The ReactOS team wants your money

The ReactOS Foundation has recently announced its 2012 fundraising campaing: the team that wants to create a free and alternative operating system that is “binary compatible” with the Windows XP and Windows 2003 environments and is seeking money to speed up the OS development.

ReactOS is now almost ready to transit from the “alpha” stage into the “beta” phase of its development, the Foundation explains, but work on its several parts (kernel, GUI, APIs and so on) is slowed down by the fact that the main developers still have a daily work and “real life obligations” to meet outside of the project.

Maybe inspired by all this Kickstarter-driven donation frenzy going on lately, the ReactOS Foundation has decided to devote its 2012 fundraising campaign to something different and “grander” compared to the previous years’ campaigns: collect money to “formally hire as many core developers as possible”, so that they will be able to “transform a hobby into a job so they can dedicate all of their time to the ReactOS project”.

While the previous fundraising efforts led to setting up and constant refining of an “industry-grade infrastructure” for ReactOS development, this time the Foundation will try to speedup things and “make ReactOS into a true competitor and alternative for computer users worldwide”.

At the time of writing, the fundraising campaign has just begun with 729 of the projected 30,000 dollars collected overall: the ReactOS Foundation accepts donations via PayPal (USD or EUR), Flattr, wire transfer or even BitCoin.

Report a problem with article
Previous Story

Ghost Recon live-action short to debut Thursday

Next Story

Apple's $304 million Austin campus approved

42 Comments

Commenting is disabled on this article.

Those of you in this thread dismissing ReactOS as things like "Windows ME 2" just don't get it.
Refer back to my previous 2 messages in this thread, and you should also read the first and
especially the second paragraph on the front page of the ReactOS website.

If after that, you still disagree (or you just don't bother) then ignorance is bliss for you.

DJGM said,
Those of you in this thread dismissing ReactOS as things like "Windows ME 2" just don't get it.
Refer back to my previous 2 messages in this thread, and you should also read the first and
especially the second paragraph on the front page of the ReactOS website.

If after that, you still disagree (or you just don't bother) then ignorance is bliss for you.


New software is going to be mostly incompatible with XP.
ReactOS aims to be binary compatible with XP.
Thus, ReactOS will never be useful for people who can afford Windows.

DJGM said,
Those of you in this thread dismissing ReactOS as things like "Windows ME 2" just don't get it.
Refer back to my previous 2 messages in this thread, and you should also read the first and
especially the second paragraph on the front page of the ReactOS website.

If after that, you still disagree (or you just don't bother) then ignorance is bliss for you.

As an OS engineer for over 20 years, I do take a bit of offense at your reductive assessment of my analogy.

I have been working with OS models and kernel technologies before NT itself existed, and have a pretty solid grasp of the 'technologies' that relate directly to this subject.

As for calling ReactOS, WinME, I admit there is a bit of hyperbole, as ReactOS is not as limited as the kernel technology in Win9x; however, it is NOT anywhere near the level of kernel technology that NT itself employs.

There is a reason why the WinME analogy does have some validity, as it was a pure monolithic x86 assembly kernel technology that was built around the Win32 kernel. And like ReactOS wants to be, WinME was binary compatible with most XP Win32 as software as well.

Win32 is NOT NT, and is just one client subsystem that uses its own Win32 kernel that sits on top of NT. So replicating an Win32 OS, would be much like recreating WinME.

ReactOS is barely more than a Win32 OS project, and is nothing like NT or Windows XP itself. There is such a large discrepancy in the level of functionality and technology being cobbled together to make ReactOS work that when people compare it to NT it is almost sad to see anyone correlate the technologies in the same context.

How about a non-WinME analogy?

The ReactOS project is like watching children recreate a space shuttle with 1800s technology and working really hard to get the steam engine working well to shoot people into the sky.

ReactOS is not even a good educational exercise, as an educator can obtain from Microsoft access to portions of NT's code for educational purposes. With a lot of information from Microsoft on the technologies of NT and why it is very much NOT like any other OS model or kernel technology, and what advantages this provides.

If you want to debate OS model and OS kernel technologies, I would gladly engage, but just offering no information with a condescending dismissal is not a debate or even a real argument.

sala said,
I would rather see better Wine integration onto Linux.

Amen to that! It's good for running foobar2000 and other small programs I prefer. More advanced programs like MS Office...not so much. Foobar2k under WINE = Best Linux music player ever

Only 10 years behind. Well since they're still not stable I guess it'll end up being loser to 15, and still falling further behind by the day.

