I was looking back through some of my old blog
entriestoday and noticed something I had forgotten about. Back in January
of this year, I mentioned how I
had just gotten and installed a copy of eComStation
1.2. I also noticed how I hadnt posted any updates about how Ive been
getting along with it. That should beSOME type of an indication right there I guess.
For those of you that have never heard of it, eComStation, also known as eCS, is
essentially an OEMed version of IBMs OS/2 Warp operating system. Serenity
Systems has updated Warp with a bunch of new features and worked hard to clean
up the code in many places. As an old time Warp user, I looked forward to
installing and using eCS on a regular basis. It installed like a charm and
worked well. Serenity Systems included enough applications for it that it would
serve as a passable Windows replacement operating system. The problem is, I just havent used it verymuch.
I reread that entry and could feel the sense of glee and
anticipation I had about getting the chance to use an updated version of Warp,
but quite frankly, I havent spent more than a week using it after I had itinstalled.
I installed it two places: on an old HP Kayak and on an old
HP Omnibook. Because they were older
units, theyd serve as a good baseline for comparison because OS/2 was
originally designed to run on much less hardware, so eCS should have performed
admirably on them. It did so, andcontinues to do so on the Kayak. Its humming away under my cube right now.
The Omnibook was a different matter entirely. OS/2 never did
work well with notebooks, and even though the base machine runs well, I could
never get the PCMCIA drivers to talk to the network card. In todays world, a
PC without network or Internet access is pretty much a paperweight, which is
what I wound up using the hard drive I installed eCS on the laptop for until Iinstalled Ubuntu Linux over it.
Since then, Ive been using SuSe Linux as my Windows
alternative OS of choice. Its limiting enough using an alt-OS in a Windows network,
and SuSe was just better at doing some things than eCS is. One minor example:
we use YM here at TechRepublic to communicate with each other. SuSe can run
Yahoos client natively. With eCS you had to use a Java program called Jeti
which works with Jabber. There are dozens of other examples where I just had tomake too many compromises to keep using eCS.
So for now, eCS is still installed on one of my
test machines. When I feel truly nostalgic for OS/2, I have that running on a
test machine at home. Even that, I dont think Ive booted in 6 months. For
their part, Serenity Systems is working on a new version of eCS called eComStation
2.0. Where this fits in the grand
scheme of things - Windows Vista, Mac OS
X, Linux, et al - its hard to tell. I might look at 2.0 when it comes out, but
for me, I think Ill save some power and shut off the eCS machine for the lasttime.