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Graphics Software

Beta BeOS R5 OpenGL Benchmarks Smoke Linux and Win 335

BigZaphod writes: "BeNews has a story up that compares GLQuake and Quake2(GL) on BeOS R5 to Windows and Linux (Corel). They compare stats using a Voodoo2, Voodoo3, and a Matrox G200. BeOS wins almost every round -- sometimes by huge margins." Update: 06/19 09:06 by CT : several people pointed out that they did the tests under XF86 3.3 which of course is not an even remotely fast 3D platform. Restesting at the very least under XF86 4 w/ DRI would be necessary to get a fair comparison.
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Beta BeOS R5 OpenGL Benchmarks smoke Linux and Win

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  • It has a big effect on stuff like audo composition, especially midi effects. If your system is fast enough to respond to sound events quickly, (especially MIDI sound events, since they aren't really streams of data) then you can mix more tracks of audio while still staying real time. Also, you can add more advanced filters and stuff and know that the system won't hold up the data and keep the tracks from playing in real time. Ff you've ever seen BeOS play two dozen MP3s, you'll know why audio latency matters.
  • Just so you know, the development tools are a free download from Be's website. They did'nt put them in the main download because it's about a 20 meg zip file.
  • Quoted from original post: "Only NetBSD can take advantage of high-quality Open Source OpenGL hard acceleration for a truly embedded gaming experience. Because of the BSD licence, game companies can embed NetBSD into their games to produce a bootable gaming disc. Put the disc in, reboot, and you're playing the game!" Don't get me wrong here, I have nothing against NetBSD, but there are several significant reasons why this is a bad idea. You can't patch or upgrade the game via the Internet -- If the company that made the game wanted to fix some bugs, or add new features, they can't. It'd be very slow -- games these days are big. Hundreds of megabytes is typical for an installation of any reasonably complex game. The files are copied to the hard-drive during installation simply because it'd be unbearably slow to repeatedly access the CD-ROM. Can't save or load games -- Unless you're proposing a file system, too... or maybe the CD should come packaged with support for several common filesystems? Then it becomes the game's responsibility to figure out where to put the flies -- and how the heck do you do that on a Linux- or Windows NT-based system, where you need to identify yourself prior to gaining access to parts of the system? Newer video/audio hardware may not be supported -- the only video and audio cards that would be supported would have to have all their support code on the CD, thus taking a lot of space away from the game itself. Card manufacturers provide drivers for major operating systems already, and update them for years after the card is first released to the public. Forget networked games -- Unless you're suggesting that traditional and WinModem drivers, LAN, ISDN, etc. card drivers, a TCP/IP (and IPX) stack should all be packed onto the CD, too. Even then, if you're arranging to play a multiplayer game with some other people, you'd probably arrange it ahead of time via ICQ or what-not. Many older machines can't boot CD-ROMs -- Oh yeah, that too, eh? Doesn't actually solve any problems -- The current system of writing, compiling, executing games on Windows, Mac, and Linux systems works fairly well. Bottlenecks aren't in the OS so much as they are in the architecture of the hardware you're using. There's no sense in reinventing the wheel all over again for the sake of less than one frame per second in Quake 3 Arena. If you want embedded gaming, use a console platform. There are several, and none of the above issues apply, since you're dealing with a single hardware spec. PC's are simply not suited. Daltorak
  • Sorry, wrong again. The QuakeII port has been around since the 4.x days, when OpenGL on BeOS wasn't really that good.
  • Are you kidding? BeOS's GL output looks slightly better than Win98's GL output! And how is this bench marketing? Just because it's by BeNews? I got news for you, nVidia's OpenGL drivers were tested by 3DLinux. How's that for bench marketing? The tests were similar except one ran QuakeII, and the Linux guys ran Quake III.
  • Read the whole thing. It says that turning off the procs yeilds a .6fps loss. However, the fact that the OpenGL on BeOS is multithreaded should mean big gains for apps that use OpenGL more extensively (other than just a simple rendering engine like Quake does), as they could leverage multiple procs automatically. Be's OpenGl also takes good advantage of SIMD, so stuff that uses the OpenGL geometry pipe should perform even better than Quake!
  • Sorry about that. I've been paying too much attention to GeForce 2.
  • I don't really know why this is so, but I've seen it on _many_ systems. Just try reseting your clocks to normal and see what happens.

    Alas, I am not overclocking the CPU. It is a dual Pentium III/550 with 256 MB of RAM, so I haven't really felt the need to overclock.

    A colleague of mine, running a single Pentium III/600 has the same problem. We are both using the firewire card sold with the Adamation Personal Studio product and bundled with BeOS 5, so I don't think it is our hardware.
  • A few things:

    First, as I said, I'm not saying Be might not have found a new way to do things that has resulted in a vast improvement. If they have, great for them. But right now, the only "proof" is a set of benchmarks on a Be related site.

    Second, how many people do you think there are on Slashdot who impersonate others? The number is pretty high. You'll notice all the time people with names like 'Bruce Perens.' or 'John Carmack.' and such. Just because his name appears on the Be Team list doesn't necessarily mean he is who he purports to be. And I'm not saying it is impossible. It is entirely possible he is. If you claim he is, fine, I'll believe you. I'm just pointing out that blindly accepting the word of anyone on Slashdot is a bad idea. In addition to this, the moderating down of one post, which has information that cannot be verified, based on the information in another post, which also cannot be verified, is a Bad Thing (tm).

    Also, I find it just a childish whenever anybody else on slashdot talks about "microsloth" or "winblowz" or any other derogatory term. It is childish name-calling. If you have a problem with MS [as many do], back it up with reasons and facts. Don't be angry at MS because it is 'hip' or 'cool' to be so. This is what Mr. Ewhac is doing. He isn't giving reasons, he is just being derogatory so that he sounds 'cool'.

    The problem I see with what has gone down in this thread is that people are blindly taking one side or another. Realize that I'm NOT saying that either person is right. I'm just saying that , seeing as neither set of information is verifiable, it seems silly to be moderating based on either of them. Whether the first should've been moderated up is questionable, but at the same time, whether it should've been moderated down at the whim of someone else who is also unverifiable is just as bad.

    And as for your audio compression analogy: no, people would NOT clap you on the back. People like LOSSLESS compression methods. Lossy methods suck. If you look around, for example, at different mp3 encoders, you'll find that some drop noise that is supposedly out of the range of human hearing to help compression. You'll also notice that most people are AGAINST this, as you can often tell the difference. The song just doesn't sound right when you do this.

    Anyways, don't mistake me here. I like Be. I think it has a lot of potential. If it had more apps and games, I'd probably use it along with Linux. I messed around with R4 and R4.5 some, and found it pretty nice, although a few things were a bit weird, but what OS is perfect? I'm not here trying to bash Be.

    Just more thoughts.
  • Did I once mention Linux in my posts? I didn't think so.

    Nice try, though.
  • While I agree with some of your comments and feelings, Mike, Beatware is not a great example to use. They changed their focus as often as Be did. First they were going to be a productivity company, with BeBasics (Sum-It and Beatware Writer) and BeStudio. They never delivered BeStudio for the Intel platform, then dropped both it and BeBasics and proclaimed they were an Internet applications company, with development work of e-Picture going on as a "web graphics" program.

    Then they delivered e-Picture, which was obviously a bet-the-farm kind of operation; as cool as e-Picture is in concept, the fact is that in practice the BeOS release was buggier than a South American jungle. I'd been saving up to buy it on the assumption that the final release would fix the bugs in the preview releases. No such luck. It didn't help things that e-Picture was more expensive than any other BeOS program--to me that wasn't a big issue, but the crashing was. The BeOS release was unusable.

