I got a real kick out of this post on /.:
“TechCrunch announced that they are planning to design their own $200 web tablet device. Quoting: ‘The idea is to turn it on, bypass any desktop interface, and go directly to Firefox running in a modified Kiosk mode that effectively turns the browser into the operating system for the device. Add Gears for offline syncing of Google docs, email, etc., and Skype for communication and you have a machine that will be almost as useful as a desktop but cheaper and more portable than any laptop or tablet PC.’ The aim is for the tablet to run on modified open source software, which will be released back to the community along with the specifications for the hardware.”
Sounds a lot like a Qubit BeIA tablet from about 8 years ago to me, sans the open source part.
Biffuz explains why 4 gigs of RAM in a modern computer system only looks like 3 gigs. The situation appears to be another case of some higher-up technology executive somewhere saying “we’ll never need that much memory in a computer system!” that is coming back to byte computer users in the butt!
I wanted a small form factor box to run BeOS and Haiku on. After much looking around at the current offerings, many with too new or too obscure features to use for a Haiku build tool, I decided to take the dive on an Eagle Tech IMC6375 (also available in black). The bottom line of this one was the i865G (Intel Extreme 2) graphics chipset, AC97 sound, and the Realtek NIC all onboard, giving it a better than average chance at being a stable Haiku machine. At $250 for the barebone kit (which included case and motherboard for 89.99, and adding in 1 gig of ram and a 2.53 celeron cpu), I threw in two Hard Disks (foregoing the floppy and putting the second HD in that slot) and a DVDR/CDRW drive I had in an older machine, and connected it to my existing 22-inch widescreen LCD and keys/mouse. The money spent was worth it, sort of…
Read On, if ye be interested…
Apparently, your PS3 can run the Folding@Home client well. So, if you sign up with TeamHaiku and head over to their site for links to running the Folding@Home client on your PS3, you can help out the Haiku community! More power to Haiku via your PS3!!!
Rudolf posted some new benchmark results on his nVidia 3d driver page. The benchmarks show the speeds of the current 3D driver Alpha 4.1 and the 2D driver 0.80. The benchmark table compares the framerates achieved in Quake 2 timedemo 1 under BeOS and Windows98 second edition. A number of cards that are supported by the 3D driver were tested and he also added another table displaying benchmark results with slower machines to show how well older systems perform with the current driver. If you haven’t checked it out, go here and have a look. Also, be sure to check out Rudolf’s blog as well.
Now an update on Euan’s work on the Radeon driver. Over at the Bebits talkback section and the Bedrivers forum, a new version was posted, download here. This version has fixes for the drawing problems, some changes to the DPMS code and he changed a line in the code for flat panels which he says seemed to be forcing the flatpanel to use the 2nd CRT output. This version runs exclusively in PIO mode for the X series chips in laptops that don’t work very well. It is recommended that 7000, 8000 and 9000 series Radeon users continue using older versions of the Radeon driver for better performance (anything upto v5.1.3).
He plans for the next version to enable full performance for cards that did work fine with full acceleration. Be sure to post your results and e-mail him syslogs and any feedback regarding the new versions of the driver. For those interested in following his progress, you can find his updates over at the Bedrivers forums.
*UPDATE (Radeon driver):
As noted in Euan’s comment, laptop users should avoid using this release since a change he made to the driver turns off LCDs completely.
Euan posted an update over at the Bebits talkback section of the ATI Radeon graphics driver regarding working drivers for the AGP X700’s and PCI-E X300’s. Thanks goes to Adam Kirchoff for loaning Euan a Radeon card to work with. Here is the important part of Euan’s post:
This driver is fresh of the mill, therefore is for people with non-working systems only. It will reduce performance as DMA is disabled. Additionally there is a drawing bug somewhere that at 5am, I don’t feel like finding right now. (Textboxes may have corners skewed off for some reason; worse case I saw was BeIDE).
Euan would really appreciate it if people sent him their syslogs and any reports of success or failure. There is also a thread regarding Radeon driver issues available over at the Bedrivers forums.
