Thursday, November 17, 2016

Native or hosted on Linux? Both!

I've been asked many times for a Linux-hosted version of Icaros Desktop but, for many motivations, I've always declined. First of all, I've always thought that one of the main goals of Icaros Desktop would have been motivating coders and users to use and improve the native flavours of AROS: why spending so many time and efforts to make AROS work on the bare metal, if anyone else would have hosted it on a more mainstream operating system? Flight of Icaros started almost ten years ago, in winter of 2007, and many, many incredible things happened in the meanwhile: piece after piece, Icaros Desktop (and AROS itself) became a fairly usable operating system, maybe with a old-style look, but with a incredibly powerful and highly customizable graphic interface (thanks to Magellan). AROS can now do almost everything on its own. So, it's time for Icaros Desktop to 'relax' a bit, and pay attention to all those people who would like a hosted version as well. Why you should run Icaros on Linux? Because it's blazing fast (in some cases, even faster than natively), it's reliable and, most of all, if you need the Icaros environment to test your own programs, without setting up a whole machine - either physical or virtual, nothing would be better. Really. So I've started following this thread on AROS-EXEC (many people there had been source of inspiration and great hints)  with more and more attention, until I could set up a hosted version in a truly Icaros way. Version 2.2 of Icaros Desktop will be hybrid, meaning that you will be able either to run its ISO files or CD/DVDs in native mode (as usual) OR, without downloading anything else, to install the distribution to Linux. Setup and configuration process will be handled by a bash script that runs from the installation media and, once files are correctly placed on the hard drive, Icaros will unpack its packages and create all necessary scripts. In a nutshell, all needed process to transform a native installation into a hosted one have been automatized. Stay tuned...

Icaros Desktop means attention to detail: have you spotted the nice volume icon already associated
to your Linux home directory?