OS/2 eZine

16 June 2000

Steve Harris sent me an author bio, but I lost it. (BAD EDITOR.) He's Canadian.

If you have a comment about the content of this article, please feel free to vent in the OS/2 eZine discussion forums.

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OS/2 Newsbeat

This Month's Usenet News and Maillist Coverage


Microsoft's legal problems made for a great deal of discussion this month, as well as a debate on the effects of the company moving to Canada as a way of escaping them. Other threads pondered the effects, if any, a Microsoft breakup would have for OS/2 and its community.

There were also a couple of threads started in response to Brad Wardell's "OS Wars 2000" (which was originally posted on the Stardock site, though seemed to have been pulled when I went to reference it for this column). Wardell concludes that OS/2 won't have enough of a following to even make the next version of "OS Wars".

Other musings included the validity of a recent ZDNet poll which begged the question, "is OS/2 dead?" Apparently the poll was moved to an obscure site shortly after its presence was announced on the os2.advocacy news group, and still managed to get more than 15,000 responses (roughly 75% responding that "OS/2 is alive and well").


Data Representations, Inc. announced the availability of Version 1.2 of Simplicity for Java and Simplicity Professional, the latest versions of their cross-platform RAD tool suite. For a free evaluation copy, go to http://www.datarepresentations.com/.

A new PMREXX FTP utility is available, for use with MR/2 ICE. This freeware program is available at http://eracc.bizland.com/ (though as always, read the documentation and notes before attempting to use this utility).


This group has spend a fair bit of time testing the new Papyrus Office v.8.18 this month. Some of the people involved have gone to some pretty severe lengths in order to test the application, though it seems to be fairing quite well by most accounts. It certainly reminds one that this is probably the best place for an unofficial review of new software!

Another significant thread dealt with the lack of OS/2 software currently available, and became a sort of ongoing wishlist for software titles and functions on OS/2. The some of the responses to the wishlist are worth reading, especially for any budding shareware developers out there.

Other postings this month surrounded finding replacements for Windows and Linux software, instructions on how to open different file-types from Windows software applications, and the attempts by some posters to get ahold of the last version of DeScribe (5.06) from some bbs's.


The new Scitech video drivers for OS/2, beta 31, are available at ftp://ftp.scitechsoft.com/sdd/beta/os2/sdd-os2-7.0.2-b31.exe.

An invitation to join John Summerfield's site, "Warped & Connected", at http://www.ami.com.au/os2/. I took a detour, and it looks pretty good (though don't everyone go there at once :)


Between Warp 4 Fixpak 13, the Warp 5 Server, and Netscape 4.61, the folks in this newsgroup have been busy. Luckily, there seems to be no shortage of good people in the know to assist users in dealing with problems. In fact, there appears to be some good links to IBM in this group, though you are in danger of finding solutions to problems you didn't know you had.

Anyone having problems with the Fixpak 13 or Netscape should definitely browse through this month's threads for solutions, it's been quite extensive.


Warp City, the privately-run OS/2 site, was taking on new subscribers this month. According to the post, the administrator broke his surf board (named "'ol Blue Bolt") and needed the money to replace it. Anyone with with the desire to join had to hurry to http://www.warpcity.com/sub.html, though, as the offer was only good until he replaced the board. Subscriptions are now, once again, closed.


Anyone looking for a soundcard to work with OS/2 should check out this month's archive. In at least 4 different threads, people gave their opinions and impressions on the various sound cards on the market, and their experiences in making them work. The AOpen cards received special attention, but many others were looked at as well.

There are also people looking for advice WinTV as well as Video Editting software titles, so be sure and add your opinion if you can.


This message was posted by Marty <mamodeo@stny.rr.com>

A note to those who use MGL applications with the Scitech Display Doctor drivers for OS/2:

MGL applications from the SDD beta 22 era will not work with SDD beta 31, or will work once and then report a "Unable to map first Mb physical memory!" error for each attempted subsequent use. This happened due to an interface change in SDDHELP.SYS somewhere between build 71 and the current build (101 IIRC).

I'm working on re-releasing my MGL applications to fix this problem. Once they do get re-released, the new applications will not work with old versions of SDDHELP.SYS.

Users, please be aware of this problem.

If you know of any OS/2 related newsgroups which you feel should be monitored by this column, or I missed reporting on a thread close to your heart, please send a message to me at scharris@attcanada.ca. Send it in!