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26 Jul 2008
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jaclaz's RANTS about Winbuilder
Thanks to the new availability of Winbuilder in a form that would run on Win2K (IMG:../forums/style_emoticons/default/smile.gif) , I had some time to play with it.

There are a number of features that I find simply unreasonable or unuseful, I may be wrong of course, but I would like to know the reason of some of these "by design" features:
1) When you go to the Download tab, Winbuilder automagically connects to the internet and starts downloding stuff. WHY? (IMG:../forums/style_emoticons/default/w00t.gif)
Cannot I have a button to the effect of "Connect and check for updates" and decide myself when to connect?
The connection happens to the pre-checked servers:

With a slow connection this is a nuisance, expecially for one that has no interest in one of the pre-checked servers contents.

2) Only AFTER the connection and updates have done whatever they are supposed to do, the "Welcome to Winbuilder" page appears.

It seems to me simply obvious that this page should appear BEFORE anything else.

3) The page also has a section about "Latest Forum posts".

First thing is that this access could be part of the "500 Server Error", this is simply crazy.
I want to build something, I need NO distraction, if and when I want to read the Forum, I know how to do that.

4) After what above described I find in top left of the windows:
"390 selected files and 336,39 Mb to download"
written in tiny letters

Since I bet that a large number of people will simply not read the above, and just press the "Download" button, this seems to me like an unneeded waste of time and bandwith, the amount to be downloaded should be displayed in LARGE, FRIENDLY LETTERS.

5) So, let's say I am NOT interested in optional, livexp or vistape, next thing I do is to uncheck these projects:
Now I should download 0 (zero) bytes, instead I get:
"255 selected files and 220,47 Mb to download"
By expanding the tree I see that a great number of files are still checked.

6) I try again, deselecting the pre-checked server and just selecting nativeex.boot-land.net and I get:
"189 selected files and 11,79 Mb to download"
unchecking the project I get:
"120 selected files and 7,32 Mb to download"
This is crazy.
I am sure a number of people interested in native_ex and that are not interested in VistaPE will download ANYWAY some 200 Mb of stuff they do not need, as they would simply uncheck the project without unchecking the server. (IMG:../forums/style_emoticons/default/w00t.gif)

7) I press the "Main" button and I am back to the "Welcome to winbuilder" page, I select nativeex and get the contents of this page:
that helps me very little, if I try again with picoxp, I get this page:
which is MUCH more helpful, as it lists the .scripts in a single page, with a minimal description for it.
I try again with mobileos.boot-land.net, and get this page:
that DOES NOT help me AT ALL.

Moral of the story, the behaviour of Winbuilder is different between projects, even those made by the same developer (psc (IMG:../forums/style_emoticons/default/worship.gif) in this example of nativeex and picoxp).

I think we need a standard of some kind, the "default" page of picoxp in the example appeared to me the most useful, whilst the brief instructions of the nativeex page are useful but should not "hide" the list and description of .scripts.

8) the "available" web servers:
It seems to me like this is a "pre-configured" setting within Winbuilder.
The only useful thing of having online access would be to connect to an updated page listing ALL available servers, and it seems to me that this approach is not used. (IMG:../forums/style_emoticons/default/sad.gif)

End of first part of RANT.

Sorry (IMG:../forums/style_emoticons/default/sad.gif) if I put it down rather bluntly, but if I had used more a more diplomatic approach it wouldn't have been a good, liberatory, rant. (IMG:../forums/style_emoticons/default/angry7.gif)

The intention is however of constructive criticism, with the only aim to better the "winbuilder experience", I see enormous potentialities "ruined" by marginal problems, that I am sure can be fixed/bettered.


5 Jul 2008
Read Topic
FUSE under Windows XP and Vista?
I will just throw this on the table:

from the little I can get, this could be useful in a number of projects, but I will leave it to the "real" developers here. (IMG:../forums/style_emoticons/default/smile.gif)

A related link:


4 Jul 2008
Read Topic
The greatest error Nuno and psc made....
Nuno and psc (actually not often) do mistakes, their greatest one, of course, was to make the new Winbuilder 2K compatible.

My sincere congratulations to both, VERY, VERY good work. (IMG:../forums/style_emoticons/default/worship.gif)

But before implementing this GREAT new contribution, they omitted (IMG:../forums/style_emoticons/default/w00t.gif) to think about the practical consequences of this new feature (IMG:../forums/style_emoticons/default/wink.gif) :

Now I can run Winbuilder on my machines! (IMG:../forums/style_emoticons/default/thumbup.gif)

...and this means that the amount of bug reports, suggestions, rants and pressing for betterings will increase noticeably. (IMG:../forums/style_emoticons/default/happy22.gif)

I am notoriously a pain-in-the-neck.

I just ran a couple of standard projects, just to get the hang of it, intentionally behaving as a n00b (though not as a complete n00b (IMG:../forums/style_emoticons/default/wink.gif) ) and encountered immediately a number of problems (some of which intentionally caused by me to see how they were dealed with).

If I am allowed a comparison with cars, Winbuilder appears to be a Ferrari, the engine is great (IMG:../forums/style_emoticons/default/thumbsup.gif) , road handling is superb (IMG:../forums/style_emoticons/default/1st.gif) , but you need to take an advanced driving course in order to get it moving (IMG:../forums/style_emoticons/default/sporty94.gif) .

