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OpenBeOS x86 Boot Loader Milestone

by @ 12:12 pm on 4/21/2004. Filed under BeUnited

Axel Dorfler announced today on the OpenBeOS mailing list that OpenBeOS can now be booted off a partition instead of just a floppy disk. The kernel itself does not support hard drive access just yet, meaning shortly after booting the kernel will panic. A short description of how to test if the kernel will boot on your system can be found at along with the rest of the post.

13 Responses to “OpenBeOS x86 Boot Loader Milestone”

  1. looncraz says:

    Freaky awesome!

    The boot loader is one area I have been dying for OBOS to get on its way… mostly because I want to try and make changes (if needed) to let it boot PhOS so that I can do some fooling around with boot ‘animations’ and effects and some new entries in the boot menus..etc..

    One huge thing I want to do is do some asynchronous actions during boot… that is the boot load animation will only do work 1/3 the time as the boot process, and the animation and boot process will be seperate.. and fatal errors will show up in a debug area… that sorta junk ( I will most likely never do any of it knowing how much time I have to code now a days).

    Congrats OBOS!

    –The loon

  2. XBe says:

    Great to hear Loooon…

    Look forward to see another Phos on the run so that yT disappears frmo the market…

  3. XBe: You’re crazy if you think that it is beneficial for the BeOS community for YellowTab to be a commercial failure and go bankrupt.  We have had enough companies fail.  There has yet to be a single company that has invested in BeOS and been a commercial success.  We need companies who invest in BeOS to succeed so that other companies will take a risk on us and develop products that we can buy.

    BeOS will never reach the greatness of even Linux with just a hobbyist interest.  It worked for Linux because of the large number of hobbyist developers.  We don’t have that luxury.

  4. XBe says:

    Chris: Did it ever cross your mind that if the main company is one with worse ethics than Microsoft that other companies might get scared?

    There are already companies who has business on BeOS, such as Tune Tracker Systems as well as Xentronix…

    Let them be the success and support their software with money…

  5. filo says:

    yT has worse ethics than M$? Wow. What color crack are you smoking, and where can I buy some? That’s some grade-A quality flamebait if I’ve ever seen it. yT might have stepped on some toes, but nothing they’ve done is even remotely in the same ballpark. It’s not even the same league. If yT is a success, it shows other companies and investors that money can be made selling BeOS/OBOS, and new distros will begin to emerge. I’m not saying that you (or anyone else) should buy Zeta if you don’t like the company, but you don’t need to be actively, publically, cheering for them to fail. Their failure WOULD make BeOS look like a bad investment; moreover, your behavior makes our community look childish. BeOS-ophiles have always been a cut above Linux zealots, and this could become a big selling point to potential investors who might be otherwise leary of getting involved in that “Open-source stuff.” Let’s keep our community classier than the penguinistas who call RedHat “the M$ of the linux world.”

  6. And I run a Mac, so I’m superior to you all!



  7. XBe says:


    I agree to some of what you write, especially that we should behave better than the Linux community (which indeed is discouraging for business). But what I’m trying to say is that sure users can scare companies away, but so can other companies. My flaming is temporary, as I normally think companies can be good and bad. yT is a perfect example of an awful company, so when we get rid of them that’s when I see things changing to the better.

    To prove my point even further, this GoBe thing is just one of many issues we’ve seen. If I’m not mistaken (a thing that hasn’t seen the light) there was a software company yT hired to write drivers which didn’t get payed, gee that’s really gonna get more companies ambitious, and also you have the looncraz issue where they acted weird once again. There are probably dussins of items which yT has done that scares companies off. If they disappear, we’ll be seeing (with a little time as OBOS needs to become a product) more comapanies building software for the community.

    See my point? Not saying you have to agree though…

  8. Simon says:

    Heh, nice and off topic 😀

    Give it a few years though, and I don’t think there will be many “distibutions”, just the official OBOS release.

    Max and Dev Ed both didn’t appear until after the death of Be; even though PE didn’t distribute any software with it, it was all people wanted.

