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Home arrow Amiga arrow Amiga OS4: 20 years after the first amiga OS
Amiga OS4: 20 years after the first amiga OS PDF Print E-mail

Amiga has been defined as the device that has made the home computer history, the long-lived system ever or the immortal phoenix everything arising again from its ashes. What is eternal is certainly its soul and its philosophy and the passion of that users all over the world that still feel (or someone miss) untouched its unique efficiency and simplicity.

Amiga OS4 is a good example of all that. Completely rewritten in PowerPC code it merges the revolutionary original Amiga OS soul and typical new OS generation characteristics. Someone says 100 words are not enough to describe the feeling received from its use; only who has tried AmigaOS once in its life can imagine a bit.

ImageAmigaOS4 runs on the modern PowerPC CPU (Blizzard/Cyberstorm accelerator boards, AmigaOne G3/G4 systems or new hardware coming soon) and not anymore on the old Motorola 680x0 processors.
This solution however allows old programs to still run on modern system (someone of these have leave a track in the home computer history) with a different level emulation (the fastest and efficient one has a JIT – just in time compilation core).
PowerPC CPU guarantees twice as the performance of a normal Intel or Amd processor with the same clock speed (Mhz) and have a less consume level with a gain in dissipation, energy and cooling need level. A lot of people talk about ecologic computer this last period (most of the times just following the fashion or the eco), interesting to know that solution like these are already available since year on alternative systems.

ImageThe AmigaOS lightness and efficiency is still today, untouched from the origins, one of its strongpoint. Thanks to modern technologies moreover this features has increased: AmigaOS4 boot speed is really impressive, few seconds for a warm reboot.
Untouched and increased is also the multiple screen characteristic, symbol of Amiga computers since ever. Each program can in fact open an independent and separate screen with own resolution, depth and so on. This concept is far more developed than multiple desktop model: you can in fact easily switch between screens, drag and drop objects, overlap and scroll screens (allowing windows management with a unimaginable freedom hard to compare with other systems).

ImageAnother remarkable characteristic you can feel at the first sensation is definitely the speed and the responsiveness. The kernel has been developed in fact to obtain the best performance and resource management with a extremely fast Inter-Process Communications and context switching (less than 1 microsecond on a 600MHz CPU). Pre-emptive multitasking allows moreover to assure core tasks a better priority with a fair share of processing time.
Simple things like opening a new window can sometimes take a surprising amount of time on most Operating Systems (not because the hardware can't do them quickly, but because high latency and poor task scheduling leave them waiting on other tasks). Forget your main application not responding to your feedback just because of high cpu demanding tasks running, the “real time” world and feeling get again a meaning (to many times forgot on other systems).

ImageSystem file management and layout is really simple and direct. A medium installation is just some dozen of megabytes and everything is stored with a basic but performing logic.
Don’t feel lost anymore among hundred of files (most of them with no idea about their location or purpose; you can easily de-install an application just deleting its directory or repair it replacing the missing file with one click. The small medium file size and the efficient distribution on the system thank to AmigaOS simple and powerful layout, reduce load, backup and maintenance times.
Ram Disk (the silicon chip on the left side of your desktop) simulates finally a store device the same way as an hard disk. It is based however on the system memory and its weight is related only to the files present time to time. If you want just to try a program or you don’t want to install anything on your system just copy everything to ram disk (with maximum some assigns for the system to find any core files) and you can run it without touching your hard disk.

ImageA scripting language simple and effective able to interface programs and functions (even if not originally provided from this or that software); configure any side of your system to screen graphic layout (with easily and infinite skin creation); a command line interface flexible and complete with the same configuration capabilities; a data management system program independent (datatype system); powerful and direct store device management (able to move whenever you want from physic device level to virtual partitions); complete and simple system localization…
You can find a lot in AmigaOS, everything with really efficient and simple.
Nothing more to say about, you have only to try it now. Will be hard to understand how you have done before without it.


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Last Updated ( sabato, 23 agosto 2008 )
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