I may be wrong, but I think that we must make Winbuilder more Porsche-like, maybe not as fast as a Ferrari, but something anyone can use any day to go to the supermarket, besides racing on the road.

First thing:
I am impressed by the usefulness of the WBverify approach by psc, my suggestion is to extend it's functionality as to make it become a pre-processing engine for Winbuilder.

I intentionally damaged (removing a number of files) a source directory and started the processing after several minutes, Winbuilder came up with a log full of errors of the type "Failed to copy or expand....".

Wouldn't it be easier (and faster) to pre-check the Source, or simply stop the execution of the build when such an error about a missing file is generated? (IMG:../forums/style_emoticons/default/unsure.gif)

At least for the "core" components, and wouldn't be more informative having a "Source file xxxx does not exist, check given path and files within it" report?

Wouldn't it be possible to insert something like a "PAUSE" statement (or a if you prefer breakpoints) in the building flow, again as an example, the .script does not pause after creating the .ISO and before starting it in Qemu, with the result, on my first attempt, that I had the thingy freezed and the log wasn't generated.

Can we have the log.html automatically saved to %Date%%time%log.html?

half the text shown in your project:
is "out of bounds" (see screenshot)
is it my 1152x864 resolution?

Again good work guys, but you must not think as this as reaching an end, but rather as a starting point....

....and you will have MUCH work to do....(IMG:../forums/style_emoticons/default/wink.gif)



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25 Jun 2008
This thread is reserved for people reporting their success using newish releases of grub4dos that allow for direct booting to a .iso imaging through mappig the ISO image to (hd32).

Ideally, any user who had some success with this way of booting can post here reporting what he succeeded with and how he did it, links to other boards, tutorials guides related to the matter are also welcome.

PLEASE NO request for help here, post them in the grub4dos forum.

PLEASE NO "Nice, thank you!" kind of posts.

PLEASE NO "Ha, this is not useful!" type of comments.

This thread should become simply a list of working setups, no more, no less. (IMG:../forums/style_emoticons/default/smile.gif)

Thanks for cooperation.

24 May 2008
Read Topic
If anyone is interested, there is this open-source DOS:

it's not clear if the release is 18 May 2007 or 18 May 2008, dates of files inside the archives suggest it is 2008 (IMG:../forums/style_emoticons/default/unsure.gif) , it seems there like NO instructions or readme of any kind in the compiled download.....
....exception made for this FILEID.DIZ:
NX-DOS OS/3 (Alternative DOS) v8.01VI
An embedded MS-DOS 5.0 compatible
MINI RTOS for the IBM-PC Pentiums.
If you need a OS to run an embedded
appliance then this may suit you
UNIX name: nxdos
Descriptive name: NX-DOS Operating System Project
License: GNU General Public License (GPL)
Public description: NX-DOS Operating System
Registration description: The NX-DOS Project
is intended to be a clone of popular Disk
Operating Systems such as MS-DOS 5.0. I am using MS-DOS and PC-DOS as
design templates but decided that to go GPL and open it to others that
wish to work on it instead of just one programmer toiling away in his
room. Hopefully, with many minds this OS will be what I intend it to be. Currently, I have written a FDISK, SYS, COMMAND, KERNEL, BOOT LOADER, and other utilities. -ce, 4-1-2005
(e.g. install on a crappy cyberdeck)
unarchive to a floppy and run SYS A:
Website: http://www.aotksc.com/
Email : tekno1911@yahoo.com

That appears to be remarkably out of date.

But some DOCS are in the "source" download, some are remarkably old, but the CHANGE.TXT confirms that development has continued recently:
; Change.log - reverse chronological order
MAY-12-2008 15:13 - ROMSCAN detect specific ROMs in computer
APR-27-2008 16:45 - Fixed the print() problem, ZSTART variable is now no longer boolean.
JUN-11-2007 - RTCupdate added to clock driver
APR-22-2007 17:10 - Finished nextmcb/firstmcb/minit/getlastarena/mmconfig in
- DOSMEM.ASM. Needs setup_arena(), malloc amd mfree.
APR-10-2007 22:00 - Using a new device driver design. wrote CLOCK$ handler,
now sets dos time values from INT 1A Real time clock from
MAR-22-2007 22:00 - added mbr loader for first IDE drive
MAR-05-2007 15:00 - USB4DOS code library added...
OCT-13-2006 20:00 - Added FS_RUN(), Still locks up on files > 512 bytes
OCT-02-2005 21:58 - Updates to graphics.asm
AUG-17-2006 13:16 - DOSMEM.ASM
JUN-29-2006 15:09 - Started on beta 9 design... Complete rewrite.

Any taker to try it and possibly write a few lines on how to build/assemble or whatever is needed to test it?

(the source archive seem to have a number of apps missing from the exscutable archive)

A bootable floppy image would be perfect!

Last Visitors

11 Sep 2008 - 18:34

11 Sep 2008 - 16:33

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6 Sep 2008 - 17:01

3 Sep 2008 - 4:49

Nuno Brito
A true expert about the inner works of MS OS's from DOS up to XP and Vista. Always provides extensive and complete replies packed with so much knowledge and informations. Jaclaz is very rare and carefull to refer anything about his life - but I bet it would be enough to write a best seller book..
26 Apr 2007 - 18:27

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