    I wish yT luck, but I really don’t think BeOS is yet commercially viable. By OBOS R3 it just may be, but now we’ve got some real catching up to do.

  9. kukyona says:

    I suppose we never needed Be either, right shaka?

    With that logic, we’re doomed to the same fate as the failure which is Linux. ( Yes it is a failure, any recent sucess is due to companies like RedHat, SuSE, IBM, SCO, etc. With out them, Linux would still be a ‘l33t’ tinker toy OS, and in many ways it still is. )

    As a direct example of how a buisness attitude is better then the open source chaos that is Linux development, I refer you to Be and Microsoft. Be for producing a great product, Microsoft for making a popular product. As much as everyone hates Microsoft, especially for making things harder for Be, they are extremely good at what they do. I think it is time to grow up, Be made its own fair share of mistakes, we can’t in truth blaim Microsoft for everything.

    OBOS is very much ran like a company, and very much not like Linux… It has a direction, it has a standard, it has organization, it has a goal… this will lead to it’s sucess, not the fact it is open source. Open source is a means, not an end. The BeOS legacy doesn’t hurt any either.

    Since it will ease your soul, I will make a non-Microsoft comparison… I challenge you to try any BSD, which are also ran like/by companies, I recommend FreeBSD, then compare it to the more arcane distros of Linux, like slackware.

    I could go on forever explaining how companies would financially help BeOS, and Capitalism, but I think that would be wasting both our time.

    — Back on Topic —
    Congrats, OBOS… Can’t wait until R1!

  10. Ryan Abrams says:

    “I suppose we never needed Be either, right shaka?”

    Um.. if we were coding the os, and all the source was open, then no, we wouldn’t have needed Be.

    At the time, Be designed the entire os, and everyone used it. yT doesnt seem to present the same consistency of vision (yet) – instead, it seems to be taking all the latest hacks people have put together, adding a few of their own, and combining it with Be’s unfinished dano codebase. (and I am assuming they actually have the code – I have never seen a clear explanation of what their actual rights are)

    Capitalism is just a financial system. It doesnt exist in a pure form anywhere, and relies on scarcity of goods and/or unique ownership of a particular product (or both) – This is why the only places you see air for sale are places like mexico city where the pollution is so bad that air itself is seen by some as scarce. In an environment in which all the source code is completely free, no one can effectively charge for the os itself. Thus companies and capitalism can have little to no benefit from working with obos. The organization of the obos group is indeed a strong point, but it is NOT a company. It is not motivated by making money – if it was, obos would not be free, or would not be as successful.

    Sorry Kukyona – there is definately room for companies around obos.. but they certainly are not needed for obos to produce a solid operating system. Doesnt mean yellowTab shouldnt try to compete – just that they are about to face nearly impossible competition from obos.

    When your core product is given away with free, the bells and whistles required to sell it for $100 is pretty high.. especially since most of those will eventually be replaced or bettered for free anyway.

    That said, good luck to them. Its great that they are trying, and perhaps they will succeed. 🙂

  11. Wombat says:

    Actually Ryan, OpenBeOS is currently in the process of filing for non-profit status. This effectively turns them into a restricted form of “Company”.

    Although the title would imply they cannot make profit, it has been proven in many cases that this doesn’t stop them from making money, so long as it is totally re-invested into the running of the NPO, including salaries to staff!

  12. Czeslaw says:

    The day that we, the community around OpenBeOS, can collectively afford to hire and pay staffers for the project is the day that our dreams will really begin to take wing, I think.

    Staffers could handle the geometric growth in administrative overhead that results from bringing on more developers — and attracting and retaining more developers is precisely what we need to do in order to grow the platform. (I’m envisioning something mid-way between the cathedral and the bazaar as a likely organizational model in future.)

    I’m always trying to dream up ways for us to build a sizable and reliable revenue stream for OBOS…

  13. Marina says:

    And what about Windows? Does it “suck”???

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