ReactOS as an idea is awesome -- Think of it as the next FreeDOS but Windows-based.

Yeah, we're all able to afford Win7 licences and such but in remote 3rd world countries you need a low-cost solution that people can get educated on. At least ReactOS resembles Windows. Also it could be an awesome thing for students to run on their PCs at home instead of pirating Windows.

If this can run on a Raspberry Pi then its even better.

Linux was never designed to be an alternative to Windows (ok if you go back far enough it wasn't designed to be anything, but still), rather it was designed as an alternative to UNIX.

ReactOS is meant to be an alternative to Windows and that's why it's important. Yes, the project is in the early stages now but once it gets a bit more stable (and definitely when it becomes usable as a daily OS), interest in it will pick up and development will accelerate.

Yeah I don't see much sense in remaking a 3rd party version of an operating system that was a) crap to use, b) not secure and c) only fast because it was made so long ago that hardware had surpassed it years ago.

I think that having a 3rd party Windows compatible OS is a great idea, I just don't see why anyone would get it instead of real Windows if it's just a replica of an old OS rather than an actual improvement also in the UI department. Not to mention Win Vista and newer have tons of things under the hood that are done better. If XP is the starting point, then they'll quickly run into the issue that certain programs simply won't work because they're made to use for example the GPU acceleration features Vista, 7 etc have.

Really?

Take a brilliant kernel and OS model and replicate it using older and less functional technologies borrowed from the *nix world.

If Microsoft was STUPID they would have built NT like ReactOS back in 1992, instead the developers threw out the obstructive and less functional generic *nix concepts and started fresh at the OS model and a created a HIGHLY flexible/adaptable kernel design that still is hard to define properly, as it is not monolithic, microkernel, nor a traditional Hybrid like XNU/OS X.

The kernel model of NT alone is why Windows Vista/7 can handle GPU virtualization/ scheduling, preemptive multitasking all added with a fully new WDM/WDDM video model that required virtually NO Kernel changes to the OS, as the NT kernel was able to add GPU scheduling inherently because of how it is designed. (BTW Something NO other OS can still do with GPU and GP-GPU threads/processes.)


Locking Windows XP to a Win32 only subsystem based OS would effectively be WinME.
If you love WinME, I apologize and more power to build a monolithic unsecured OS.

However if you don't, do you get why this is a bad idea?


(Yay! Donate to WinME 2.0... The reason WinME was 'problematic' was Microsoft was trying to strap NT level technologies on an aged kernel design, that ironically is very close to what the ReactOS team is building.

thenetavenger said,
Really?

Take a brilliant kernel and OS model and replicate it using older and less functional technologies borrowed from the *nix world.

If Microsoft was STUPID they would have built NT like ReactOS back in 1992, instead the developers threw out the obstructive and less functional generic *nix concepts and started fresh at the OS model and a created a HIGHLY flexible/adaptable kernel design that still is hard to define properly, as it is not monolithic, microkernel, nor a traditional Hybrid like XNU/OS X.

The kernel model of NT alone is why Windows Vista/7 can handle GPU virtualization/ scheduling, preemptive multitasking all added with a fully new WDM/WDDM video model that required virtually NO Kernel changes to the OS, as the NT kernel was able to add GPU scheduling inherently because of how it is designed. (BTW Something NO other OS can still do with GPU and GP-GPU threads/processes.)


Locking Windows XP to a Win32 only subsystem based OS would effectively be WinME.
If you love WinME, I apologize and more power to build a monolithic unsecured OS.

However if you don't, do you get why this is a bad idea?


(Yay! Donate to WinME 2.0... The reason WinME was 'problematic' was Microsoft was trying to strap NT level technologies on an aged kernel design, that ironically is very close to what the ReactOS team is building.

Your the reason and type of people that would not allow advancements to be made by people. No offence but I am sure people would agree!!

I will donate now that I saw this as I have always had a keen interest in ReactOS, Good ob guys for keeping it alive thus far and not just factioning it off!

Shahrad said,

Your the reason and type of people that would not allow advancements to be made by people. No offence but I am sure people would agree!!

A reimplementation of XP is no advancement...

MFH said,

A reimplementation of XP is no advancement...

... Why try and clone dinosaurs?! They failed natural selection. No point in recreating them...

Sometimes recreating something (and sharing the knowledge) is the first step to advancement.

GreenMartian said,

... Why try and clone dinosaurs?! They failed natural selection. No point in recreating them...

