1. Computers
  2. Display Drivers
  3. Graphics Cards
  4. Memory
  5. Motherboards
  6. Processors
  7. Software
  8. Storage
  9. Operating Systems


Facebook RSS Twitter Twitter Google Plus


Phoronix Test Suite

OpenBenchmarking.org

Major ReactOS Release: Themes, Shell, ACPI, WiFi

Operating Systems

Published on 07 February 2012 07:07 PM EST
Written by Michael Larabel in Operating Systems
16 Comments

ReactOS, the open-source operating system project that's been aspiring to be Microsoft Windows NT binary compatible for more than a decade, is out with a major release -- the first in nearly one year.

ReactOS 0.3.13 was released in March of 2011 while coming out today is ReactOS 0.3.14. For those not familiar with (or have since forgotten about) ReactOS it's the free software operating system project that tries to be binary compatible with applications and device drivers targeting Microsoft Windows NT 5.x and later (what is effectively Microsoft Windows 2000 and beyond).

With it being almost a year since the last release, it brings forward the work done during last year's Google Summer of Code plus a whole lot more. Besides new features, there's nearly 800 bug-fixes (more than 100 of which were regression fixes), including a fix for nearly a decade-old issue of PrintScreen not working.

Below are some of the prominent ReactOS 0.3.14 features as mentioned on the news announcement page.

- ReactOS can finally handle Windows themes. With this new release, Windows XP-based themes can be installed to customize the operating system's user-interface and shell.

- WiFi/WLAN network drivers can now be installed and function correctly. This WiFi network driver support within the ReactOS kernel does incolde the ability to join WEP-encrypted wireless networks.

- Another ReactOS network improvement is the LwIP networking driver. LwIP is a new TCP/IP driver that's said to significally improve network performance, stability, and presents an eventual upgrade path to IPv6.

- The Advanced Configuration and Power Interface (ACPI) is now enabled automatically when the ACPI Hardware Abstraction Layer is used.

- ReactOS, including its kernel, can now be built from MSVC (Microsoft Studio Visual C++). The MSVCC-produced binaries will boot and function correctly. Previous building ReactOS had to be done using the GCC tool-chain, but now it can be done using Microsoft's tool-chain too.

- DMA Scatter/Gather operations are now supported to improve compatibility with network drivers.

- The shell32 library has been rewritten in C++ and brings various improvements.

- Special pool support is in place to guard against misuses of kernel pool memory.

Meanwhile, the Wine project is gearing up to release Wine 1.4 for their binary support of Windows applications under Linux and other operating systems.

About The Author
Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com and founded the web-site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience and being the largest web-site devoted to Linux hardware reviews, particularly for products relevant to Linux gamers and enthusiasts but also commonly reviewing servers/workstations and embedded Linux devices. Michael has written more than 10,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics hardware drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and OpenBenchmarking.org automated testing software. He can be followed via and or contacted via .
Latest Linux Hardware Reviews
  1. AMD R600g/RadeonSI Performance On Linux 3.16 With Mesa 10.3-devel
  2. Intel Pentium G3258 On Linux
  3. SilverStone Precision PS10
  4. ASRock Z97 Extreme6
Latest Linux Articles
  1. KVM Benchmarks On Ubuntu 14.10
  2. X.Org Server 1.16 Officially Released With Terrific Features
  3. Ubuntu With Linux 3.16 Smashes OS X 10.9.4 On The MacBook Air
  4. Preview: Benchmarking CentOS 7.0 & Scientific Linux 7.0
Latest Linux News
  1. FreeBSD Developing A New Automounter, Other Features
  2. Guix 0.7 Can Now Install The GNU Operating System
  3. X.Org Foundation Still Works Towards Becoming An SPI Project
  4. Open-Source AMD Hawaii Support Should Now Be Working!
  5. KDE Developers Continue Working Toward Wayland Support
  6. Ubuntu 14.04.1 LTS Released
  7. Linux Developers Jump Quickly On ACPI 5.1, Helps Out ARM
  8. Pkg 1.3.0 Released To Improve Package Management On FreeBSD
  9. GOG.com Officially Starts Rolling Out Linux Games
  10. Fedora 21 Has Been Delayed By Three Weeks
Latest Forum Discussions
  1. Updated and Optimized Ubuntu Free Graphics Drivers
  2. AMD "Hawaii" Open-Source GPU Acceleration Still Not Working Right
  3. Radeon related kernel bug??
  4. how the US intellegentia operates:
  5. AMD Publishes Open-Source Linux HSA Kernel Driver
  6. Next-Gen OpenGL To Be Announced Next Month
  7. Open-Source Radeon Performance Boosted By Linux 3.16
  8. Remote gui not accessible in Phoronix Test Suite 5.2