The driver is available for download here
RepairmanJack wrote in a submission for the new $100 Laptop Initiative. From the article: “it will rely on open-source software”. I guess the idea of the submission is: wouldn’t it be nice to get Haiku on one of those things. They have flash for long term storage - anyone working on booting Haiku from flash drives?
Eventually, they are supposed to be available commercially, eventually, but as of right now, the plan is to provide them only to governments. Cool concept, rearing a whole new digital generation and all.
Heck, for a green rubber laptop at $100, I’d get my kids one, if they didn’t both have 500Mhz and greater laptops already (my older ones).
Greg Crain recently posted over at the bedrivertalk mailing list and the Bedrivers.com forum about his work on the ESS Maestro3 /Allegro sound driver. Here’s what he posted in the bedrivertalk mailing list:
I finally got around to tweaking the Maestro3 driver code, and it seems
to be working. I have a pretty limited test platform though on my Dell
8000 with Zeta Neo, so if you have a laptop with a ESS chip (Maestro3 or
would be interested to know if it works for you.
I made a post over at the BeDrivers website in the sound drivers forum
with a bit more info.
More info over at his post in the BeDrivers forums here
PLEASE NOTE this is an Initial debug release, so it could cause unpredictable problems and could cause your computer to go into KDL. Currently it only supports sound output.
So if you have a system that uses the ESS Maestro 3/Allegro chipset and have taken note of the caution mentioned above, then download and test the driver and be sure to report your results to Greg. You can find his contact info in the README file.
Now that Jérome has an Echo Gina3G, thanks to Bedrivers.com and the support/donations from the community, he now has an Echo audio card to use to continue developing the Echo audio drivers for BeOS.
Since Jérome can only test the drivers with his Echo Gina3G, he is interested in seeing the results of other Echo audio cards using the same drivers. So, he recently posted over at the Bedrivers.com forums a link to a build for download of his current work on the audio drivers. The driver is not finished yet, but anyone running BeOS with and Echo audio card can test the drivers and report their results to Jérome. You can download a build of the Echogals and Echo24 driver from here:
Here are some key features currently implemented in the driver from Jérome’s post:
* outputs 1/2 and 3/4 as 48khz stereo 16bits streams
* input 1/2 as 48khz stereo 16bits stream
* mixer interface for output busses (levels and mute)
before testing the drivers, make sure you have the Haiku Media preferences and MultiAudio addon from bebits installed. The sources for the driver are also available in the Haiku repository.
A poll was started over at the Bedrivers.com forums to start raising money to support the development of a complete driver for a multi i/o high quality soundcard for the BeOS.
The poll was made to start a discussion about the fund to see who would be interested, how much to raise and to decide which soundcard to support development for.
Some progress has been made on drivers for the M-Audio and Echogals and Echo24 audio cards, but I’m not sure how complete those drivers are. So, maybe this fund could help get those drivers completed or maybe start support for another model.
If you’re interested, head on over to the topic at the BeDrivers.com forums and let Paul know. His e-mail address is available there if you wish to contact him.
I noticed yesterday that the BeOS Laptop Page has a different look and a new forum as well, head on over to the site to take a look. ConneX also has plans to add some new features to the site. One of them is to add a list of laptops that are known to not work at all with BeOS/Zeta so that users are aware of them. Another feature that ConneX might add is the ability to rate the laptops that are already listed on the Laptops page. Through this, a top 10 list could be made to allow users to see which laptops work best with BeOS/Zeta based on BeOS user experience.
Thanks goes to all those that have already submitted a laptop they tested or use with BeOS/Zeta. If you haven’t added your laptop, go here to add it to the list and make sure you put as much info as possible regarding your laptop, especially if you had to do something special to get BeOS/Zeta to work on your hardware so that others can benefit from your experience. There is also a section to add PCMCIA devices that work with your BeOS/Zeta laptop as well.
Today, Rudolf released a new driver and app which enables VIA’s C3 CPUs MTRR-writecombining for graphics cards. According to Rudolf, this will increase access speed to your graphics card by 200-400%. That’s a big increase! You can download the driver and app from Bebits here.
