Icaros Desktop is a pre-configured AROS desktop environment for the PC platform, distributed on a bootable live media. The AROS Research Operating System is a open source lightweight, efficient and flexible desktop operating system, aiming at being compatible with AmigaOS 3.1 at the API level, while improving on it in many areas.

Icaros Desktop 1.5.2

A new, improved version of Icaros Desktop is now available for download.

Enhanced integration of 68K applications

Would you believe they are old Amiga 68K applications running on a common PC? Well, they are! Discover the new AmiBridge integration mode which does not need original Amiga ROMs and OS anymore!

Play Hurrican and other classics

Linux format said "Icaros Desktop is the best OS to frag productivity". Why? Because you can play thousands of old classics and dozens of great remakes. And every game Amiga had.

Patch 02 for Icaros Desktop 1.4.5

People who, for any reason, still run Icaros Desktop 1.4.5, do not forget to apply this patch! It brings many little and big enhancements here and there...

Strangely enough, there was a (quite, relatively) simple task that was still impossible to perform under AROS: creating ZIP archives. You could extract files from them, even when password protected, but you couldn't easily create one. Well, let's write a big "THANK YOU!" to our friend Serk118uk, as his upcoming tool Arzip is fixing this issue once forever! He has also written a wonderful ZIP archives extractor called Anzip, and you'll obviously find both in next Icaros Desktop.


Now that Magellan is in a quite good shape (yes, I'd need to add some more filetypes and maybe give Icaros' configuration more love, but I guess it can be done later), it's time to look after the rest of the distribution. One of the key features of Icaros Desktop is, obviously, AmiBridge (the ensemble of core components that allow M68K emulation and old Amiga applications support). Everyone who downloaded WIP5 already know I changed the way AmiBridge presents itself: by default, it no more tries to integrate old programs in the AROS desktop, but opens a new emulation screen and run them over there. This was, obviously, the beginning of major changes I was already planning for a while but, for a motivation or another, I couldn't ever turn into real code.

If you carefully looked in the AmiBridge:AmigaApps directory, you could find a very old script called "ADD_PROGRAM" which, in the beginnings of AmiBridge life, allowed users to create a shortcut to a 68K application. It practically created a launch script in the same directory that would just call Janus-UAE, add a "RUN this:application/for/amiga" line in guest S drawer, and let the guest OS (which was AmigaOS 3.x, strictly taken from Amiga Forever) run just that program, without the overhead of Workbench and other possible applications launched at boot time. A quite good beginning for 68K support, but obviously not a ideal one since it opened a whole Janus-UAE session for every program, easily running out of host memory. The ADD_PROGRAM script became obsolete when Janus-UAE gained integration support, so we could run just a single session of the emulator and hide it to user eyes, showing just the portion of the screen used by Amiga programs.

ADD_PROGRAM, however, was not deleted from Icaros. It was just hidden removing its icon. It has been always there and, obviously, it continued to work if you just executed it. I was sure some day it would have been useful again and that day has come. Since we now have both AROS and AmigaOS available as possible guest operating systems, with many possible integration levels like fullscreen, windowed, with or without workbench/wanderer and so on, it just would have been nice to give users a way to run a single application like they wanted, without opening the screen, running workbench, going to the right path and so on. Just create a shortcut in AmiBridge menu et voilĂ , you're ready to work.

The new script will be called ADD_SHORTCUT and is a direct evolution of its parent one. It will handle running applications inside AROS 68K or, if your have integrated AmigaOS 3.X through Amiga Forever, inside AmigaOS. Let's see how it will work in next Icaros release:

1. First of all, it will appear in the usual menu with its own new icon:


2. Once run, you have to choose an Amiga M68K application. Let's choose Ignition...


3. The following question will appear only if you have integrated AmigaOS from Cloanto's Amiga Forever. Otherwise, it won't ask anything and it will default to AROS M68K.


4. Look at the menu: it's changed! Not only it has added Ignition to the options, but it has also taken its original icon for faster reference. 


5. Run it and the application will open, following settings for AmiBridge you've set using the usual AmiBridge script in /Prefs.


