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Thread: Why does the OS have to be loaded ?

  1. #1
    Senior Member Pablo's Avatar
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    Default Why does the OS have to be loaded ?

    Hi all,

    A simple question and I guess that I may be left feeling stupid by some short answers, but...

    Given todays technology and the ability to pack many times the address space into ROM's than say 10 years ago,

    Why can't computers run the way the Commodore/Amiga computers used to where the OS (workbench) was in ROM

    Back then, the chip (workbench 1.1 or 1.3 or 2) was simply a ROM upgrade,
    the rest that was needed for programs was loded with the program.

    My main question I guess is, of all the things that is loaded for windows to run, is it all needed ?

    Can what is needed to run windows be crammed into one of todays ROMS ?

    Something along the lines of miniPE in ROM.

    Do I make any sense here and am I about to be slammed

    Cheers and thanks for any replies

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Why does the OS have to be loaded ?

    i am also wondering. i wish for instant boot up OS

  3. #3

    Default Re: Why does the OS have to be loaded ?

    THere were plans to have like 10+gb of flash memory for the OS so that it boots up superfast. Solidstate memory is still pretty expensive though. Maybe soon? I know they sell those PCI cards that can take DDR ram and use them as a small but super fast harddrive for I/O intenseive applications. The drawback is that its volatile and needs power to retain the info. The builtin battery only lasts for a few hours IIRC.
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  4. #4
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    Default Re: Why does the OS have to be loaded ?

    actually hor, if u use notebook, can just close the lid and the next time u wanna use, just open the lid, and it restores instantly, like less than 2 sec.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Why does the OS have to be loaded ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Paul_Yeo View Post
    actually hor, if u use notebook, can just close the lid and the next time u wanna use, just open the lid, and it restores instantly, like less than 2 sec.
    Can wat... just set the close lid function to standby loh.

    That's what I do for my lappy.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Pablo's Avatar
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    Default Re: Why does the OS have to be loaded ?

    Hi Paul_Yeo and raptor84,

    Yes Paul I am glad that I am not the only one that wonders about instant boot of OS.

    As you say raptor84, plans for a 10GB+ flash memory. But my question is, does the OS have to be so BIG

    Do we need to load it all to be up and running ?

    I can't say that I know what size ROM's are at present "and I am saying ROM's not flash memory",

    but surely the OS can be reduced to 1GB and put into 1 or 2 ROMS.

    The computer will be up and running within seconds rather than minutes.

    As programs are needed "clicking an icon" the extra required is loaded at that time. Not beforehand.

    OH by the way, if there is an upgrade to windows, you "flash" the ROM

    Cheers

  7. #7

    Default Re: Why does the OS have to be loaded ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Pablo View Post
    Hi all,

    A simple question and I guess that I may be left feeling stupid by some short answers, but...

    Given todays technology and the ability to pack many times the address space into ROM's than say 10 years ago,

    Why can't computers run the way the Commodore/Amiga computers used to where the OS (workbench) was in ROM

    Back then, the chip (workbench 1.1 or 1.3 or 2) was simply a ROM upgrade,
    the rest that was needed for programs was loded with the program.

    My main question I guess is, of all the things that is loaded for windows to run, is it all needed ?

    Can what is needed to run windows be crammed into one of todays ROMS ?

    Something along the lines of miniPE in ROM.

    Do I make any sense here and am I about to be slammed

    Cheers and thanks for any replies
    I'm thinking of PDA WM5 technology... pretty cool and fast.

    But it's a severely limited OS for a desk top applications.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Why does the OS have to be loaded ?

    very ex to implement rom...nt many ppl will 1 to pay for the premium...to implement is oso to change the standard of mainboard...this will take a very long time to b implemented...
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  9. #9

    Default Re: Why does the OS have to be loaded ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Pablo View Post
    Hi Paul_Yeo and raptor84,

    Yes Paul I am glad that I am not the only one that wonders about instant boot of OS.

    As you say raptor84, plans for a 10GB+ flash memory. But my question is, does the OS have to be so BIG

    Do we need to load it all to be up and running ?

    I can't say that I know what size ROM's are at present "and I am saying ROM's not flash memory",

    but surely the OS can be reduced to 1GB and put into 1 or 2 ROMS.

    The computer will be up and running within seconds rather than minutes.

    As programs are needed "clicking an icon" the extra required is loaded at that time. Not beforehand.

    OH by the way, if there is an upgrade to windows, you "flash" the ROM

    Cheers
    There's some (but limited) products that combined HDD and flash memory to allow part of the data to reside in flash. Plans are in pipeline to put OS on flash memory.... it still boils down to $$$ and business risk.

  10. #10

    Default Re: Why does the OS have to be loaded ?

    First of all ROM stand for Read Only Memory, anything that Write on it will not able to be erase. Now, if you put you "whole Window" onto ROM, not only the size is big (for some maybe said few hundreds MBs of ROM is cheap), but the problem with it is it is not upgradeable. With the buggy Win XP, which need to have security, critical update very few weeks, or every week. Now, if you use ROM then, you will have to change the ROM every week or few weeks. Anyone want to pay for that?

    However, the good news (or maybe bad news) is the next generation of windows (Windows Vista) can load with flash, and support flash hybrids hard drive. So, it is doing exactly want you have in mind.

