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IBM Operating Systems

New OS/2 Warp Operating System 'ArcaOS' 5.0 Released (arcanoae.com) 145

The long-awaited modern OS/2 distribution from Arca Noae was released Monday. martiniturbide writes: ArcaOS 5.0 is an OEM distribution of IBM's discontinued OS/2 Warp operating system. ArcaOS offers a new set of drivers for ACPI, network, USB, video and mouse to run OS/2 in newer hardware. It also includes a new OS installer and open source software like Samba, Libc libraries, SDL, Qt, Firefox and OpenOffice... It's available in two editions, Personal ($129 with an introductory price of $99 for the first 90 days [and six months of support and maintenance updates]) and Commercial ($239 with one year of support and maintenance).

The OS/2 community has been called upon to report supported hardware, open source any OS/2 software, make public as much OS/2 documentation as possible and post the important platform links. OS2World insists that open source has helped OS/2 in the past years and it is time to look under the hood to try to clone internal components like Control Program, Presentation Manager, SOM and Workplace Shell.

By Tuesday Arca Noae was reporting "excessive traffic on the server which is impacting our ordering and delivery process," though the actual downloads of the OS were unaffected, the server load issues were soon mitigated, and they thanked OS/2 enthusiasts for a "truly overwhelming response."
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New OS/2 Warp Operating System 'ArcaOS' 5.0 Released

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  • by Anonymous Coward

    And we will revive them

    What is this? Jurassic Park, for computers? OS/2 community... now there's a bunch of geezers... Can it run COBOL?

    • by Wolfrider ( 856 ) <kingneutronNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Saturday May 20, 2017 @12:11PM (#54455099) Homepage Journal

      --Maybe... But it should certainly run REXX.

    • by hey! ( 33014 )

      Of course it can run COBOL.

      COBOL remains in use -- it's been estimated that even today on average a typical American interacts at least indirectly with a piece of COBOL software more than a dozen times daily. Over 200 billion lines of code are currently being maintained, and that figure is growing, albeit slowly. It's not hard to find COBOL jobs, if you live in a city which is a major center for some the industries that were early adopters of computers.

    • Comments like this truly shine in their ignorance. Do you like using bottled chemical products, such as shampoo, detergent, bleach, and household cleaners? Do you like the way they are boxed in cartons of a dozen bottles when shipped to your local supermarket? Guess what the systems run which are making the plastic bottles, mixing the chemicals, creating the boxes, and boxing those filled bottles? OS/2, more than likely. Do you like having life and auto insurance? Guess what systems are most often running t
  • by Osgeld ( 1900440 ) on Saturday May 20, 2017 @10:42AM (#54454815)

    While I can and do see the point behind the commercial version, the price of the personal version puts me off of even considering trying it, guess you really have to be a diehard OS/2 personal user.

    I am not saying that it should be FREEEEEEE and all that, just 99$ is not appealing for something that is a refresh of something that hasn't existed on the personal market for a couple decades and tout's features like "usb support" and OSS that runs on any semi current OS

    • Can someone tell me why I should [perhaps] want to use this OS?

      I ask because for now, I do not see the point, sadly.

      • by Anonymous Coward

        On the one hand I'm happy for alternative OSes to be available. So, good on them and so forth.

        One reason is that I've lost faith in everything even close to mainstream (redmond AND linux in all tis many forms AND the BSDs, just about all of them, AND everything else I've looked at, though some moreso than others). We need that diversity (not the SJW "diversity" identity politics BS, thanks, this is about OS code base diversity) for look what happens with a monoculture.

        On the other hand, OS/2 feels quite nin

      • I'm thinking if you want to run an application on a OS that is simplified down so that it is stable and have attack vectors minimized, but you are using a development platform that won't be compatible with linux, you may consider this. I have seen many kiosks with blue screens.
      • Can someone tell me why I should [perhaps] want to use this OS?

        Back in the day, you could run multiple nodes of your favorite BBS software in OS/2 on a single machine. The alternative was DOS with DESQview and QEMM. Those who had the money or were funded by their users swore by OS/2 for running multiple nodes. Some these BBSes might still be around.

