MORPH OPERATING SYSTEM is an Amiga-compatible computer operating system. It is a mixed proprietary and open source OS produced for the Pegasos PowerPC processor based computer, PowerUP accelerator equipped Amiga computers, and a series of Freescale development boards that use the Genesi firmware including the EFIKA and mobileGT. It is the first operating system that has delivered on its promise to provide a native Amiga-compatible PowerPC operating system.
The project started in 1999, based on the Quark microkernel. The earliest versions of MorphOS ran only via PPC accelerator cards on the Amiga computers, and required portions of AmigaOS to fully function. A collaborative effort between the companies bPlan (of which the lead MorphOS developer is a partner) and Thendic-France in 2002 resulted in the first regular, non-prototype production of bPlan-engineered Pegasos computers capable of running MorphOS or Linux. A busy promotional year followed in 2003, with appearances at conventions and exhibitions in several places around the world, including CES in Las Vegas. Thendic-France had financial problems and folded; however, the collaboration continued under the new banner of "Genesi". After some bitter disagreements within the MorphOS development team in 2003 and 2004 culminating with accusations by a MorphOS developer that he and others had not been paid, the Ambient desktop interface was released under GPL and is now actively developed by the Ambient development team. Subject to GPL rules, Ambient continues to be included in the commercial MorphOS product. An alternative MorphOS desktop system is Scalos. On April 1, 2008 the MorphOS team announced that MorphOS 2.0 would be released within Q2/2008. This promise was only kept by a few seconds, with the release of MorphOS 2.0 occurring on June 30, 2008 23:59 CET. MorphOS 2 is commercially available at a price of 150 EUR per machine (111,11 EUR as a special promotion within the first two weeks of its release). A fully functional demo of MorphOS is available, but without a keyfile, its speed is decreased significantly after 30 minutes of use.
Characteristics and versions
Developed for PowerPC processors from Freescale and IBM while supporting the original AmigaOS MC680x0 applications via proprietary task-based emulation, and most AmigaOS/PPC applications via API wrappers. It is API compatible with AmigaOS 3.1 and has a GUI based on MUI. Besides the Pegasos version of MorphOS, there is a version for Amiga computers equipped with PowerUP accelerator cards produced by Phase5. This version is free, although it does slow down after each two hour session if it has not been registered. Registration is free. PowerUP MorphOS was most recently updated on 23 February 2006; however, it does not exceed the feature set or advancement of the Pegasos release.
ABox is an emulation sandbox featuring a PPC native AmigaOS API clone that is binary compatible with both 68k Amiga applications and both PowerUP and WarpOS formats of Amiga PPC executables. ABox is based in part on AROS Research Operating System. ABox includes Trance JIT code translator for 68k native Amiga applications.
• AHI — audio interface: 6.7
• Ambient desktop — the default MorphOS desktop, inspired by Workbench and Directory Opus 1.43 • CyberGraphX — graphics interface originally developed for Amiga computers: 5.1 • Magic User Interface—primary GUI toolkit: 4.0
• Poseidon (USB stack)— the Amiga USB stack developed by Chris Hodges • TurboPrint— the printing system
• TinyGL—OpenGL implementation and Warp3D compatibility is featured via RAVE low-level API: V 51 • Quark—manages the low level systems
MorphOS can run any system friendly Amiga software written for 68k processors. It also provides compatibility layer for PowerUP and WarpUP software...