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Archive 12/2003

Genesi (E-Mail)

Genesi selects IBM PowerPC for Performance-intensive Pegasos Release
Genesi today announced a new, PowerPC®-based, modular MicroATX mainboard release that brings flexibility and efficient processing power to performance-intensive applications, including desktops, workstations, servers, and communications products.

This latest MicroATX board is the most powerful and cost-effective hardware foundation for Genesi's popular Pegasos platform, with over 1,000 users in 34 countries around the world.

The new motherboard features an IBM PowerPC 750CXe microprocessor and supports industry standards software such as Open Firmware, and multiple operating systems including distributions of Linux and BSD.

"Genesi's new PowerPC-based computer brings effective and flexible processing power to the desktop, low-end server, firewall and pervasive space at an affordable price", said Bill Buck, CEO of Genesi.

Looking forward, Mr. Buck also revealed that Genesi would be working closely with IBM to release a 64-bit Pegasos workstation in 2004, based on the new IBM PowerPC 970 microprocessor.

"Today's Pegasos release is a starting point that will enable all the operating systems developed for the PowerPC environment to begin to move in this direction with confidence and purpose", he explained.

The new Pegasos platform is also the core for Genesi's first commercial product designed to support the increasingly-important security infrastructure requirements of Fortune 1000 companies and large institutions.

The Pegasos Guardian provides: border protection of networks; proactive protection of network assets; and logging and auditing of suspicious network traffic.

"IT Managers must know exactly what is happening on their networks, and why", said Buck. "The Guardian gives you a very high level of control and the new MicroATX board provides the performance platform for them to achieve this."

Choice of the PowerPC environment enhances the security that Guardian offers: "Much of the office and network IT infrastructure in use today is x86-based", explained Buck. "The Guardian runs on a different processor platform and is not as susceptible to the common buffer overflows that are the main entry point for security breaches." Any element of security begins with people, procedure and enforcement, but with tools such as the Guardian IT Managers can audit and build their own code. Customers need a total security posture, and this is one component of a total security system.

Genesi developed the Guardian with partners ShopIP ( and Diginexus ( The interface design and border-level protection is based on the acclaimed ShopIP Crunchbox.

Proactive protection is based on the security scanning features of Nessus ( and the internal invisible IDS scanning features were developed and contributed by Diginexus.

Buck added, "this collaborative effort is an example of the partnerships we expect to develop in the months ahead and indicative of the many and varied potential uses for an open, powerful and efficient hardware platform."

"IBM has worked closely with Genesi and its partners to ensure that the Pegasos platform can be configured to cover the rich variety of applications over multiple operating systems that Genesi and its partners are developing", said Ray Bryant, Director PowerPC Products at IBM Microelectronics. "The integration of the IBM PowerPC 750CXe offers developers further opportunities to extend Pegasos' use into the evolutionary path we have chartered for the PowerPC."

Based on industry standards, such as Open Firmware, the Pegasos supports multiple operating systems including varieties of Linux and BSD. The Pegasos platform also comes with Genesi's own non-UNIX, Quark-based MorphOS. Recent releases supported on the Pegasos include OpenBSD 3.4 and Debian-Installer Beta 1.

Buck added, "in the meanwhile, the strategic value of moving to a Linux Desktop is becoming increasing clear and a migration to Linux has begun. Every major commercial or non-commercial version/distribution of Linux on the market today runs on the Pegasos, including SuSE and the Novell® Nterprise Linux Service package. Getting on the network with the Pegasos Guardian and on the desktop with the Pegasos, now and in the future with the PowerPC 970, places Genesi at the forefront of these major market developments."

Genesi has served the computer hobbyist since the first Beta release of the Pegasos in 2002. Trialed and tested by over 1000 users in 34 countries, enthusiasts have configured the Pegasos in variety of fashions with over a dozen different operating systems. The Pegasos was awarded the Amiga Award 2002 by Falke Media Verlag and recently, the Pegasos was acclaimed as the future home of the Linux desktop by German Linux site PPCNUX.

The Pegasos-Guardian will make its public debut with ShopIP and Diginexus at Infosecurity 2003, at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center in New York, December 8-11, Booth 126 and be distributed by Pegasos Resellers worldwide through the IBM Global Solutions Directory.