        • They might, but if they're OS/2 only, why would they need anything other than the version of OS/2 they already have? And if not, why bother when something like Ubuntu + VirtualBox + FreeDOS can presumably do the same thing? (And that's assuming you want to run an ancient BBS implementation to begin with...)
          • They might, but if they're OS/2 only, why would they need anything other than the version of OS/2 they already have?

            The most popular BBS packages were DOS only. A few were available for OS/2. Most sysops used OS/2 to run multiple DOS sessions.

        • by Greyfox ( 87712 )
          Yeah, the company I was working for from '89 to '93 had three DOS programs they maintained. We had clients all over the place, so they bought me an amazing 486 laptop with a color display and 4 megabytes of RAM that was the most powerful machine at the company. Our production systems started out as 286 machines that we eventually upgraded to 386 or 386sx processors. They were running DOS and mostly only needed to run one of the three programs we maintained. But I was able to run all three programs (and then
        • Can someone tell me why I should [perhaps] want to use this OS?

          Back in the day, you could run multiple nodes of your favorite BBS software in OS/2 on a single machine. The alternative was DOS with DESQview and QEMM. Those who had the money or were funded by their users swore by OS/2 for running multiple nodes. Some these BBSes might still be around.

          OS/2 was a multitasking monster!

          I remember fooling around with OS/2 Warp, and spinning-up program after program and watching, fascinated, as they all just Marched along.

      • by Wolfrider ( 856 )

        --If you have $99 to spare, you can expect it to be pretty much immune to most virus infections - nobody's targeting it.

        --OS/2 Warp 3 came out right before Win95 did. It had a very stable object-oriented GUI that basically wouldn't crash unless you had a driver issue; had an advanced filesystem for the time (HPFS supported long filenames and was fragmentation-resistant), great DOS support, native REXX scripting that was "better" than command.com, good multitasking (you could format a floppy in the backgrou

        • I tried Warp back in the day, and I liked it a lot. The only thing that held me back was that it required a fairly powerful machine to make it practical.

          At the time a PC with the speed and memory of that caliber was around $4000 to $5000. Anything less and it was painfully slow, lots of disk thrashing, etc. But it worked and you could run lots of DOS windows under it seamlessly.

          I remember editing a doc, doing a download from a BBS with Telix, running a game, and formatting a floppy all at the same time....w

          • JustAnotherOldGuy wrote :

            I tried Warp back in the day, and I liked it a lot.......Not long after that Windows 3.0 came out .... Warp was technically better but Windows took over the market and that was the end of that.

            Your long term memory is failing OldGuy. Windows 3.0 came out in 1990 and Warp (OS/2 v3.0) came out four years later. But OS/2 should not be compared with WIndows 3.x or 9x, they had entirely different types of user. OS/2's equivalent and rival was Windows NT which first appeared in 1993, by which time OS/2 v2.0 (the first decent version) had been out for a year already. OS/2 and NT were systems for servers and power users.

            • Your long term memory is failing OldGuy.

              I think you may be right, lol. It was OS/2 I installed (I still have the install disks in their plastic binders). I'm not sure why I said Warp, but I think I tried that too at one point.

        • by jandrese ( 485 )
          While it was technically true you couldn't crash the OS very easily, it was pretty easy for a badly behaving application to lock up the entire interface due to a quirk in the way it handled events. I can't remember the details exactly, but I do remember some apps that would effectively freeze the machine when they crashed, even though technically the OS was still chugging along.
        • great DOS support

          But would it run X-COM: UFO Defense?

      • Can someone tell me why I should [perhaps] want to use this OS?

        I ask because for now, I do not see the point, sadly.

        Some people have weird hobbies. For example I'm really into computers, not everyone is and maybe you would be more interested in football or frisbee.

      • Nostalgia. The same sort of feeling I get whenever I see a Tandy TRS-80.
      • Can you imagine the expressions on the faces of TSA employees when they boot up your laptop and see OS/2? Could they possibly figure out how to access your data?

        The laugh might be worth the $99 dollars all by itself!

    • They release updates so infrequently that $99 doesn't seem like a big deal. Cheaper than a movie box set, and will probably consume more hours of my time.

      And if you're a contractor you can probably write off the $229 version as a business expense, and possibly apply depreciation on it. (I'm not a tax accountant)

      • Are you suggesting that OS/2 is cheaper to operate than Windows because you dont have to upgrade it very often? Like you only just now need to go upgrade from DB9 mouse to USB because it is just now supported?

