genmac driver was because the TAG thats in ecs\inst_flg file contained the word beta. Turned out these defect has been in the
genmac2.wpi file ever since it was created.


* The defect in the USB driver.

The way Q&A work has been done at Mensys has never been realy been different for the last 10 years since I have always done this.

Regards,

Roderick Klein
Mensys B.V.

Roderick Klein

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Re: eComStation 2.2 Beta (release of final version)
« Reply #77 on: April 03, 2013, 04:42:31 pm »
As for Eirik his question.

The eCS 2.2 beta  won't be made GA next week. The beta period will be extend the end of the third week of April (at least). That means the original time frame to release the GA of eCS 2.2 is dropped.

Roderick Klein
Mensys B.V.




Doug Bissett

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Re: eComStation 2.2 Beta First Impressions
« Reply #78 on: April 03, 2013, 06:10:36 pm »
Quote
The way Q&A work has been done at Mensys has never been realy been different for the last 10 years since I have always done this.

We noticed. It has always been "late", and the end result has always had more problems than a user would expect. This was not unexpected in early releases, as everybody was learning. It is becoming more irritating because the record isn't getting any better. It is still "late" and there are still more problems than expected. Some of the problems are not really unexpected, but you (or somebody in the team) knew about more than one of them, before the beta was released. That should have stopped it, or you should heave gone back to what is known to work for the majority. I would also suggest that announcements of new public betas should not take place, until you have one, in hand, that works for your testers (obviously, you need more testers, to do Alpha testing), Then, the only changes that get made, would be to correct a found problem, then the beta test starts over again. When all of your testers agree that it works as expected, then you announce a public beta, and nothing changes unless a serious problem is found.

The fact that the wrong USB drivers got included, on the first download, demonstrates that somebody lost control of the product quality, and/or nobody did proper testing of the product before it was released. Announcing it, then delaying it, demonstrates that you do not have control over the product.

It seems that you need to have a list of machines that need to be tested, including newer and older laptops. Then, you need to know who can do testing for those machines (more than one, when possible - preferably an experienced user, and somebody who is not a techie), and be sure that they test specific parts that have been changed. In many cases, the test only needs to include changing a driver (like Dani), to be sure that it still works, after somebody changes something. Once all of the testers agree that something new works, it can be inserted as a candidate for the next beta, or GA. At that point, if somebody wants to change something, they (or you) need to make a business case for it, and the testing starts over. If it passes, it goes into the next release. If not, it goes back for repair, and the testing starts all over again. As soon as a product is deemed to be stable, it gets packaged as a beta, is tested by the testers, THEN you announce a new beta, or GA, and NOTHING changes. If somebody finds a problem, the process starts again.

Once a Public beta has been announced, the next Alpha cycle starts. Any new changes go into that, not into the current beta, which gets repaired only (nothing new), and eventually becomes the next GA, after found problems are repaired, and everybody (including the person who found a problem) agrees that it works as expected.

I am not saying that EVERYTHING needs to be fixed for any specific beta, or GA. You should be able to make an exception list, with known problems, and work arounds, when possible. From that information, a user can make a more intelligent decision about whether to participate, or not. Blindly falling into a problem that can disable a NIC (even in windows), without warning, is not going to impress many people. There will, of course, always be new hardware, or somebody will introduce a new program, that will surface problems that did not get caught, but they should be pretty rare.

Pete

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Re: eComStation 2.2 Beta First Impressions
« Reply #79 on: April 03, 2013, 09:17:43 pm »
Hi Roderick

Would the USB drivers be responsible for what seems a slow boot time here? - or is the new kernel involved?

The eCS logo is onscreen for a long time compared with eCS2.1 and total boot time is double eCS2.1 (Time in Minutes:Seconds):-

      Boot logo on screen      Boot time total

eCS 2.1                00:07                               00:45

eCS 2.2 beta       00:55            01:35


Anyone else seeing longer-than-eCS2.1/eCS2.0 boot times?

I'm seeing the occasional problem of the system boots to a working Desktop but the USB mouse is totally unresponsive, the pointer on screen does not move and neither button works. The last time this happened I experimented with pulling out the usb mouse lead then plugging it back in. Hey, Presto! - a working mouse. However, this is not a good "workaround" as it involves crawling under a desk to get at the usb mouse lead.

The above is not a problem that I have seen when using Lars Erdmanns USB Controller drivers build 10.186 with IBMs USBD.SYS 10.162


Regards

Pete



Doug Bissett

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Re: eComStation 2.2 Beta First Impressions
« Reply #80 on: April 04, 2013, 05:14:45 am »
Quote
I'm seeing the occasional problem of the system boots to a working Desktop but the USB mouse is totally unresponsive,

This is one of the symptoms that the USB drivers can cause. I have reverted to the 186 version, and have had no more problems with that sort of thing.

