Looks like ReactOS 0.3.14 has been finally released. See the news here, on the official website.
I can’t say I care a lot about ReactOS, as I mostly use Linux and other *nix and have no interest on NT-based operating systems. ReactOS is one of the OSS projects I follow by keeping a “semi-closed eye” on them. But still, it is interesting to see how the project has evolved since its 0.3.13 release, almost a year ago. They now support Windows XP themes, wifi drivers, ACPI among other improvements.
But again, will ReactOS do any good when it finally achieves full Windows XP capability? I blogged about that some time ago.
For those who may not know, ReactOS is an operating system that “aims to follow the Windows-NT® architecture designed by Microsoft from the hardware level right through to the application level”. By other words, the idea is to provide Windows XP-level compatibility with software and hardware.
Looks like a neat idea? Yes, indeed. An “open source Windows” system would has lots of applications, for example, in situations where demand for using open source software and common standards, instead of proprietary solutions, exists (like what happens, in theory, on some country governments).
Why it doesn’t work right? Well, nobody can say the project has been abandoned. It’s progressing, but very slow. I can’t blame the developers for the slowness: the task they’re doing is hard, and there aren’t many developers devoted to the project.
The latest version was released on March 2011, and it was just a tiny improvement over all that’s still missing. My only concern is, when they get a Windows XP compatibility that is good enough, won’t be XP as obsolete as Windows 95 is now? At the end, Windows XP is already more than 10 years old, and even some of the most recent software by its creator, Microsoft, doesn’t work on XP (e.g. IE 9 or the latest Live Messenger).
And another thing: if ReactOS gets noticed enough, won’t Microsoft try to squash them and send some juridical flames regarding e.g. stupid patents? Or even reverse engineering, although I don’t think they can be legitimately accused of doing it? Note that these questions may also apply for WINE and similar software, but up to now, it looks like they have been safe from Microsoft’s hammer.
Those who say Windows is the best either never tried anything else than Windows or are Windows (or MS) fanbois
Those who say Linux is best for some things and Windows is better for another things have a farily good knowledge and perhaps experience on both systems and moderatedly use each when needed.
Those who say Linux is best and MS and/or Windows is everything of bad that they can invent, are Linux
Those who invent defects on Linux (or a distro) which exist no more or are now easily supressed have either never tried Linux, or tried Linux many years ago and had a bad experience.
Those who invent defects on Windows either don’t use Windows for a long time because they have been using Linux for that time.
Someone that doesn’t meet any of the follwing conditions, is a pacific user.
Apple and MacOS users are excluded from this post as Apple fanbois are of different matter, something to write on another post.
…and it’s so frustating that I must use it at school.
To make things worse, it’s not any Windows version, but perhaps the best version of windows ever: Vista!
By the way, all the computers have Linux installed on another partition (the HD of these PCs has like 6 partitions, for special non-functioning OSes, plus their recovery and backup partitions), but we never use it (most people have the idea of a Linux distro being something where you can play SuperTux, nothing more). And my IT techer looks at me with some strange eyes every time I tell her that I use Ubuntu as the main OS of my computers at home, and asks me “Oh, you use Linux?”. Bah.
Fortunately, in some hours I’ll be at my own computer again…