Genesi's "Ready for IBM Technology"-validated Pegasos systems signal the advancement of the IBM 750CXe PowerPC microprocessor family into the broader global marketplace for embedded industrial controls, military, multimedia, consumer electronic appliances, blade servers, thin client systems, storage, networking, firewalls, and communication applications. With leading edge CPU bus speed capabilities and enhanced AGP, PCI-X, SDRAM and DDR support, the combination of the Marvell Discovery II chipset and IBM PowerPC 750CXe processors offers a most desirable solution to the performance-intensive applications marketplace.

Genesi is an IBM Business Partner and carries the Ready for IBM Technology mark on five of its products, the Pegasos Guardian, Pegasos, PegXLin, MorphOS, and OpenBSD for Pegasos. The basic Pegasos featuring the IBM PowerPC processor can be purchased online for 299 Euros at while the Pegasos-Guardian is priced between 5000 and 15000 Euros depending on the configuration and the associated service contract. Genesi is based in Luxembourg and can be found on the Web at Details on the Pegasos Guardian are presented at (snx)

[News message: 04. Dec. 2003, 19:07] [Comments: 0]
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Gunther Nikl (ANF)

Aminet: New Versions of BMPdt and xpkGZIP
New versions of BMP-Datatypes (V40.16, 42 kB) and the XPK Module xpkGZIP (V1.2, 74 kB) have appeared on Aminet. Both are by Gunther Nikl.

XpkGZIP 1.2 makes use of zlib 1.1.4 and was ported with GCC 3.3. Through GCC 3.3 xpkGZIP got about 11% faster at compressing. BMPdt now uses inline-assembler for little -> big endian adjusting. (snx) (Translation: dm)

[News message: 04. Dec. 2003, 12:42] [Comments: 0]
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Kicko (ANF)

Update of Access Virus MIDI Commands for Tracks&Fields
The VirusOS from Krister "Kicko" Skrtic's Tracks&Fields Amiga Page has reached version 6.5 and is now available for download. According to the author Virus now sounds stronger like MiniMoog, and there is a deeper dimension to the tonality.

The changes include an update of Filt1 mode as well as the implementation of four new values. The update is being offered because Kicko still uses Tracks&Fields, until HDRec is ready. After that all commands will be utilized by HDRec. (snx) (Translation: dm)

[News message: 04. Dec. 2003, 10:45] [Comments: 0]
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04.Dec.2003 (Website)

Merchant: Datakompaniet Creates a Webshop
The Norwegian Amiga merchant Datakompaniet has completely revised its homepage and implemented an online webshop. (snx) (Translation: dm)

[News message: 04. Dec. 2003, 08:22] [Comments: 0]
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Schlonz (ANF)

Update Of DVDRTools
DVDRTools has been reworked. The following changes were made:

  • The text of the homepage was brought up to date
  • All instructions for DVDRTools are now in HTML format
  • DVDRTools has been recompiled with GCC3.3, something that should provide for cleaner code, and from there on shrink the size of the executable by about 70%, because of the reduction of debugging code
  • The GUI ToastDVD has also been updated and now not only works with DVDRTools alone but also with the other programs of DVDRTools. With this DVDRTools becomes almost as easy to use as MakeCD or BurnIT, it's just that you can do the same stuff with DVDR support
Further, I am now working on a solution to overcome the 2 GB limit, but that's not quite ready yet. (snx) (Translation: dm)

[News message: 04. Dec. 2003, 07:52] [Comments: 0]
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Martin Rebentisch (DaFreak) (ANF)

Music: Liquid Skies records #062
After the homepage of the scene group Liquid Skies is reachable again they published their 62nd music package today. It contains a trance tune by the musician Maxus and the fitting CD cover for this track.

Title: Dream World
Musician: Maxus
Style: Trance
Playing time: 3:31
Format: mp3 @128kbps
Size: 3.3 MB

The zipped file is available for download by the title link. (nba) (Translation: ub)

[News message: 03. Dec. 2003, 23:59] [Comments: 0]
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Commodore Gebruikers Groep

HCC days: Photos by the Commodore Gebruikers Groep
The Dutch user group Commodore Gebruikers Groep has pushed some photos of their attendace at the HCC days online. That event is the biggest of its kind within the Benelux countries. (snx) (Translation: ub)

[News message: 03. Dec. 2003, 18:01] [Comments: 0]
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03.Dec.2003 (Webseite)

New version of the ASFS Linux dirver
The ASFS file system driver for Linux by Marek Szyprowski is now available as a public beta 1.0 beta 1. With this tool SmartFileSystem (sfs) partitons of the Amiga/MorphOS are accessable while running Linux. In the meantime it became possible not only to read these partitions but also to write to them, even this is still in an experimental stage.

