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October 13, 2014 | September 28, 2014 | September 14, 2014 | previous

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Latest News

Warpstock 2014 will feature a presentation by Lewis Rosenthal, announcing Arca Noae, the new OS/2-focused company, describing its mission, and how it complements open source venues. There will also be a session by Paul Smedley, discussing the porting of software from the open-source world, including available resources and the challenges involved. The annual event will be held Friday, October 24th through Sunday, October 26th, in St. Louis, Missouri. Thanks to Andy Willis for the info.

Martin Iturbide continues on his quest to get unmaintained OS/2 programs to be released as open source; he has created over 1200 public repositories of OS/2 open source projects on GitHub, created a wiki index for them, and published an EDM/2 article discussing how to use Git on OS/2. He has gone through the Hobbes archives, extracting the available source code, and making it easily accessible. He welcomes assistance in uploading more source to github, and any other suggestions, and will gladly provide repository administration rights to anyone interested. From OS2World.

Lots of updates today, but not much in the way of big news... some highlights from relevant open source projects: SeaMonkey 2.30 and Firefox 33 will be released on tier one platforms this week. Gecko 31 is the current ESR branch, having replaced Gecko 24esr a few months ago. Qt version 5.3.2 is the current release, with version 5.4 due out later this month; since 5.x is not ABI compatible with Qt 4.x, it's more likely we will see a port of 4.8.x before we see anything for 5.x. LibreOffice 4.3.2 (and Apache OpenOffice 4.1.1) are available on "tier 1" platforms, with features from IBM's Lotus Symphony merged in. OpenJDK 8u20 is the current release, with development on OpenJDK 9 underway.

The bitwiseworks Firefox fork has released (9/26/2014) a new beta, based on Gecko 24.8.1esr. Compared to the previous 24esr beta, the spellchecker has been fixed; however, sound support is broken, while the IPC plugin support is still buggy and some users report having to disable it completely. It is unlikely there will be any further 24esr security updates, since Mozilla switched over to 31esr several weeks ago. You can donate to bitwise projects by buying sponsor units via their online shop. From VOICE News.

Work has begun on updating the IcedTea-Web Java Browser Plugin to version 1.5.1; the previous version never really worked properly, so here's hoping that major progress will be made as part of this update.

The Warpstock website has updated calendar, presenters, and sessions information for the 2014 event, which will be held in St. Louis, Missouri October 24 - 26. Thanks to Andy Willis for the info.

Peter Flass scanned some old OS/2 promotional material, including promoting gaming on OS/2, and WordPerfect 5.2. I got a kick out of seeing these nicely done pre-"Warp4 nuns" ads. From VOICE News.

Warpstock 2014 will feature a presentation by Lars Edrmann regarding USB stack development, including his new work on USBMSD. He will accept hardware donations of currently incompatible USB mass storage devices, so that he can use them in his efforts to improve the drivers. There will also be two presentations by Jan van Wijk: an overview of the functionality in the DFSee disk analysis and recovery tool; an overview of disk partitioning, including OS/2 LVM and GPT style, and a summary of the on-disk structures of several file systems. The annual event will be held Friday, October 24th through Sunday, October 26th, in St. Louis, Missouri. Thanks to Lewis Rosenthal and Andy Willis for the info.

After Tomas Hajny reported that the OpenSSL project was planning to drop OS/2 support after version 1.0.2, Lewis Rosenthal chimed in on the mailing list expressing interest on behalf of our platform. Apparently that was enough to keep it supported for now, but it will certainly help tremendously if the OS/2 ports submitted patches upstream.

Elmar Stellnberger reports that Mark Harvey's 20-year-old MultiUser program for giving different users different desktops continues to work well, and can be used in conjunction with the Security/2 sses package from Nickk. In addition to Hobbes, the software is available from Elmar's site, which also offers collections of icons and fonts.

Martin Iturbide continues on his quest to get unmaintained OS/2 programs to be released as open source; both HTML Wizard and Styler/2 are available under open source licenses now.

Bitwise has released (8/27/2014) an update for the OS/2 port of OpenOffice 4.1.1 RC3, which enables the spellchecker and a few other modules. Bitwise took over OpenOffice development from Mensys earlier this year; the primarily developer on the project remains the same. Mensys discontinued their OpenOffice subscriptions some time ago, so this should not affect anyone who previously paid for it; Bitwise allows you to purchase the software in their online shop, as a means of donating to the ongoing development. At least for this early release, there is no installer available, and there are some dependencies you may need to resolve; check this OS2World forum thread for helpful hints if you have trouble. Previously planned features included support for high memory and Java; it's unclear if those goals have been fully achieved. Bug reports can be filed in the OpenOffice Bugzilla, and presumably the OS/2 source code continues to be available in the Subversion repository. It's unclear if the WPS integration package previously available from Mensys will continue to get updates; it extends the WPS data file class to recognize OpenOffice.org document files, has integrated support for WPS-Wizard hint and folder info area, and provides Rexx hooks for reading document properties. From VOICE News.

