Why is ReactOS based on a 17-year-old version of Windows?

Here you can discuss ReactOS related topics.

Moderator: Moderator Team

coldbluts
Posts: 1
Joined: Mon Apr 08, 2024 2:23 pm

Re: Why is ReactOS based on a 17-year-old version of Windows?

Post by coldbluts »

Like the not really opensource-project called MS Shared Source Initiative.
The_Wizard_of_OS
Posts: 12
Joined: Sun Dec 26, 2021 10:14 am
Location: Somewhere in Virginia

Re: Why is ReactOS based on a 17-year-old version of Windows?

Post by The_Wizard_of_OS »

dizt3mp3r wrote: Thu Feb 02, 2023 7:50 pm Many perceive ReactOS main usage as being within a VM so that you can legacy apps in a host o/s.
That's hardly a worthwhile effort at this point. Everyone is already running old software in an XP virtual machine, solved the problem and moved on. That's been around for decades now. A business of mine operates such piece of old software in a virtual machine, we are quite fine as-is. There is no new problem to solve.
dizt3mp3r wrote: Thu Feb 02, 2023 7:50 pm If it runs on older hardware then that is a valid goal too - it proves a point and is a valuable goal in itself. There are many millions of old boxes out there, you are just looking in the wrong place.
E-waste. You can buy an SBC that runs a modern desktop for a price of a lunch these days. XP-era hardware is all in a landfill (or my garage, which looks like a landfill). Besides, XP-era hardware struggles running relevant software, like a web browser, most often lacking necessary instruction set extensions (SSE2, SSE3), among other caveats.
dizt3mp3r wrote: Thu Feb 02, 2023 7:50 pm ReactOS is not trying to be a big seller so we don't have to try too hard to run on newer kit, at least not yet. That will come, in time.
I don't want to demoralize the developers but it's not doing too hot with software applications either. I see recent work was done on a GUI installer. A need for a graphical installation for an operating system that lacks driver and application support positively the wrong priority.

I understand that all of the work is voluntary and developers work on whatever they like, but there's a definitely a problem with the direction.
User avatar
EmuandCo
Developer
Posts: 4742
Joined: Sun Nov 28, 2004 7:52 pm
Location: Germany, Bavaria, Steinfeld
Contact:

Re: Why is ReactOS based on a 17-year-old version of Windows?

Post by EmuandCo »

All fine, I don't feel demoralized. ^^ You are free to help the progress by sending in pull requests. We have enough ppl who are just talking, we need people who help improving the system. As you already realized we have quite a few devs, but these work on what they are interested in. If you really think you can force them to do something else, then don't be surpised when I start laughing. No one will force you to follow your hobby in another way than the way you wanna go. And a little suggestion... Check the newsletters and forks to realize what is going on outside of the master tree. You would be surprised.
ReactOS is still in alpha stage, meaning it is not feature-complete and is recommended only for evaluation and testing purposes.

If my post/reply offends or insults you, be sure that you know what sarcasm is...
User avatar
dizt3mp3r
Posts: 1879
Joined: Mon Jun 14, 2010 5:54 pm

Re: Why is ReactOS based on a 17-year-old version of Windows?

Post by dizt3mp3r »

The_Wizard_of_OS wrote: Thu May 16, 2024 12:17 pm
but there's a definitely a problem with the direction.
In your opinion.

Please try not to suck all the positivity from the project. Q. for you: Do you work during the night as a dementor on the Harry Potter film set?
Skillset: VMS,DOS,Windows Sysadmin from 1985, fault-tolerance, VaxCluster, Alpha,Sparc. DCL,QB,VBDOS- VB6,.NET, PHP,NODE.JS, Graphic Design, Project Manager, CMS, Quad Electronics. classic cars & m'bikes. Artist in water & oils. Historian.
The_Wizard_of_OS
Posts: 12
Joined: Sun Dec 26, 2021 10:14 am
Location: Somewhere in Virginia

Re: Why is ReactOS based on a 17-year-old version of Windows?