The patch for the kernel source code of Linux is to obtain from the ASFS homepage:

The author emphasizes that this is a beta version and there is no warranty that this driver works correctly. There is the possibility of system crashes or loss of data. The use of this tool is on your own risk, Marek Szyprowski is not responsible for any kind of damage.

He adds that he successful copied several gigabyte of data using this driver. Feedback of any kind is welcome by him. (snx) (Translation: ub)

[News message: 03. Dec. 2003, 10:24] [Comments: 0]
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03.Dec.2003 (Website)

Music software: Protracker II under development
Ruben Monteiro currently works on ProTracker II, a successor to the original family of the Soundtracker (SoundTracker, NoiseTracker, ProTracker). The Portuguese programmer estimates a release date for March next year. There is support for MorphOS and Windows, versions for OS4 or AROS are not confirmed yet.

According to the author these will be the features:

User interface
  • 16 bit screen or window mode
  • Attractiv OS independent GUI (screen shot)
  • Shortcuts and layout in the known classical style
  • Skinable
  • (MorphOS) AHI support
Music processor
  • Internal mixing in 32 Bit
  • 8-tap-FIR-resampling (close to perfect quality)
  • Loads: MOD, MOD2, DBM, XM, IT, S3M, MED, MT2
  • Saves: MOD, MOD2, XM
  • Direct hard disk recording up to a quality of 32bit, 44kHz, stereo
  • 64 tracks
  • 256 patterns / positions
  • 8/16 bit mono/stereo samples of unlimited size
  • Separate volume / panning / effect parameter for each track
  • (MorphOS) full native PowerPC program
  • Freeware (no adverts or upgrades to "professional" versions)
  • It's ProTracker ;)
Ideas and constructive critics are welcome by the author, he is to reach by mailing to (snx) (Translation: ub)

[News message: 03. Dec. 2003, 09:59] [Comments: 0]
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AmigaWorld (Website)

Fortnightly Q&A's with Fleecy Moss - episode 24
The English online magazine AmigaWorld has published episode 24 of the regular questions and answers session with Fleecy Moss, CTO at AMIGA, Inc. (Update 2012-03-15, cg: as the original document is no longer available, the following content was moved into our database):

1) BobC: Can you tell us what third party software companies or individuals are interested in writing or actually are writing software for OS4 on the A1? If you can't say who they are, perhaps, what types of third party software is being developed?

Fleecy: I can only tell you of those that have publicly committed to writing for AmigaOS4.0 since the others are either still looking into it or are developing but do not wish to make an announcement yet.

Those that are publicly committed are

CandyFactory 2
Tales of Tamar

Hyperion have also committed to creating AmigaOS4.0 versions of their games and have a licence to develop DirectoryOpus for AmigaOS4.0.

Several other companies have said that when a more complete developer SDK is available and/or when the market size becomes clearer, then they will take another look.

There are likely to be quite a few surprise products turning up as well but as I said, for a number of reasons the companies involved are not willing to announce publicly at this time.

2) Uncharted: Will the new "AG2 services" change the way AmigaOS works from a user's perspective? Will things like devices, system structure (C: DEVS: LIBS: ENVARC: etc.), and UI paradigms be changed?

Fleecy: Initially no but with the introduction of a resources and services architecture, it will change. This architecture internalises the implementation and publicly presents a semantic abstraction. AmigaOS4.0 presents a half way house with its use of interfaces called against libraries. However, because the access is via a semantic abstraction, it will be possible for a user to create a relationship that makes it look like the old organisation model, if they so desire.

As for the interactive environment, we have looked at all that is good in the existing interface as well as all is bad. We are bringing a workflow analysis to this area and, whilst you will be able to recognise elements from previous implementations, there will be a lot that is new and (we hope) better. The whole solution will allow the user to eventually build their own interface so if you want to go back to AmigaOS3.9 Workbench, it should be possible.

3) Shep: A while ago on here I suggested that Amiga could use affiliate marketing, similar to amazon, for marketing the new Amiga. I would gladly join such a scheme when I have my new website sorted out (which will be appropriate because of its theme), what do you think Fleecy?

