RISC OS on Raspberry Pi


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by everslick » Fri Jun 15, 2012 8:26 am
Am I right in assuming, that the BASIC VI interpreter could be benefit from FP hardware a lot?
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by trevj » Fri Jun 15, 2012 11:35 am
Here's a relevant thread on the ROOL forum. https://www.riscosopen.org/forum/forums/1/topics/693

(When's the hyperlink colour going to be changed so they stand out from surrounding text without needing to show ugly URLs?)
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by theom » Fri Jun 15, 2012 7:50 pm
BBC BASIC VI (aka 'BASIC64'), which is the standard BASIC V interpreter but modified to use floating point instructions rather than FP calculations with integer instructions, would benefit... if you modified it to use VFP rather than FPU instructions. That doesn't look too hard... the BASIC V/BASIC VI difference appears to be a compile-time flag. The relevant source files are fp.s and fp2.s. Those just have routines that either call an FP instruction, or emulate it. So rewriting those to use VFP instructions probably wouldn't take too long and would have decent speed benefits.

Use of VFP instructions in the assembler environment embedded in BASIC works, but is something different.
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by svrsig » Sat Jun 16, 2012 5:18 pm
Although RISC OS on the Pi is still really 'pre-alpha' you can see what a RISC OS distro might look like. This is a zipped 2Gbyte SD card image which is just 38 Mbytes in size and should be unzipped (using WinZip ot 7zip) and then written to an SD card using Win32DI.

The Pi should then start up in RISC OS command line within 6 seconds from power on.

The code within RISCOS which operates the SD Card filing system is rather new and only works with some cards (hence the 'pre-alpha' warning) but if you choose the right card then you can type:
*SDFS
*Exec Run_Me
and you will get a fully functioning RISC OS desktop with working networking (using DHCP) after only another 20 seconds with the necessary boot structure held within the RAM filing system.

This is really just an unofficial taster as the bottom 5% of the screen is currently cut off (this is being worked on) and the desktop display is currently fixed at 1920x1080 so you need a monitor that can display at that resolution. Also there's no tutorial yet but there is a little free software.

Here's the pre-ALPHA distro: http://www.svrsig.org/RISCOS_Distro.zip

Have fun!
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by xChris » Sat Jun 16, 2012 5:48 pm
The resolution is 'fixed' to 1920x1080, but as I see its possible to use the RISCOS
with a monitor that has lower resolution than this. I recently got new hdmi->dvi-d cable (as the old one was a bit problematic) so I use the following config.txt with the RISCOS:

hdmi_drive=2
hdmi_group=2
hdmi_mode=39
framebuffer_ignore_alpha=1

My monitor's native resolution is 1360x768 (18.9"), when I boot the RISCOS the fonts are small, but easy to read.
I also played with other hdmi parameters but in vain..
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by DavidS » Sun Jun 17, 2012 1:33 am
Cool; Now I will have 4 non-n*x Operating Systems to play with as soon as I get my R-Pi.

And I have always loved RISC OS (it is pure simplicity, the type of OS a team of 4 could write in 2 years from the ground up).
ARM Assembly Language: For those that want: Simple, Powerful, Easy to learn, and Easy to debug.
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by pygmy_giant » Sun Jun 17, 2012 1:54 pm
People without PIs aren't necessarily missing much - I've got mine and have been poking about with linux but intend to switch to RISCOS when its fully ported. So really, all I am able to do is stroke it and learn stuff that I'm not sure I will be using in the future.

I am excited about RISCOS because I started on a BBC B and viewed the archimedes with envious eyes and can now own something similar for a fraction of the price!

I'm not deriding Linux as it is well supported and may even switch back to Puppy (once ported) if it can out-perform RISCOS as it runs in RAM - am I right in understanding that RISCOS (partially) runs in RAM also?
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by tobiasax » Sun Jun 17, 2012 7:22 pm
DavidS wrote:Cool; Now I will have 4 non-n*x Operating Systems to play with as soon as I get my R-Pi.


Cool indeed! I'm not very interested to run Linux on my Pi myself, the port of RISC OS and other OS'es is what makes it interesting.

Off Topic: Which are the other three OS'es?
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by trevj » Mon Jun 18, 2012 10:24 am
pygmy_giant wrote:am I right in understanding that RISCOS (partially) runs in RAM also?
There's no virtual memory, and the OS loads into and runs from RAM. Modules adding further functionality also load to RAM. (Theo or someone, please correct/clarify if required!)
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by svrsig » Mon Jun 18, 2012 4:36 pm
am I right in understanding that RISCOS (partially) runs in RAM also?


Puzzled. The Rapsberry Pi only has RAM. Original RISC OS hardware had a ROM in which the operating system sat - in the Pi it allocates itself some RAM and protects it from write access. Other components allocate themselves some RAM but permit write access. Applications load into RAM and are paged into a particular logical address (&8000). Some software sits on disc until/unless you run it But all software is actually running in RAM whether RISC OS or Linux!
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by pygmy_giant » Mon Jun 18, 2012 7:59 pm
Apologies for being vague - my understanding is that Debian Linux has bits in RAM and bits on the SD card which are called as required, whereas Puppy loads COMPLETELY into RAM and is ready to go...

...was wondering which model RISCOS most closely resembles?
Last edited by pygmy_giant on Mon Jun 18, 2012 8:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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by svrsig » Mon Jun 18, 2012 8:01 pm
This is really just an unofficial taster as the bottom 5% of the screen is currently cut off (this is being worked on) and the desktop display is currently fixed at 1920x1080 so you need a monitor that can display at that resolution. Also there's no tutorial yet but there is a little free software.

