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November 2016 Highlights

Author:Krzysztof Smiechowicz
Date:2016-12-29

November saw a fair amount of changes in AROS system. Neil Cafferkey provided further improvements to MUI and made 3D acceleration on the IntelGMA video driver work again. Krzysztof Smiechowicz fixed Windows-hosted AROS port, enabling Windows users to enjoy AROS again, and was making final changes to ABIv0 system refresh. Olivier Brunner fixed a memory trashing problem in AROS MUI List class and Miloslav Martinka made a small but usefull improvement to Wanderer's Info tool, which from now on shows the path at which the icon is located and allows opening that path in separate Wanderer window.

Paolo Besser, who is working on next version of Icaros, announced that it will support also hosted flavors of AROS which is a welcomed development by AROS community. It means Linux and Windows users will be able to enjoy Icaros without a need to install virtual machine.

Third party development also provided new, interesting software. Marcus Sacrow prepared versions of his EdiSyn and Maporium applications for AROS ARM platform, which is a very welcomed development as ARM platform has very few 3rd party applications at the moment. Yannick Erb provided a new version of MAME (Multiple Arcade Machines Emulator) which can be downloaded from AROS Archives.

October 2016 Highlights

Author:Krzysztof Smiechowicz
Date:2016-12-04

In October the AROS repository breached the 53,000 commits mark thanks to contributions from multiple developers. Neil Cafferkey continued his work on improving MUI as well as fixing the IntelGMA video driver. Miloslav Martinka contributed further Czech localization as well as a localized WiMP tool. Yannick Erb and Marcus Sackrow contributed fixes to AROS programs and we saw the introduction of a new AROS GUI theme. Lastly, the ARM Linux-hosted version of AROS has been fixed to compile again as part of the ABIv0 refresh by Krzysztof Smiechowicz.

After September's explosion of distributions, October was quiet on that front. Third party developers however continued their work. Yannick Erb released an updated version of the ZuneView tool and Joerg Renkert released a new version of his ModExplorer application for playing online and offline music modules. AROS archives also saw the upload of two interesting Zelda-type games, 'Time to Triumph' and 'Navi's Quest'.

September 2016 Highlights

Author:Krzysztof Smiechowicz
Date:2016-10-25

September was definitely a distro month. First, the AEROS distribution was refreshed by Pascal Papara and brought to version 4.2.1 on all supported platforms (Raspberry Pi 1/2/3 and Odroid XU3/XU4). The changes include integration of EmuLa, installation of the Chrome browser supporting Flash, SDL2 libraries, ScummVM 1.8 and the game 'Amiga Racer'.

Staying on the ARM platform, September also saw the first release of an AROS distribution targetted at the Orange Pi platform. The distribution, called PiAROS, uses the hosted version of AROS, similar to AEROS.

Lastly, Icaros Desktop, the x86 distribution by Paolo Besser, received an update and is now available in version 2.1.3. The new version brings updates to several applications, including Odyssey Web Browser, PortablE, SimpleMail and Mapparium.

In core AROS development we had two activities. While Neil Cafferkey continued making improvements to MUI, Miloslav Martinka added Czech localization to a number of applications as well as implementing localization in Appearance preferences.

August 2016 Highlights

Author:Krzysztof Smiechowicz
Date:2016-09-12

Opening this news summary is the announcement of a public, read-only access for AROS repository. So far such access was only provided via the AROS GIT-mirror but now it is also available on the main repository.

Also last month, a first full developer pack for AROS 68k has been released by Krzysztof Smiechowicz in cooperation with the Apollo/Vampire team. The dev-pack contains a ready-to-use native development environment for 68k as well as scripts that will download and build AROS 68k on a Linux host, delivering system and cross compiler.

In the AROS core there have been a few notable developments. Nick Andrews continued making fixes to AROS to allow compilation under GCC 6.1. Krzysztof Smiechowicz updated the OpenSSL library to version 1.0.1t and started porting the OpenSSH 7.3 package, releasing the first, alpha version. The work on the ssh client was triggered by the results of June's usage survey. Neil Cafferkey continued making fixes and extensions to MUI's List class and finally a number of programs received new or updated Czech localization thanks to Miloslav Martinka.

Outside of the core team, Pascal Papara continued releasing updates to his AROS distributions. In August AEROS 4.0.1 has been released with support for Raspberry Pi 1, 2 and 3, containing updated kernels and an update for the UAE4ARM emulator.

Closing this update, there have been two interesting third party developments in August. SimpleMail 0.42 with SSL support has been released and a new OpenGL-enabled port of the classic 'Elite 2: Frontier' has been made available by David Douglas.

