1. 8

    1. 4

      A couple of notes…

      Some demoscene guys, commercial Amiga programmers fans started building MorphOS. There was no people connected with Commodore directly or OS3.x developers which is kinda weird

      Actually, not weird at all.

      Firstly, if you let someone who has seen the original source code of a piece of software work on what is supposed to be legally clean reimplementation of it, you are essentially asking to get sued.

      Secondly, most of the Commodore software engineers working on AmigaOS were hired hands. They did it for a pay cheque, not passion. Even the original development team, who did some personal sacrifices to keep the project alive, were a lot less attached to Amiga and AmigaOS than the end users to who opted to stick around until today. If you read their work bios, they usually moved on very quickly and worked on all kinds of different platforms.

      That said, it is worth mentioning that the original MorphOS team included developers who had previously provided essential system software such graphics card driver stacks (CybergraphX), Magic User Interface (GUI toolkit), the Voyager web browser, and others. These would normally be included with an operating system but had to be developed by third parties since Commodore was unable to do so.

      There’s a myth that original non-public and some first public released were based off from OS3.x sources stolen from somewhere

      Feel free to look up how much cleaning up the developers with actual access to the original source code had to do.

      It is a silly idea that was primarily spread by an individual who set up a contract promising to port AmigaOS from 68k to PowerPC in a matter of months for a mere 25.000 EUR, failed to do so, then turned around and sued his client for several years, and was eventually granted the AmigaOS rights because Amiga’s only investor unexpectedly died and there was nobody around who had the money to keep paying expensive lawyers…

      So, everyone, please consider the source.

      The “blues” (MorphOS Team) got partnered with bPlan (later Genesi) which found MorphOS a nice target OS for their PowerPC G3/G4 boards: EFIKA, Pegasos I, Pegasos II and some R&D boards not publicly known. They pumped some serious money into project, hired some developers full-time for few years and generally accelerated the development

      Actually, Thendic France spent a lot less on MorphOS directly than you might think. Lots and lots of unpaid bills. Also, the very few hired full-time developers that were there lost their jobs or outright quit after mere months, not years.

      License is kinda expensive

      As always with prices, this is subjective as well as relative. You can never please everybody.

      However, I think it is worthwhile to add that updates have always been free. People who registered MorphOS 2.0 all the way back in 2008 have received a total of 20 free updates over the course of 10 years.

      Even when Microsoft still allowed to upgrade to Windows 10 for free, that offer did not include 10 years old Windows versions. And this is a billion dollar company, not enthusiasts who have to buy their own development hardware to develop and maintain drivers, etc.

      Even if the kernel can, OS can’t allocate more than 1 gigabyte of RAM (or maybe 2?) even when Amiga could theoreticaly allocate 4GB of RAM in 32-bit address space.

      Commodore’s AmigaOS used a 31bit address space (2GB). Sadly, backwards compatibility depends on it.

      I do not mean to sugarcoat this whatsoever but, based on user feedback, 2GB is actually still decent for the time being.

      The system was built with GCC 2.95.3 to this day

      That is incorrect.

      Same for computers sold/transferred between users, you must rename your license.

      Nobody needs to rename anything. There are some users who are apparently bothered by the fact that the registration information lists a different name than their own. Those have the option to get a new keyfile with their own name in it.

      From all of my knowledge there’s only a single German company which bought about 30 licenses late 2000s for their work machines and nobody actually know what they really do

      If that happened, it was probably a tax write off issue or so. Companies buy crazy things near the end of a fiscal year ;)

      No supported office software exists.

      If you take a look at the new Iris IMAP email client, its email editor is half-way there to a word processor…

      No Vim or Emacs. This is ridiculous (…) I asked on MorphOS IRC channel for help, everyone turned off as “it’s a linux shit, get away with it”

      Actually, there is a port of Vim 8.0.1… I do not recall anything but appreciative comments after its release.

      That said, there is also Flow Studio, which uses the Scintilla engine and offers lots of handy features that make MorphOS development more convenient.

      But it has some irrational design issues and the community is horrible when you can’t get their spirit of old grumpy Amiga user who’s angry at everything around and frustrated from 20 years waiting for “next Amiga” which never happened.

      Before anybody takes this for gospel, please visit MorphZone and see for yourself whether the community is “horrible” or not.

      1. 2

        I thought about linking to it but figured if mighg be too much for casual readers. I saved that one for when people ask about the deeper history. ;)

        1. 2

          Thanks for that! Given that you say in the article that Hyperion shuttered days before you wrote it, who’s putting out new MorphOS versions? :)

          1. 3

            From what I remember, Hyperion did AmigaOS variant. The MorphOS variant is this team. They were competing groups. I still want to know which company is referenced in this quote:

            “From all of my knowledge there’s only a single German company which bought about 30 licenses late 2000s for their work machines and nobody actually know what they really do”

            It could be pretty boring with some terrible acquisition practices. It might also be a very, interesting outfit. Maybe something in between.

            1. 3

              The death of Hyperion seems to have been premature. Also, MorphOS isn’t Hyperion.

              There are several forms of AmigaOS like operating systems: AROS, AmigaOS 3, AmigaOS 4, and MorphOS.

              There are also “hybrid” projects such as AfA (AROS for AmigaOS) which is replacing parts of AmigaOS with AROS components when those components are stabl, compatible, and offering additional functionality.

              1. 2

                That’s fantastic! What state are they all in? As in, are they actual usable operating systems?

          2. 3

            The visuals on the site are always beautiful.

            1. 3

              Thank you :)

            2. 2

              It’s crazy that Amiga-like OSes are still kicking around. I would try this out, but my iMac G4 apparently isn’t supported.

              1. 1

                I get the connection timeout. Is it just me?

                1. 1

                  I’m sure this is awesome. I’m having a hard time understanding why anyone would want to use it as long as it’s propietary, though? Doesn’t the fact that there are many FOSS operating systems make it difficult to find interest in users for products that they aren’t already invested in?

                  1. 1

                    Very cool! As an old Amiga hand it tickles me to hear about work still going into a fork of AmigaDOS.

                    I have to wonder though - who is actually USING this? Folks with old actual Amiga hardware and PowerPC processor extender cards?

                    1. 3

                      MorphOS is a bit different. See its overview. It aims to be a full-featured desktop that can run on newer hardware like PPC Macs. It has a microkernel that can emulate old stuff or run new stuff. The Amiga community also had some computers purpose-built for them. AmigaOne X1000 was on high end.

                      1. 2

                        The Cyrus+/X5000 is the latest from A-Eon - the cost is high but the products are much loved.

                        1. 2

                          Still cheaper non-x86 than a Raptor Talos II. Chip ain’t as fast but it’s quite usable with lean software. The Amiga people seem to be all over that concept.