Alternative, Alternative Operating Systems
I love operating systems, the heart of any good computer. Because of my love for the “OS” I have become a sort of collector of Operating Systems. My virtual machine “LAB” contains nearly one hundred different operating systems.
Because of this interest I’m going to list a few of the less famous but still noteworthy ones here, sort of top 3 of the unknown OS market.
1. Haiku (http://www.haiku-os.org/)
- I LOVED BeOS, I still do. It had a very slick interface, beautiful to look at, and very multimedia friendly. I heard rumors that this was going to be the next Mac OS (before X) but that it didn’t pan out. Palm bought BeOS, and grounded the OS. Hooray for open-source, where teams of guys like me (but not me) went out and decided to build a binary compatible version of BeOS. That’s the origins of Haiku.
2. ReactOS (http://www.reactos.org/)
- I hate Windows. It was poorly designed from the beginning, because of its single user mentality it just hasn’t been able to catch up. Maybe this will change in Windows 7 (though I doubt it). Hooray for open-source, where teams of guys like me (but no, not me) went out and decided to build a FREE binary compatible version of Windows. That’s te origins of ReactOS, which to me looks fairly useable, and actually quite close to Windows binary compatibility.
3. SkyOS (http://www.skyos.org/)
- SkyOS is an attempt at building a FAST and stable OS from the ground up. In Assembly. Quite a project, and it’s quite beautiful. It has a very quick kernel, and well optimized source. The problem is that development is very slow, and updates are few and far between. But quite a nice operating system to watch.
I have personally installed and run each of these with little to no problems on an older machine. They’re quite nice projects, and (at least in my opinion) nearly user friendly enough for the common desktop market (especially in the cases of Haiku and ReactOS)