Open Sourcing Windows 9x

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forart
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Open Sourcing Windows 9x

Post by forart »

Check out the Unofficial Win98 SE Service Pack's forum.

note: i think those peoples (who builds unofficial patchs & service packs) could help the ROS development.
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Mike
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Post by Mike »

I've seen the unofficial service pack (and used it, too), it's not open sourcing anything. It's just taking a bunch of patches from MS Windows Update and rolling them up into an easy-to-install package. Technically, they even violate Microsoft's license and is illegal (to help your neighbor, to put it more or less metaphorically), but haven't gotten in trouble in the last few years yet.

forart
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Post by forart »

I've seen the unofficial service pack...
...but not my 3ad 8)
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mikedep333
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Post by mikedep333 »

What patchworks is referring to is his idea to gradually replace windows 98 components with free equivalents. There are a few problems with this:

1. Whether you are using windows 98 by itself, or 98 with half free components, you are still just as restricted by MS licensing until the free replacement projct is done. In contrast, by building an OS from the ground up like ReactOS, it is 100% free even before it's finished.

2. Windows 98 is pretty crappy compared to NT. Everything running on dos which is very inefficient, with a totally monolithic kernel that doesn't let you change any setting without rebooting, no real security, etc.

3. We shouldn't aim to simply replace windows, we should make a compatible OS with the best features possible. For example, what would you rather people spend time developing, a crappy minimalistic sound recording program( when there good free ones available) or support for multiple free filesystems?

While I am always open to new ideas, I think it is much better that we support ReactOS's plan.

bubach
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Post by bubach »

omg. those people still use 98, when they could use some nt based version like 2k or xp instead? whats wrong with 'em?

dj50
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Post by dj50 »

bubach wrote:omg. those people still use 98, when they could use some nt based version like 2k or xp instead? whats wrong with 'em?
Well, even if it's crappy it is a lot lighter on the resources. For example I was very annoyed to see that while win9x boots in 20-30 seconds on my old machine, win2k boots in 3-4 minutes.

If you know how to maintaint win9x (install all updates, use only programs you know and trust, make a HDD image of it and restore it from time to time when it gets too bloated, tweak the registry here and there and so on) it can be usable to some degree and offer a little more performance on old computers - still I'm begining to think that buying a new computer would be a whole lot more inexpensive that losing all that time.

stefan
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Post by stefan »

on my p2 400 win2k boots faster then on my athlon 1200 mhz
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forart
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Post by forart »

Well, the idea is a try to 'convert' unofficial service packs developers to open source world, and not just improving an os without the author agree.
In this way other open OSes could benefit from their (good) work.
Not only: "Win 9x" could also evolve to a better stage indipendently...
Anyway it could be interesting for ROS developers to understand better how windows works, i think.

Anyway it's just an idea (i repeat: i don't want grab developers from here, but between uSP developers) :roll:
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cmoibenlepro
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Post by cmoibenlepro »

Anyway it could be interesting for ROS developers to understand better how windows works
well... I think that ROS developpers know how how windows work...
If not, how could their code be compatible with windows? How could many applications already work with ROS?
:P

I still agree with you, ReactOS will still need more developpers, so every help is welcome. :D

Mike
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Post by Mike »

Unless some ROS developer is breaking an NDA with Microsoft, there's a lot to learn about how Windows operates still. ReactOS-devs don't know everything about Windows yet, but someday they hopefully will ;)

Well, now that I've read the MSFN topic, sounds like a good idea. It's on the same playing field of, say, replacing BeOS components one-by-one until the entire operating system is eventually free, open source software. While Windows 9x/Me might be an oddity to replicate, why not? Hell, most OSS don't have reasons for being created, they just are. And this free Win9x project actually has some motivation behind it (even if the old FreeWin95 example was abandonned in favor of a Windows NT clone we all know and love).

cmoibenlepro
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Post by cmoibenlepro »

Unless some ROS developer is breaking an NDA with Microsoft, there's a lot to learn about how Windows operates still.
Reactos developers only use documented information or information they found themselves using test programs
They don't use information under non-disclosure agreements, or other "illegal" information.
http://www.reactos.org/xhtml/en/dev_legalreview.html
So ReactOS can't accept developers making illegal things.

Mike
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Post by Mike »

I'm sorry if it came off as such, but I wasn't attacking anyone, or the ReactOS dev team itself. If a user/"developer" is caught breaking an NDA with Microsoft (or anyone else), I do hope that he his kicked out of the project's development (until the NDA is expired), and that all acompying (sp?) code is removed, if any.

etko
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Post by etko »

Actually original WindowsNT is quite not resources hungry. Here I have accounting DOS software. It works on P120 machine which was running firs DOS with MS Lanman. Then I switched to Win98SE. As soon as I got posssiblity to use WinNT 4 Server I grabbed it from my friend who disposed of it and is using W2K now.

As far I can tell WinNT 4 is blazing fast, it runs on 48 MB RAM quite well, on the other side Win9x family is really bad on the same setup, not mentioning security problems.

So I think that it is right to consider W9x branch dead. WinNT proved me that it is able to scale up quite well from vintage P120 to newest Sempron2800.

Floyd
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Post by Floyd »

etko wrote: So I think that it is right to consider W9x branch dead. WinNT proved me that it is able to scale up quite well from vintage P120 to newest Sempron2800.
Win9x sucked compared to nt/2k/xp. NT is blazing fast (not really feature rich when compared to 95 but much more efficient). NT4 was built to run on a 486 and ran on my pentium (1), 100mhz with 16 mb of ram better than win98 did (course there was no plug-and-pray and i had to tinker with ntcompatible.com to get games to work, but all in all it was worth it).
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Post by MadRat »

Win98SE didn't have the HAL to protect the kernel like NT4, which is one of the reasons it seems faster. NT doesn't fix resource conflicts with collision-avoidance techniques akin to ethernet, rather the NT kernel has absolute control of the whole situation. Win2K was just as much evolved from Win9x as it was from NT. I really have nothing to complain performance-wise from XP or 2K except when running AV programs in the background. It seems security has its price.
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