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Messages - Neil Waldhauer

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31
General Discussion / OS/2 Article on Ars Technica
« on: November 29, 2019, 06:07:39 pm »
There is a long article on OS/2 in Ars Technica

https://arstechnica.com/information-technology/2019/11/half-an-operating-system-the-triumph-and-tragedy-of-os2/

It was a cloudy Seattle day in late 1980, and Bill Gates, the young chairman of a tiny company called Microsoft, had an appointment with IBM that would shape the destiny of the industry for decades to come.

He went into a room full of IBM lawyers, all dressed in immaculately tailored suits. Bill’s suit was rumpled and ill-fitting, but it didn’t matter. He wasn’t here to win a fashion competition.

Over the course of the day, a contract was worked out whereby IBM would purchase, for a one-time fee of about $80,000, perpetual rights to Gates’ MS-DOS operating system for its upcoming PC. IBM also licensed Microsoft’s BASIC programming language, all that company's other languages, and several of its fledging applications. The smart move would have been for Gates to insist on a royalty so that his company would make a small amount of money for every PC that IBM sold.

But Gates wasn’t smart. He was smarter.

In exchange for giving up perpetual royalties on MS-DOS, which would be called IBM PC-DOS, Gates insisted on retaining the rights to sell DOS to other companies. The lawyers looked at each other and smiled. Other companies? Who were they going to be? IBM was the only company making the PC. Other personal computers of the day either came with their own built-in operating system or licensed Digital Research’s CP/M, which was the established standard at the time.

Gates wasn’t thinking of the present, though. “The lesson of the computer industry, in mainframes, was that over time people built compatible machines,” Gates explained in an interview for the 1996 PBS documentary Triumph of the Nerds. As the leading manufacturer of mainframes, IBM experienced this phenomenon, but the company was always able to stay ahead of the pack by releasing new machines and relying on the power of its marketing and sales force to relegate the cloners to also-ran status.

The personal computer market, however, ended up working a little differently. PC Cloners were smaller, faster, and hungrier companies than their mainframe counterparts. They didn’t need as much startup capital to start building their own machines, especially after Phoenix and other companies did legal, clean-room, reverse-engineered implementations of the BIOS (Basic Input/Output System) that was the only proprietary chip in the IBM PC’s architecture. To make a PC clone, all you needed to do was put a Phoenix BIOS chip into your own motherboard design, design and manufacture a case, buy a power supply, keyboard, and floppy drive, and license an operating system. And Bill Gates was ready and willing to license you that operating system.

https://arstechnica.com/information-technology/2019/11/half-an-operating-system-the-triumph-and-tragedy-of-os2/

[follow the link for the rest of the story]

32
General Advertisements / ArcaOS 5.0 on ebay
« on: November 22, 2019, 07:14:59 pm »


Blonde Guy is now offering ArcaOS 5.0 on ebay. This is intended to make the English language ArcaOS DVD available outside the USA and Canada.

ArcaOS 5.0 Commercial DVD including 12 months of support.
http://www.ebay.com/itm/362907943853

ArcaOS 5.0 Personal DVD including 6 months of support.
http://www.ebay.com/itm/324066323069

ArcaOS 5.0 (Media only) DVD If you already have an ArcaOS license, you can send me the URL of the .ISO.
http://www.ebay.com/itm/362907912072

33
Utilities / Re: graphic interface for smartahci
« on: November 22, 2019, 03:23:27 pm »
For the current Arca Noae AHCI driver, smartctl from Hobbes (listed as smartmontools) works. But how do I get a nice display like smartmon and DaniS506 used to give me?

The data is there if I use smartctl -a ahci1

OK, smartctl -A ahci1 seems to give a black and white version of the smartmon display.

34
Setup & Installation / Re: Screen Size
« on: November 06, 2019, 12:50:34 am »
You know, there must be such a table, because Panorama uses the Gradd driver, and it can set up quite a range of resolutions.

Of course, you could just use Panorama. Still, it would be nice to have a utility to set up Gradd, much like PanoUtil does for Panorama.

35
Programming / Re: Porting Lilypond to OS/2 - eCS - Arca Noae
« on: November 05, 2019, 03:35:49 pm »
I think most or all of the requirements you are listing can be installed on OS/2 with rpm/yum.

If you are already a Linux user, then maybe you can build Lilypond on Linux. Then you can try to do the same on OS/2 with the same or similar shell and tools.