        If so I would mod you up. You may not be a tax accountant but you are clearly a CTO.

        They release updates so infrequently that $99 doesn't seem like a big deal. Cheaper than a movie box set, and will probably consume more hours of my time.

        And if you're a contractor you can probably write off the $229 version as a business expense, and possibly apply depreciation on it. (I'm not a tax accountant)

    • While I can and do see the point behind the commercial version, the price of the personal version puts me off of even considering trying it, guess you really have to be a diehard OS/2 personal user.

      I am not saying that it should be FREEEEEEE and all that, just 99$ is not appealing for something that is a refresh of something that hasn't existed on the personal market for a couple decades and tout's features like "usb support" and OSS that runs on any semi current OS

      I do think it ought to be Open Source: its pricing is up to them. At this point in history, it would be like FreeDOS: something fascinating to try out on computers w/ several times more memory than what they had when these OSs were in their prime. Like OS/2 Warp had a recommended RAM of 4-8MB. Imagine what it could do if we took one of today's computers w/ 2GB of RAM, an Atom or Celeron, and all the rest?

      In fact such a computer would be a good substitute for Windows XP, for people who can't or don't wa

  • The summary does not exactly make it clear how this pricing works. It almost sounds like pay to have your OS run (ie, "for the first 90 days") but then it's immediately contradicted by stating that updates will be available for six months.

    Is there any corporate use of OS/2 anymore, anywhere? Without corporate adoption I don't know how they can make enough money to keep this project viable as a for-profit venture.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      New York's subway system uses OS/2. http://techland.time.com/2012/04/02/25-years-of-ibms-os2-the-birth-death-and-afterlife-of-a-legendary-operating-system/

    • Don't let the editing in the summary trip you up. Personal version is $99 now but the price will go up to $129 in 90 days. From the actual article:

      The personal license will retail for $129, with an introductory price of $99 for the first 90 days following release. This includes six months of support and maintenance updates and fixes.

  • Excessive server traffic? All five of their users trying to update at the same time?
    • by Greyfox ( 87712 )
      It's probably overloading their 9600 kbps modem.
      • Actually, we're on a 75Mbps synchronous fiber link, and our ordering server (running WordPress) was overwhelmed. The IP stack was not the problem, rather poor response from PHP was causing serious issues. Ultimately, we moved the Arca Noae site off onto a dedicated server (also running ArcaOS 5.0) and this has mitigated the problem (the main web server here runs close to 50 virtual hosts, and does a fairly good job of keeping up, but we were not anticipating anything like the response we've seen). (As the f
  • by Charles Werbick ( 4135297 ) on Saturday May 20, 2017 @11:15AM (#54454911)

    For anyone too young to remember, OS/2 Warp was an OS released by IBM to compete with Microsoft DOS in the late eighties. It was meant to be backward compatible and superior to DOS in just about every way(it really was too) . Because IBM had a better reputation for business/uptime/everything than Microsoft at the time OS/2 found wide usage in commercial & embedded devices (most notably ATMs). However, in the PC world, it didn't catch on. (Imagine having to install OS2 instead of DOS, then put windows on top of that. So unless your PC came with it you were probably SOL) So after a few years it was ONLY found in ATMs, where it continued to live all the way through the 1990s, eventually being replaced by XP.

    OS/2 was pretty cool and I'd support this project if their pricing structure was geared to only charge for commercial use. They could have thousands of free beta testers. Charging hobby users will likely be their death knell... Just my 2 cents.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      OS/2 was the "high end" PC operating system developed jointly by IBM and Microsoft, which was crafted to take advantage of the protected modes of Intel's 286 and 386 chips, and thus be able to address up to 16 MB memory (for 286) or 4GB memory (for 386) without the Rube Goldberg hacks needed to address more than 1MB memory under MS-DOS. It came with a Macintosh-inspired GUI called Presentation Manager.