The QSINIT loader is a replacement for OS2LDR; it allows 3.5GB of RAM to be used on certain systems where OS2LDR prevents using more than 512MB due to "memory holes". It also allows using memory above 4GB as a RAM disk, which otherwise is useless on a 32-bit operating system that does not support PAE (such as OS/2). It is now fully compatible with the official ACPI drivers, and has lots of other features, including PXE support, VESA video support, disk editor, reading, writing and formatting drives in FAT32 or FAT16, general partition managing capabilities, including GPT partition support, LVM support, general boot manager features, and more. The source code is also available. From OS2World.

Bitwise has issued a newsletter outlining their recent and current projects. Their future plans include updating Java to the latest OpenJDK, and porting Qt5, which will include a newer QtWebkit. You can buy sponsor units from their online shop if you wish to contribute funds to their projects. From VOICE News.

Bitwise has announced they are now working on porting Eclipse SWT to OS/2, building on top of OpenJDK and Odin. If you check out the github commits, you'll see that the primary contributor is Ben Rietbroek aka "rousseaux", which seems to imply that the Bitwise team is growing in size - certainly a positive sign. The impetus for working on SWT is driven by developer desire for good GUI tools for source code control, such as SmartSVN and SmartGit, which require SWT support in recent versions.

Lewis Rosenthal announced that Arca Noae, LLC was chartered in Delaware at the end of July; this new company plans to be the driving force behind further development and maintenance of the OS/2 platform for some time to come. An official website should be coming soon; planned announcements include new applications and updates, and new device driver developments. An announcement regarding Warpstock Europe is also expected. From VOICE News.

Dave Hart from PlanetECS reports there are a few more PHP applications that work well on OS/2 with the ports of Apache, MySQL, and PHP, including: PHP Dev Shell, a plugin based code management PHP framework; and WebIssues, an issue tracking and team collaboration system, which uses a PHP server, and a Qt4 client that has been ported to OS/2.

The second annual OS/2 User Meeting in Cologne, Germany will be held at the end of November, and there is an open call for presenters. There are a few pictures from last year's event, and there is a lengthy report describing all that happened.

Warpstock Corporation is finally a recognized 501(c)(3) organization, and all contributions to Warpstock are now fully tax-deductible to the fullest extent allowed by each donor. This recognition is retroactive to May 15, 2010. Thanks to Lewis Rosenthal for the info.

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WPA Supplicant version 2.3 has been ported (10/12/2014) to OS/2. This is a backend component for controlling the wireless networking connection. An older version of this program is included with XWLan. The latest build is not officially posted yet, pending testing.

Paul Smedley has made available (10/11/2014) some test builds of CUPS version 2.0.0 and cups-filters version 1.0.61. Also available are CUPS version 1.4.8 (12/21/2012), as well as Gutenprint 5.2.9 (10/28/2012), HP-LIP version 3.12.10a (10/28/2012), Splix version 2.0.0 (4/4/2010), Foomatic version 4.05 (9/26/2010), and foo2qpdl (6/28/2010). Also available (4/10/2009) is a CUPS port driver, which allows interfacing the standard OS/2 printing subsystem with CUPS. CUPS is the Common Unix Printing System; the goal is to improve the printing support in eComStation. You can see what printers are potentially supported; those mentioned as working with CUPS or Gutenprint should work. There is a newsgroup dedicated to discussion and feedback, as well as a HowTo.

Ghostscript version 9.15 has been ported (10/11/2014) to OS/2. This is an interpreter for the PostScript language, compatible with GSView.

Stunnel version 5.05 has been ported (10/11/2014) to OS/2. This is a program that allows you to encrypt arbitrary TCP connections inside SSL (Secure Sockets Layer); you can secure non-SSL aware daemons and protocols (like POP, IMAP, LDAP, etc).

PHPMyAdmin version 4.2.10 has been released (10/11/2014). This is a set of PHP scripts to administer MySQL over the web.

Arachnophilia version 5.5 build 2856 has been released (10/11/2014). This is a web page editor and development tool, which requires Java 1.5 or higher.

Qpdfview version 0.4.12 has been ported (10/10/2014) to OS/2. This Qt4 app is a tabbed PDF viewer using the poppler library (same as Lucide).