But what is the best part of shortcuts? They use a custom .uaerc configuration file instead of the default one (actually, it gets copied from the default one at the moment of shortcut creation), so you can change it whenever you want. Are you dealing with an application that needs a faster processor, a different screen handling, a better audio or joystick support, but you don't want to mess with the default configurations? Here's the solution! Just press Ctrl+Alt+J and modify the settings for this application only! 


Icaros Desktop 1.5.2 WIP 5 is now available for download. This version includes all most recent fix from Deadwood, the new ZUnZip program from Oliver Brunner, the latest releases of ZuneARC (already set to use ZUnZip) and ZuneView from Yannick. It fixes many annoying bug like the number 0 appearing in fields when entering texts into them, the multiplied host drawers in Janus-UAE and so on. This version introduces also the modular kernel recently introduced by AROS developers so you'll find a completely revised GRUB configuration (that means: distro must be reinstalled from scratch). GUI Choice now acatually allows switching default file manager and, as suggested by Magorium on AROS-EXEC, to run just the shell at startup. It also allow to disable AmiStart when switching to Magellan, to let drag'n'drop work correctly.


As like as the last time, I have to warn you. This version of the distribution is not based on mainstream AROS nightlies, but instead on a more advanced (in many areas) custom version by Deadwood, who's backporting from ABIv1 everything which won't hurt (so much) binary compatibility with current software. This means, in a nutshell, that this work-in-progress version of Icaros Desktop is formally NOT compatible with the mainstream one, and you should NOT mix its files with the ones on your hard drive, NOR try to update your current setup with this one. Why? Because 1) it won't work and 2) I won't help you fixing the mess, since you've been warned. Please dowload it and install on a spare computer, on a new virtual machine, and test it, test it, test it! This version of Icaros Desktop is a benchmark for me, for Deadwood, for BSzili and for everyone involved in the "next Icaros revolution" program which in a few words means: new AROS, new GUI, new Experience. We need to catch and fix bugs, compatibility issues, and everything which might bring problems to users. Remember, it's just a TEST, not something we consider suitable for your daily Icaros fun.

By downloading this, you AGREE you have read all above, and you'll also expected to help us. How? Simple!
> You can download Icaros Desktop 1.5.2 Experimental WIP here.

If you find a bug, please test it again on your regolar installation and, if you spot differences, don't forget to tell us. Where? Easy.
> You can report bugs and other issues in our little on line bug tracker here.

I guess I have to thank Oliver Brunner for a little, great favour he's doing to me and to Icaros Desktop (but I guess it may be beneficial also for other programs, projects and distro as well). He answered to a request of mine on Aros-Exec.org and made a modified version of unzip called ZUnZip: a zip archives expander which can show a Zune progress bar on the screen. Why was it so important to me? Because I really wanted to get rid of the 'frozen InstallAROS' window during expansion of files in the final part of Icaros installation. Even if users were warned both on the manual and by the script itself with a popup message, I felt this was something that had to change. ZUnZip may not be the 'final' answer, but it's a big step ahead, because it can be used also on other parts of the distribution. For instance, it can be used with ZuneARC instead of unzip: it will show the progress when unzipping your archives, and that's definitely good.

Above: ZUnZip working with ZuneARC to decompress a huge ZIP archive. Isn't it better than having no clues about job's progress?

Hello! I have updated some components in my build system recently, so I though it was time for another work-in-progress version of Icaros Desktop. This time I have made these changes to the distribution:

1. the DVD starts with Magellan instead of Wanderer. Before starting a holy war about this, please notice it is just a 'try me' temporary decision, born from the necessity of testing what happens when Magellan is started straight from a read-only optical media, instead of running only installed on the hard drive. One of the first results you'll see, is a couple of "AROS Live CD is a read only media" warnings during common operations and during installation onto the hard drive. Click OK and proceed.

2. Janus-UAE has been updated with a beta version 1.4. Also this component must not be considered stable, and while it should fix the "this path is not valid" issue when running 68K applications from the x86 side, it does not cure the duplicated drawers issue on host filesystem error already reported on AROS-EXEC.  But I wish you to test it as well to find any other regression.