    And what was Beatware's response? Not a single bugfix.

    All the resources at Beatware have been devoted to the Mac release. From a pragmatic standpoint, that's wise; Mac users consider a $150 vector-based graphics program a bargain, while Be users seemed to be looking for reasons to dismiss it as a "GIF animator". (Beatware's insistence on marketing it as, well, a GIF animator rather than a vector-based graphics program didn't help, of course.) But anyone who was thinking of buying the Be release when it was bug-free was left out in the cold.

    This is essentially the same argument I made through the middle of last year about Adamation's ImageElements and AudioElements. There may be a host of good reasons they haven't delivered them on the Intel platform yet, but the cold hard truth is that if the program isn't available nobody's going to buy it. Nearly the same thing is true with Pe for Intel. Maarten Hekkelman could hardly have worked less at promoting the damn thing; he didn't even upload the demo to BeBits until last month--after he'd already announced he didn't see enough demand for it to continue development. (Gosh, Maarten, if people didn't have to already know it existed to go hunting for it, d'ya think there might have been a little demand? Possibly?)

    As for Spellswell--hey. I'm very impressed by Word Services and if I was implementing an editor, I'd have used it. But virtually nobody else has. That reduces its value. You needed a network effect for it to take off, and the network effect never happened. Standalone spelling/grammar checkers are a tough sell these days. I worked very briefly at RightSoft, the makers of RightWriter (the only useful grammar checker I've ever seen); they shut down when WordPerfect chose to buy Grammatik as their built-in grammar checker. There was no market for them. Even on the Mac, where Word Services has been successful, it's difficult to find a word processor that doesn't have a spelling checker built into it.

    I'm not convinced the BeOS commercial software market is ever going to exist, and I think some of the fault does lie with Be. But I'm not convinced they're alone. There are better and worse choices to make for a program in that market. A low-cost MIDI sequencer might be a good choice; an office package was obviously a good choice for Gobe. But, say, porting a high-end SQL database server to BeOS is painting a big fat target on your ass, because all you can do is hope a handful of developers will want to develop front ends for it (or add front-end capability to their existing products)--if you're really lucky, this gives you a total market of, oh, two or three until (and if) their client software comes out. A stand-alone spelling checker with an API people need to explicitly support (albeit a simple one) may be less of a gamble, but it's still a relatively high-risk product--like the SQL database, it's entirely dependent on the "market leaders" deigning to offer support.

    Good luck with your future endeavors, wherever they end up taking you.

  • MP3s do play in a continuous stream, but remember, you're running 24 of them at a time through filters. Because the OS has to manage so many buffers, and the fact that the filters are constantly accessing the stream, the latency to audio calls is important. And of course RT Linux can do that, but so can most other real time OSs. BeOS so far has the lowest audio latency available on a normal (ie. not real time) OS.
  • by ewhac ( 5844 ) on Monday June 19, 2000 @10:21AM (#991732) Homepage Journal

    The above poster is either aggressively misinformed, or is deliberately attempting to misinform.

    We do not drop triangles. If we do, it is a bug and we'd like to know about it.

    Unlike Micros~1, we are not interested in cheating and fudging benchmarks and issuing misleading press releases and pre-announcing non-existent products. We are trying to beat the crap out of Windoze by simply being better than Windoze. With the amazing OpenGL work Jason has done, we're getting closer...

    Be, Inc.
    Currently working on Intel 810 OpenGL driver

  • by be-fan ( 61476 ) on Monday June 19, 2000 @11:00AM (#991733)
    Have you ever considered that it is just your hardware? Video works great for loads of other people, and even for me (who does graphics programming and BDirectWindow stuff, apps which tend to crash 50,000 times during their development) R5 hasn't crashed yet.
  • Actually, I have version 1, and it doesn't contain GIMP. I know, though, that it uses the GIMP filters. The GIMP project on BeOS is still alpha (as is the GTK+ port) but is progressing nicely.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    it's designed to be a multimedia os.
  • Great. BeOS has suberb midi handling capabilities too. (Read up on ObjektSynth, a software midi synth with hardware-like resonse times.)
  • It just pisses me off that so many /. readers are misinformed about BeOS. Like the guys who don't read the entire articles and miss little things like QuakeII is not SMP aware, so they go out and blaber on /. about bad testing methods. Then there are the guys who don't even research the fact that Voodoo is slower under X4.0 and complain that an older version of X was used on the tests. Under a Linux againt Microsoft story where Linux won, any errors pro-Microsofties made would be quickly pointed out. In the case of BeOS, /. tends to let these things slide. There are a great many people on /. who have no clue about BeOS, much less have used it, but still feel that they should post potentially false information.
  • You kidding? Blender has an interface from hell. Also, it doesn't run on BeOS very well because it seems to render the whole preview to a bitmap first them blit that to the screen. (God knows why!)
  • Have you seen the benchmarks? GeForce2 blows away Voodoo5. As for antialiasing, GeForce2 does its antialiasing just about as fast as Voodoo5 4x mode. Plus, GeForce2 has cool lighting and rasterizer effects like per-pixel lighting, bumpmapping, etc, all applied in ONE PASS!
  • Ok everybody, I'm a new user to /., so I expect a lot of flame mail and negative moderation. However, I have to agree that the flamewars are getting out of hand re: OSS/Desktop pervasion. I have used Linux for more than 3 years (Slackware in '96, SuSE, RedHat and now Mandrake) and I've loved every single minute of it. However, I will freely admit that Be is an *amazing* MM and gaming OS. It is blindingly fast even on crappy platforms, has great stability and manufacturer backing (apart from NVidia, with all the other issues I feel like dumping my GeForce). They are announcing because it is simply good for their business - looking at the XBox and the PS/2, we are talking about a serious competitor here - bugger Indrema, this could crack it with that kind of performance - and with the BeIA version set-top boxes could really become the basis of blow-you-away entertainment systems. The Linux community really just has to stand up, take the flak and say "OK, they creamed us - now we'll get to work and fix it." Criticism is the only thing that gets what people, and yes, even 'lusers' want. Pointless flames and reactionary attitudes only reduce the Linux community's acceptability. My business runs it in increasingly mission-critical applications, but we don't need our MD finding out too much of the 'zealot stuff'. OK, personally my NT4 desktop at work makes me physically ill, but I can turn around and enjoy the aesthetics and warmth of e... Lets just all take it in the way it's meant and start pushing and coding (I'm just learning C and perl, and the kernel essentials now) for a better Linux - I'm talking about making Linux easy to set up/download/install specifically for either games/development or a business desktop - and in the end, who knows - we might get the best of all worlds, and be able to share it - without the dreaded spectre of 'fragmentation'. my £0.02
  • I am not blindly pro Be. I acknoledge their weaknesses, like there lack of a deep UI and the fact that networking sucks. The simple fact is that these benchmarks are not skewed. Think about it, Voodoo so far is about the best Linux 3D driver. 3DFx has poured an enormous amount of energy into it. 3DFx is also the fastest BeOS driver at this time. The use of "outdated" hardware, is a no brainer in this case, because it is the only driver that works well in this beta! release. This is not a guantlet to Linux users everywhere that Be is king. It is simply a status test. As such, it is not designed to be the perfect test, merely the best that can be achieved under the circumstances.
  • R5PE does seem to have slight stability problems.