Qupzilla version 1.8.2 has been ported (10/9/2014) to OS/2. This is a Webkit-based browser, which uses the Qt4 libraries.

SMplayer version 14.9.0 has been ported (10/8/2014) to OS/2. This is a GUI frontend for MPlayer, based on the Qt4 graphics toolkit. It appears to have been uploaded with the wrong filename. Also available is SMTube version 2.1, which is a GUI front-end for passing YouTube videos to SMPlayer (or another video player).

Paul Smedley has released (10/7/2014) an OS/2 port of Apache version 2.2.29. Apache is the premiere web server of the Internet. From VOICE News.

Paul Smedley has released (10/6/2014) OS/2 builds of PHP 5.6.1, PHP 5.5.17, PHP 5.4.33, and PHP 5.3.29; modules supported include bz2, curl, dbase, exif, filepro, gd, gettext, mbstring, mysql, mysqli, openssl, pdo_mysql, pdo_sqlite, pgsql, and sqlite. It features a module for Apache 2.2, as well as CGI and CLI versions. For more info on PHP, see the PHP web site. From VOICE News.

Paul Smedley has released (10/6/2014) a port of GCC version 4.9.1. This compiler allows many modern projects to be compiled for OS/2. Also available are ports of 4.8.3, 4.7.4, 4.5.4 and 4.4.6, as well as even older GCC versions 4.3.x, 4.0.4, and 3.4.6. From VOICE News.

CMake version 3.0.2 has been ported (10/6/2014) to OS/2. This is a cross-platform, open-source build system. From VOICE News.

Paul Smedley has ported (10/6/2014) GNU Binutils version 2.24 to OS/2. These are tools for compiling and linking programs, and most notably includes 'ld' (not functional on OS/2 yet), and 'as', the GNU assembler. From VOICE News.

Paul Smedley has released (10/6/2014, but built 8/15) an OS/2 port of Tor version Tor protects your privacy and anonymity by bouncing your communications around a distributed network of relays run by volunteers all around the world. From VOICE News.

dos2unix and unix2dos version 7.1 have been released (10/6/2014). These command line tools convert plain text files from/to DOS and UNIX formats.

Stendhal version 1.15 has been released (10/5/2014). This is a multi-player online adventure game / MMORPG, which requires Java 1.5 or later.

ddrescue version 1.19 has been ported (10/4/2014) to OS/2. This is a data recovery tool, which tries to work around read errors.

Iron Spring PL/I beta version 0.9.5 has been released (10/4/2014). This is a compiler for the PL/I programming language, although it is currently missing some features.

Nice-OS/2 Enhancer version 5.6.7 has been released (10/3/2014). This application adds new features to the OS/2 PM interface: extended scrolling, window skinning, keyboard/mouse actions, window positioning, logon scripts, priority management, window list cleaning, text-mode window additions, SSH console control, FireFox & Wiki keys, various patches for OS/2 and Workplace Shell.

PMView, the indispensable graphics viewer, has been updated (10/2/2014) to version 3.76. Version 3.x has several new features, including EXIF support, scripted batch conversions, lossless JPEG rotation, and flyover image info; see the full list of what's new for more info. Registered users can get their updates by following the download instructions received with their original purchase.

Logical Config.Sys Sort version 0.4.8 has been released (10/2/2014). This sorts the CONFIG.SYS file into logical sections.

GeoGebra version 5.0.16 has been released. This is software for learning and teaching math, from elementary school to university level; it requires Java 1.5 or higher.

SDL version 1.2.15 OS/2 port has been updated (9/30/2014). Simple DirectMedia Layer is a cross-platform development library designed to provide low level access to audio, keyboard, mouse, joystick, and graphics hardware; it is used by video playback software, emulators, and popular games. This new OS/2 port features updated VMAN, DIVE, and DART support.

NDPDAV version 1.2.0 has been released (9/29/2014). This is a WebDav client for NetDrive, which allows you to connect to Apache mod_dav WebDAV resources as regular directories on a NetDrive virtual volume. WebDAV is a set of extensions to the HTTP protocol which allows users to collaboratively edit and manage files on remote web servers.

PrefBar version 6.5 has been released (9/28/2014). It allows you to configure several Mozilla settings on the fly, and incorporates the features of UABar.

RSSGuard version has been ported (9/28/2014) to OS/2. This Qt4 app is a RSS and ATOM feed reader.

Automake version 1.14.1, Autoconf version 2.69, and libtool version 2.4.2 have all been ported (9/28/2014) to OS/2. These are essential tools for developing and/or porting many open source programs.

Regina REXX version 3.8.2 has been released (6/29/2014). This is an implementation of the ANSI Standard REXX Programming Language. From OS2World.

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