36
Setup & Installation / Re: old eCS CDs
« on: October 26, 2019, 05:17:41 pm »
Suntan Special provides a superior method of installing SmartSuite and all its fixes.

http://www.blondeguy.com/suntan6.html

First, it enables all options on the installer, Second, it fixes many config.sys items that aren't quite right on eComStation or ArcaOS of even MCP. You still need your own copy of Lotus SmartSuite v1.7.


37
Please read the web page that Martin quoted above.

The T540p is an excellent choice for ArcaOS. But follow the advice in the article. Set the BIOS the way it says. And if you have a T540p with NVidia video, trade it in for one with Intel video.

Alternatively, just buy my T540p. :)

38
Hardware / HP Printer support
« on: October 11, 2019, 03:48:15 pm »
The support in Cups for HP printers has been very good. But it's getting stale. If I look at printers in retail outlets or on-line, I'm no longer seeing support.

I'm looking at two consumer-grade color laser printers. These printers are cheap to buy, but expensive to buy new toner, which is appropriate for a home or business with modest printing needs.

The HP printer driver is called hplip, and we have version 3.17.11-1 at Netlabs, which can be installed by RPM/YUM.

My old M252dw has been replaced by M254dw, and needs 3.18.5 or later. The slightly fancier M454dw needs 3.19.6 or later.

I don't know how difficult it is to port the hplip software, but supporting at least one brand of printer is strategic, and HP is at least commonly sold in USA. They are also good at recycling used toner cartridges.

39
Internet / Re: PMMail and EARLYMEMINIT=TRUE problem?
« on: October 10, 2019, 05:25:39 pm »
If no POPUPLOG.OS2 entry is created, then are any .TRP files created? If so, these could contain a clue to what is going wrong.

40
Hardware / Re: UNIAUD Update: Thinkpad X250 - The Perfect ArcaOS Laptop
« on: October 07, 2019, 04:54:13 pm »
Indeed I did. For the current ArcaOS uniaud driver on the T540p, this is the unimix list.

Code: [Select]
Command line mixer for UNIAUD32. Version 1.1
Detected UNIAUD version 2.02.05
Detected 1 audio adapter(s)
Control list for adapter 0

Control ID: 1
Interface: virtual mixer device
Device(client): -270333520, subdevice (substream) 0
Name: [Capture Switch]
Index: 0
Element type: boolean type
Count of values: 2
Value:
 Bounds: min: 0, max: 1, step: 0
  value 0: 1
  value 1: 1

Control ID: 2
Interface: virtual mixer device
Device(client): -270333520, subdevice (substream) 0
Name: [Capture Volume]
Index: 0
Element type: integer type
Count of values: 2
Value:
 Bounds: min: 0, max: 63, step: 0
  value 0: 40
  value 1: 40

Control ID: 3
Interface: virtual mixer device
Device(client): 3, subdevice (substream) 0
Name: [Master Playback Volume]
Index: -269297847
Element type: integer type
Count of values: 2
Value:
 Bounds: min: 0, max: 87, step: 0
  value 0: 87
  value 1: 87

And this is the list for the T540p with the new test uniaud driver:

Code: [Select]
Command line mixer for UNIAUD32. Version 1.1
Detected UNIAUD version 2.02.04
Detected 1 audio adapter(s)
Control list for adapter 0

Control ID: 1
Interface: virtual mixer device
Device(client): 0, subdevice (substream) 0
Name: [Speaker Playback Volume]
Index: 0
Element type: integer type
Count of values: 2
Value:
 Bounds: min: 0, max: 87, step: 0
  value 0: 0
  value 1: 0

Control ID: 2
Interface: virtual mixer device
Device(client): 0, subdevice (substream) 0
Name: [Speaker Playback Switch]
Index: 0
Element type: boolean type
Count of values: 2
Value:
 Bounds: min: 0, max: 1, step: 0
  value 0: 1
  value 1: 1

Control ID: 3
Interface: virtual mixer device
Device(client): 0, subdevice (substream) 0
Name: [Headphone Playback Volume]
Index: 0
Element type: integer type
Count of values: 2
Value:
 Bounds: min: 0, max: 87, step: 0
  value 0: 80
  value 1: 80

Control ID: 4
Interface: virtual mixer device
Device(client): 0, subdevice (substream) 0
Name: [Headphone Playback Switch]
Index: 0
Element type: boolean type
Count of values: 2
Value:
 Bounds: min: 0, max: 1, step: 0
  value 0: 1
  value 1: 1