  11. #11
    Senior Member Pablo's Avatar
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    Default Re: Why does the OS have to be loaded ?

    Quote Originally Posted by dreamerz View Post
    very ex to implement rom...nt many ppl will 1 to pay for the premium...to implement is oso to change the standard of mainboard...this will take a very long time to b implemented...

    Hi dreamerz,

    I see your point about costs and have to agree to some point.

    Yet I see many mainboard manufacturers and they often completely re design them.

    Actually, I have mentioned ROM's but actually should have said EEPROMS.

    OK, so it is likely out of the scope of Microsoft to re invent everything.

    And we have Linux, but that loads the same way .....

    So, why not another OS platform that is indepently built from the knowledge of both.

    In simple terms (and this is a vague guess here), to design the mother board for such a system should not

    be much more than having the EEPROMS at a point on the motherboard where one might put on board HD cache

    Stop me if I am getting to far streached in my thinking

  12. #12
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    Default Re: Why does the OS have to be loaded ?

    i guess that's why the ROM OS are no longer around.. cos it didn't work out?

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    Senior Member Pablo's Avatar
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    Default Re: Why does the OS have to be loaded ?

    Quote Originally Posted by griffin View Post
    First of all ROM stand for Read Only Memory, anything that Write on it will not able to be erase. Now, if you put you "whole Window" onto ROM, not only the size is big (for some maybe said few hundreds MBs of ROM is cheap), but the problem with it is it is not upgradeable. With the buggy Win XP, which need to have security, critical update very few weeks, or every week. Now, if you use ROM then, you will have to change the ROM every week or few weeks. Anyone want to pay for that?

    However, the good news (or maybe bad news) is the next generation of windows (Windows Vista) can load with flash, and support flash hybrids hard drive. So, it is doing exactly want you have in mind.

    Hi griffin,

    Just read your post after writing my last one.

    Interesting point you mentioned regarding Vista. I will look further into that !

    You may notice that I corrected my self about (ROM) where as I had been thinking in terms of EEPROMS.

    EEPROMS being "electrically erasable programmable read only memory".

    I used to have a programmer back in the days of Amiga's and would re-write some of the code and burn it into an EEPROM

    then replace the workbench ROM with that "custom OS "

    Cheers

  14. #14

    Default Re: Why does the OS have to be loaded ?

    EEPROM will not be a good solution if you need to write repeatably. If I not wrong you only can write like 10K time on EEPROM. After that it will lost it ability to store information. Therefore Flash is much better that EEPROM for this propose.

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    Default Re: Why does the OS have to be loaded ?

    think got those Linux that can boot from CDROM and thumb drive (without need to install), so booting from ROM/EPROM/flash shld be possible?

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    Default Re: Why does the OS have to be loaded ?

    I guess cost is the most limiting factor. Our ROM now is at best 2mb. Can't imagine how much you need to pay for a 10G ROM. The best option is to get a better power supply and never shut your com down

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    Default Re: Why does the OS have to be loaded ?

    i'm waiting for MRAM technology to mature.. non-volatile storage with RAM access speeds.. based on spin electron technologies

    instant ON computers will no longer be a dream.

    In this case of 'instant on'. the computer really shuts down and consumes no power ie: even if you unplug from mains and plug it in again.. it turns on immediately!
    Last edited by yanyewkay; 8th January 2007 at 10:13 PM.

  18. #18

    Default Re: Why does the OS have to be loaded ?

    Who said its not ?

    But it will be VERY HARD to maintain for average user as when a flashy hardware is out [video card,sound card etc etc], you will have headache making the ROM for it to update and write to the kernel.

    ROM'ed OS normally are for a controlled environment device ie robotics arm in manufacturing plant [ ps : BMW Germany still run their robot arm with customised Win95 ]

    A sample of one is your PDA OS. Its ROM based, but any low level driver update == reflashing the ROM

  19. #19

    Default Re: Why does the OS have to be loaded ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Splutter View Post
    I guess cost is the most limiting factor. Our ROM now is at best 2mb. Can't imagine how much you need to pay for a 10G ROM. The best option is to get a better power supply and never shut your com down
    I saw the die size of EEPROM before, it is not really big (I see it before, my ex-company produce it). If there are demand for it they will have no problem producing it. Beside, you don't need 10GB to store WIN xp. (if Win Xp need 10GB, the mob will burn the Redmond to ground ).

    Cost is just one, but not the main factor ROM/EEPROM is not used. As I said before, you only can reporgram it limited number of time. That will shorten the life of computer and it is not acceptable.

  20. #20
    Senior Member Pablo's Avatar
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    Default Re: Why does the OS have to be loaded ?

    Hi all that have contributed to my question so far.

    Many interesting views and I have learned some interesting things from you.

    Such as I was not aware of MRAM and will have to read up about it.

    b18 (kangaroo land hey ?) what part ?....

    Anyway as you mentioned reguarding the point of say adding a new graphics card ....

    If windows was based in as I mentioned EEPROM, it would load up in a couple of seconds,
    whilst doing so it would access the hard drive and load required drivers.

    Going back to the Amiga days (quite a while ago so forgive me for mistakes), if I remember there was on the hard drive....

    C: the directory that held common used programs.
    Devs:
    Libs:
    S:

    If I remember Devs: had the drivers for connected hardware and was accessed whilst the ROM was booting.

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