Merry Christmas 2023!

Where all the magic happens

It’s been… a trying year, and unfortunately the nonsensical stuff I had planned to do this year fell through. Sadly all I have is this half baked idea, so I’m sorry but I guess it’s better than nothing?

OS X 10.4.1 / Maklar, a lump of coal

While talking about Mach/XNU and of course how obvious with how ‘easy’ it was to build Darwin 0.3 for i386, I had noticed that the original Marklar 10.4.1 deadmoo image had all up and disappeared from the internet. Obviously, that had to be fixed, and I was able to locate a copy, and upload it to! (merry christmas?!)

Digging around further lead me to this post on, detailing the hardware that Apple used for the Apple Development Transition Kit, and how it was an Intel D915 Pentium 4 board. Neat! So digging around some more and I find this:

Mark Hoekstra’s setup

An entire setup guide by Mark Hoekstra! (RIP). The big takaway here is that if you want the accelerated graphics for the best Marklar experience you need an Intel board with the 915 chipset. Combing through, you can find quite a few boards that used this chipset. I didn’t want to spend a lot of pateron money on this, so I thought I could do it on the cheap. I picked up a Dell 4700 motherboard, and some ‘as is’ 915 boards for their CPU’s and RAM.

I really need to get some SATA cables, I had to pull one out of my AMD64 machine to get this thing going. Which leads to the other issue how to boot this thing?!


I won’t touch much onto it as I couldn’t get any custom menus working at all so the usefulness is super limited, but I setup at home, was able to netboot the board, and dd a deadmoo onto the SATA disk I pulled from the G5 iMac.

Fan pinout for some Dells
Dell 40pin power/IO pinout

On many of these Dell boards there is only one fan jack, so I just made a simple breakout so I could drive some fans & a AIO liquid cooler. Although the dell boards suck when it comes to easy heatsink mounting.

Dell board with fan breakout & something heavy to hold the water block in place

It wasn’t pretty but it did work.

booting up

So yeah it booted up into OS X! It’s super fast. One thing that was always interesting is that running 10.4.1 under VMware or Qemu is that there is a lot of blitting ‘bugs’ that artifacts like crazy. And it does it on real hardware. It was pretty neat to see. Unfortunately there was a long term issus with the board that I didn’t really pay attention to the USB ports.

over-current condition

Even OS X noticed the USB problem

USB in an overcurrent condition.

Since I was using PS/2 peripherals I thought I could just ignore it.


In order for the accelerated video to work you need the Intel 915 chipset with GMA-900 support.

Silicon Image ADD2 card

I do have the PCI-E adapter, the ADD2 card that is apparently needed, but I was copying over some video files and the board suddenly powered off, never to power up again.

buncha dead boards
Dead boards

So in the end, I just had an hour or so running 10.4.1, and now I have 3 processors, about 4GB of RAM, and a box of dead boards. I did get lucky that the 22 GoodBoyPoints (GBP) did refund me the price of the board. So maybe I’ll tackle it again next year.

BOW the gift that keeps on giving

In BOW news, the excellent Win16 emulator WineVDM had enough updates where BOW starts to run. And yes my hammering of Apache does in fact run! I can’t imagine what to really put on a page to make it interesting, but behold

Not sure what to say, BOW on WineVDM on Windows 10

I was going to try to do some DOSBox using Trumpet PPP to a Linux VM to give it internet access this way, but WineVDM is far easier to get working. YAY.

That about wraps it up

Sorry if you were expecting anything cohesive or making sense, but sadly it hasn’t. I’m not sure if pursuing the Marklar thing is worth it, although it was cool.

Merry Christmas 2022!

I’d been working on some stuff this month, but things got a little sidelined. At the same time some fun progress had been made.

I’ve been messing with Hack, along with some progress on some ports that’d never been mainstreamed..

First correct render on the Sinclair QL

I’ll have some more added to that, along with a port of COM, the CP/M emulator to the QL, bridging that fatal application launch gap. Some nearly 40 years too late, but as they say, better late than never.