      Unfortunately, it was slow to take off. Then MS released Windows 3 in 1990, which was a huge hit; moreove

    • Back in the day OS/2 was THE way to have a modern OS with real and sort of stable multitasking on a regular PC. It could run DOS and Windows apps but it also had native apps and for some applications that was all you needed. I had a BBS/FidoNet system back then and OS/2 was the best way to run all the services and parallel processing tasks... the alternative that some used was DESQview, a multitasking OS/Hack running on top of DOS. People on the argentine FidoNET scene stopped using OS/2 mostly because of:

      -

      • by jandrese ( 485 )
        The problem of course is that if you has an affordable machine then you couldn't run those DOS or Windows apps because there wasn't enough computer power left over for them. I bought an honest to god IBM P75 with 16MB of RAM back in 1995 and it came with OS/2 Warp 3.0 preinstalled alongside DOS/Windows 3.0. I tried using OS/2 a bit but I personally found the interface to be somewhat inscrutable and it was really vulnerable to random interface lockups when running the included applications. Virtually no D
        • by Dog-Cow ( 21281 )

          You must have really sucked at life. OS/2 was well-known as a better Windows than Windows because it was natively preemptive, which made it easier to kill misbehaving Windows apps. Its compatibility was so good, it practically killed OS/2. No 3rd parties wanted to create OS/2-specific versions of their software when they had a perfectly good Windows version that worked just fine under OS/2.

        • by Reziac ( 43301 ) *

          I bought Warp 4 in the retail box, and had a similar experience. It was bog-slow, locked up at random, used about 10x as much RAM as Windows to run the same apps, proved incapable of printing large documents because it consistently ran out of memory, and after the second time it committed seppuku (via a problem sufficiently well-known that the fix was documented deep in the manual) I gave it up.

    • Like Steam, it'd be an Impulse buy at 5 or 10 bucks, with a similar expectation of "get around to it eventually."
    • by laughingskeptic ( 1004414 ) on Saturday May 20, 2017 @01:01PM (#54455301)

      You left out a lot: IBM initially contracted Microsoft to create OS/2 due to their recent antitrust issues. IBM insisted on the entire OS, including the UI shell being written in assembler despite Microsoft's advice that the majority of the code be written in C with a small assembler kernel. It is easy to claim superiority over DOS. DOS was not an OS, it was a simple shell for running a single single-threaded process. However, OS/2 was incredibly buggy due to the extensive use of assembler. Key internal APIs and structures such as the kernel memory block structure were still changing within dot releases of Warp until the very end. This meant that other key OS component were always playing catch up. Getting working debugging tools was almost impossible. Every functional debugging tool I ever received for OS/2 came to me through back channels from a guy who knew a sales guy at IBM who knew an engineer who had patched a given tool for a given release. IBM horribly mismanaged later contractors such as those that developed the postscript printer drivers. The project managers at IBM seemed to have no understanding of what a printer driver was and they essentially contracted for the same work over and over resulting in a complete mess in that part of the product.

      Windows NT came out a year after OS/2 had a working UI and supported existing hardware. OS/2 only really worked on IBM's PS/2's. Windows NT quickly surpassed OS/2's reliability despite the fact that it ran on a much wider variety of hardware. The big difference between OS/2 and Windows at that point was individual Windows aps did not have a threading API provided by the OS. I implemented this feature for my company because our code was initially developed on OS/2 and was designed from the beginning to use 2 threads. It was easier to add threading to Windows NT than re-write our code for the port. I spent 2 years working at a low level with both OSes and in my opinion OS/2 was doomed from the beginning by its buggy, unstable kernel and lack of tools. I don't think Window's kernel memory structures have changed since NT was released. Microsoft learned a lot from their early work on OS/2.

      • by dissy ( 172727 ) on Saturday May 20, 2017 @03:19PM (#54455829)

        While I can't speak of the OS/2 "internals" as I've never developed for the platform, as someone who still administrates OS/2 systems to this day, my end-user experiences are far from what you describe.

        At the manufacturing plant I work for, we have numerous pick-and-place machines and through-hole insertion machines that are driven by OS/2 embedded systems.
        The front end software was also made for OS/2 on a desktop, which in our case lives in VirtualBox instances on the engineers workstations.

        While these systems are not on our standard client computer vlan, and in effect can only see each other in what is basically the OS/2 vlan, the systems themselves run flawlessly and with pretty insane uptimes.

        The machine controllers have never actually been "rebooted", and in the last decade only powered off and on twice (Once due to a 12+ hour power-loss, and once for relocating the machines themselves)
        That last power cycle was back in 2011, and they have been running for 6 years non-stop without problems.

