Visopsys 0.91 Released

General discussion about Visopsys.
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andymc
Posts: 581
Joined: Tue Nov 16, 2010 7:20 pm

Visopsys 0.91 Released

Post by andymc »

Available on the download page.

https://visopsys.org/download/

From the change log (https://visopsys.org/download/change-log/):
Overview: This maintenance release fixes RAM disk boot support, adds sparse file support to the EXT filesystem driver, and updates various build-related things.
  • Added support for sparse files to the EXT filesystem driver.
  • Fixed some problems with the RAM disk boot feature, first introduced in version 0.85.
  • Added a cross-compiling toolchain to the build system, to reduce the fragility of relying on the host system’s compiler and associated programs, and fixed a number of warnings and errors that emerged from that.
  • Updated the administration.conf files for German, Spanish, Russian, and Turkish.
  • Updated sources and fixed some warnings and errors, when building with GCC versions 7 through 10.
  • Added a kernel linker script, so that we have finer control over the layout of the kernel binary.
  • Isolated architecture-dependent code and parameterized the build system with the architecture. For now, still just 32-bit x86.
  • Renamed the floppy image file to include the word ‘floppy’.
  • Factored some code in the BIOS OS loader and fixed some rounding errors.
  • Added byte offsets to various structures described in <sys/elf.h>.
  • Removed the unused kernel function kernelSysTimerWaitTicks().
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ronaldlees
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Re: Visopsys 0.91 Released

Post by ronaldlees »

Hi Andy,
Hope you are well in these times. Thanks for the update v.91 - will have to see if it'll compile for me OK.
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andymc
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Joined: Tue Nov 16, 2010 7:20 pm

Re: Visopsys 0.91 Released

Post by andymc »

Thanks Ron,

I hope you and yours have been keeping well.

There's a new way to compile: first building a cross-compiling toolchain (binutils and gcc) from sources, as a kind of one-time operation. It's described in the updated BUILDING.txt.

The vagaries of relying on whatever compiler configuration is installed on a build machine became too much, when I upgraded my Mint workstation and couldn't build a working system. I did discover the cause in the end, and could probably have fixed it with a compile flag, but long-term I think this is a good step.

Andy
Uityyy
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Joined: Mon Jan 23, 2017 6:57 am

Re: Visopsys 0.91 Released

Post by Uityyy »

Real-hardware usage report:

I downloaded the 0.91 ISO and attempted to boot it on three different machines:
- A Celeron M laptop with an IDE hard disk and a flaky DVD drive.
- A desktop with both IDE and SATA drives
- A Toshiba laptop from 2009.

On all three machines Visopsys failed to figure out how to read its own CD in a variety of different ways. I've had impressively bad luck getting Visopsys to talk to real disk drives across multiple computers and multiple Visopsys releases. Before I delve into the specific failure states of specific machines, do you have any advice on what hardware is known to *not* have problems booting Visopsys?
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andymc
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Re: Visopsys 0.91 Released

Post by andymc »

Hello Uityyy

Thanks for the report

It's been quite a while since I used Visopsys to boot a physical CD/DVD. I don't think I even have an IDE one anymore.

I do remember this being a particular struggle with IDE. At one point I took a week off work, took my stack of old laptops, and tried to get the IDE driver working with all of them. The CD-ROM drives were particularly troublesome. So much so that I probably would have needed to start supporting different IDE drivers with different systems -- such were the incompatibilities.

I thought my SATA driver was quite a lot more reliable though. It didn't get a lot of testing on many different physical systems however, since I didn't have many at my disposal.

Unfortunately I don't maintain a list of known working systems and non-. It would be pretty out of date by now, I'm sure. That stack of old (IDE) laptops eventually went to the rubbish tip for recycling :-)

I do wonder how many people might actually burn a Visopsys ISO to a disc nowadays. I haven't had a report like this for quite some time. I would have thought that bootable USB sticks (or even USB CD/DVD -- I think I got that working?) would be much more prevalent today. Probably the USB options will be better supported in Visopsys.
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