    I would characterize the stability problems as "slight." I have Be R5 and have tried running it with Adamation Personal Studio, using both an analog Hauppauge card as well as a IEEE 1394 card (which came with the product). I can consistently crash the system and corrupt my video data by trying any number of things, the simplest being to attempt capturing more than 8 minutes of (digital) video source to a (SCSI) hard drive, or more than 25 minutes of analog source.

    It is unusable for the one application I purchased it for: non-linear video editing.

    As another pointed out, even windows, as crappy as it is, stays up longer. The Linux multi-media is progressing rapidly and becoming very exciting, but it isn't quite there yet. Once it is, I won't look back to either Windows or BeOS.
  • ARGH!! How could I miss this in proof reading.

    I would characterize ...

    should, of course, read I wouldn't characterize the stability problems as "slight."
  • by Wakko Warner ( 324 ) on Monday June 19, 2000 @12:06PM (#991770) Homepage Journal
    Sorry, but people that complain about lack of support for a given OS are usually using the cheapest, nastiest hardware available. No-name NE2K clones, piece-of-garbage motherboards, etc. The money and time invested by Be (or even the Linux developers) to bring support for Bob's Crap Sound Card Model XYZ to the OS probably won't offset the money they'd recoup from increased sales.

    Buy good hardware and be happy when everything just works.

    - A.P.

    "One World, one Web, one Program" - Microsoft promotional ad

  • Will it ever be available?! To everyone, not just some selected beta testers?
  • Oh, stop it already. Your rant comes down to "BeOS is easy to use and we don't want Linux to be easy to use, because easy to use systems are for FaGz, and Linux is for E/_/t3 ha>0rz.

    Maybe, just maybe, Linux isn't all that easy to use for some intelligent tech-heads, too.
  • I looked at your bencmarking setup and would like to point out a few things.
    A) Driver differences count. Your using the Window V3 drivers, and 3DFx made a lot of progress in the OpenGL support of the V3. (IE. V3 miniGL is a lot faster than V2 miniGL)
    B) The V3 has nearly double the clock speed, and a more optimized pipeline.
    C) You ran with stuff like sound off. The BeNews guys ran it with everything at default.
    Add all these factors together with the 17MHz difference, and the results are quite plausible. Also, you seem to have a histroy of conspiracy theories, saying that Tom's Hardware is biased. This probably dates back to the fact that Tom hand a nVidia approved logo on his site during the TNT vs. V3 wars. That was simply an acknowledgement of the fact that nVidia thought that Tom's methods were sound. Also, V3 was never as fast as TNT2. That fact is acknowledged by every major game rag, so I don't really get your viewpoint.
  • by be-fan ( 61476 ) on Monday June 19, 2000 @10:29AM (#991778)
    Did you guys even read the whole article? How, exactly, is this benchmarketing? The guys put up a test between 3 OSs running an industry standard 3D test, namely Quake. Everyone and their mother has used Quake to test 3D cards and OpenGL. Hell, 3DLinux used Quake to test the nVidia Linux drivers. The tests showed that BeOS was faster in most cases, especially windowed operations. Is it benchmarketing simply because Linux didn't win? BeOS has shown this kind of amazing performance in other fields too, like audio latency around 2 or 3 millseconds opposed to around 50ms in Windows. Is there something wrong with the testing method? True, the machine used was SMP, but if you read the whole article, the BeNews guys said that SMP only lowered the score by about .6fps. Okay, so now it is 72.6 to 77.8 instead of 78.4! It isn't like this is a synthetic benchmark, it was Quake. If Be did something to cheat Quake benchmarks, then good for them. That means that any game that is Quake-like in terms of 3D use (ie. all of them) will run faster. If you're complaining about the narrow scope of the test, remember that Voodoo2's are the most stable cards available on BeOS, and that QuakeII is the only major 3D application. So what's the beef? A lot of people have tossed around the term benchmarketing, but if anyone can give me a specific example, then I'd be glad to listen.
  • by matticus ( 93537 ) on Monday June 19, 2000 @10:29AM (#991781) Homepage
    Did you notice how the test systems were Dual P3s and the tests were run against Win98 and Linux? the Linux ports of the Quakes are not SMP-optimized, and Win98 can't use the other processor at all. A bit unfair? Definitely!

    it is cool that there is no frame loss when switching to windowed mode...

  • I am a long-time BeOS developer and until recently I was a very active member of the [] developer mailing list.

    I am one of the few developers to actually ship a commercial application, Spellswell [] from Working Software []. I've kept Spellswell actively maintained over a couple of years, it is now at version 1.0.5.

    So I didn't appreciate it when Be announced it was dropping active support for the desktop and "refocusing" on Internet Appliances.

    Now promoting the system for Internet appliances is fine, but Be had spent years promoting its system as a platform for multimedia content creation, and in my view it is the best platform for desktop software. Check out, for instance, Gobe Software's [] Gobe Productive [], one of the best integrated applications available.

    While Be still has a desktop operating system and gives it away for free, [] it has made it clear that there will be no further desktop-specific development for the operating system; if a feature or bug-fix makes it into the system it will be because it is needed for Internet Appliances, and not because it is needed for the desktop.

    I repeatedly tried to bring this failure to live up to its commitments on bedevtalk and beusertalk [] and while other professional developers supported my position, I was constantly shot down by the hobbyists and Be's own employees.

    Finally I tried to point out the error of their ways in some detail by posting this to bedevtalk:

    Some of Use Work For a Living []

    in which I pointed out that the appropriate response to criticism from developers like me would be for Be employees who subscribe to the list to communicate our concerns to senior management.

    How did Be respond?

    Tom Maddox, [mailto], unsubscribed me and asked the list if they'd prefer to have the entire list moderated. []

    Before you decide to devote time and energy to developing BeOS software, I ask you to consider whether you wish to take the risk to invest your time and money in a system that is only available from a company that has not only proved it cannot keep its commitments, it has stated repeatedly it does not want its dishonesty pointed out to it and will actively work to censor those who would work to correct its behaviour.

    One of the reasons I am working to reorient my consulting business [] to take primarily Linux work is that I feel it is a mistake for any third party software developer to depend on any API, particularly an operating system, that they do not have the source code to.

    If you feel you must support a closed-source operating system or API, I urge you to require the API vendor to sign a contract guaranteeing they will support the API forever - both in terms of maintainence and marketing - or else they will reimburse you for your lost revenue and opportunity cost if they fail to live up to their commitments.

    I had much the same experience with Apple Computer [] which is why I became a BeOS developer. []

    BTW - My fiance told me that being unsubscribed from bedevtalk is like being kicked off the design committee for the Edsel. It's a beautiful OS and the engineering quality is excellent, but the sales prevention team there, uh, I mean the management, is determined to do everything they can to prevent the business from succeeding.

    Perhaps Internet Appliances are a good idea, but after the galling lack of marketing cluefulness shown when they were on the desktop I seriously doubt they can get it together to succeed in the Internet Appliance arena either.

    If you are an Internet Appliance manufacturer, think about whether you want to make your livelihood dependent on a company with a proven track record of failing to live up to its commitments. Consider that in many was QNX is a better OS for appliance and you can get a developer kit for free [].

    I don't think Linux is a very good platform either for the desktop or Internet Appliances but because it is free software that problem is capable of being addressed.

    Tilting at Windmills for a Better Tomorrow

  • you can see the kind of controls Be has put in place to prevent these things from happening.

    Yes, they maintain such strict control. After all, OpenTracker is licensed under the BSD license - and we all know how controlling and restrictive that is.

