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Old 13 November 2002, 00:03   #9
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Join Date: Sep 2001
Location: Germany
Posts: 624

So I have some questions: Where get Apple their chipsets from ? Have they designed and produce their own chipsets ?
Actually I'm not even sure what northbridges Apple uses. But if their Northbridges are no a custom design, they're probably of the "works with both x86 and PPC" kind and their manufacturer won't even consider production runs below 500.000. You get into real trouble nowadays if you are trying to produce hardware in limited quantities.

And a few years ago there were apple clones available, where do they come from and are this manufactors all gone ?
"A few years ago" means "heavily outdated". There are PPC motherboards out there (even IBM has a few designs available), but lack an AGP slot, only have ATA-33 etc... And none of them has USB.

And maybe wouldn't it be possible to buy mainboards from apple for use in the AmigaOne,
I doubt that. And even if Apple would do this, the resulting computers would be damn expensive.

they have already newer hardware available
"Newer"? Don't think so. I'm no Apple expert, but I don't think their motherboards do any fancy stuff the A1 doesn't...

and nice notebooks.
Well, that's true. And everybody within the OS4 team is quite aware of that fact. Let's wait and see, miracles happen (sometimes)...


Just a question, I thought eyetech have been working on the Amiga 1 for at least 3 years, they even showed up some funky motherboard some years ago. You mean they droped this development when Escena dropped out and just went for the PPC board that was out there?
Eyetech don't have any hardware engineers. They are a "solution provider" (not sure if this is the correct english term). If they need to have something designed, they simply contract external developers.

About four years ago, Escena (who previously did contract work for various Amiga companies including Villagetronic (IIRC) and DCE) announced the "Brainstormer": A G3/G4 CPu card for A3000/4000 computers that would fit into the Zorro3 slot of these machines (don't ask - the concept made somewhat sense, actually). However, the brainstormer was heavily delayed (while all other announced G3/G4 cards were cancelled or the companies behind them went bancrupt).

When Amino took over Amiga Inc. in early 2000, Eyetech wanted to provide a sensible upgrade path for current Amiga-Owners, hence the original "AmigaOne1200/4000" design was born. As Escena's Brainstormer implementation pretty much fitted Eyetech's requirements, they were contracted to expand the design to fit Eyetech's special needs (though the original design was not even working yet).

At that time, an AmigaOne was a computer with a x86/PPC/Mips/... CPU running AmigaDE natively. Eyetech's plan was to build such a computer (with a G3/G4 CPU), but with a 68k emulator integrated in the BIOS, and a connector for classic Amiga motherboards. Such a computer would have been able to boot OS 3.9 (still 68k, just executed by the onboard 68k emulator). It would have been faster than a classic Amiga, and it would have had PCI + AGP slots, USB etc. At the same time it would have been able to boot AmigaDE, which was supposed to be the path towards the future.

Late 2000/early 2001 (the Brainstormer/A1 design is still not working), Amiga Inc. decides that they need to continue development of AmigaOS (something they completely refused to do until then), The idea of a PPC native AmigaOS4 is born. An AmigaOne is now defined as "a PPC computer running AmigaOS4". Eyetech have to adopt their plans (slightly) - the AmigaOne1200/4000 will now run AmigaOS4.

In spring 2001 a first batch of AmigaOne boards gets produced - they are still not working. Escena keeps promising that the boards will be finished on time. More and more people (including Amiga Inc., Haage&Partner (who were supposed to do OS4), Hyperion...) start to loose their faith in Escena and apparently, the guys simply stopped working on the A1 design at that time (without telling anybody).

In September/October 2001, Eyetech finally realise that Escena will never deliver anything, drops them and starts searching for alternatives. A few months later, they come up with the slightly modified TeronCX/PX design.

I hope that answers your question

@Akira + RetroMan:

Well, Akira said "might run on Macs", indeed OS4 "might" get ported to Macs...


So if MAI is selling their boards for $500, which is considerably cheaper than the AmigaOne board, you could buy one of those instead, and when OS 4 comes out, apply the dongel to that machine?
OS4.0 (note the "dot zero" - no decision yet for following versions) will only be available bundled with hardware. You won't be able to buy it seperately. Anyway, you wouldn't have much luck applying the dongle, so you'd have to use a cracked version anyway.

Actually, you identified one of the reasons (one, there are lots more) for the dongle scheme: If you could buy a Teron board and run OS4 on it, nobody would buy an AmigaOne. If Eyetech would be faced with such a situation, they wouldn't produce the AmigaOne at all. No AmigaOnes mass-produced = no cheap TeronCX/PX boards = no reason to buy OS4. See the problem?

Does anyone know what the focus of AmigaOS 4 is?

The focus is to make an up-to-date version (PPC native, memory protection, virtual memory and one hell of a fast kernel) of the world's best operating system. I already love it.

Yes, there will be a browser (Ibrowse 2.3 SE).

It would also be interesting to hear exactly how well linux runs on these machines. Does anyone know if someone is creating a specific distro that installs easily?
That is already done. RedHat, Suse, Mandrake, Gentoo, TurboLinux, YellowDog. Pick your favourite. Additionally, MacOnLinux is working fine.
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