Warpstock 2015

Warpstock 2015 Wichita

Warpstock 2015 Wichita

This year conference for OS/2 and eComStation users Warpstock 2015 was held in Wichita, Kansas. The announcements made this year were kind of dry because nothing was really new and available but on the list for future updates or releases only. One Announcement of Arca Noae however will have a big impact on the future of OS/2: there will be new OS/2 distribution code name “Blue Lion” with the target schedule 3rd quarter of 2016. More about this in the session overview below.

 
“Arca Noae News” by Lewis Rosenthal
Among the talk about driver updates there was the announcement of a new OS/2 Distribution code name “Blue Lion”. Arca Noae is licensing the Merlin Convenience Pack 2 (MCP2) with the SMP kernel from IBM. This means they have an similar agreement like XEU has for eComStation. As there have been no news about future releases of eComStation it was somewhat logical that Arca Noae plan might be an agreement with XEU or with IBM to create a new update of the OS/2 client. This agreement does not contain defect support or source code access from IBM. Arca Noae has the limited ability for fixes and changes of IBM code. This new distribution will have the following list of features:

  • based on IBM’s MCP2
  • IBM SMP kernel with Arca Noae patches
  • New pre-boot menu
  • New installer
  • latest Arca Noae drivers
  • updated SNAP graphics driver
  • licensed IBM components

They also plan to make the install working from a USB thumb drive and a network based install. The release will also have a driver subscription for a limited time.

 
“SNAP Graphics Driver” by Steven Levine
After the license agreement with Alt Richmond there is still no new driver ready. The reason is the big and complex code base. Currently the subversion repository is under construction, when this is ready the next step will be compiling of the current source and then the work on new drivers. There are plans accelerated drivers for selected currently popular video chipsets, just not yet clear what is on the list and if users can vote what they like to have. A support of current processor graphics from Intel and AMD is a must have. The Intel HD driver is already on the way for a release in 2016. One interesting piece of code was seen on the sources: a planed SNAP Audio driver that follows the platform independent driver architecture if SNAP. The first changes will be features takes from the code of the panorama video driver (MTTR/PAT and VESA mode improvements). A list of planed features:

  • SMP support
  • HDMI connector support
  • more dual monitor support
  • better MTRR/PAT
  • better VESA performance

What was missing is a note of the support for DP (DisplayPort) which is a requirement for current hardware.

 
Device Drivers: recent progress and future plans by David Azarewicz
David gave an overview about current and future driver developments. There were some updates to most of maintained the driver sets but not uniaud. This audio driver needs are core update since two years to work on newer hardware. A new multimac driver for Intel wireless network adapter is in development but not yet working. The work was concentrated on updates to the BCL32 system library to make new driver for different hardware possible that are currently not supported. Now a short overview about the driver changes:

  • ACPI: smp safe hires timer, acpica updates
  • ACPI future:acpica updates, support for system initialization on UEFI based systems
  • JFS: fix for a log redo bug that can lead to a corrupted volume
  • USB 11.x: stable branch with latest updates, usbcalls lib that covers all previous version
  • USB future: USB 3.0 host controller driver
  • uniaud future:repository reorganizing, drop in new alsa code, fix remain problems on the OS/2 interface code
  •  
    The 2nd part will cover Kerberos support for the SAMBA client and more..

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