Unfortunately, I don’t have a system that uses a VIA C3 processor, but I have been looking at some laptops to run BeOS with which use VIA processors. This would be interesting to try out, so once I have the chance I’m going try testing a BeOS live CD on a laptop that uses a VIA C3 processor with this driver to see what happens, hopefully this method will work. This driver should be very good for those that have a desktop system that uses this processor. So if you try this driver, be sure to report your findings to Rudolf, you can find contact information over at his site here.
I noticed this in the Begroovy forums. MYOB posted a topic regarding the new 3Com driver by Patrick Lafarguette. This might interest some BeOS PowerPC users if you haven’t already read his post:
Yet another historic BeOS limitation seems to have been shattered - the 10Mbit barrier for PowerPC network cards.
Patrick Lafarguette, who wrote the Intersil Prism drivers and the 3Com 940 Gigabit ethernet drivers for x86 BeOS has ported his 3Com 920 driver to PPC, and has added support for the 905B chipset to it, one of the most common 100Mbit network cards in existance.
I tried with my 905C-TX card, and its recognised but crashes the network stack on any IP but 192.168.0.1, which is my router and hence not usable… However, this could be an issue with the C revision chipset
So, any other PPC users with 3Com cards, give it a go: http://bebits.com/app/3551
So, if you run BeOS on a PowerPC and have one of the mentioned NICs that this driver supports, then try it out on your PowerPC.
Rudolf, the man who made my nVidia-based laptop go into beautiful widescreen under BeOS, needs your help. He writes
I’ve hit some major hardware faults, and I’ve released a new (already old again version 0.06. (current is 0.09 from the build factory!)… I need people to test the 0.09 CVS driver for me before I can setup the workarounds for the faults that exist!
You can read the full story and help him out.
I know for a fact, from experience, that Rudolf is a very responsive developer, and will do everything he can to get your hardware working properly. But he needs your help and your debug logs to do it!
Caught over at IsComputerOn that there is a new add-on for Boneyard out that will help laptop users configuring wireless cards. It adds a tab to Boneyard (the preference panel for BeOS Networking Environment - BONE - users) that takes configuration of a wireless card out of text configs and into the gui. Great news!
Wear a thong, win a BeBox. According to the official WalterCon Thong Rules website, the winner of the contest gets a dual 133 Mhz BeBoxen with BeOS R5 Pro installed. Second and third place prizes have not been announced but are described as “a bunch of great things directly from Be Inc. auction that are Brand New.” The contest involves wearing the thong for the entirety of WalterCon 2004. Head on over to the official rules page to get the rest of the rules or to the unofficial WalterCon Warez Cafepress shop to get your thong, or cool T-shirt.
As most users have noticed by now the hardware matrix at FrizBe.net has been down for some time now. After the FrizBe hardware store went under the domain name was eventually left unregistered. The folks over at BeDrivers.com now have a mirror of the matrix in static pages and are working on obtaining the actual data for the site.
Scottmc wrote in to let us know about the newly redesigned BeDrivers website. He had this to say about it:
The new site is using php and will allow easier updates. This new site was created by Sikosis and he’ll be helping me out keeping things more upto date than in the past. We now have the ability to post stories (probably driver related ones). Also the Most Wanted page will soon have the option to let users enter their “Most Wanted” driver. There’s still work to be done on the new site, such as adding the driver links back in. Hope everyone likes the new look.
Don’t see it yet? Don’t worry, DNS is still propogating for the new site. You will - soon.
Rudolf Cornelissen, the author of the NeoMagic driver we posted about a couple of months ago, has begun work on a new nVidia driver. He had this to say in a post to the BeDriverTalk mailing list:
Currently modesetup is partially working, all cards should be recognized (85!) and the hardcursor is operational.
He also mentions the current status of the NeoMagic video driver by saying:
This driver has full modesetup, hardcursor
and hardware overlay working. Some details have to be sorted out though for most cards, because I don’t own them I am unable to test much here
This is great news for both NeoMagic and nVidia users! I’m sure I speak for everyone when I say “Keep up the great hard work Rudolf!” You can find more information and get the current status on the nVidia driver, as well as download the NeoMagic driver, on his website.
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