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Re: Native Inferno for the PC?

Problems with NATIVE Inferno for the PC

Two main problems exist with native Inferno for the PC (we've run it and
thanks to help from Lucent made it work -- sort of)

1) There is no well defined target for the native Inferno to run on -- since
it needs to support the devices directly without intervention by Windows or
the like there need to be Inferno drivers for each device

2) There is no native file system -- hence you need to boot the PC from some
host which at the present time apparently must be UNIX (possibly including

These two features make the Native Inferno for the PC a bit of a problem to
implement at present

Are there possible solutions to the problems?

I've got a couple of suggestions -- comments are appreciated

a)Pick a standard set of PC parameters (P-166, 8 MB RAM, 1 GB IDE disk (on
board controller) with PCI bus with Soundblaster 16 audio card or on board,
with PCI bus video card Stealth 64 2 MB VRAM or equivalent (maybe just spec
S-3 chips set) with 2 serial ports + parallel port (or maybe just USB) with
some standard network card such as 3-COM and with CD-ROM reader
b)with DOS for boot and for diagnostics of zPC state and with files stored
using DOS FAT
c) build a minimal Inferno console routine into the boot for chosing network
addresses and other critical parameters and to provide a place for error
messages to be displayed

2) distribute this on CD-ROM for use with DOS FAT

3) load by copying to DOS directory inferno

4) boot by invoking Inferno command

5) Native Inferno takes over and boots (pun) out DOS (except for usinf DOS
file structure) -- voila no need for UNIX box to boot (another pun)

This lets people develop for a realtively stsandard PC platform without
worying about using EMU and without the problems associated with Native
Inferno today (no way to boot directly and no way to store files)

Later if you want to actually run on still more primative a PC environment
(no DOS files and  no CD-ROM no hard drive with 2 MB or so of memeory) you
could quite esily make the transition


Ted Kochanski

At 11:06 PM 12/26/96 +1300, you wrote:
>>Reply-To: inferno@inter2.interstice.com
>>i'm wondering is there a planned or existing distribution of native
>>inferno disribution on PC platform.
>Hello Artem!
>I have no idea.
>Message Signature:
>Karun Sathaiah				Phone : +64 9 820 0360
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Ted Kochanski, Ph.D.
Sensors Signals Systems  ---  "Systematic Solutions to Complex Problems"
e-mail tpk@sensorsys.com   phone (617) 861-6167  fax  861-0476
11 Aerial St., Lexington, MA 02173