Sunday, March 30, 2008

Announcing VmwAROS LIVE!

Lucky people partecipating to AROS developers' mailing list already knew I was secretely aiming to transform VmwAROS into a complete, installable live distribution. Which means the ability to run VmwAROS directly on top of your real hardware, taking all the advantages of it when supported. Last days' spare time has been used figuring how to convert all the work I've done before into a more flexible, adaptable one: to customize VmwAROS, I had to do lots of scripting which involves installing programs into proper directories, adding their ASSIGNs, modifying their configuration files to match VmwAROS file organization. A long work which grow up while I was doing it, and in the meanwhile I learnt lots of little trick that made it more and more elegant.

Quake being installed by InstallAROS
InstallAROS placing Quake's PAK files on the hard drive.

Work that, luckily, I had not to place in the dustbin. I only had to take some smarter decisions and change paths here and there. Today I finally managed to have something working, and it is encouraging: I can't boot yet straight from CD, however VmwAROS Live! is pretty functional and installs correctly on the hard drive. Most of the programs run fine from CD, too.

As you can notice in the screenshot above, there are not hard drives on this test machine, however this alpha version of VmwAROS LIVE! can run Webkit, Quake and Lunapaint. Click to enlarge.

Next days' bugfixing session will correct wrong behavior of programs normally installed on DH0: (such as SimpleMail and Murks!), and when everything will be in a good shape, I will add the bootloader to the CD-ROM.