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[News] AmigaOne Update from Alan RedhouseANN.lu
Posted on 24-Jul-2002 22:17 GMT by Douglas McLaughlin106 comments
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On the AmigaOne mailing list, Alan Redhouse from Eyetech posted the following update:

Many dev board purchasers were clearly motivated by the 10% discount rather than their ability to contribute to the developer process. The initial boards were therefore shipped to those who could make a real contribution to developing drivers etc, and porting Linux/UAE distributions. Their progress has been astounding IMO with no less than 5 different linux distributions (SuSE, Debian, Mandrake, Yellow Dog and TurboLinux) being ported within a couple of weeks. More... Many dev board purchasers were clearly motivated by the 10% discount rather than their ability to contribute to the developer process. The initial boards were therefore shipped to those who could make a real contribution to developing drivers etc, and porting Linux/UAE distributions. Their progress has been astounding IMO with no less than 5 different linux distributions (SuSE, Debian, Mandrake, Yellow Dog and TurboLinux) being ported within a couple of weeks.

However the Softex open firmware we had originally shipped with the dev boards (incidently as seen on the Pegasos video) has several shortcomings (although this has been used to boot the 5 linux distributions and the OS4 kernel) and we are currently developing/extending the alternative PPCBoot open firmware for use on the production AmigaOne boards. This will allow us to build in Amiga- specific boot etc options, a well as a more comprehensive multi-boot environment.

We are not shipping the remainder of the dev boards (or any of the user boards) until this code is complete because of the expense of shipping update ROMs and chip changing tools. This is anticipated to be towards the end of August.

This revision to the boot ROM is being undertaken by Hyperion as part of the work necessary for booting OS4 on the A1.

Meanwhile the Amiga Inc club membership/coupon program results (coupled with our own market extrapolation processes) means that the future of the AmigaOne is in no doubt.

Finally several people have asked us why we are not delivering the A1 board to Linux users in advance of the release of OS4. Well there are two main reasons:

1 - This is a product we are producing for the Amiga market and IMO it is proper that the Amiga community get their hands on it first.

2 - I still cannot see why there would be a significant market for Linux on the A1 given that the main focus of Linux is the x86 platform, which - because of sheer sales volumes - will always be an order of magnitude cheaper than a ppc-based product.

Hope this helps

Alan
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