Post by The_Wizard_of_OS »

EmuandCo wrote: Thu May 16, 2024 1:00 pm All fine, I don't feel demoralized. ^^ You are free to help the progress by sending in pull requests.
The state of things goes many ways. On one hand there's clearly a need, there is always a desire to help, but on the other hand it's a hard sell to work on something that may turn out to be a futile effort. I think to commit my time like that I'd need to see the philosophy and the direction of the project. I'd probably need to ask questions that really need a thread (or better yet, an article) on their own. Such as, whether ReactOS can exist (or be useful) without components from Microsoft, as a significant amount of software will require VC++ redistributables and .NET runtimes, and what will happen to ReactOS if Microsoft will stop distributing future versions of those outside of Windows updates, making them part of Windows product itself. Whether VC++ and .NET alternatives will be included into the scope of the ReactOS project. Or any other way Microsoft will respond if the project ever matures. I understand the project got into trouble before... I remember the days of the code audits. Microsoft may see it as a waste of time pounding the dead horse for now, but if the dead horse rises from the dead, what sort of beating might follow? Many more questions.
EmuandCo wrote: Thu May 16, 2024 1:00 pmCheck the newsletters and forks to realize what is going on outside of the master tree. You would be surprised.
I don't like surprises, but I just might take a look.
dizt3mp3r wrote: Thu May 16, 2024 6:24 pmQ. for you: Do you work during the night as a dementor on the Harry Potter film set?
I'll respond with a question. Will you still have a sense of humor when you end up like the Hurd guys? (That one should hurt.)
User avatar
dizt3mp3r
Posts: 1879
Joined: Mon Jun 14, 2010 5:54 pm

Re: Why is ReactOS based on a 17-year-old version of Windows?

Post by dizt3mp3r »

The_Wizard_of_OS wrote: Fri May 17, 2024 6:44 am I'll respond with a question. Will you still have a sense of humor when you end up like the Hurd guys? (That one should hurt.)
Makes no sense to me, your cultural references are too local.
Skillset: VMS,DOS,Windows Sysadmin from 1985, fault-tolerance, VaxCluster, Alpha,Sparc. DCL,QB,VBDOS- VB6,.NET, PHP,NODE.JS, Graphic Design, Project Manager, CMS, Quad Electronics. classic cars & m'bikes. Artist in water & oils. Historian.
MadWolf
Posts: 696
Joined: Sat Dec 31, 2005 4:19 am
Contact:

Re: Why is ReactOS based on a 17-year-old version of Windows?

Post by MadWolf »

The_Wizard_of_OS wrote: Fri May 17, 2024 6:44 am I'll respond with a question. Will you still have a sense of humor when you end up like the Hurd guys? (That one should hurt.)
this https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/GNU_Hurd ??
The_Wizard_of_OS
Posts: 12
Joined: Sun Dec 26, 2021 10:14 am
Location: Somewhere in Virginia

Re: Why is ReactOS based on a 17-year-old version of Windows?

Post by The_Wizard_of_OS »

dizt3mp3r wrote: Sat May 18, 2024 6:56 pm your cultural references are too local.
I wasn't aware that GNU Hurd was part of my local folklore, but it might as well be.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/GNU_Hurd
https://www.gnu.org/software/hurd/
https://www.reddit.com/r/linux/comments ... t_ever_be/
https://quotefancy.com/quote/1445776/Li ... e-the-Hurd

The story of the development of the original GNU kernel is rather sad and tortured, and a good lesson to all the other development teams.

(And then came the Linux kernel from outside of the GNU project, more years went by, the Linux kernel matured, but the Hurd guys still had nothing to show for their effort, and then everyone pretty much forgot about them, but they're trying, still trying, why nobody knows.)

The takeaway from the Hurd story is the importance of setting goals, and controlling scope. Projects need focused objectives that are clearly stated, are attainable, and are relevant. And that goes back to the subject of this thread, it's right there in the title of this thread.
dizt3mp3r wrote: Sat May 18, 2024 6:56 pm Makes no sense to me
Don't get frustrated with intelligent humor that goes over your head. ;) Just accept your limitations.
MadWolf
Posts: 696
Joined: Sat Dec 31, 2005 4:19 am
Contact:

Re: Why is ReactOS based on a 17-year-old version of Windows?

