Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish

1998’s most intriguing OS, 15 years later: Hands-on with Haiku alpha 4

Filed under
OS

An OS of yore
Revived and open source freed
Waiting to be used

Haiku is not only a Japanese short poem with a defined structure—it's also the name of an open-source recreation of BeOS, an alternative operating system originally developed in the mid-1990s.

BeOS reached its pinnacle of success in 2000 when the R5 version was released as a free download. However, few people upgraded to the $99 “Professional” version, and a last-ditch attempt to save the company by bundling BeOS with the Sony eVilla Internet Appliance failed to bring in the necessary cash.

With the legal status of the BeOS source code in limbo, it was up to an open-source group of hackers to try to recently keep the BeOS dream alive. Their project was originally named OpenBeOS, but trademark issues forced a name change. Haiku was chosen as a callback to the old error messages in BeOS’s built-in Web browser, which were delivered (appropriately) in haiku form. Today, the Haiku group aims not only to rebuild that operating system, but to also run application binaries originally designed for BeOS. With the team recently releasing version R1/Alpha 4.1, Ars decided to take the OS for a test drive.

full story




More in Tux Machines

Developing Linux Is Essential To Intel's Success

The dominant position of Intel in the server processor market is likely helped by the company's consistent strong support for Linux. Based on the W3Techs chart below, Linux is almost as popular as Windows-based servers are. Read more

Firefox OS heading for Africa — and the U.S. too

Orange announced a $40 “Klif” Firefox OS phone for Africa, and Mozilla says it’s working with Verizon Wireless and others on Firefox OS feature phones. There’s still no evidence that Mozilla’s HTML-focused Firefox OS has made much of a dent in the world smartphone market, where it has been focused on low-end devices sold primarily to emerging markets. Yet, Firefox OS still leads the way among upstart, Linux-based mobile operating systems, and will soon be available in more than 40 markets, this year, on a total of 17 smartphones, according to its latest stats. Meanwhile, the very first Tizen (Samsung Z1) and Ubuntu (BQ Aquaris E4.5) phones have only just shipped, and Jolla’s Sailfish OS based Jolla phones are still mostly limited to Europe. Read more

Why large companies use open source ERP

The main reason larger companies use open source Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems is because they are cheaper and easier to customize. Read more