Fleecy: I think it is a very good idea. We have a lot of ideas ourselves which are partly a reaction to the situation we find ourselves in at the moment. Getting the good news about Amiga's rebirth out into the world is going to be top priority and, as we found at the Micromart show and, as has been proved over the past six months, our user groups are going to be crucial in that process.

4) DaveP: Hi there Fleecy, would you rather do this monthly? ;-)

Fleecy: At least it wouldn't be late all the time ;-)

5) GregS: Are there any plans with including in OS4-4.2 a XML Signature generator?

Fleecy: XML will play a big part in AG2, so yes.

6) Asemoon: There is much concern within the industry about monopoly OS companies abusing their position to make it hard or near impossible to replace components with alternatives. This has never been the case with AmigaOS' design. Will this modularity and freedom continue with future releases?

Fleecy: Very much so. With a resource and services architecture it would be hard to do otherwise.

7) prmetime: 1. When the A1/zico spec was first announced, a partnership with Matrox was announced fairly soon thereafter. I have yet to see any Matrox drivers or chips on hardware to this point. Is Matrox still a partner and will their graphics chipsets be supported?

Fleecy: Matrox are still a partner and, with SNAP coming on board, we will have an excellent set of drivers for Matrox boards. Given that 3D is not currently the forte of Matrox, then we will be concentrating on other, more appropriate products.

8) GregS: Are there any plans (beyond OS4.0) to add to the Amiga some simple and easy to maintain and control Multi-User-Profile system for the AmigaOS?

Fleecy: Yes but it will require the foundations to change first for the data storage and organisation services. That is something that will appear early in AG2.

9) The_Editor: We recently had, what seemed to be a high profile visitor to expressing his frustration at not being able to find anyone "high enough" to talk to about developing for DE. Due to a lack of information, he is taking his idea elsewhere. Who do we direct such enquiries to in future and what steps would Amiga Inc take to see this calamity is not repeated ?

Fleecy: This is clearly very worrying. I did not receive any information about him and there is supposed to be a requests process on the Amiga Anywhere website. I shall look into this as a matter of urgency.

10) jurassiccamper: Alan has mentioned that earlybird owners may get an installable OS4 beta by christmas. How will this be distributed?

Fleecy: It won't be a beta per se but a pre-release that will not be supported directly. Amigaworld have already expressed an interest in becoming a forum for support and feedback of information generated from the pre-release. As for the format for distribution I believe we are currently considering a downloadable ISO image to be burnt to a CD via Debian.

(Copyright © 2003 All rights reserved.
Originally available at
You may freely redistribute this article, providing that a URL is provided to the original source,
and the copyright notices remain intact)
(nba) (Translation: ub)

[News message: 03. Dec. 2003, 04:15] [Comments: 0]
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Maja (ANF)

Safety hole in Linux-Kernel makes Debian attackable
At the end of November there are hacker attacks on the open source project Debian Linux. Those attacks were possible because of holes in the Linux centre. You can get more information because of this theme on the TweakPC-website under the title link. (nba) (Translation: gf)

[News message: 02. Dec. 2003, 20:28] [Comments: 0]
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Golem (Website)

Golem: PNG Second Edition becomes W3C-Specification
The World Wide Web consortium has decided the Portable Network Graphics (PNG) Second Edition for the W3C-recommendation as standard. Please read the complete text at the online news-service Golem under the title link. (nba) (Translation: gf)

[News message: 02. Dec. 2003, 20:26] [Comments: 0]
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Felix Schwarz (E-Mail)

IOSPIRIT: fxSCAN 4.05 available
In the download-area of IOSPIRIT an update-archive from version 4.0, 4.01, 4.02, 4.03 and 4.04 of fxSCAN to V4.05 is now available for download.

Changes include:
  • PNG-support (loading and saving)
  • the saving format last used is reused
  • MorphOS-adaptions: support for the MorphOS-skinsystem
  • MorphOS-adaptions: WarpUP-warning does no longer appear
  • multiple starts will switch to the already running application
  • bugfixes

A detailed list of changes can be found in the update archive.

fxSCAN 4 is currently available at a special price of 29,00 EUR. (nba)

[News message: 02. Dec. 2003, 16:19] [Comments: 0]
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