Power Mac G5 owners looking for an alternative to Virtual PC may be interested in
announcement release on Wednesday of WinTel v1.0.1. It’s a new version of the open source “Bochs” PC emulator. The new version of WinTel is now accelerated for Power Mac G5s, according to the company.
Bochs is an open source IA-32 PC emulator written in C++. The software’s main purpose is to act as a PC emulator, like Microsoft’s Virtual PC program. It can be used to run operating systems designed for Intel-compatible PCs on non-Intel hardware, and has been used with various flavors of Linux, Unix and Windows. WinTel is OpenOSX’s specific implementation of Bochs aimed at Mac OS X users.
OpenOSX offers a number of open source applications for Mac OS X. The company’s goal is to provide Mac users with popular Unix software “in a friendly, Mac environment.”
WinTel specifically comes with 10 different open source operating systems pre-installed, including various flavors of Linux, FreeBSD and more. OpenOSX noted that it has tested WinTel will Windows 95, 98, 2000, NT 4.0 and XP Professional, although the company does not recommend XP or 2000 because of speed issues. OpenOSX’s WinTel release comes with a single-click installer.
In late August, Microsoft
confirmed with MacCentral
that its Virtual PC emulation software, acquired earlier this year from Connectix Corp., will not work on the Power Mac G5. Users who launch the software on their G5s get an error message noting that the software is incompatible with the CPUs in their Macs.
Microsoft attributed this incompatibility to the G5’s lack of support for pseudo little-endian mode, and said that the software would be updated to support G5s in the future, though the company stopped short of volunteering a schedule for when this will happen.
WinTel is apparently not restricted by this issue, because OpenOSX noted that the new release “delivers increased performance on the new PowerMac G5,” along with newly updated software, added features, and enhanced performance and stability.
A download-only release is available for US$25. OpenOSX also sells WinTel on CD-ROM for $30. Book bundles and 6-month subscriptions are also available. More details can be found on the Web site.