Post by MadWolf »

dizt3mp3r wrote: Thu Feb 02, 2023 7:50 pm Many perceive ReactOS main usage as being within a VM so that you can legacy apps in a host o/s.
The_Wizard_of_OS wrote: Thu May 16, 2024 12:17 pm That's hardly a worthwhile effort at this point. Everyone is already running old software in an XP virtual machine, solved the problem and moved on. That's been around for decades now. A business of mine operates such piece of old software in a virtual machine, we are quite fine as-is. There is no new problem to solve.
it is a worthwhile effort to have compatibility to run old software and games but all versions of NT are built on top of older versions

I have Windows 8.1 64-bit + open shell + other mods + without the telemetry spyware updates most games I do not have problems there are
user-created patches, game engine recreations, Source Ports, GOG, DOSBox / other tools

windows 8 /8.1 is EOS windows 10 is going to be EOS on October 14, 2025 windows 11 is a joke
dizt3mp3r wrote: Thu Feb 02, 2023 7:50 pm If it runs on older hardware then that is a valid goal too - it proves a point and is a valuable goal in itself. There are many millions of old boxes out there, you are just looking in the wrong place.
The_Wizard_of_OS wrote: Thu May 16, 2024 12:17 pm E-waste. You can buy an SBC that runs a modern desktop for a price of a lunch these days. XP-era hardware is all in a landfill (or my garage, which looks like a landfill). Besides, XP-era hardware struggles running relevant software, like a web browser, most often lacking necessary instruction set extensions (SSE2, SSE3), among other caveats.
using XP-era web browsers on the modern web is dum but you can use an up-to-date browser compatible with Windows XP, 2003, for example, https://github.com/win32ss/supermium

Windows XP RTM August 24, 2001 Mainstream End Date Apr 14, 2009

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SSE2
The_Wizard_of_OS wrote: Fri May 17, 2024 6:44 am
EmuandCo wrote: Thu May 16, 2024 1:00 pm All fine, I don't feel demoralized. ^^ You are free to help the progress by sending in pull requests.
The state of things goes many ways. On one hand there's clearly a need, there is always a desire to help, but on the other hand it's a hard sell to work on something that may turn out to be a futile effort. I think to commit my time like that I'd need to see the philosophy and the direction of the project. I'd probably need to ask questions that really need a thread (or better yet, an article) on their own. Such as, whether ReactOS can exist (or be useful) without components from Microsoft, as a significant amount of software will require VC++ redistributables and .NET runtimes, and what will happen to ReactOS if Microsoft will stop distributing future versions of those outside of Windows updates, making them part of Windows product itself. Whether VC++ and .NET alternatives will be included into the scope of the ReactOS project. Or any other way Microsoft will respond if the project ever matures. I understand the project got into trouble before... I remember the days of the code audits. Microsoft may see it as a waste of time pounding the dead horse for now, but if the dead horse rises from the dead, what sort of beating might follow? Many more questions.
dot net depends on the version
VC++ redistributable ReactOS used part of wine if ReactOS can use the wine version of the files then there is not a problem
Directx there is WineD3D a DirectX 1-11 to OpenGL wrapper, dxvk A Vulkan-based translation layer for Direct3D 9/10/11
The_Wizard_of_OS wrote: Fri May 17, 2024 6:44 am Microsoft will stop distributing future versions of those outside of Windows updates, making them part of Windows product itself
that has happened with metro apps or whatever Microsoft is calling them nowadays but them apps are not important
The_Wizard_of_OS
Posts: 12
Joined: Sun Dec 26, 2021 10:14 am
Location: Somewhere in Virginia

Re: Why is ReactOS based on a 17-year-old version of Windows?

Post by The_Wizard_of_OS »

MadWolf wrote: Sun May 19, 2024 7:08 am using XP-era web browsers on the modern web is dum but you can use an up-to-date browser compatible with Windows XP, 2003, for example, https://github.com/win32ss/supermium
I know about Supermium and I have tested it on ReactOS (and Windows XP, actually). When the day comes and it works on ReactOS, it will be a huge quality of life improvement. But it's a crutch, because rather than showing that ReactOS runs common Windows software, it will show that ReactOS needs specialized versions of software, which defeats the purpose. ReactOS is only useful so long as it runs common Windows software, or better yet, all of it (99.9%).

As of right now it didn't work on ReactOS, and didn't work on my XP machine. I didn't test it on newer operating systems because there is no reason to.

As far as XP compatibility goes, possibly the reason why it didn't work is because my XP machine (real hardware) is single core, and from what I read single core is only planned for the future, presumably it doesn't yet work like this.