3. the default behavior for Amibridge has changed. It now opens full screen with 68K wanderer enabled. Why? Because too many people got stuck with the still existing problem of right menus not working correctly once integration and mouse sync are turned on, so I prefered to choose this temporary solution, until the issue will be solved. Running 68K environment in its own full screen, though, should increase overall speed and emulation experience, since many people told me they prefer running 68K applications this way, instead of using the integration mode. Press lAmiga+Tab to switch from the emulation screen to the host AROS one and vice-versa.

4. vim, lunapaint, zuneview and Duke3D have been brought to their latest version. In the cases of vim and Duke3D, they should also fix compatibility issues introduced by the recent changes in AROS system. Deadwood also fixed the problem with MESA demos leaking memory, so also this issue should be gone now.

5. I've accepted some hints and suggestions from Magorium, you can now choose to not open any default GUI for Icaros at startup, but just the AROS shell. Once you'll enable Wanderer or Magellan again, "GUI Choice" will ask you wether to keep the shell or not. Some new environment variables have made their debuct in the env:Icaros directory to accomplish all this.

Please refer to this version as "wip4". To fix drag'n'drop of icons in Magellan, just close AmiStart.



As like as the last time, I have to warn you. This version of the distribution is not based on mainstream AROS nightlies, but instead on a more advanced (in many areas) custom version by Deadwood, who's backporting from ABIv1 everything which won't hurt (so much) binary compatibility with current software. This means, in a nutshell, that this work-in-progress version of Icaros Desktop is formally NOT compatible with the mainstream one, and you should NOT mix its files with the ones on your hard drive, NOR try to update your current setup with this one. Why? Because 1) it won't work and 2) I won't help you fixing the mess, since you've been warned. Please dowload it and install on a spare computer, on a new virtual machine, and test it, test it, test it! This version of Icaros Desktop is a benchmark for me, for Deadwood, for BSzili and for everyone involved in the "next Icaros revolution" program which in a few words means: new AROS, new GUI, new Experience. We need to catch and fix bugs, compatibility issues, and everything which might bring problems to users. Remember, it's just a TEST, not something we consider suitable for your daily Icaros fun.

By downloading this, you AGREE you have read all above, and you'll also expected to help us. How? Simple!
> You can download Icaros Desktop 1.5.2 Experimental WIP here.

If you find a bug, please test it again on your regolar installation and, if you spot differences, don't forget to tell us. Where? Easy.
> You can report bugs and other issues in our little on line bug tracker here.

One of the good news about Magellan being integrated in Icaros Desktop, is its great FTP module. It basically allows transfering files from/to a FTP server over the Internet or the local network and, even if FTP is perceived as a "thing of the past", its useability is all inside the client: if you use a damn good cosy FTP client, transfering files with this protocol becomes a really immediate thing. In a recent video I explained how you can download a .d64 image file from a remote server and easily run it through VICE, straight from Dopus 5 Magellan. This time I would like to point that this FTP thing has a nice side effect too, since every Icaros machine can be a FTP server as well, and our files can be easily transfered from a Icaros machine to another with a little configuration effort.

First of all, we need to know the 'server' IP address. Server is the Icaros machine with the file we are about to download on another Icaros machine, that we're going to call 'client'. To do that, move on the server machine and 1) run Prefs/Services to be sure "FTP file transfer" is enabled (if not, enable it and restart Icaros); 2) run a shell and enter this command:

ifconfig -a



Take note of the IP address for the network interface used by the local area network. For cabled devices, it usually is net0:. Now go on the client machine and run Magellan:

 

 Perform these actions: 1) click on FTP; 2) click on ADDRESS BOOK; 3) click on "New"

You can now add a new entry for your Icaros server machine:

 
1) Choose a name for your server, in order to spot it immediately in the address book. Enter the IP address you got before. 2) click on Custom Options:

 

1) go to Miscellaneous in the left menu; 2) Ensure "Passive Transfers" is NOT selected; 3) click on Use. We need to deactivate Passive Transfers because YAFS, the FTP server included in Icaros, only allows active transfers at the current stage. Now, we can finally connect to our new file source:


1) Look into the address book for the newly introduced server, be sure that name and IP address are right, and 2) click on Connect. A new lister with server's "MyWorkspace" contents will appear. You can now transfer files over the network choosing a destination among your local (client's) volumes.

We have explained these steps for Magellan, but they can be easily adapted to any FTP client on any platform of your choice. Just be sure your client allows Active Transfers as well.