  • Yes, the article is a simple test given to the BeOS community about the results of the OpenGL beta testing. It was not meant to say BeOS smokes Linux, the conclusion doesn't even use the word "smokes!" they don't even use a superlative, simply saying that 'it is clear BeOS has made a very good OpenGL implementation' (paraphrased.) It was never meant to be a declartion of superiority by the BeOS community. It was simply a status report to BeOS people. If Slashdot escalated it such, then it's /.'s fault, not BeNew's.
  • Not really. Quake II for BeOS has been available since October of 1998. That's a year and 9 months. BeOS 4.0 was released nearly two years ago. Also, it was ported to the old OpenGL implementation when it was quite immature (and BeOS 4.5 was still called BeOS 4.1)
  • Already we've seen C-Net and BeNews use CorelLinux to represent Linux in general. This disturbs and worries me, and it should do the same to you too.

    CorelLinx is not, by any stretch of the imagination, a good representation of Linux as an OS. I barely consider it a good representation of Linux as a desktop, but that's another matter. CorelLinux is based on a version of Debian. Of course, Debian is a superb distro, and my personal favorite, but the fact remains that Debian 2.1 was years old when CorelLinux came out. As just one result, we see them (CorelLinux and BeNews) using XFree86 3.3.

    While it could be argued that CorelLinux may be, or may become, the most common 'desktop' Linux OS on the market, this is a remote possibility at this point, IMNSHO, and even if it were argued, I would tend to dismiss that argument as relying on baseless marketspeak. I see nothing good coming from a general trend of using CorelLinux in OS comparisons, benchmarks, or comparisons/benchmarks of applications they run.
  • Quake runs plenty fast on Windows and Linux as well.

    Now, if BeOS were open and had some compelling technical features, maybe it would be more interesting. But merely doing what everybody else is doing a little faster and more cleanly isn't good enough for me.

  • by SirSlud ( 67381 ) on Monday June 19, 2000 @09:35AM (#991813) Homepage
    Stuff like this makes me wonder how much of Be's youth has to do with it.

    Younger, leaner code, et al ... anyone have any similar thoughts?

    I do remember using a preview copy of Be 1 and trying out that terrain demo on a PowerPC. Seeing a mac render so many polygons at one time at full 35fps almost gave me a heart attack. I dont know the details of why Be is so good on the graphics side, but it looks like its still the same way ..
  • Well, I won't justify all the attacks here, but if you're going to compare performance - then at least tune the damn drivers and get the latest first!!

    This is just like comparing BeOS version 4 vs. 5 - I mean - come on!

  • I didn't try Linux when I wrote this comparison of the audio performance of MacOS, Windows and BeOS, but I don't think Linux would have fared much better than Mac or Windows:

    The Battle of the Bands []

    I was able to play nine uncompressed CD quality audio files simultaneously and independently vary the volume on each on the BeOS. I was never able to play more than one on the other operating systems I tried. I could play up to two tracks simultaneously from an ISO 9660 CD before the seek time of the head broke up the sound.

    I've found in the 2.4.0-test1-acX kernels that audio streams will just plain stop until I click on or drag around an XWindow. Posts I've seen on the Linux kernel mailing list suggest that X is failing to yield the PCI bus at times.

    I'm not suggesting though that you should all go use BeOS for your sound. What I do suggest is improving the multimedia architecture of Linux until it can match the BeOS.

    Tilting at Windmills for a Better Tomorrow.

  • Corel Linux doesn't even ship with server stuff, much less enable them by default.
  • Hmm, it occurs to me that they had better tested against XFree86 4.0 since that's a big step towards hardware acceleration support.
    They used a voodoo 2. Those perform better under 3.3.6. If they'd used 4.0, then you COULD have rightfully ripped them to shreds for not portraying Linux in the best light.

    For the right graphics boards the Linux numbers should have been a lot more like the W98 numbers (extrapolating from Q3A
    Voodoo2 is a good graphics board for both BeOS and Linux, and that's why it was used. Also, Q3A doesn't run on BeOS.

  • It probably never will. However, not only is POSIX supported, but most of the standard configuration methods in /etc, and all the cool development like gcc, cvs, etc, are there.
  • Did you even read the freaking article? They used a freaking Voodoo2 running on Celerons! The sheer fact that their numbers are even near half yours is a miracle! And BeNews is not a huge operation. They used an SMP Celeron because that's what they had, and they used a Voodoo2 because that's what ran well.
  • This has nothing to do about me. If you read the official response of the guys who tested this, that's their response. I for one, am ecstatically happy! IE. My words and actions in now way represent BeNews. Also, notice I rarely brought up the subject that BeOS trounced Linux. 90% of my posts are merely to correct /. dumbasses who don't read the article, yet still feel they can post.
  • Finally I tried to point out the error of their ways in some detail by posting this to bedevtalk:


    How did Be respond?

    Tom Maddox,, unsubscribed me and asked the list if they'd prefer to have the entire list moderated.

    No. Quite a few list members (normal ones, not just Be engineers) refuted your arguments and asked you to stop since you were essentially just rehashing the same old issues over and over again and accomplishing nothing but filling our mailboxes with spiteful remarks. You did not stop and so some of us asked the listmaster to intervene.

    I'm sorry that you see it otherwise but don't go blaming other people (the listmaster in particular) for just doing what they need to do. You obviously weren't happy developing for the BeOS. If you were so unhappy, why continue? It just isn't healthy. Neither is screaming at a bunch of other people for not totally agreeing with your opinions.


  • First, allow me to proclaim my loyalties: I run Slack 7, thanks.

    I also run BeOS R5, and WindowsMe. (Er... I'm an MS Beta tester, this copy is legit.. I swear!)

    -Why- do I run three operating systems? I run Linux because I like to tinker. It's my post-youth toy, if you will. I run BeOS, because it's insanely responsive, there is no better operating environment for my ameteur music hobby. I run Windows because, let's face it... we need games.

    It's wonderful to see so many of you doing your own research, and questioning-- There's no other way to do things. But I wonder of your motives. Many of you came to Linux's defense with such profound comments as "Be Cheats," or "They didn't use Linux-optimized components." Noble arguments, I'm sure, but why should they have had to cater the benchmark to Linux? Aren't benchmarks supposed to reflect real-world conditions? Should not, by that logic, BeOS and Windows be optimized with the proper hardware?

    Others pointed out the quite obvious deficiency in the use of one dead-horse version of XFree86. I agree. Still, you know well-enough that the Linux horse would finish last in this race. Linux is a networking operating environment, and we've all known that. Massive operations to mold it into a contender in the media sector not-withstanding, it's still UNIX. Windows is designed for the idiot. What does the idiot do? Play games, watch DVDs, and get their RDA of multimedia. BeOS is designed solely for the media experience. Sound, graphics, you name it. That's just a niche it was built to fill.

    Defending your choices is noble, but some of this looks like fanaticism, or blind following. Most of us believe in Linux, and the open source way of doing things-- so just who are you trying to prove it to? Maybe, just maybe... yourselves. It probably wouldn't break any souls to just accept that Linux is not up to par with BeOS and Windows in certain fields. Likewise, Linux outshines the two in many other fields.

    Rooting for your team is good support. Killing opposing fans or launching insults is just heathenism. Sometimes I'm ashamed to be associated with it. .Default User The evolution of emoticons :-) | :) | =) | o_0 | #@$!%$
  • I'm quite happy developing for the BeOS. What disgusts me are the lack of sales for my existing product, Spellswell, because Be never lived up to its commitment to provide adequate marketing for its own product.

    My monthly royalties from Spellswell just about buy dinner for me and my fiance. One dinner. In recent months it wouldn't include a bottle of wine with that dinner.