Worse yet, there is no browser for XP that can download Supermium releases from Github if you don't have the direct link to file, as the versions of Firefox (including MyPal) that run on XP don't load/render the asset attachments to releases on Github. So your choices are either send yourself the direct link to the file download, or provide the file to yourself some other way. (This is sort of like distributing a ZIP extractor inside a ZIP archive. :lol: )
Last edited by The_Wizard_of_OS on Sun May 19, 2024 9:36 am, edited 1 time in total.
MadWolf
Posts: 696
Joined: Sat Dec 31, 2005 4:19 am
Contact:

Re: Why is ReactOS based on a 17-year-old version of Windows?

Post by MadWolf »

hi at the moment you may need to use specialized versions of the software but NT6+ application compatibility is being worked on
NEWSLETTER 103
https://reactos.org/blogs/newsletter-103/

NEWSLETTER 104
https://reactos.org/blogs/newsletter-104/
Aeneas
Posts: 506
Joined: Sat Oct 10, 2009 10:09 pm

Re: Why is ReactOS based on a 17-year-old version of Windows?

Post by Aeneas »

Well — as "much" and as "little" as it means to you, it has become an "academic hobby project" as well as a "virtual Windows OS". That last part is interesting; it was certainly not planned, but the fact of the matter is, while struggling on real HW, "virtualized" it runs just fine. There is a delicate balance with regard to popularity, and you are right, it is not geared towards "maximizing popularity". But it has found "a niche". It is the only major totally non-Unixoid thing apart from Haiku and FreeDOS. — "But who NEEDS it?" Anybody curious — as well as nobody. Who "needs" the Calligra suite, in view of OpenOffice? Who "needs" any BSD, in view of Linux? If one were to work on it, it would be "something quite unique", like being a helicopter designer in an age of airplanes; I could imagine, in a job interview or as a personal reference, that is no shame. So will it be found soon on every laptop near you? Likely not. Does it offer the possibility of intellectual stimulation with something rather fascinating? Yes. We cannot judge things by immediate utility alone, or otherwise we should burn our museums and art galleries. You might indeed see it as a variant of fhe Mona Lisa: not particularly "cute", of more socio-cultural than material importance, it has become quite an icon in the open source world the way she has meandered her way through the world of art. And, without any offense implied: "it might not be for you." In all frankness, it is has become "less for me", too. For that, however, it deserves neither praise nor contempt, but rather — acceptance and respect for what it is.
ofniemag
Posts: 11
Joined: Fri Oct 18, 2019 9:29 am

Re: Why is ReactOS based on a 17-year-old version of Windows?

Post by ofniemag »

Answer would be, IMO, there just is not enough people to develop it up to the next pop_OS version level. Even achieving NT5_2 compatibility point is a lot. OS development is not just application development, it's much more complex. Recent developer additions are most welcome.
reactosfanboy
Posts: 15
Joined: Sun Feb 01, 2015 1:54 pm

Re: Why is ReactOS based on a 17-year-old version of Windows?

Post by reactosfanboy »

I have not read through all the thread to see whether the initial question was answered already or not. Therefore:
It is wrong that ros is based on / or would properly reflect a 17 year-old code-base of Windows yet.

In fact in many areas we are not even on par with MS Windows NT4 from the late ninetees yet. E.g. when it comes to multiprocessing, or when it comes to supporting a modern journaling file-system like NTFS, or when it comes to "just playing sound", or when it comes to support real video drivers, or when it comes to run 32bit applications within our 64bit builds (WoW64).

2k3sp2 is our current target, because it makes sense for us to catch up in those very basic and urgent musts of an operating system first, before it will make sense to go ahead and really dig into adding all the more modern Windows world and all its APIs on top of that.
It will happen at some point, just be patient until then.

Ftr: It makes no sense to reply to my comment, because I do only very rarely read the forums.
The_DarkFire
Posts: 8
Joined: Sun Feb 14, 2021 4:08 am

Re: Why is ReactOS based on a 17-year-old version of Windows?

Post by The_DarkFire »

We’re in the process of moving away from windows 2003 so this whole thread is a bit late, it’s just not as easy as changing a number
Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Ahrefs [Bot], DotBot [Crawler], Yandex [Bot] and 1 guest