July 2016 Highlights

Author:Krzysztof Smiechowicz
Date:2016-08-21

In July the AROS core received a number of small fixes and updates from various contributors, including Neil Cafferkey, Krzysztof Smiechowicz, Matthias Rustler and Stefan Haubenthal. Notably, this work included fixing the native GCC to correctly search for SDK paths.

Outside of core AROS developments, an interesting offer has been made by the Apollo Team . They offered free Vampire accelerator cards to developers interested in improving AROS 68k. More information can be found in this thread .

We've also seen a good portion of new applications being released for AROS. A number of games have been ported and are now available for download from the Archives . Next, the SimpleMail mail client, has been updated to version 0.41. Finally, a retro gaming center program called EMULA has been made public by its author, Fabio Falcucci. EMULA is free to use and includes additional features based on a subscription model.

Closing July's highlights, Pascal Papara released a new preview build of his AROS x86 distribution called AROS Broadway. More information can be found here .

June 2016 Highlights

Author:Krzysztof Smiechowicz
Date:2016-07-17

This month's highlights start with the results of the AROS 2016 usage survey. The survey was aimed at understanding the ways in which AROS is used and what is needed to make it more useful. In total 50 people took part and you can read the results of the survey in this thread . Thank you to all who participated!

June also saw the release of an update to Icaros Desktop, the leading x86 distribution by Paolo Besser. The update, presented as version 2.1.2, brings a refreshed 68K environment, new cloud service drivers and a few updated applications. Visit www.icarosdesktop.org/ to download the update.

As a final highlight, Krzysztof Smiechowicz began work to refresh the ABI_V0-compatible system files with the latest developments from the AROS trunk. The last refresh was done at the end of 2014, so it is a good time to bring the new functionalities to the AROS community. The refreshed version is expected to be available in Fall 2016.

May 2016 Highlights

Author:Krzysztof Smiechowicz
Date:2016-06-12

As the days finally got warmer in the Northern hemisphere, the activity of both users and developers of AROS reached quite low levels in May.

Krzysztof Smiechowicz made the necessary fixes to the source code to re-enable the x86_64 build of AROS, which was not available for over three months. Right now nightly build targets for all supported architectures are available.

In May the first version of a new, interesting application has been made available by Marcus Sacrow. Mapparium is an OpenStreetMap client working under AROS and MorphOS. Current functionality allows, for example, browsing the map and searching for locations.

Closing, a new survey has been launched in order to understand how AROS is used by people and how it can become even more useful. If you have not done so, please answer the survey questions in this thread

April 2016 Highlights

Author:Krzysztof Smiechowicz
Date:2016-05-03

The biggest news of April was the release of the long awaited new version of Odyssey Web Browser by Krzysztof Smiechowicz. Odyssey 1.25's release after one and a half years of development brings an updated WebKit engine, many stability and bug fixes, and finally the capability to play HTML5 videos in AROS. While Odyssey is a cross-AmigaNG browser, AROS currently has the most advanced version.

Nick Andrews continued his work started in March and added more patches to support AROS being compiled with GCC 6.1.0 as well as Clang/LLVM. In April Nick also initiated the work on supporting a 64-bit version of the ARM platform. We do not yet have a working build, but the first important steps are taken. Finally, Nick ported the ffmpeg library version 3.0.1 to AROS and updated the source code of the SMB file system. The latter allows compatibility with Windows 7 created shares.

The Icaros 2.1 AROS distribution, released in March, received a small update in April (version 2.1.1), bringing component fixes and the new version of Odyssey Web Browser. Olaf Schoenweiss also released an updated version of his Aros Vision distribution for AROS 68k. From version 3.1, AROS Vision adds the "RTG" suffix, because in April Olaf also released a new experimental distribution called Aros Vision PAL which is aimed at lower-spec machines.

March 2016 Highlights

Author:Krzysztof Smiechowicz
Date:2016-05-02

March saw tons of activity from all aspects of AROS. First and foremost Nick Andrews has been working on enabling compilation of AROS with GCC 6.0. This not only included the porting of the compiler itself, but also adjusting the source code to suit the new compiler and fixing warnings and bugs. While at it, Nick also worked on our build system, making it more flexible and capable of integrating a second compiler -- LLVM/Clang. While AROS cannot yet be compiled with the new compiler, its usage is already possible.

Continuing with the work of Nick, he applied many fixes to x86_64 version of AROS. The fixes were mainly the result of problems detected with the new version of GCC.

