(note this is a guest post from Tenox)
Christmas came early this year. An emulator able to run Apple A/UX has been developed. It’s called Shoebill. See also Screenshots and Discussion. Hurray! I can finally get rid of my old Macs!
Also, A/UX documentation is available here.
Update: latest dev snapshot runs A/UX 3.0
19 thoughts on “Virtual A/UX”
April 5, 2014 at 2:57 am
Great, you’ve ruined my weekend!!!!! 😀
April 5, 2014 at 3:30 am
Wait what! Where’d this come from!
April 5, 2014 at 4:47 am
Sorry… If this of any consolation I also ruined my own weekend!
April 5, 2014 at 2:35 pm
I don’t have a Mac so my weekend is kept. 😉
April 6, 2014 at 3:49 am
You don’t need a Mac. I run OSX on VMware on my PC.
April 7, 2014 at 1:38 am
i need to seriously upgrade my potato – no VT and 2 GB RAM make running 7 in a VM sluggish – but it runs!
April 7, 2014 at 2:15 am
Yeah at least one of those AMD 8 ways… the 1st gen should be cheap by now…
April 8, 2014 at 12:35 am
i did get a new machine, it runs windows 7 like a dream! even aero! http://img.installgentoo.com/di/JX41/20140407_006.jpg
April 5, 2014 at 8:52 pm
Good god. Finally.
April 6, 2014 at 3:05 pm
Yeah pretty much. And im so terrible enjoying 2.0 wanting 3.0..
April 7, 2014 at 7:36 am
3.0 works on the latest dev snapshot.
April 7, 2014 at 8:31 am
just not the 3.0 media I have 🙁
April 7, 2014 at 8:43 am
Did you try this?
“If you have a 3.0.0 install CD image, you can extract the kernel by mounting it under A/UX 2.0.0 in Shoebill and copying /unix to the 2.0.0 image’s macintosh partition. Then shut down the emulator, and mount the image on OS X – OS X can mount HFS volumes read-only – and you’ll have the 3.0.0 kernel”
April 7, 2014 at 10:34 am
Oh I extracted the kernel fine, but the filesystem on the 3.0 is corrupt… very strange, so I fsck -y /dev/rdsk/c1d0s0 and let it repair, it’ll boot up to where it’ll show a Quicktime extension icon, then think for a second then it’ll hang with an assert on read… I need to rebuild to printf what its doing before the assert. But I think my 3.0 media is screwed up, I shouldn’t have to fsck a ‘cdrom’… right?
Here is the image I have:
MD5 (AUX_3.0.1_Install.iso) = dd3edefa2095821878a8b6dee7dc7940
I also have a “AUX_3.0.1_Install.toast_image” but it turns out it’s the same MD5 checksum, and it also shows up as corrupt …
The error I get:
Assertion failed: (fread(scsi.buf, len * 512, 1, dev->f) == 1), function scsi_buf_set, file scsi.c, line 420.
Now to re-build core..
For some reason it tries to read zero bytes from disk….???
scsi_buf_set: Responding to read at off=464 len=0
April 7, 2014 at 10:24 am
This is the first time I’ve been able to actually play with A/UX.
I wonder why Apple didn’t put their energy behind this instead of their go nowhere OS projects? Would have it been so hard to port it to PPC? Other than limited hardware support, were there limitations with it that aren’t obvious through the emulator?
April 7, 2014 at 11:36 am
I don’t think it was MacOS compatible enough for mom/pop and it being SYSV it was kind of expensive to license IIRC. I know Atari had a good Unix license but just really didn’t have good hardware, and once they had machines capable of SYSV, time ran out for them.
I’ve run A/UX on a Quadra 700 and it was quite nice, Pretty much why I like OS X today, I can get ‘off the shelf’ office stuff and run it, and I have ‘real unix’ underneath. I guess the real downfall was no real A/UX applications that could take advantage of toolbox, and toolbox couldn’t really take advantage of being on Unix… Kind of where carbon fit in the OS X history.
A/UX almost feels like the much needed ‘posix’ checkbox of us government sales contracts to get mac’s (and windows nt even!) onto government workstations. Oh sure it’s an apple but it runs Unix! It has real passwords, and NFS etc etc.. and can run MS Word!…
April 7, 2014 at 7:54 pm
It wasn’t hard to port but there was no market for it. A/UX wasn’t popular with “regular” Mac users/consumers at all. It was marketed and used on Apple server like the Workgroup Server. It saw no deployment beyond a server room. With move to PPC Apple decided to sell re-branded IBM RS/6000 as Apple Network Server, which ran IBM AIX.
I blame demise of A/UX on an average Mac user who not so much didn’t care about the fact that it was Unix underneath but they were simply afraid of it. It also booted much slower and used much more resources. Simply no benefits on a desktop.
April 8, 2014 at 1:59 am
Yeah you really needed a Quadra with at least 64MB of ram and a 500MB disk to get it going. Which was considered a ‘big ass’ machine back in the day.
Meanwhile, OS 7.0.1 needed what? 4MB of disk space, and 4MB of ram? 6.0.8 needed 1MB of ram, and 1MB of disk space, tops?
avatar Peter Godwin
April 8, 2014 at 2:34 am
Not unlike NT at the time as well 😉
It’s lost to history now, but I’d love to know if it was even a consideration to persue A/UX beyond the ‘POSIX’ tick while they were mucking around with Pink/Blue/Taligent/Copland? Swap SysV out for NuKernel or any number of the projects they had going at the time…
The funny thing is that ended up more or less in the same place with Rhapsody/OS X Server/OS X by the end – albeit with a much nicer API!