Here's the pre-ALPHA distro: http://www.svrsig.org/RISCOS_Distro.zip


Distro updated to recover the icon bar and to boot up automatically on power on into the RISC OS GUI desktop with working networking.
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by pygmy_giant » Mon Jun 18, 2012 8:04 pm
fantastic!
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by pygmy_giant » Tue Jun 19, 2012 4:07 pm
Observations from my setup - image does not fit on (my) 2gb card, ok light and power light constantly on - start-up comandline display is teensy weensy and barely readbale - words 'No keyboard present - autobooting' appear after 15 seconds despite there being a keyboard connected. The os then freezes - no change after several minutes.
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by pygmy_giant » Tue Jun 19, 2012 4:11 pm
just thought that this could be due to some homemade circuitry connected to the GPIO pins so disconnected these and re-booted - looks more promising - now got a two tone blue sand-timer....
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by pygmy_giant » Tue Jun 19, 2012 4:20 pm
Still hangs - restarting goes back to the 'No keyboard present - rebooting' prompt where it hangs again - cant get the sand timer back again....? The green light on my keyboard is showing despite the prompt claiming that no keyboard is connected. I am using a siliconpower 16gb class 4 SD card which has successfully run Debian on my PI before reformatting to take this image...
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by helpful » Tue Jun 19, 2012 4:35 pm
Ignore the keyboard warning, it is only complaining that it can't find a PS2 keyboard!

I'm sure that message will be removed by the time the RISC OS Pi build gets out of alpha/beta test.
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by pygmy_giant » Tue Jun 19, 2012 4:42 pm
Debian now running hapily again off same card.
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by higwoth1 » Tue Jun 19, 2012 5:26 pm
re : keyboard error hang.

I also get this appearing a few times. Just power off, wait a little while, then reapply power. If at first you don't succeed...

Also I'm using a 2gb card with no problems, no errors in writing, so it does fit. I use the 'dd' command from a Mac.
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by strawberrytau » Tue Jun 19, 2012 7:27 pm
Just the rainbow screen of death for me - on a Sandisk Class 4 16GB.
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by svrsig » Tue Jun 19, 2012 7:49 pm
Well just in case of doubt, here it is, using a Sandisk Extreme III 2Gbyte SD card. You can see power on at 5 seconds, the RISC OS Supervisor at 15 seconds. It then starts booting from the SD card and by 38 seconds it is waiting for an IP address from the DHCP server and by 45 seconds it has started up into the RISC OS GUI desktop. It boots up a little more quickly if you have a pen drive as it does not need to copy, decompress and move the boot structure.

Here it is in video: http://youtu.be/wdOKjAsZ4Do
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by xxxstarmanxxx » Tue Jun 19, 2012 8:25 pm
Seems one of my 2GB SD cards only has 3862528 sectors available regardless of formatting choice.

The image requires a minimum of 3968055 sectors available so that rules out cheap no name 2GB cards.

In theory your SD card must offer 1.89GB of available formatted writeable space - Cheap 2GB cards won't give you this much space. Sandisk and Kingston most definitely will.

Justin :)
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by vannystick » Tue Jun 19, 2012 9:52 pm
After 5 to 10 minutes of what seems like a hung computer, i get a typical riscos warning message (on a blank grey background) stating
'Machine startup has not completed successfully: 'Failed to load DOS FAT sectors'

I thought this might be to do with the SD card formatting, but formatting as FAT or FAT32 makes no difference. Nor does having a 2gb FAT formatted pen drive installed.

If i hit cancel, i do get a desktop though.

Once into the WIMP environment the pen drive shows as a scsi 'ZIP' drive (dont know if this is normal or not, my RISC PC doesn't have USB!). If i try to do anything with the 'SDFS' drive, everything hangs bar the mouse pointer, i assume this is something to do with the 'Failed to load DOS FAT sectors'.

Well it's a good part of the way there for me, and makes me smile. Just have to get a browser onto it and see if it can see the outside world!
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by svrsig » Wed Jun 20, 2012 7:53 am
After 5 to 10 minutes of what seems like a hung computer, i get a typical riscos warning message (on a blank grey background) stating


I'm afraid the SD card filing system on RISC OS is very very alpha at the moment. If your SD card is one of those that is supported (and the list is only just being put together) then you will find a complete boot structure in the RAMFS after it has booted up. If you format a pen drive under RISC OS (!HForm in $.Utilities.Caution') and copy the contents of the RAM FS onto it then all you need to do is to alter the file '!Boot' on the SD card to say '*SCSI[CR]*Run !Boot' rather than ''*Exec Run_Me' and it will boot from the pen drive rather than the RAMFS/SD card (so long as it can read the file !Boot from the SD card).

If the SD card will not read under RISC OS then you will need to follow the instructions on the RISC OS Open web site to get RISC OS to run. See here:
http://www.riscosopen.org/wiki/documentation/show/Software%20information:%20Development%20%28ROM%20image%29
Last edited by svrsig on Wed Jun 20, 2012 7:58 am, edited 2 times in total.
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by svrsig » Wed Jun 20, 2012 7:57 am
Just have to get a browser onto it and see if it can see the outside world!


When an official download appears it will almost certainly have a browser included (probably Netsurf). Networking is working.
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