  • Posted by 11223:

    The problem with this is that BeOS hard acceleration only exists on Intel. What about the lonely other platforms? With NetBSD, you can get pure Open Source hard acceleration on any of NetBSD's ports. Intel not good enough for you? Hard acceleration rocks on an Alpha. Want some Apple-quality OpenGL goodness? Run it on macppc! Furthermore, tying OpenGL to a specific processor for performace with SIMD is silly. Why not give your software to all architectures? NetBSD is the solution.

    Only NetBSD can take advantage of high-quality Open Source OpenGL hard acceleration for a truly embedded gaming experience. Because of the BSD licence, game companies can embed NetBSD into their games to produce a bootable gaming disc. Put the disc in, reboot, and you're playing the game!

  • BeOS was designed from the ground up to be a multimedia OS. Linux added OpenGL support seemingly as an afterthought and Windows OpenGL performance is pitiful (possibly because MS wants to promote the use of DirectX on Windows platforms).

    It would be interesting to see how Be's and SGI's implementations of OpenGL are different from Windows' and Linux's. I'm also curious as to how extensive Be's graphics card driver support is and the quality of the drivers used. I'm sure tha part of the blame rests with the graphics card manufacturers for writing poor OpenGL drivers. Naturally those included with an OS that is designed for 3D/Multimedia would be superior to the manufacturer's "we cannot ship without drivers" variety.
  • BeNews says that BeOS rocks. How strange. And on Windowsthingamajig, they says W2K beats everything. Sure yeah.

    For example, I don't have seen mentionned what version of X-Free they use for their Linux test. If it's not the 4, Linux is screwed, because of OpenGL.

  • Except Voodoo2 support on XFree4 is slower than in XFree 3.x.
  • too bad it can't use half of the hardware built in the last 10 years. bleh ---- the pr0n-o-matic
  • I have to agree with this. Looking at the results of the test, I'm a bit skeptical. I'm not saying it is impossible that Be managed to pull it off. However, some of the differences are rather large. Most of the work is done by the video card, and no OS is going to magically force your video card to work 1.75 times faster.

    Add that to the fact that the only person refuting the original poster is (possibly) a Be employee who (quite obviously) has some problems with Microsoft, as well as acts rather unprofessional, and I'd say that you have to be a little suspicious. Do we even have confirmation that he works at Be? I didn't think so.

    But hey, thats how the moderation system fucks up I guess.
  • Could you please cite references when Microsoft "cheated" and fudged benchmarks? Of course, Be has never preannounced [] any products.

    Of course, your credibility is only strengthened by using "Micros~1" and "Windoze".

    With people like you at Be, and with those sort of attitudes, it's no wonder it's been such a failure (choose your measurement), and hasn't been able to capture any significant amount of the developer market. Who wants to work with a bunch of zealots who clearly can't see the industry with any sort of objectivity? Yes, the childish name-calling was a dead giveaway.

    Thank you for confirming my suspicians regarding Be. What a great rep you are for your company.


  • You do if you need real applications. Right now, about all you can do is gimp and code. Oh boy. Putz dorks like you sitting in thier underwear thinking how superior they are. I bet you have an AOL account.

    Or write using a word processor, or run a spreadsheet, or go out on the web. In fact, the most common uses of windows can be done under Linux as well. What is missing is an array of more specialized applications. And even there, Linux is pretty strong in scientific and mathematical applications.

    Regarding the "Why do Linux users emulate the windows interface" troll, I think that views on the Windows interface are rather mixed among Linuxers. Everyone who has used a variety of computers is going to have something to gripe about in just about any interface. But I personally don't think the interface is the big problem with Windows; what I hate is lack of stability, settings that automagically change themselves, relative lack of configurability, closed proprietary file formats that would make exchange of documents with scientific colleagues or journals impossible for me and the business practices of Microsoft. So KDE and Gnome borrowed some ideas from Windows, OS/2, Mac, etc. Big fucking deal. It may not be the latest and greatest in UI design, but it works and it's familiar to most people. IMO an advance in a UI has to be of major importance before it justifies abandoning what's familiar to most people. YMMV.

  • I wrote BFS and am an ex-sgi employee. I did
    not however work on XFS at all. I knew some
    people that did though. And once I talked to
    Adam Sweeney (one of the principal architects
    of XFS).

    BTW, when you state "Linux has a performance
    advantage because it is written in C not C++"
    you ought to back that up with numbers. C++
    is not inherently slower. And besides, the
    BeOS kernel is pure C.
  • by Montressor ( 34631 ) on Monday June 19, 2000 @09:47AM (#991886)
    Although I agree that BeOS has a screaming advantage over Windows or Linux, it's the Windows/Linux difference that disturbs me.
    Seeing as they used Corel Linux, they probably did not bother getting any real hardware state-of-the-art Linux drivers. The reason for this is not just Linux-trolling!
    The Linux Games article [] compared Linux and Windows performance, and got much better results for Windows vs. Linux.
  • *sigh* You'd think with all my years experience on USENET, I'd know better.

    Okay, the slam against Microsoft was gratuitous and unecessary, and for that I apologize.

    As for the rest of it, I've scanned my personal archive of our internal OpenGL beta mailing list, and I can find no mention of problems with dropped triangles, nor any mention of attempts to run SGI's flying paper airplane example (where the missing triangles are allegedly visible). I've also searched our bug database; same result. This /. post is the first I have heard of any such problem.

    Speaking entirely personally, it is much easier to help people having trouble with BeOS if they address their issues through the channels we've set up [] or our mailing lists [] -- not just OpenGL issues, but any issues at all. There are precious few of us here, so we can't respond to everyone individually, but everything does get logged and reviewed. We really do want to make BeOS amazingly great. And, if nothing else, going through channels helps prevent easily excitable people like me from committing social gaffes.

    My apologies,

  • It would be nice to have the openness of linux, the speed and simplicity of BE, the guts of plan9, and a gui with the portability of X, as well as a remote-terminal systme a-la sun's sunray setup.....
    and all open-source.
    THEN we would have an OS.

  • BE maybe fast, but I tried the supposedly "free" BeOS and it locked up with a kernel fault or whatever they call it in less than 10 minutes when i asked it to play two 600 meg mpeg-1 videos at once on my dual p2 400. Geez, even windows can last longer than that. Faster opengl means diddly squat if it can't stay running without a kernel fault for more than 10 minutes. Imagine trying to frag your buddies on quake and having to reboot every 10 minutes, not a good way to win. Stability wins over speed everyday of the week.
  • Think of it like this... mature hardware should imply mature drivers - everybody should be up to snuff by now. So, a slightly older game with slightly older hardware on the new OS gives you a lot less variability for the tests... Even if the older games are the newest available. True, you can't see how the drivers react to the ever growing fill rates of the GeForces and Voodoo3+ series, but it should give a pretty good representation. The test isn't the card, as much as the layers in between the hardware and the GL APIs.
  • by SvnLyrBrto ( 62138 ) on Monday June 19, 2000 @01:22PM (#991899)
    It doesn't matter what you're testing. There's no cross-platform benchmark that will be accepted by EVERYONE. The loser will invariably (and sometimes justifiably, sometimes not) whine about how the benchmark is unfair, or unoptomised or whatever.


    ByteMark is biased in favor of PPC
    SpecMark is biased in favor of intel
    Unreal FPS is biased in favor of Glide
    Quake FPS is biased in favor of OpenGL
    Office benchmarks are biased in favor of windoze
    Photoshop benchmarks are biased in favor of MacOS

    Mindcraft benchmarks are.... well, I won't even go there.

