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Messages - Dave Yeo

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Applications / Re: libusb-1.0 port to OS/2 - help needed
« on: April 27, 2013, 05:17:51 pm »
Thanks - I wonder if usb.ids is included in eCS.  If it is, I could try and change the code in lsusb to look in that location...

It is in eCS\bin

Also a slightly older copy in amouse, they're both from 2007, at least in eCS 2.1

Games / Re: Mahjonng Solitaire 2.20
« on: March 25, 2013, 02:18:57 am »
IIRC with virtual box it can depend on the version, some work very well, others not so much.  MS's virtual machine used to work quite well.
I've seen people running OS/2 under both virtual box and parallels on OSX

Applications / Re: Odin
« on: March 21, 2013, 04:28:51 pm »
Might just be a requirement of the kernel loader

Applications / Re: Odin
« on: March 20, 2013, 08:04:14 am »
What..? D: Random. But thanks for the insight Dave. This is normal for old systems and their old FS, just forgot all about how "dumb" pre:NT4 was concerning file names.

While the native filesystem is FAT with its 8.3 limit and DOS and Win3.1 can only see 8.3 names using any long file name aware file system is enough to enable long file names for everything besides DLLs, the DLL 8.3 limitation is a kernel limitation which didn't exist in ver 2.0 but seems to have been added to reduce memory usage. Remember this system could be crammed into 4 MBs of memory up until Warp V3 (16 MB for V4 and realistically double to be useful).

Applications / Re: Odin
« on: March 20, 2013, 03:17:58 am »
Be aware that OS/2 also has a 8.3 name limit on DLLs with the .3 having to be .dll. It's a shame as it limits things but...

Applications / Re: Odin
« on: March 19, 2013, 07:16:59 am »
Windows is worse for DLL hell due to using C++ but it can still happen with OS/2.
x:\os2\dll or x:\ecs\dll aren't too bad of choices, you can also have a dedicated directory for DLLs by adding a directory to the LIBPATH statement in config.sys. OS/2 uses LIBPATH to find DLLs. You should also put the mozfntcfgft DLLs in the same place as other things are starting to use them. Most people have one partition for the operating system and other partitions for programs etc.
Really FF 10.0.12 should depend on libc065 as that is what I linked it against, I think the libc064 dependency comes from the statically linked GCC library as GCC 4.4.6 was built with libc064.
I did both C:\home\default\Mozilla\Firefox and C:\programs\firefox I'm thinking only one of these locations actually need it, and that would(might be) the first one.

c:\programs\firefox will work if LIBPATH contains a dot (usually does), the profile directory will not work.

Applications / Re: Odin
« on: March 19, 2013, 03:30:58 am »
Update Firefox if yours is too old. contains most of the newest ones, latest being 10.0.12ESR. Note for that version you also need the mzfntcfgft runtime.

Applications / Re: Odin
« on: March 19, 2013, 12:26:49 am »
Haha. By "more" I meant install Flash 11, Flash 5 won't run Youtube. Unless you know of a fancier way to get Youtube working? I've gotten Gnash, but I can't figure out a way to force Firefox to use it, unless of course I code my own plugin.

Webm support works fine with Firefox and Youtube. You have to go into the experimental features youtube page to turn on webm (or at least did last time I tried)
Note that due to a bug in the OS/2 multimedia you might have to pause a video and then restart it to get sound. This is true with Flash as well.


There are a few things important to me, and I'd say it's Flash, Java, and multimedia support. My main PC has a Super-Multi bluray player. I have a feeling eCS won't support it(yet anyway). I know there is a VLC port, so I could run DVD media, and possibly some video formats. But X264 / avc? Not sure. I know VLC has everything, but if it doesn't support my graphics card's capabilities it probably won't be so easy. But, like I said, going to try it anyways. I don't like Mac OS, but I don't hate it either. Everyone has their own likes, preferences, and needs.

As Doug said, we have Flash, Java is coming along. For Multimedia support, FFmpeg, libav, MPlayer and I believe VLC all support OS/2. X264 refused to support OS/2, mostly due to our not having YASM and them not liking NASM but it isn't that hard to build X264.
No bluray as our UDF file support is too old and most newer graphic cards run unaccelerated.

Based on what I can see of the OS/2 UI they were ahead in the times of Windows 98se, (active desktop?). Remember when that bugger used to crash all the time? Haha. I'm not sure where XP was, but I think it was then they got full PNG support and a few other things. How customisable is the UI on OS/2 Warp? And, if it's programmable, how hard would it be to learn how to program for OS/2? Are icons interchangeable? I'm like Curious George, I've bounced around and used everything like a crazy monkey over the years, haha. I'm saddened I haven't used OS/2 yet. OpenBSD was fun. I wanna know the UI stuff a bit more, because if I were to use it, I wouldn't want 16bit icons, haha.

The Work Place Shell (WPS) is object orientated so you can just subclass various classes and extend the shell. One example is here, where the programmer added Cairo to the UI to enable things like transparent PNG support.
OS/2 is layered, text mode which is much like text mode on Windows. The Presentation Manager which is the graphic layer, similar to Windows with very similar functions for drawing windows etc, and the WPS on top which I understand is harder to program for.  Need to write IPL interfaces and I believe you need special compiler but I'm far from expert so perhaps someone more knowledgeable can chime in.