I have noticed that boot times seem to be shorter with eCS 2.2 (once I get it going properly). I haven't actually timed it. If you are seeing a problem at the time the logo is on screen, it could be a number of things. The most likely, is that BootDly.SYS is inserting a ridiculously long delay after a SCSI driver is loaded. Inspect your CONFIG.SYS for such a thing. AFAICT, the delay may be needed if you boot from a SCSI device, otherwise, it is not really needed. Some experimenting may be needed to find a more reasonable delay, if it is needed at all. My SCSI card runs my scanner. No delay is necessary for that.


Doug Bissett

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Re: eComStation 2.2 Beta First Impressions
« Reply #81 on: April 04, 2013, 06:04:43 am »
I decided to tackle my old test machine. The machine has a CD drive, not a DVD drive. It also seems that it is difficult to find an IDE DVD drive. So, I got a USB DVD drive.

The first problem is that the machine will not boot from a USB CD/DVD drive. Okay, I made the diskettes. After remaking one bad diskette, I got it to boot, and loaded all four diskettes. It asked for the driver update diskette, which I didn't try, but also gave me a message that the code had not loaded properly, for some reason. Okay, I pressed a key, and the preboot menu showed up. So, I proceeded. The install started, and came to an abrupt halt, when the disk drive could not be "seen". The Dani driver problem (I thought somebody said that only affected a few laptops). So, start over, and select the IBM1S506 driver. Now, the USB DVD drive could not be read. After I powered everything off, and started again, the USB drive was okay, so I proceeded. All went well until it did the first reboot. Now, the USB drive could not be read, again. Okay, I know that is one of the symptoms of the USB drivers, so I rebooted to an alternate boot system, and put the 186 USB drivers in. While I was at it, I put the Dani driver, and DaniFLT.FLT, from eCS 2.1 in and changed the CONFIG.SYS. Rebooted again, and off it went, for a couple of minutes. Then it stopped. No indication of any problems, but it was going nowhere.I realized that I had forgotten to REM the NTFS.IFS and HPFS.IFS lines in CONFIG.SYS, so I rebooted, did that and rebooted again. It continued, and now I am waiting as it is apparently installing CUPS. I think i will kill it because it should not take that long, even if it is downloading it. Hmmm. It took the rest button to break it loose.

More about this saga, if I ever get the time to do it.

Gregg Young

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Re: eComStation 2.2 Beta First Impressions
« Reply #82 on: April 07, 2013, 02:04:48 am »
I finally got the time to do some in depth testing. I avoided the genmac problems. Who knew that having an "UNSUPPORTED" nic would be a good thing. It would be nice to have the option to install the base genmac driver.  NAP doesn't install my unsupported driver correctly but MPTS does. The USB & DANI drivers work for me.

The install went fine except for the error between boots "Operating system missing, system halted". Rebooting fixed this. This is caused by a space in the drive label name. It is probably a quoting issue in how the new setboot (eCS 2.1 and higher) passes the name to boot manager.

Drag text doesn't install correctly. The DTProgram template gets the Ftp class instead of the DTProgram class. Not a huge issue and uninstalling DTProgram and reinstalling it fixes it. Split view is also problematic independent of rather you like it or not. Because split view is installed by running a REXX script to set the "Drives" default view to split view any drive that is added after the install (all network and virtual drives) don't default to it. I couldn't get the script to set the additional drives either. Not sure why. The other problem as already discussed is the lack of an easy way to change to the standard behavior.   

PNG Desktop was much more of a problem. If I installed it the phase 3 boot always failed to populate the desktop forcing an additional reboot. The Amouse object failed to install in the settings folder and since mouse settings aren't really optional this represents a reason to remove this completely if it can't easily be fixed. The issue of drive labels verses letter which has previously been discussed needs to be addressed also. Lastly, the Drag Text file template icon is lost if you open its properties.

I think this is a very good showing for a beta. I have submitted bug reports for the issues listed above.

Pete

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Re: eComStation 2.2 Beta First Impressions
« Reply #83 on: April 09, 2013, 06:15:19 pm »
Hi Doug

I tried to resolve the usb issues I'm seeing by deleting USBOHCD.SYS and USBEHCD.SYS then installing the files from the 10.186 build by Lars Erdmann

Rebooted  to a working Desktop with Mouse "active"

I hoped the above had cured the problem but find it has not - 2 of 5 boots have resulted in no mouse "active" when the Desktop has loaded.

I then tried replacing USBD.SYS and USBHID.SYS with the IBM 10.162 builds

Rebooted with no problems, mouse works.

A few reboots later - and no changes to config.sys file - I find boot stopping after loading the genmac marvbell 88e8056 driver.

This is about the time that the usbmouse.sys driver should load...

I tried turning off my Logitech M570 Trackball - just purchased to replace my ancient wired Microsoft Trackball - and then turning it on. No difference...

I pulled the wireless receiver from the USB socket - Boot continued; I reinserted the wireless receiver and the mouse worked fine when the Desktop had loaded. Interesting... I suspect the USB drivers are not even "seeing" the attached mouse until the wireless receiver is reinserted. But, Why not?

