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AmigaOS 4.0

In 2001, Amiga, Inc. licensed the development of AmigaOS 4.0 to AmigaOne Partners, collectively Hyperion VOF and Eyetech Group Ltd. AmigaOS 4.0 moves the Amiga Operating System from the Classic Amiga 68xxx platform to the Power PC platform utilising off-the-shelf components from third party vendors. Under the agreement AmigaOne Partners have the right to distribute AmigaOS 4.0 into the AmigaOne desktop computer market and into Cyberstorm PPC enabled devices. Distribution into any other market or device will require a new licensing and distribution agreement with Amiga, Inc. It is also important to note that the development of future versions of the Amiga Operating System is not available for third party development or distribution, whatever that might mean in real terms.

True to its heritage, AmigaOS 4.0 is small, fast and robust. Over 40,000 applications have been written for devices running AmigaOS, and many, perhaps the majority, will be available for AmigaOS 4.0 users. It was first scheduled for release in December 2004, then December 2005, and then December 2006, obstensibly to ensure that it was stable and contained all of the essential components at release time.

While Alpha versions had been demonstrated since October 2003, the Developer Pre-Release for AmigaOS 4.0 wasn't released on CD until around May 2004, although it took until the end of July to reach New Zealand users. Update 1, together with a U-Boot update, was released in October 2004 that enabled the serial port and fixed many other issues, update 2 was released in January 2005, and update 3 was released in June 2005 that needed the revised U-Boot update released in March 2005. During 2005 it became apparent that new A1 motherboards were no longer available, but releasing AmigaOS 4.0 without hardware to run it on would be a bad idea, so in February 2006 update 4 was released to keep the momentum going until new or alternate hardware could be made available to coincide with the Final release of AmigaOS 4.0. The latter hadn't happened by the end of 2006, but in December 2006 Hyperion released OS4.0 Final Update, whatever that means. Is this the Final or simply update 5? Meanwhile, a version of AmigaOS 4.0 for Cyberstorm PPC has yet to be released, and at this time there is no sign of when this might happen.

Remember that Amiga, Inc. does not distribute or support AmigaOS 4.0. For information on product availability, support, local dealers or resellers, please contact AmigaOne Partners through Hyperion VOF as Eyetech Ltd no longer appears to be trading, and due to legal issues that have arisen between Amiga Inc and Hyperion don't expect much from the latter either. Despite the fact that Amiga Inc have had nothing to do with AmigaOS 4.0 as clearly stated on their website, now that AmigaOS 4.0 Final has been released they want to take the product back again. However, it seems that since very little of the code was actually supplied by Amiga Inc in the first place, and Hyperion and it's developers had to develop their own from scratch, they don't want to give it up without suitable recompense for the labours, although Amiga Inc claim that they have offered $2 million as a settlement, a figure that Hyperion disputes, so the whole future of AmigaOS 4.0 is in limbo until after the court case is settled.

Disclaimer: Amiga Auckland have prepared the above information for the use of its members based on our experiences and as such is subject to revision at any time. Amiga Auckland cannot guarantee any of the information and cannot be held accountable for any issues that may result from using it.

Copyright 2006 Amiga Auckland Inc. All rights reserved.
Revised: December 24, 2006.