Thursday, January 3, 2013

Icaros Desktop 1.5 has been released

As you may have already noticed, Icaros Desktop 1.5 is ready for download. Please use the "Download" link in the new "Distribution" box from the right column, where you can find also a comparative chart between the three versions we released this time. There is, in fact, a secondary version of the Live! distribution targeted to ARES ONE computers and others that may meet compatibility issues with the new Kernel included in the "regular" Icaros Desktop Live! and Light flavours. Please notice the new Legacy Kernel Edition (LKE) will be only partially supported and won't get any new kernel in the future, since it uses the last one from the old ABIv0 branch. The new kernel, instead, is the one you can find in current nightly builds, and that's been recently backported from ABIv1 by Deadwood. This new kernel brings back to ABIv0 more than 18 months of AROS development which has never been included in Icaros Desktop before, and fixes many little and big issues we had in the past (one of them being the nasty graphic corruption when scrolling window contents in Wanderer's detailed view). You can also notice some differences when booting, since we now use Grub2 v2.0 for the regular distribution (while we kept v1.99 for the LKE edition). So, what version should you download? Obviously, the regular one. But, if you can't boot it or have too much problems with that, the LKE. If you don't want to waste your time, just try the Light version and, if it doesn't work for you, download the LKE distribution instead.

Icaros Desktop 1.5 provides a full emulation layer for classic Amiga software, running both games from their ADF files and Workbench applications without the need for original Amiga KickStart and AmigaOS: we use AROS 68K replacement ROM and operating system, running on the new Janus-UAE v1.3 emulator, both in coherency mode or in a separate screen. Under AROS 68K you don't need to manually set the guest resolution anymore (it will automatically adapt to host's one at startup), nor you'll have to choose for locale, input and Zune preferences anymore: our AmiBridge subsystem will keep them in sync for you. Icaros Desktop also provides some famous classic programs like TVPaint, Real3D, AmiBlitz and others. But if the compatibility degree assured by AROS 68K is not enough, you can always integrate Cloanto's Amiga Forever into Icaros Desktop and take advantage of AmigaOS 3.X and original Amiga ROMs.

Weren't you bored of Icaros Desktop 1.4 installation times? We were. So we decided to change the way Icaros installs itself on your hard drive, allowing you to choose what programs to install and which not. If you don't need games, Icaros won't install the anymore, neither during its installation, nor when updating the system through LiveUpdater. Our area-based macro-packages include all programs of the same kind, and you can activate or disable them with the new "Custom" installation option. All mandatory files and programs have been moved out from the Extras drawer, and have been included both in the Live! and Light distributions. Moreover, you'll find a little script in the root of the media which will help you create installation USB pendrives.
- System files from Dec 25th, 2012
- kernel from Jan 1st, 2013 with selectable boot device
- files layout completely overhauled
  + most important programs are now placed in tools and utilities drawers
  + other applications and games are now zipped into archives
  + system-functionality software is now placed in SYS:system
- faster installation procedure, with area-based macro-packages system
- new ABIv0 kernel, backported from ABIv1 by Krzysztof Smiechowicz
- new GRUB2 v2.0 with better compatibility
- improved AmiBrige, providing a reliable M68K environment for classic Amiga™ software
  + updated Janus-UAE to version 1.3
  + fixed tearing issue with some AROS M68K screenmodes
  + AROS M68K configured to run classic Workbench M68K applications
  + No need to manually set guest M68K screen resolution anymore
  + presets for full-screen, integration and partial integration
  + updated AROS KickStart replacement to run games from ADF files
  + Added AmiBridge preferences tool in Prefs to customize M68K environment
  + Improved environment for AmigaOS™ 3.X, once integrated from Amiga Forever
  + no more ugly "Z" icon for Janus-UAE when iconified
  + latest Amiga Forever releases finally supported by setup script
- added some classic M68K applications under kind permission
  + Real3D (last release for Amiga platform)
  + TVPaint (last release for Amiga platform)
- updated and improved user manual with clickable table of contents
- added a script to create USB installation pendrives
- new "Pixblue" default decoration theme by Drea
- updated XAMOS, AMOS interpreter for AROS, to latest release
- changed default applications in AmiStart to reflect new entries
- added HarmonyPlayer and uade to Multimedia
- added Candy Crisis to games
- added Cave Story to games
- added Neverball, Neverputt and Hurrican to Games-Gallium3D
- added many development libraries
  + libmng
  + libtiff
  + libjasper
  + physfs
  + libpng
  + libexif
  + ZLib
  + popt
  + ...and others!
- updated pforth, FlexCat and irrxml in development tools
- updated several custom Zune classes to latest version
- updated YAM to version 2.8
- removed useless 'USE' button from Theme preference
- added several CLI utilities for graphics, sound and file manipulation
- almost all CLI commands and programs are now located in C drawer.
- updated OpenURL to latest release
- updated DiskImage device to latest release
- updated Annotate to latest release
- updated fpc to latest release
- updated LiveUpdater
- fixed the "memory=debug" problem during boot
- fixed a bug which corrupted graphics when scrolling detail-view windows
- added Mupen64 to emulators
- added a new video from Josh Woodward
- fixed OWB's YouTube script