Opinions? BeOS

Zane H. Healy healyzh at aracnet.com
Thu Mar 10 22:13:19 CST 2005

>Kurt Huhn wrote:
>>On Mar 10, 2005, at 9:26 PM, Joe R. wrote:
>>>    I picked up a Cd and manuals for BeOS today. Anybody here use it? What
>>>do you think of it?
>>Works great on my BeBox.  :)
>>BeOS is an oddity in OS circles.  It's very much what you might 
>>expect from OpenStep, sort of.  Well, if you mixed OpenStep with a 
>>liberal dose of multimedia.  It's very strange, but in a very 
>>comforting way.  :)

I'd never have thought to compare BeOS to OPENSTEP, but in some ways 
I can see that comparison.  Though OPENSTEP has a serious 
relationship with Unix, BeOS simply attempts to be POSIX compatible. 
It has a totally none Unix filesystem (IIRC, it's a database), but 
like OPENSTEP, it has it's own GUI rather than using X-Windows.

>I like it.  I have a dual PII-233 I run it on and it's FAST on that 
>hardware :)  It's sort of unix-y-ish, but not really, and kind of 
>openstep-ish, but not really.  Fun to mess with, and it has a really 
>interesting thread/process model and programming APIs.  If you're 
>interested in that sort of thing it would be cool to play around 
>with :)

I ran one of the last developer releases a little on my PowerMac 
8500/180, and it was quite impressive.  Latter I used BeOS 4.5 
briefly on my old dual 400Mhz Celeron, and it was awesome!  The 
downside is development ground to a halt.  There has been some modern 
activity, and there is even work being done on an Open Source version.

It would have been nice to see it continue, but after Apple bought 
NeXT rather than Be, Inc. they sort of started to run out of steam. 
I might be typing this on a dual 2Ghz G5 running Mac OS X, but I 
can't help but thinking how much better the system would be if it had 
been BeOS based, rather than OPENSTEP based.  The good thing about 
them buying NeXT was getting Steve Jobs back, but BeOS was a far more 
efficient OS.  And yes, I've run OPENSTEP and BeOS on the same system.


| Zane H. Healy                    | UNIX Systems Administrator |
| healyzh at aracnet.com (primary)    | OpenVMS Enthusiast         |
|                                  | Classic Computer Collector |
|     Empire of the Petal Throne and Traveller Role Playing,    |
|          PDP-10 Emulation and Zane's Computer Museum.         |
|                http://www.aracnet.com/~healyzh/               |

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