Hey Doug, thanks for that addition. Wouldn't you say that no-viruses is because it's such a foreign OS? Not language wise, but in terms of use? It's very sparingly used by anyone, and the market share is so low that no one writes viruses for it? Same goes for linux and Mac OS? Mac OS and iOS is becoming used more, but not at the extent Windows is, to my knowledge.
Not Doug but...
While OS/2 resistants to viruses is partially due to it not being very common it does have very high payback. Rooting a bank is much more profitably then rooting Joe User. The advantage is the IBM culture. While MS seems to have a culture of "it compiles, lets ship" IBM had a culture of "there is still some compiler warnings, we better fix them before shipping". This leads to less holes for virus writers to take advantage of.
When you said "If you wanna play games use Windows, if you want to do work use eComStation", I was heavily reminded of the Mac VS PC commercials. Any OS can be used for gaming, provided someone writes software for it, or so I thought? The OS isn't the limitation, it's the developers for the system that create limitations, correct? If someone made a Win32 directx library that ran virtually or parallel in OS/2, couldn't it play games too? Also, if eComStation or OS/2 has support for GCC, couldn't it also install linux software(games), with some sort of driver manipulation for OpenGL?

Of course OS/2 is just as capable of running games as Win32. At that Odin (think Wine) was originally written to run Quake III. And funny enough, directx was a direct ripoff of OS/2 DIVE. The problem now is hardware support for OpenGL, software emulation is just too slow for most games. Perhaps by leveraging LLVM but no-one has the interest in doing the work.
Note that most of Windows is a direct ripoff of OS/2. Even the naming. Internet Explorer is based on Web Explorer which shipped with WARP 3 in '94, mostly as a system DLL so any program could link against it to get HTML functionality.

Back to Martin. Yeah, for a lot of people stability is very important. But how much tuning is actually required, what's the learning curve on doing such tweaks? Would someone have to go out of their way and read an OS/2 for dummies book?

There's a learning curve though much is simple drag'n'drop. The problem now is that people are used to the Windows way (or Linux or MAC) and OS/2 is different. Thing is once learned it is learned. I'm writing this on an install done in '97. Through multiple hardware upgrades this install has kept working. I used to migrate to Linux regularly but it just became so frustrating as every time I learned the system, it would change. It started as fun but with time it was like "how to fix the sound again"

:P That "microkernel" part I agree seems like a nifty thing to have. I guess that means anyone can write software-based drivers and not have to hook into the kernel or different security rings? I'm not 100% knowledged on "rings" or anything like that, but it seems like that's what it would be optimized for.  But they should support enough out of the box to actually do work, and do they? I mean, I see that they finally have support for Athlon 64, which is a decently old CPU. I'm running a modest Phenom II x6 1045t, with 10GB ram. Would eComStation actually work out of the box for my system?

Martin exaggerates a bit. The OS/2 kernel is closer to a microkernel then lets say Linux but is really more of a hybrid. For a true microkernel you'd have to go to the PPC port of OS/2. A true microkernel (Mach based) and the system that IBM should have open sourced, ideally as LGPL. OS/2 device drivers are somewhat a bitch as they still have to interface with the kernel on the 16 bit level.
As for support for an Athlon 64, that was old (non-smp). The odds are that OS/2 would boot up on  your Phenom II system and given the right network and video chips would work fine though only using 4 GB of your memory.

My take, OS/2 has one of the best graphical shells ever written (, even more amazing as it was optimized for 4 MB of memory (really needed at least 8MB), had a very good scheduler especially for a desktop system. Giving the foreground app a priority boost as well as an IO boost which made it a nice to use (and it could be optimized as a server). It had very good DOS support, even running DOS drivers and also very good Win 3.1 support where you could run multiple win3.1 programs in separate sessions so that if one crashed the rest continued on. The advertised better DOS then DOS, better WINDOWS then WINDOWS was true, even if only because you could use a superior file system. The scheduler was much better then Windows, I remember magazine comparisons where basically they'd test an OS/2 version against NT. After failing to get SMP working on OS/2 they'd declare NT the winner even though OS/2 was faster on one core then NT on two. NT won because it ran slower with 2 cores but used both <GR>
At this point most OS/2 users are using it from momentum as most other systems have caught up over the last decade though the interfaces seem to be taking a step back (look at Win8)

Programming / Re: A little help with OS/2 Warp Architecture Components
« on: March 07, 2013, 04:09:54 am »
My apologies, mixed up ring 1 and ring 2.

Programming / Re: A little help with OS/2 Warp Architecture Components
« on: March 06, 2013, 11:32:23 pm »
I don't think anything uses ring 2 in any OS. OS/2 is unique in using ring 1, namely for DOS device drivers, and even the OS/2 device drivers don't all run completely in ring 0 IIRC.  Used to have an ATI video driver which during boot advertised that it had a ring 0 component and IIRC IBM and MS had a falling out over whether the video system should be in ring 0 or not with MS pushing for ring 0 for speed and IBM more interested in stability back in the OS/2 1.x days.
Perhaps someone more knowledgeable can verify my memory.

Applications / Re: Whatever happened to...
« on: February 22, 2013, 07:24:21 am »
and start to use the same font support that the Mozilla derivatives are using. At least the source is available, so problems should be fixable (I don't know if that would actually work either).

Easier said then done as it would probably take a lot of rewriting. Mozilla uses Cairo Actually following the examples link does show that work has been done on adding Cairo to OO. Nothing recent though, see

Doodles Screen Saver has some Cairo based modules and WPS-Wizard adds some classes to the WPS that adds Cairo support. Unluckily it is not the most stable and source is unavailable. Screen shots at

General Discussion / Re: Hybrid "64-Bit" eComStation
« on: February 18, 2013, 11:24:06 pm »
I use a RAMFS volume with 1 GB, seems to work fine. Also with 1 GB, my swap hardly ever grows to over 300 MB so 1.5 GB should be ideal. I did have Thunderbird run away one day and the system crashed with a swapfile full error. Seems that it was actually a 2 GB limit on the swapfile.

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