The third area that received improvements was 68k support in AROS. Georg Steger updated the AROS RTG driver, giving it better performance, stability and functionality. Toni Willen implemented faster hunk executable loading, solving a long-standing difference between hunk and ELF formats. Additionally, Jason McMullan improved the stability of the Amiga ATA driver under low memory conditions. All these improvements contribute to better AROS 68k, which is important in the light of the coming Vampire V2 accelerator card.

Wanderer, the AROS Workbench replacement, also received a new file search capability thanks to Matthias Rustler. This development is going to be really appreciated by Wanderer users.

A lot also happened in AROS distributions. Pascal Papara released a new versions of AEROS Premium for Odroid XU3 and XU4 as well as AEROS for RaspberryPi 3. Icaros Desktop, the leading distribution for x86 PC computers, was updated by Paolo Besser to version 2.1, bringing updates to software released in the last year.

Closing this update, looking to third party development, Marcus Sackrow released version 0.54 of his text editor EdiSyn. As well as standard editor features, EdiSyn supports syntax highlighting, which is important to developers working directly under AROS.

February 2016 Highlights

Author:Krzysztof Smiechowicz
Date:2016-03-13

Core AROS developments in February focused mostly on bug fixes. Matthias Rustler and Neil Cafferkey improved several Shell commands and Michal Schulz fixed a bug in the TLSF memory manager. We also saw a number of fixes for 64-bit support from Nick Andrews and Michal Schulz as well as enabling of 64-bit AROS to allocate memory over the 4GB barrier.

Lunapaint, a native paint program, has been added to the AROS Contrib repository, which should make fixing it for compatibilities with different platforms easier.

Third party developers brought a number of important updates in February. First Yannick Erb updated ZuneView, the image viewing program, to version 0.22. Pascal Papara released updates to AEROS for Raspberry Pi 1 and 2. AEROS is a distribution of AROS hosted on Linux. Finally, an interesting development from Norbert Kett has been made available, namely a Google Drive handler. This handler allows, in its basic version, read-only access to files located on Google Drive accounts. For a small fee of 10 Euros, a license can be obtained that enables write access, as well as guaranteeing access to future works from Norbert, which will include Dropbox and Google Cloud Print handlers.

January 2016 Highlights

Author:Krzysztof Smiechowicz
Date:2016-02-11

This month the developments were dominated by Nick Andrews who was working on animation.datatype and specialized animation classes. These components were missing for a long time in AROS and we are happy to see Nick take up this work. The work is additionally financed by a bounty hosted by Power2People.org. Nick already delivered the gif and mpeg classes as well as making substantial improvements to the anim class. MultiView was also extended along the way.

Following on the topic of bounties, two new bounties were opened. The first targets a new port of the Python programming language. The complete work is split into five stages: for now the first stage bounty is defined, which aims at porting the core of Python 2.7. The second new bounty will deliver overscan support to AROS 68k Amiga chipset video drivers. More details can be found on Power2People.

Further progress has been made on supporting the 68k platform, with Scalos, a Workbench replacement, now functioning correctly under AROS 68k. In more 68k news, Olaf Schoenweiss released a new milestone build of his AROS 68k distribution called "AROS Vision". The version is now 3.0 and brings a lot of important improvements.

Following up on third party developments, Frederik Wikstrom, who in November completed the FUSE bounty, delivered an updated version of the filesysbox.library and NTFS and exFAT drivers.

Closing the January highlights, AROS made it to AmigaFuture, the printed Amiga magazine. The January/February issue contains an interview with Krzysztof Smiechowicz, one of the core AROS developers.

December 2015 Highlights

Author:Krzysztof Smiechowicz
Date:2016-01-05

Happy New Year to Everyone!

In Decemeber, while everyone was taking time to prepare for celebration of Christmas, a number of small developments happened.

Neil Cafferkey implemented support for refreshing MUI windows when a requester is opened on top of them and used it in AROS preferences programs. Neil also improved handling of HAM images in the ilbm.datatype, fixing palette and transparency issues. Toni Wilen extended the AROS 68k startup code to make it compatible with undocumented AmigaOS behavior. Thanks to this change it is now possible to run for example Shrinkler compressed 68k binaries. Stefan Haubenthal updated a number of language and keymap files as well as updating the fd2pragma tool to version 2.195.

December also saw the opening of a new bounty, targeting an improvement to Workbook - the AROS 68k ROM-based "Workbench" replacement. More details can be found on Power2People.

Lastly, development was started to make Scalos, which is another "Workbench" replacement, work under AROS 68k.


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