    But you get the point?

    All of the above have been used, at one point or another (again, sometimes justifiably, sometimes not), by the side that came out behind in an attempt to invalidate the test that showed their OS / CPU / video card / FPS game / etc. to be inferior.

    Resistance is NOT futile!!!

    I am not a drone.
    Remove the collective if

  • I don't think we should be censoring posts based only on one faceless Be representative.

    After all, there is a reason it's so much faster, and it's very suspicious when the card does most of the work.

    I think this AC had a valid point, and at least to my eyes, it doesn't read like a troll. If someone wants to refute it with real facts/measurements, then that's OK. But we shouldn't assume it's a troll just because someone with a very significant interest says so.

    Please moderate this up.


  • True, but be honest here - probably more people are going to play Quake or its ilk than utilize the full set of OpenGL extensions available to them. For the average user, this says that BeOS has better 3D performance (way better) than two other very popular operating systems. That is big news, although I think testing X 3.3 instead of 4.0 obviously jilted the scores by a lot.

  • "Look how far EVERY closed-source OS has come without the help of the open-source community.

    I wish I could. Unfortunately the source is, as was mentined, closed. So how am I supposed to see "how far they've come" in fields like security and good design?

    In any case, free software (unlike open source software) isn't about features. It's about freedom. The "good it would do me" to have BeOS open is that I could take some of their alleged rockin' code and put it into my own programs.
    Compaq dropping MAILWorks?
  • Well, it looks like you guys have crushed their poor little server. Nasty, nasty Slashdotters! It does have one of the cuter "can not connect" errors I've seen though.

    On topic though, I think this is sweet. It definetly will make it worth the wait. I do find it interesting that the cards that they are using for this demo are also the ones that are most accessible to the Open-Source community in general: 3dFX and Matrox.

    These are the vendors that have gone the furthest in allowing access to their products, and this has allowed a company with a limited budget to show what some of those cards are really capable in. Good for Be. Good for 3dFX and Matrox. Good for the consumers. Win-win-win.

    Black & White will be one of the first titles to come directly to BeOS too. I'm damn sure gonna get the Be version now.

  • ...considering how it was the fastest card on the market when it was released and is still a pretty damn good contendor. Unfortunately, when I tried out BeOS I found that I could only run in it grayscale mode! Forget about hardware acceleration.

    Don't get me wrong. I think BeOS is certainly a good OS in many ways, but you can't claim with a straight face that it doesn't have compatability problems. There is a ton of hardware out there it won't work with at all and even more it has mediorce support for. I think it would be great if BeOS got better support, but it just isn't going to happen.

  • > But then I seem to recall that it was rerun with the help of some Linux people, and the result was pretty close to the same. But I'm sure you'll poo-poo that one, also.

    And indeed I do. It was a single benchmark for doing an unrealistic job on an unrealistic hardware configuration. It stinks all over of "Hey - here's one we can win!"

    If they want to convince anyone, they need to do a broad suite of realistic benchmarks like c't did. And guess what? Linux beat NT there, but only by a small margin, and not on every single test. Pretty much what you would expect from two different operating systems on the same hardware.

    Unfortunately, c't doesn't get splattered all over the US media the same way Microsoft does every time Bill farts. So lots of PHBs saw the unrepresentative Mindcraft results, and few saw the more nearly representative c't results. That's why we call it "benchmarketing".

    IMO, Red Hat made a serious mistake by offering to help with Mindcraft II (and indeed, I said that before the MII results were in). By doing so they gave the appearance of realness to a very fake benchmark.

  • Not all of us hate you.

    I would like to ask, however, whether you have any theories that explain the results vis a vis Linux?

    Also, is Be integrating multimedia into the kernel (or whatever you have) in order to acheive speed? (I personally would like to have a layered design, even if it sacrificed a fair amount of speed. Of course, other people will feel otherwise. But I would like to know whether something like that is influencing the benchmark.)

  • BeOS does have an x86 emulator. It's called BeBochs and is a port of the Bochs emulator. (disclaimer: I have never tried this).

  • I've noticed that BeOS R5 is much less stable than R4.5. I still have the R4.5 CD floating around my room somewhere, maybe I'll rip apart my room and find it and then install that instead. I've had several OS crashes in R5 in less than a month of running it, and never had a single one in R4.5 after running it for 6 months.
  • by gavinhall ( 33 ) on Monday June 19, 2000 @09:54AM (#991939)
    Posted by 11223:

    Because the site is slashdotted, I'll tell you about the other neat issue with BeOS performance. BeTips [] has been running under BONE (the BeOS Networking Environment) for the past few days, and has seen great performance increases in networking. This machine also serves as Scot Hacker's personal computer and is used for playing MP3's, rendering personalStudio videos, etc. The performance of BONE is in the same league as Linux and NetBSD now, and it's design was modeled on the excellent BSD TCP/IP stack.
  • 2ms might be too much for monitoring, but...

    it kicks ass for scratching.

    D'yall remember that slashdot article about a year ago where these guys were selling vinyls with nothing but timing information on them. You hooked up the turntables to the soundcard, which then scratched mp3s (or whatever) controlled by how you were scratching the vinyl. No more lugging crateloads of discs to parties...

    Now that's what you need low latency for.

    Does anyone know what happened to them?
  • >Could you please cite references when
    >Microsoft "cheated" and fudged benchmarks?

    That's the most obvious one off the top of my head. The story is archived on slashdot I'm sure.... not too sure just when gates was caught THIS time, but you should find the story with a simple search.

    The short version is that gates wanted to "proove" that Linux is an inferior POS. Microsoft, therefore, PAYED mindcraft to go to redmond and do a series of "independant" benchmarks comparing server performance between NT/IIS and Linux/Apache. Gates then had a hoarde of his MCSE drones set up NT/IIS in the ideal configuration and optimise it in every way they could think of. And for the Linux side, they just installed an old version of Red Hat/Apache in the default configuration WITH NO OPTIMISATION WHATSOEVER!!!

    And when NT beat Linux, gates trumpeded it all over the press that an "independent" benchmark by mindcraft "prooved" that NT is the server OS uber alles; and that Linux is a worthless piece of crap.

    Sure seems to meet the definition of a "cheated and fudged benchmark" to me.

    Resistance is NOT futile!!!

    I am not a drone.
    Remove the collective if

  • if anybody is still reading this thread...I just downloaded GLQuake for the Mac and ran it on a standard iMac DV (a 400 MHz PowerPC G3, an 8MB Rage 128VR 2xAGP, but with 128 MB of RAM instead of 64 MB). I managed to eke out 38.7 fps running in 800x600 in 16-bit color. The rate dropped to around 22 fps when running in 32-bit color.

    These tests were run under Mac OS 9.0.4 with Apple's newest OpenGL drivers, and with virtual memory turned on (plus a standard complement of Mac OS system extensions).

    I would hope that a properly configured Power Mac G4 running Mac OS X final will be competetive with the BeOS results. In any case, perhaps the Mac isn't such a worthless platform for gaming after all....

  • Read my original comment again.

    As I said:

    a. We don't know that he works at Be. He claims to. Do we have any proof? No.

    b. Regardless, he is acting childish and unprofessional

    And furthur:

    c. The benchmarks as suspect. Either the original benchmarks were tampered with, or Be is doing SOMETHING [such as dropping triangles] to speed it up, OR Be has discovered a new way around some bottleneck that is slowing down all other OGL implementations.

    I find it hard to believe that ANY OS is going to be 1.75 times faster than another in OGL, especially when the losing OS was Windows. I don't like Windows, but the fact of the matter is, the OpenGL implementations for Windows are generally fast, as they've had a lot of development money put into them.