I’ve also been digging up some older projects and throwing them up on github, along with looking at the SLiRP updates from Debian, and 86Box, and thinking of doing an update for stuff like Cockatrice III. I’ve also started uploading more to preserving stuff like MacMiNT, that was nearly lost from my primary machine being offline. Of course, check out my favourites, maybe some of what I enjoy will be interesting for you.

So since i’ve been messing with 68k ql lately:

Merry Christmas

Maybe ill do a stream. Maybe I won’t I don’t know. Its been a rough year for me and my muse but we’ve made it this far.

Merry Christmas

I had a bunch of stuff in my head for this year. Really. Some 'new' Commodore 64 game reviews. some random g2a action, and just some all around fun. Then my schedule slacked and log4j happened. On the one hand none of the stuff I ran was immediately impacted as it was inward facing. I had already gutted the 'magical nonsensical scripts' t hat kids these days use to deliberaly complicate running simple services. So adding the right flags to disable this crap in the Java runtime was something I could do quickly. Sadly the rest of the organization didn't fare so well.

Things are bad.

But life finds a way.

So in the words of the late George Carlin, Merry Christmas, and try to do the best you can.

Merry Christmas

From my daughter

It’s been a trying year, and despite the HKPF’s best efforts to make it a terrible one, we won’t let them. If anything the events of the year just make family and friends all the more precious, just is our time with them.

There never seems to be enough time in the day to get everything done, and that list of could of, should have builds.. Its tough. In spite of it all I’ve still managed to do my own “out reach” helping kids where I can help with internships, books, food or even a shoulder to cry.

It’s been a trying year. But life, it goes on.

So Merry Christmas to all!

Ultimate Christmas! Ultimate DooM! giveaway!

Nothing says Merry Christmas, like shotguns, demons, and a free trip to hell!

I’ve got 5 extra steam keys, so leave a comment with some way to reach you, and the first five people get a copy of Ultimate Doom! Sorry all five have been claimed!

Feel free to play with GCC 1.27, or the x68000, or don’t forget vintage DooM shovelware of the era to go along for the ride!

And for those who like the vintage, don’t for get that you can revert Ultimate DooM back to version 1.1


Merry Christmas from China!

Well it is that time of the year again!

I’ve been insanely busy at work, and the few hours I do get home I end up spending sleeping

vivo Christmas

Of all things it was some ‘critical update’ nonsense on my phone that suddenly set the mood. As a personal rant I think it is kind of funny that in China we can say “Merry Christmas” without any impunity, nobody threatens my livelyhood just because of uttering two words. Over in the middle kingdom I don’t have to hide behind “seasons greetings” or any of that other PC tripe. Who would have thought 30 years ago that living in some Communist dictatorship would actually be more free. Oh well, it’s more bizarre as I had that blitz trip to the United States where Christmas is all but outlawed by the PC police, and so many Chinese were hoping to see big public displays that just simply don’t exist, just as where I contract for reminded everyone that Christmas is banned in name.

If this were twitter I would no doubt face harsh criticism for writing such a thing, with actual consequences. The ‘tolerant’ left is anything but.

I can only imagine the manufactured outrage over something like the Commodore Christmas demo for the Commodore 64 in these modern ages.

But here, I rent my own server so I can write whatever I please.  Lest we remember in the dawn of “fake news” it really is more so a war on unacceptable news, as we further burrow into our “truth silos” where any option that challenges our world view must be removed.  Naturally people find government censorship of this level intolerable, but oddly enough find no qualms about having corporations do this for them.  And corporations will gladly defend themselves from the ‘fake news’ while serving endless and misleading native ads, as long as consumers keep buying.  It is an interesting shift driven in the media space, as companies struggle to stay relevant in the crybully and offended Olympic age.

I guess if anything I’m still just amazed how big Christmas is in places where I’d never traditionally find it, as the commercial aspects of it are being absorbed in a cargo cult like fashion, but in retrospect in the west 30 years ago Christmas was pretty much a cargo cult holiday, saying and doing the motions for that precious cargo, aka going through the massive catalogs of the time, and hoping  Santa would buy the right thing, which of course for the most part they did not…

So yes, enough of the old man rant, and Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas from Japan!