        The front-end systems have also never once needed rebooted to fix any stability issues or problems, although these systems don't run continuously.
        That however is mostly due to the fact the virtualbox virtualization hosts are Windows desktops that do have to reboot for updates and stability issues. Thus the VMs are only ran as needed.

        None of the bare metal involved are IBM PS/2 based systems, or IBM systems in anyway beyond being x86 backwards compatible Pentium era embedded machines.

        As an OS/2 developer, you are likely in a very small minority that is already within a very small minority.
        I'm not saying you are incorrect or anything, but within the small group of existing "end users" I gather you won't find many people at all that share your view of OS/2.

        • by Anonymous Coward

          Place I work in the mid 00s had an OS/2 system running the phone voice mail for about 1600 extns, over several years we rebooted it maybe twice.

          Where things would go wrong for NT4 systems, is people would try to get one box to do many different things and run server different apps, and they would be unstable. The NT4 systems we ran at the time typically would run either core network services and nothing else, or be dedicated to one application, and they also got good uptimes. I think we even had one NT 3.51

      • by Anonymous Coward

        Not sure how this post was ranked at 5. I agree with everything that you said in the first section of your post, all of the stuff about IBM mismanagement and how misguided it was to try to build it entirely in Assembler, etc. The second part of your post though is inaccurate in several ways and frankly almost sounds like it was written by someone from M$FT's NT team.

        I ran several versions of OS/2 on many different clone PCs for many years with no problem, and so did a lot of people.
        OS/2 was always very s

      • Windows NT came out a year after OS/2 had a working UI and supported existing hardware. OS/2 only really worked on IBM's PS/2's. Windows NT quickly surpassed OS/2's reliability despite the fact that it ran on a much wider variety of hardware.

        OS/2 had a UI years before NT was released, in 1988.

      • by SEE ( 7681 )

        Um, no. The Joint Development Agreement didn't have anything to do with antitrust. (You're confusing that with why IBM didn't lock Microsoft into exclusivity in the DOS contract five years earlier, which in part was motivated because of the antitrust settlements on IBM mainframes that required IBM to make its mainframe OSes available.)

        Microsoft's original plan for its successor to the limited DOS was a migration path to Xenix, but, when the 1984 AT&T antitrust resolution came down, AT&T got permis

    • by squiggleslash ( 241428 ) on Saturday May 20, 2017 @01:23PM (#54455355) Homepage Journal

      OS/2 Warp was an OS released by IBM to compete with Microsoft DOS in the late eighties

      Not... really. OS/2 Warp was the name given to the third version of OS/2. OS/2 was originally Microsoft and IBM's jointly developed successor to MS DOS/PC DOS. The history went like this:

      1. OS/2 1.0 was co-developed by Microsoft and IBM as the successor to DOS (not a competitor.) It was not very good, the first version didn't even have a GUI although later versions in the 1.x series had a limited GUI not unlike Windows 3.x
      2. Both parties hated the arrangement, and Microsoft and IBM had different ideas as to what the next version of OS/2 should be like. The two initially agreed to work on two more versions, with IBM releasing a short term 32 bit version of the OS called OS/2 2.0, and Microsoft working on a longer term version that would end up being the version after OS/2 2.0.
      3. IBM released OS/2 2.0, which was generally praised but not widely adopted; but at this point Microsoft and IBM were completed divided on the future. What Microsoft had developed was clearly so far removed from OS/2 that it wasn't going to be OS/2 2.0's successor. It became Windows NT, and in the mean time Microsoft started selling DOS with Windows 3.x as the true successor to plain old DOS.
      4. At this point - the early 1990s - IBM and Microsoft were at war. IBM revamped OS/2 2.0 producing OS/2 3.0 Warp, which it heavily marketed as a better Windows than Windows. PC manufacturers, with a handful of exceptions, completely ignored it, bundling Windows 3.x with their PCs, partially because IBM was considered a major competitor, and, after the MicroChannel debacle, not a company to be trusted.
      5. OS/2 4.0 came out about the same time as Windows 95. Microsoft blacklisted IBM and refused to provide them with Windows 95 even for testing on their PCs until literally the night before release. IBM, knowing it had no chance of selling PCs without Windows 95, promptly dropped all development and marketing of OS/2.