    Anyways, I'm just pointing out that the original post shouldn't be moderated down just because some guy on slashdot claims he works for Be and that he has the answers. If Be wants to put up an official statement on the matter, they can put it up on their website. Until then, I have no way of identifying this guy as a true Be employee.

    Do I have a way of identifying the original poster as somebody who has had access to the beta OGL from Be? Nope. But his explanation sounds like it might be plausible, and if nothing else, is no less plausible than the guy claiming to work for Be.
  • It has a lot to do with Be's failure to adopt the Word Services Suite [], which is the interapplication communication protocol based on BMessages that enables Spellswell to communicate with other applications.

    Rather than take advantage of my work to bring this protocol to the BeOS - it is an open protocol and allows any text service to be linked to an email client, not just spellchecking - Be instead wrote their own spellchecker for email.

    The only other email client to implement Word Services on the BeOS, Mail-It from BeatWare [] became a free product after BeatWare abandoned the BeOS market and ported their ePicture graphics editor to Mac and Windows where it is selling very well.

    If you don't think I have good reason to be pissed at Be, why don't you ask Marc Verstaen, the President of Beatware, what he thinks of Be after he and a group of investors wasted several million dollars developing desktop software for the BeOS?

    There were only a few substantial commercial companies solely devoted to BeOS development and Beatware was one of the best. Now they are a Mac and Windows shop.

  • Its not about software is it? It's about OpenGL performance. Also, Gimp is already almost ported, and the GTK+/GDK port is nearly complete. True MS Office is not there yet, but its isn't there on Linux either. Wine is being ported, and an X11 port is already complete. FreeMWare is being ported too. And it's free. Aside from the Office thing, what's your beef?
  • by Stiletto ( 12066 ) on Monday June 19, 2000 @10:06AM (#991960)

    Just a nit-pick:

    If they are only comparing Quake speeds, you can hardly call it a comparison of OpenGL implementations. Quake and Quake-based games use a relatively TINY portion of the OpenGL API.

    If run at high resolutions, the tests are basically testing the hardware's fill rate, and at lower resolutions, they are testing the drivers' geometry rates--definitely nowhere near a comprehensive "OpenGL benchmark".

    Perhaps the headline, "Quake faster on BeOS" would be more appropriate...

  • I was able to play nine uncompressed CD quality audio files simultaneously and independently vary the volume on each on the BeOS. I was never able to play more than one on the other operating systems I tried.

    Strange, with my nifty Diamond Monster MX300 soundcard in windows I have played 8 mp3's at once, 10 CD quality wav's at once (these were uncompressed cd ripped 1 minute samples), and tried both of those while recording even, and it worked fine. In Linux I can play 96 audio streams at a time if I was so inclined, but I've only made device files enough for 15 :), so I dunno where all this "can't do it in windows/linux" stuff comes from, maybe you just have a shitty soundcard.

    -- iCEBaLM
  • I need to vent, I'll reply anyway...

    I'd rather have BeOS being developed by paid professionals than by a bunch of whining open-sourcers.

    Sounds like someone's awful frightened about job security...

    Look how far EVERY closed-source OS has come without the help of the open-source community.

    Yeah. Windoze. Hooooo-wie! What an OS! Thank god those "whining open sourcers" didn't get their hands on it, think how unstable, unusable, and counter-intuitive it would be then!

    Do you really give a shit about seeing
    and understanding the source code, or do you just want to get BeOS for free?

    Personally, both. Be's API is fscking beautiful, I'd love to get my hands under the hood. Furthermore, give it to me for free god damn it, throw in a car too. You know us open-sourcers are just freeloading whippersnappers looking for a free ride (or beer). We're not in it for anything else but a handout.

    It's pretty arrogant to think that the hour you spend programming at night is going to improve the OS...

    Let's see:



    (I got bored with the 82 karma account...)
  • True, the theory of thread (or process) scheduling is the same no matter what OS you are talking about. There is little difference between scheduling performance between modern operating systems, they all make tradeoffs here and there and come out about the same. The difference between BeOS and NT and Linux lies in how much of the operating system services are written to be "threaded" or scalable across multiple processors. When one says BeOS is a better SMP OS it is not referring to its ability to schedule threads across multiple processors (which NT and Linux, among others, can do) but rather it refers to other services the OS provides which take advantage of threaded systems. Linux (and NT), from what I understand, is not as capable in this regard as BeOS.


    BTW, win32 alone doesn't include SMP support, only Windows NT can schedule multiple processors, Win95 and Win98 ignore other processors but provide most of the "win32" APIs.
  • supruzr, you are evil ;-)

    no, seriously... Be rules. I really hope it catches on. I use it most of the time - does everything I need my computer to do, and does it damn well.

  • My guess would be that, at best, BE somehow can get out of the way for smart optimizations. They mention SIMD use in PIII but I don't understand why that wouldn't be used in linux or windows to the same extent
    Some of the Be developer newsletters hinted that they were doing some interesting dynamic code-rewriting features. I'm not sure how much is possible on that front, but it certainly would seem like an excellent way to improve performance - trimming a few instructions here and there (based on the host CPU & video card) based on real-time profiling would really benefit graphics routines that are being called a few trillion times over the life of the program.
  • Spellswell is an always has been a profitable product on the MacOS, and one Windows where it is available as an OEM spellchecker.

    Even at the lowest point of Apple's difficulties, the MacOS spellswell brought in substantially more revenue than BeOS Spellswell ever did.

    The core dictionary engine is the same, only the UI is different between the two products. While the Word Services [] protocol is different between the two platforms, they work in an analogous way.

    A big difference between me and Gobe is that they had funding for marketing and I had no funding at all. The only investment I was able to make on my own was my time. The whole time I was shipping Spellswell I expected Be to get started and get serious about marketing its own product soon. That day never came.

    The best thing they did for me was give the OS away for free. But at the same time they stopped development of the desktop OS and made it clear they weren't going to support desktop developers anymore. We don't even get BeOS 5 Pro for free as part of our developer program membership. They shut down the BeWare online software catalog.

    Very early on Be promised to make things better for developers in the market by fashioning itself as an Internet company which would promote products online. We wouldn't have to deal with distribution channels anymore but just sell our products through BeDepot. I think that was an excellent idea but their actual execution of it was amazingly incompetent.

  • by Honclfibr ( 202246 ) on Monday June 19, 2000 @09:57AM (#991974)
    On a whim, I downloaded the personal edition of BeOS over this last weekend. Mostly on a whim - I'd heard about it but had never had the time to give it a runthrough before. My initial impression of it from about 3 or 4 hours of use is this: BeOS is everything that Windows 98 should be and that Linux, regardless of what you might think, doesn't want to be. By that, I mean that it is suitable for the 99% of the world's population that wants a lightweight, easy to use desktop operating system that is allows them to access the "new technologies" they've heard of (you know, this email stuff and the world wide wait?) with a minimum of intervention or knowledge on their part. Those of us who enjoy the power and configurability of linux should really stop trying to jam it down the throats of the average consumer - we like our operating system powerful and configurable, but the average consumer does not agree with us. Oh sure, we say "look, it's got a GUI, and an installer, it's waay easy, check out RPM, a monkey could install Linux". But we forget that the average monkey, apart from eating bananas and scratching their butt, has very little else to do and could spend the next week or so finding the proper drivers and poking through configuration scripts. Joe Consumer sees his computer and thinks TeeVee and he wants to be able to boot up his computer and have everything set up and clean with no "do not touch this" buttons that could potentially ruin everything. This is why the "non user serviceable" parts to a TeeVee (ie the syncs and other such adjustments)are hidden away from view. As they are with BeOS. Linux, OTOH, is like a TeeVee with the back cover removed - it's suitable for those who like to fiddle and know enough not to touch the toroid. Anyway, just thought I'd mention that - I do hope that linux continues to gain support and popularity, but if you're looking for something that's going to replace Windows for the majority of home users, I'd say look no further than Be.
  • by nd ( 20186 ) <nacase AT gmail DOT com> on Monday June 19, 2000 @09:58AM (#991976) Homepage
    They used XF86 3.3.6
  • Believe what you want, but I'm also suspicious about believing a "magic" operating system can make video cards that much faster.