This combination of Lars Erdmanns controller drivers build 10.186 and IBMs 10.162 USBD.SYS and USBHID.SYS works fine on this hardware when booting from my eCS2.1 volume. This seems to indicate the problem is not just related to USB drivers.


Regards

Pete


Doug Bissett

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Re: eComStation 2.2 Beta First Impressions
« Reply #84 on: April 09, 2013, 08:07:17 pm »
I think that Lars has been doing great work with the USB stuff. However, it seems that the poorly written, and even more poorly followed USB specs are causing problems for him. Throwing in "unusual" devices, like a trackball, doesn't help. It may become a case where users will need to mix, and match, the different parts to find a combination that works. At least Lars is willing to continue trying.

GENMAC also has some very strange problems (that likely won't get fixed), but I haven't seen any evidence that either driver will interfere with the other (doesn't mean that it doesn't happen).

ECS 2.2 beta seems to have picked a couple of bad combinations of both of those drivers, and there are some other problems that may affect what you are seeing. Right now, I am waiting to see what the next beta does. The current one seems to have a number of problems, that have been identified, but working around one, may be causing others to show up. It becomes a chicken and the egg problem, which can waste a whole lot of time.

Pete

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Re: eComStation 2.2 Beta First Impressions
« Reply #85 on: April 09, 2013, 08:50:18 pm »
Hi Doug

Throwing in "unusual" devices, like a trackball, doesn't help.


I would not consider a trackball an "unusual" device; it is nothing more than an upside down mouse  ;-)

Yes, lets see if the next 2.2 beta - if there is 1 - resolves the issues people have reported.


Regards

Pete

Pete

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Re: eComStation 2.2 Beta First Impressions
« Reply #86 on: April 11, 2013, 03:32:17 am »
Hi Doug

I think I've found the cause of my usb "mouse" problem: USB Legacy support was Enabled in the mainboard BIOS.
Changing that to Disabled has resulted in no problems when booting using the IBM 10.162 builds of usbd.sys, usbhid.sys, usbehcd.sys and usbohcd.sys and the mouse has been active when the Desktop has loaded.

Lars 10.186 builds do not like my wireless trackball as they cause boot to stop until the usb receiver is removed from the usb port.

I've yet to retest the usb drivers supplied with eCS 2.2 beta

I've also discovered the cause of the slooow boot time I've been experiencing with eCS2.2 beta: BASEDEV=OS2AHCI.ADD /Q
Putting REM in front of that line has improved matters greatly - about the same boot time as my eCS 2.1 installation.


Regards

Pete

Sigurd Fastenrath

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A different OS2 Loader - Link
« Reply #87 on: April 11, 2013, 08:46:22 am »
For those, looking for this QS Loader, as long at it is there :P

- I am not responsible for any damage or soemthing else you will get while following/using this link:

http://212.12.30.18/other/QS_LDR.ZIP

I personally did switch back to OS/4 Loader so far.

Martin or wohever: please let me know if this link does violate forum rules or whatever, thanks!

EDIT: Oh sorry, it is on the wrong discussion, could you move this to the "Warp 4" one please, thanks and sorry!
« Last Edit: April 11, 2013, 08:49:30 am by Sigurd Fastenrath »

Joop

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Re: eComStation 2.2 Beta First Impressions
« Reply #88 on: April 14, 2013, 10:51:01 am »
Hi Doug

I think I've found the cause of my usb "mouse" problem: USB Legacy support was Enabled in the mainboard BIOS.
Changing that to Disabled has resulted in no problems when booting using the IBM 10.162 builds of usbd.sys, usbhid.sys, usbehcd.sys and usbohcd.sys and the mouse has been active when the Desktop has loaded.

Lars 10.186 builds do not like my wireless trackball as they cause boot to stop until the usb receiver is removed from the usb port.

I've yet to retest the usb drivers supplied with eCS 2.2 beta

I've also discovered the cause of the slooow boot time I've been experiencing with eCS2.2 beta: BASEDEV=OS2AHCI.ADD /Q
Putting REM in front of that line has improved matters greatly - about the same boot time as my eCS 2.1 installation.


Regards

Pete
Pete,
You need need to upgrade to MOUSE.SYS and USBMOUSE.SYS version IBM:10.163 or AMOUSE
version NB:2.7 or later. If not than only an attached USB pointng device will not work, with lower version you need to attach an ordinary mouse to serial or ps port. Have had similar problems with Wacom tablets. Also be sure its in the right order in your config.sys.

Regards,
Joop

Andreas Schnellbacher

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Re: eComStation 2.2 Beta First Impressions
« Reply #89 on: April 20, 2013, 07:13:48 pm »
Roderick, excuse me for the late reply.

eCS should better consist of update packages.

Instead of this, it still uses old IBM installers.

It's still not possible to update an eCS version. That lack of possibility
leads for many (if not most) users to no updates.

With a packaging system, you'll reach those users as well. I mean to
package all system components into common packages. BTW:
RPM/YUM is able to fulfill the specs.

Do we really need the IBM installer? I'm sure that installation could be
make easier,  10 times faster and more reliable without it.