      Was it any good? Opinions differ. I thought it had some nice features, but it was hampered by poor technology choices from the beginning. It was a better system than 16 bit Windows, but that's not much of a complement.

      • by Anonymous Coward

        Your point 3 is almost right. MS did dev it. The *ALSO* did NT because they saw what IBM was trying to do Which was make them a suppler to IBM only again. It was the reason DPMI existed and win3.x was included in os2. MS wanted to position OS/2 as a 'business' target. IBM wanted general computing but then priced it at 10x a copy of DOS and win3.x. IBM wanted to box general computing back into their realm. They wanted to put the toothpaste back into the tube (see micro channel). MS did not.

        As for yo

    • by Kjella ( 173770 )

      Because IBM had a better reputation for business/uptime/everything than Microsoft at the time OS/2 found wide usage in commercial & embedded devices (most notably ATMs). However, in the PC world, it didn't catch on.

      Basically all the places that could afford the hardware OS/2 needed to run well. On low end hardware particularly without enough memory it was very slow, IIRC it needed 8MB to run okay vs 4MB for Windows 3.11 also many games were DOS based so you only started Windows 3.x when you needed to, a poor man's "dual boot" if you will. It was technically superior but lost anyway, a bit like VHS vs Betamax or how SCSI never took over for (E)IDE.

    • by johnw ( 3725 )

      Not quite.

      OS/2 was released jointly by IBM and Microsoft in the late eighties as the replacement for MS/PC-DOS (also a joint IBM/Microsoft product) and early fairly useless versions of Windows.

      Then Windows 3 started to take off (Windows 1 and 2 had pretty much tanked) and Microsoft jumped ship, deciding instead to continue with the Windows branding and abandon the OS/2 marque. They were already working on OS/2 2.0 which they took and re-branded as Windows NT. IBM continued with the OS/2 branding and start

      • Not quite..... Microsoft jumped ship, deciding instead to continue with the Windows branding and abandon the OS/2 marque. They were already working on OS/2 2.0 which they took and re-branded as Windows NT.

        Not quite. WinNT was not a re-branding of OS/2, although it is believed that it had a bit (perhaps quite a bit) of OS/2 code in it. NT was mostly written by a team headed by Dave Cutler who (and most of the team) had been poached from DEC for the purpose. It is also believed that Cutler's team brought a bit (perhaps quite a bit) of VMS code from DEC. DEC threatened to sue Microsoft over the poaching of Dave Cutler and team, but they settled out of court; it was really the end for DEC anyway.

        • NT started life as the next version of OS/2. The original UI (personality) for this OS was the new UI from OS/2. As Windows 3.x became more popular, they added a second personality to it that borrowed heavily from Windows 3.x. There was also a POSIX personality, IIRC. The original filesystem for this OS was HPFS, but Microsoft developed their own filesystem (NTFS) as well. The original releases of NT 3.x included support for HPFS. They also developed the HAL that allowed them to run NT on various CPU

    • by nukenerd ( 172703 ) on Saturday May 20, 2017 @06:38PM (#54456471)

      OS/2 Warp was an OS released by IBM to compete with Microsoft DOS in the late eighties.

      Who modded this codswallop as "Informative"?

      DOS was old hat by the time WARP was released (1994, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/... [wikipedia.org]). By then OS/2 was competing against Windows, in particular Windows NT.

      I've some news for you and the modders, albeit nearly 30 years too late :- OS/2 in the late 80's was jointly developed by IBM and Microsoft themselves, to replace DOS, not rival it. There were several versions of OS/2 before Warp, by which time Microsoft had split from IBM and gone off to develop WIndows. It is thought that there was a fair bit of OS/2 code in Windows NT.

      You are not the only poster who seems to think that OS/2 was always called Warp. Only versions 3 and 4 had that name.

    • ... Just my 2 cents.

      Awesome, thanks! Just another $98.98, I'll be able to try out a copy myself!

  • I would be surprised.
  • OS/2 was designed to be the replacement of DOS and Windows, by IBM ... and ... Microsoft. It had an interesting history, and up until they were ready to release OS/2 NT (http://www.os2museum.com/wp/nt-and-os2/) even Microsoft believed in it. However history was not kind at that moment, and MS and IBM split, causing OS/2 NT being repurposed as Windows NT, and the rest of the story is well known.