So yeah, I’ve been crazy busy this holiday season, between work and vacation so updates have . well not been forth coming.

I wanted to touch on old StarWars games for the new movie, and even got to play Star Wars on a x68000!  If it were the 80’s I would super recommend one.  But in this day/age it’s plagued by poor draw distances, poor wire frame 3d, and just poor game play.  It is probably more of a fault with the arcade version that was revolutionary for it’s time, then it rotted and was ported out.  Something like Frontier puts Star Wars to shame on low grade 68000 based hardware.

But the sound, sure was awesome!

I also want to do some passable review of the retro freak!  I picked up one for about $150 USD. It is expensive, there is no doubt about that, and it is emulation.  I also picked up a NES on a chip console clone for about $13 USD.  At the same time I can score a MegaDrive for about 30-40 USD, and 25-30 for a SNES.  Which brings me to an interesting observation:

There is next to NO Mega Drive stuff.  There is far more Saturn, and very few Dreamcast, but I’s seen maybe 15 Mega Drive carts.  Meanwhile I’ve found Famicom/Super Famicom stuff almost everywhere I look.  My favorite is the local chain “Book Off” that almost always has a nice retro section, along with used PS1, PS2, PS3 and PS4 stuff.

Otherwise, I have horrible to non existent internet in the house I rented (it is like the yacht in Hong Kong from a few years back), so I’ve been forced to spend my time in internet cafes for 12+ hours a day.

Oh yeah, Tokyo is just like London.  After 6pm, everyone goes home, the stores close, and there is nothing open.  After 10 the trains stop and that is that.

While I’m on the subject of living in the future, and working physically wherever, the Microsoft Surface is a HORRIBLE HORRIBLE thing.  Granted I didn’t pay for this one, but it’s wifi chip is utter crap, it is prone to locking hard, and the kickstand and detachable keyboard is a JOKE.  I know Balmer wanted in on the iPad action, and then the Surface RT, eventually became just another PC, but damn a laptop this is not.  The only nice thing I can say is that it boots fast.  Which is something you’ll be doing lots of.  The fan is noisy and distracting, the display is OK, but nothing fancy in this modern age.

I currently had to go out and buy 2 USB Ethernet adapters and bridge the cafe’s internet so I could connect this POS.  I give the Microsoft Surface Pro v3 a 1/5*.  AVOID DO NOT BUY.

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas!

In the “neato” section, I did find an eval copy of Citrix.  And a NIB quality box of Postal 2!  I didn’t know there was any updates so that was a surprise.  But now I see it is on sale over on Steam, for $7.50 Hong Kong Dollars.  I would do some give away but I also found out that my account got converted. YAY.

steam is now in HKD

Steam is now priced in Hong Kong Dollars!

Which means I cannot give anything away as apparently I now live in a poorer area and get subsidized games. I guess that is to make up for censored and restricted catalogs.

So yeah, I am alive.


Crazy to think that 2016 is literally around the corner!

Belated Merry Christmas!

Sorry things have been busy @ Home & Work.

I had been thinking about doing something special for the holidays but looking around it’s a little too late.

So instead here is something nerdy from my youth, the Commodore Christmas demo diskette..   When I was lucky enough to get a C64 along with a 1541 in 1983, this was one of the bundled diskettes.

At the time I never realized how lucky I was to have the floppy drive, so many poor Europeans with their tape drives.

I hope it’s been a good holiday for everyone!

Merry Christmas!

Wow this year has been quite a personal ride for me.  From a bad 2012, to a seeming uncertain 2013 where I not only found my love but also found a new home in a new continent.

Through it all I’ve kept the blog up and going.  I’ve changed VPS providers a few times, to now living out the dream on dedicated hardware.

As this year draws to the end, Id like to thank regular users for sticking around just as I’d like to thank new users for taking a look at my mis-adventures through the years.

I’m really looking forward to next year, and the endless possibilities.