Sometimes recreating something (and sharing the knowledge) is the first step to advancement.

it took them 14 years to reach the level they on right now... and that's not much - no offense to the team, I value their work but the re-creation of a more than 10 year old, outdated OS is not an advancement and not a step towards it - its just a dead end

even so, an OS needs promotion to reach any kind of success which clearly can't be done in case of ReactOS

im sorry, but this is good work and money down the drain... if you want an XP, stick to an XP - you had 10 years of opportunity to buy one

Shahrad said,

Your the reason and type of people that would not allow advancements to be made by people. No offence but I am sure people would agree!!

I will donate now that I saw this as I have always had a keen interest in ReactOS, Good ob guys for keeping it alive thus far and not just factioning it off!

Advancement is not recreating a current technology using older methodologies.

How does this make sense to you, in any logic pattern of thought?

Based on YOUR thinking... Let us advanced the world and recreate DOS using punch cards...

Cause that will 'be such a great advancement'...

Really?

Shadrack said,
Anyone remember Lindows? http://www.neowin.net/news/lindows-30-announced-anyone

Yeah, me either.

Aside from the fact that Lindows (later Linespire) had the word "windows" amalgamated into its name, the two projects are/were entirely different. Lindows was, basically, linux aimed at people familliar with Windows.
ReactOS, on the other hand, is a binary-compatible alternative to windows. That means windows programs should run on it, not to mention windows drivers - a key element that keeps people locked into Windows.
As far as alternatives go, Linux can only go so far - if you need to use a certain piece of hardware or software, there's a chance it won't run on Linux even under WINE, yet ReactOS should be able to (eventually).

goofyinthehead said,

I honestly do not see the reasoning for this at all.
What is the point? Is this a benefit to anyone?


It ultimately aims to be a drop-in replacement for Windows, or one of many free alternatives.
This donation drive gives the ReactOS project the potential to become an operating system
that is fully binary compatible with Windows, built upon completely free open source code.

Choice is good.

has no effect on people who use linux/wine environment... can this be considered open source if they are having you pay for it now? (sounds like donationware now)

rfirth said,

They claim to be big contributors to wine.

good for them. it won't replace wine though - is what i ment.

if they are in eastern europe - at least 3 very very happy workers for a year. easily. maybe more. for programmers that dont have good full time jobs, i am sure they can get 10 happy programmers!!!

For the first time ever, the ReactOS Foundation seeks to go beyond the usual small fundraising campaigns aimed at paying infrastructure expenses. We wish to raise money to formally hire as many core developers as possible, to work on the project they believe in, the project they've been working on, to transform a hobby into a job so they can dedicate all of their time to the ReactOS project.

How many people are they expecting to be able to hire with 30,000 euros?

ZakO said,

How many people are they expecting to be able to hire with 30,000 euros?


That's enough money to keep a Foxconn employee employed for 7.8 years.

Needs to be a LOT more than just a replacement for a dead/dying OS. Development is horribly slow. Maybe, just maybe the donations could speed it along. Not sure I would donate personally. Releasing minor updates over the last decade is hardly indicative of a project on it's way.

KillTheIrishman said,
So if I invest and this is successful do I get some $$$ or stock (if it goes public)?

Donation != investment. Don't worry though, it won't be successful enough to go public.

Good news they're finally looking towards moving from Alpha to beta status with the project.
Even though it's still quite buggy (it is still in Alpha after all) ReactOS has a lot of potential.
Now that Windows XP has got just under 2 years to go before Microsoft switches off it's
life support machine, there's a chance ReactOS could be an ideal drop-in replacement
for all those wishing to stick with Windows XP to the very end.

Tjcrazy said,
On the front page is says Euros, not dollars? Typo?

No -- they're based out of East Europe or Russia if I remember right.

Finally they did it! I will donate, not because I want to see Windows fall, but because I wanna see hor far the React OS team can go.

sanctified said,
Finally they did it! I will donate, not because I want to see Windows fall, but because I wanna see hor far the React OS team can go.

They should open a Kickstarter project.

sanctified said,

They should open a Kickstarter project.

Not sure Microsoft will go for it. The project lives by reverse engineering Windows XP to some extent.

sanctified said,
Finally they did it! I will donate, not because I want to see Windows fall, but because I wanna see hor far the React OS team can go.

ReactOS takes over XP marketshare...I mean Ubuntu....gasp***

shinji257 said,

Not sure Microsoft will go for it. The project lives by reverse engineering Windows XP to some extent.

Not quite right. React OS code was audited by Microsoft, they are clean. They borrow from Wine.