    NT microkernel had support for separate subsystems (OS/2, Windows, and Unix). Even until Windows NT 4, it was able

  • Despite endless upgrades, there has always been come lingering need for DOS support (which has existed since the days of DOS) for legacy stuff people still use but does anyone know of a need for OS/2 support? I feel like all the systems that needed OS/2 support have been replaced by now. So, seriously, does anyone know of any sector or business that actually relies on OS/2 software? I'm not saying it's not interesting, I just think anyone that has needed it in the past has moved on by now.

  • "The OS/2 community has been called upon to report supported hardware, open source any OS/2 software, make public as much OS/2 documentation as possible and post the important platform links."

    That's an interesting idea.

    Here's my counter offer:

    I'll happily give you access to each of my OS/2 software titles.

    Each title will be available in two editions, Personal ($129 with an introductory price of $99 for the first 90 days [and six months of support and maintenance updates]) and Commercial ($239 with one year

    • by Junta ( 36770 )

      An article from a while back said:
      "Because ArcaOS includes software from third-party vendors, pricing information is not yet available as negotiations with vendors are ongoing."

      So they may not have much choice on pricing or open sourcing, even if they wanted to.

      But would be nice for them to be clearer.

  • I think OS/2 was a nice OS, for the time. However, it's time is past, and I can't imagine why I would want to switch to it, today (I run Arch on my main system and I have a Mac laptop for iOS development).
  • I used to be a serious OS/2 user, and I'm definitely going to check it out. If you've never used the Workplace Shell, you really owe it to yourself to check this out. If it ends up compatible with a lot of things, I might very well end up running Arca OS and the WPS in a full-screen VM on my Linux machine, just to have the WPS. A great deal of Linux software will likely be as portable to Arca OS as it was to OS/2 in the past... which is extremely portable. (I probably ran 2/3's free open-source softwar
  • I used to be a dedicated OS/2 user. It has some great features and I developed some applications and drivers for it. But I would not pay $99 just for the privilege of trying it out. I like open source, but I will still definitely pay for my own copy of good software (system or application). I think if we want good software, we have to support those who develop it financially. But you have to price it right if you want to build a base of loyal customers. $20 to $25 is what I call a fair price for stuff like
  • Not wanting everything for free, but 129$ for a basically deader than a door knob OS that needs community help to find out what isn't working? How about 29$ or 49$ with decent email support for a year? And 239$ for commercial use? Isn't that even more than a Windows license?
    • It's cheaper than switching to Windows if your business already has a lot of expensive OS/2 software. Even if you switch to the latest version of Windows, you'll notice that Microsoft eventually kills off releases and their hardware requirements continue to increase.
      At least with a supported version of OS/2 these super conservative business don't have to change much and can replace worn systems with modern off-the-shelf hardware because of the new ACPI and USB support in this version.
      Of course running OS/2

      • Hmm... Are Firefox 45ESR (soon 52ESR), SeaMonkey, Thunderbird, and OpenOffice 4.1.3 considered "limited in terms of software library?" PMView, which is an excellent image viewing and editing application is at the same code level on OS/2 as other platforms (and started life as an OS/2 application, BTW). Indeed, the pricing model for the commercial version is a good one if you have a business with a critical application which runs on OS/2 as compared to trying to migrate that to something else when the hardwa
  • The thing that would allow a single poorly programmed application to freeze the entire OS?
    • This was - and continues to be - a complete myth. There never was an SIQ problem in OS/2. Indeed, OS/2 has a single input queue. So what? The problem is software not written to properly behave and systems which were underpowered at the time. Today, issues like this rarely occur. To answer your question, not only did IBM never address this issue, neither have we, because it simply isn't an issue.
      • There never was an SIQ problem in OS/2.

        I'm afraid I have to disagree.

        I was an OS/2 developer and user from 1989 through 1998, and worked extensively with all versions from 1.1 EE on. Besides being a key platform for the commercial software package I worked on, OS/2 was my client platform of choice until it became impossible to get decent video drivers for the laptops (Thinkpads, ironically) I was issued by my employer, sometime around 1996. Even after that I continued to work on commercial software for OS/2; and since that package was also avail

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