Control ID: 5
Interface: virtual mixer device
Device(client): 0, subdevice (substream) 0
Name: [Internal Mic Boost Volume]
Index: 0
Element type: integer type
Count of values: 2
Value:
 Bounds: min: 0, max: 3, step: 0
  value 0: 0
  value 1: 0

Control ID: 6
Interface: virtual mixer device
Device(client): 0, subdevice (substream) 0
Name: [Mic Boost Volume]
Index: 0
Element type: integer type
Count of values: 2
Value:
 Bounds: min: 0, max: 3, step: 0
  value 0: 0
  value 1: 0

Control ID: 7
Interface: virtual mixer device
Device(client): 0, subdevice (substream) 0
Name: [Capture Switch]
Index: 0
Element type: boolean type
Count of values: 2
Value:
 Bounds: min: 0, max: 1, step: 0
  value 0: 0
  value 1: 0

Control ID: 8
Interface: virtual mixer device
Device(client): 0, subdevice (substream) 0
Name: [Capture Volume]
Index: 0
Element type: integer type
Count of values: 2
Value:
 Bounds: min: 0, max: 63, step: 0
  value 0: 23
  value 1: 23

Control ID: 9
Interface: virtual mixer device
Device(client): 0, subdevice (substream) 0
Name: [Master Playback Volume]
Index: 0
Element type: integer type
Count of values: 1
Value:
 Bounds: min: 0, max: 87, step: 0
  value 0: 16

Control ID: 10
Interface: virtual mixer device
Device(client): 0, subdevice (substream) 0
Name: [Master Playback Switch]
Index: 0
Element type: boolean type
Count of values: 1
Value:
 Bounds: min: 0, max: 1, step: 0
  value 0: 1

Even if I adjust values to turn on Speaker and turn up Speaker Volume, and unplug the headphone output jack, I still get nothing on the speakers. But I do get good sound from the headphone jack that is plugged into a powered speaker.

41
Hardware / Re: UNIAUD Update: Thinkpad X250 - The Perfect ArcaOS Laptop
« on: October 07, 2019, 05:01:24 am »
I have access to the new uniaud driver.

This works on the T450s slightly better than the UniAud32.sys in ArcaOS 5.0.4. In the new driver, the volume control works, while in the release driver, sounds are always the same level.

The same is true for the T540. I've been without working volume control for Uniaud so long I've forgotten how to properly test it. It seems to work better with the new driver. Other than volume control, for both these machines, there is very little difference. Neither machine can use the built in speakers.

42
Web applications / Re: Migrating Apache Web Server
« on: October 06, 2019, 06:37:29 pm »
Still no luck on stability. I'm wondering about the server machine being too old.

The symptom is that the machine stops serving. There is no error in the logs that we can see.

This is an IBM MPro with MCP 2r. The owner is reluctant to change things on the machine.

How important would it be to have an rpm/yum Unix compatibility system on the machine? I think it does not, but I will check if that looks like a significant issue.

Apache seems to run for a long time on ArcaOS with yum update to the current level.

43
Applications / Re: Polarbar Mailer
« on: October 06, 2019, 04:43:49 pm »
Polarbar 1.2.5e was quite stable with Java 1.3.1 and some font fixups. As stable as Thunderbird, anyway.

It's a lovely mailer, and I'm sure once you use it, you won't be able to go back to Post Road.

IMAP didn't work perfectly, and I don't use POP much anymore, so I was hoping to run the new version. Maybe if BWW ports Java 11 or newer, this could replace Thunderbird for my use.

44
Setup & Installation / Re: Informal eCS 1.2R releases
« on: October 01, 2019, 03:31:44 pm »
I frequently update installed OS/2 versions from (Warp4 to ArcaOS 5.0.4) to the latest using Suntan Special.. But this is English-only. Still, if installing English updates (everything I use is included, not just the operating system) would help a non-English system, I'd guess that could help.

It's a lot of work to update, and I think Suntan Special does not save much time, but does help to remember all the items that need updating.

45
Applications / Polarbar Mailer
« on: September 30, 2019, 11:28:07 pm »
This was a great mailer, based on Post Road Mailer for OS/2. Long abandoned, it is now under development again.

However, it requires a minimum of Java 11, and on OS/2 we have OpenJDK 6. So I think it's not needed to put up news on OS/2 World about Polarbar Mailer for now.

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