    Okay, so the idea here is that Be developers sign an NDA, come up with better drivers than the video card companies themselves produce for Windows. Let's see how long *that* lasts. No really, after all the fact is that if the Video card companies were squeezing as much performance as was possible out of their cards then people would not be as quick to go out and buy the next one. There is no doubt that if the card manufacturers would just release the data, then it would be a win-win-win situation all around. Everyone *could* have better drivers, depending on how much interest there was and how many folks wanted to sit down and hack on it.

    If there's anything I take away from the facts(?) in this thread it is the following;

    1. Card manu's drivers okay.
    2. Committed and NDA'd developers' drivers appear better.
    3. People should pressure the cardmakers to release their specs, and reward those that do with sales, rather than endlessly flaming Be based on the fact that they do okay in benchmarks.

    f someone from Microsoft posted that an anti-Microsoft post should be moderated down would you support that too?

    Only if they are astroturfing. I personally would be much more inclined to have Be get a spot on my HD if I could see the source (read that as have others be able to look at/improve/fix the source), but I'm not going to go instantly believing anything anyone says around here, so I find that moderating those sort of posts down to be very patronizing to me as a reader (I hope we're referring to the same post here, I just got lost in a maze of "nested" where the comments don't slide all the way to the right like they used to. Rob, make it like the old way again please?)
  • MS OpenGL is not pitiful. If it is, then Linux OpenGL is down-right skanky. Be has pretty good graphics card support, and for mainstream stuff like TNT, they are high quality and take advantage of a lot of acceleration. Also, 3D card manufacturers don't write crappy drivers. In fact, nVidia's GL drivers on Windows are probably as high quality as SGI's on IRIX. (Not anywhere near same absolute performance, but close relative to the hardware.)
  • by be-fan ( 61476 ) on Monday June 19, 2000 @10:09AM (#991984)
    The BeOS filesystem is a hideosly fast journaling implementation called bfs. It IS faster than anything available on Linux. Messaging speed is also top notch. I don't know how you benchmark mem. management, but BeOS has good memory protection and uses about half the memory of Linux/GNOME on the same machine.
  • Hmm, it occurs to me that they had better tested against XFree86 4.0 since that's a big step towards hardware acceleration support. For the right graphics boards the Linux numbers should have been a lot more like the W98 numbers (extrapolating from Q3A) as can be seen here [] though it seems the Voodoo fares better under 3.3.6 for now [] but the latter article also hints at how much can still be done for Voodoo support under linux.

    What amazes me most in the article is how BeOS compares very well against windows. I'm really looking forward to a Q3A comparison of BeOS, Linux/XFree86 4.0 and W98 in a few months (best by some neutral agency) when Q3A is there for BeOS, more graphic cards are supported and XFree86 4.X has shed some bugs.
  • True, but what did 3D Linux use to test nVidia support? Hmm, I don't know, Quake? The truth is that there are no professional calibar 3D programs available on BeOS (and Linux for that matter.) This should change with the introduction of Maxon'x 3D modeler and the ports of Maya to Linux. Also, 3D apps don't really use OpenGL for more than previewing so it doesn't matter. What I want to see, though, is some viewperf scores.
  • I think what you mean when you say that an Open Source project could not have produced something like BeOS you really mean that a poorly funded, volunteer-run, design-by-committee project couldn't have made something like BeOS.

    There are well funded, tyranically controlled Open Source projects, too.
  • :-(

    I thought it was a nifty idea.

    but 1.2 ms is too much !?! How do you even measure that? 1.2ms is what, 800 bps?
  • One of the whole points about multitasking operating systems is that you can do more than one thing at once.

    For example, you could have a web browser, email client and streaming audio show going on at the same time in most OSes.

    But in the BeOS, all of these different programs could be individually making audio and they'd be mixed together.

    It happened that the test I did sounded really cool. If they were all at high volume there was a cacophonous roar. At low volume it sounded like a crowded subway station, and as you varied the volume of each song it would be as if you were walking among the crowd and approaching people carrying radios, then they'd recede.

    I've tried to play sound files on windows NT while I had realaudio going, and I got a rude alert saying the device was busy. After all these years I'd spent working with the BeOS, I thought that was really lame. Isn't NT supposed to have architecture?

    The fact is the human ear can pick out individual conversations from a crowded room (most people can, I can do it well even though my hearing is damaged by my fiance can't). With multiple audio streams (BeOS can do multiple video streams too) all of your programs can be making sound and you can just tune into the one you want to listen to, or raise the volume on the one you were interested in.

  • OpenGL is not tied to SIMD processors. It simply takes good advantage of them. The reason they don't port it to PPC is because the PPC port is dying, and Be only has about 100 engineers to go around. As for NetBSD, when it performs like this, then you can speak.
  • > It was a test for a large-scale site. YMMV, as they say. I don't understand why you think this is so fake.

    And how many Web sites do you know of that use four (4) NICs on an x86 machine? To download static Web pages in huge packets?

    I could deal with "a test for a large-scale site" if it was configured like a real large-scale site. But it wasn't. It was fraud, pure and simple.

  • Voodoo5 will be supported by 3DFx themselves, who have commited to write BeOS drivers. Also, since Voodoo5 is not out yet, they couldn't test it. In addition, the QuakeIII port is incomplete/immature as it is waiting for the OpenGL implementation to come out.
  • by Spyky ( 58290 ) on Monday June 19, 2000 @10:42AM (#992023)
    Actually, its designed as a good OS. Multimedia OS is just something the marketing droids call it because it sounds cool, and its a good niche for a wonderful operating system.
    BeOS is from the ground up, a beautifully thought out and put-together operating system. I don't believe an open source development process could have created such a result. I also don't believe Micro$oft will ever catch up without completely ditching their entire codebase and starting fresh. Hey they tried to do just that thing with NT (in collaboration with IBM), but we can all see how well that turned out.
    I don't mean to this to sound like flamebait, so I apologize. I just want to make the point that BeOS is designed as a single user desktop OS with a first rate filing system, process and memory management and a clean interface to boot. That makes it great for writing music or working with graphics or whatever simply because they tax the parts of an OS which BeOS is particularly well designed. BeOS capabilities with different types of media is a result of its design, not the other way around.

  • by be-fan ( 61476 ) on Monday June 19, 2000 @10:17AM (#992039)
    I do think, however, that you're analogy is a bit wrong. Be has most of the cool UNIX stuff you like in Linux, but its hidden away under the / directory. (For you non Be users, the GUI has /boot as the reference so stuff like /bin, /lib, and /etc are never seen by the user.) It's more like a TV with an easily removed cover, wheras Win98 is like a TV with the cover welded shut. (For good reason, people would puke if they ever say what was in there!)

Given its constituency, the only thing I expect to be "open" about [the Open Software Foundation] is its mouth. -- John Gilmore