ECOMSTATION or ECS is a PC operating system based on
eComStation is a 32-bit operating system which runs exclusively on the x86 processor architecture (real or virtualized ) and is still used as of 2017 .
* 1 Differences between eComStation and
* 2 History
* 2.1 Origins * 2.2 Version 1.0 * 2.3 Version 1.1 * 2.4 Version 1.2 * 2.5 Version 1.2 media refresh (1.2R) * 2.6 Version 2.0 * 2.7 Version 2.1 * 2.8 Current status * 2.9 Summary of releases
* 3 Open source software * 4 A selection of FOSS software for eComStation * 5 Other versions * 6 Hardware requirements * 7 Limitations * 8 References * 9 External links
DIFFERENCES BETWEEN ECOMSTATION AND OS/2
Version 1 of eComStation, released in 2001, was based around the
* IBM-supplied updates of software and components that had shipped
with the 1999 release of
eComStation provided a retail channel for end users to obtain these updates. In addition, from the beginning it bundled a number of additional features and enhancements, including (but not limited to):
* Value-added applications, including the Lotus
suite, IBM's Desktop On-call remote-control software, and more.
* Utilities and drivers licensed from third parties including
scanner support and drivers for multiple serial cards, as well as
enhanced storage drivers developed by Daniela Engert .
* A number of features from
* ACPI support.
* A new generic graphic card driver called Panorama.
* A bootable version of JFS .
* A 'universal' sound card driver based on ALSA .
AHCI support (introduced in version 2.1).
* On-the-fly resizing of hard drive partitions.
* A new client to access
CIFS /SMB (Windows-style) LAN resources
(supporting both files and printers) based upon Samba .
* Ports of current
When it became clear that
On April 29, 2000, Serenity itself in conjunction with Kim Cheung of
Touchvoice Systems created a discussion group for the purpose of
Notwithstanding Cheung's fairly simple initial concept, community input was actively solicited from the beginning, and feature requests quickly began coming in. The final GA release of eComStation 1.0 (US English) was not released until July 2001, and was significantly different from the original preview in many respects.
Most obviously, the
eComStation 1.0 was built on the 2000 release of IBM's Convenience
Once the English edition was released, efforts turned to making other language editions (called National Language Versions, or NLVs) available. However, the first non-English NLV targeted, German, was not released until the end of 2001, due in large part to the greater-than-anticipated effort of localizing the redesigned installer and other new materials. Ultimately, no further non-English NLVs were released for eComStation 1.0; other languages would not become available until eComStation 1.1 or 1.2.
eComStation 1.1 included several major new features compared to version 1.0. The largest change to the operating system as installed was a package of wide-ranging functional enhancements to the desktop environment (Workplace Shell), based on the open source XWorkplace project from NetLabs.org. These included desktop folder enhancements such as status bars and improved sorting options, a new virtual desktop feature, a customizable desktop toolbar with support for programmable "widgets", and expanded configuration options. Various other enhancements such as built-in support for PPPoE and PPtP Internet connections were also provided.
In addition, a completely new install process was designed. The bootable code on the installation CD was rewritten to improve compatibility with modern BIOSes, and a "pre-boot menu" was introduced which allowed the user to select various drivers and kernel options to use in booting from the CD. The graphical installer from eComStation 1.0 was replaced with a new, more streamlined interface.
With this version, Serenity Systems separated the base operating system product from the major commercial applications that were bundled with it in eComStation 1.0. The base eComStation 1.1 product was sold under the title "eComStation Entry"; and the applications, including Lotus SmartSuite 1.7 and HOBlink X11 Server, were packaged separately in the eComStation Application Pack.
Multi-processor support was not included in eComStation Entry, due to
the additional license fees required by
With the release of eComStation 1.1, an eComStation Server Edition
was also made available, based on the
Besides English, there were also German and Russian NLVs released for eComStation 1.1.
The principal new feature of eComStation 1.2, as advertised, was
revamped desktop multimedia support. Updated versions of various
bundled components, both
eComStation 1.2 was released in English, German and Dutch NLVs.
VERSION 1.2 MEDIA REFRESH (1.2R)
Serenity Systems announced its intention to provide a "media refresh" incorporating a number of fixes and updates which had been made available after the release of eComStation 1.2. This was released as version 1.2R, initially on 12 November 2005, but subsequently withdrawn and re-released (due to a last-minute bug fix) on 17 November 2005.
The principal new feature of eComStation 1.2R was support for installation on Athlon 64 systems, which had previously been possible only through awkward work-arounds.
eComStation 1.2R was released in English, German, and Italian NLVs. Additionally, a beta release of a Traditional Chinese NLV was made available via download for registered customers.
eComStation 2.0 had a longer-than-usual development cycle. The first beta was released on 21 December 2005, with the first self-styled "release candidate" being announced on 18 June 2007; the final GA release was not available until May 2010.
The biggest change in eComStation 2.0 was the addition of ACPI support, which represented the first major update to the core operating system to be developed specifically for eComStation (and not by IBM). The benefits of ACPI included support for modern hardware, including advanced power-management features, as well as support for IRQs above 15. In addition, the new ACPI driver allowed access to OS/2's symmetric multi-processing support, obviating the need for IBM's proprietary SMP-enablement driver. Consequently, starting with eComStation 2.0, SMP support was included in the base product at no additional cost.
The other major feature introduced in version 2.0 was an enhanced
version of the Journaled
The eComStation pricing model was revamped significantly with version 2.0. The standard consumer version was the Home however, one customer was limited to five purchases. The Business Edition was targeted at commercial customers, with no limit on the number of purchases. The Business Edition also came with telephone support, whereas Home only the license terms differed, as noted above.
Both editions of eComStation 2.0 included the
eComStation 2.0 was available in English only; the release of all other language versions was deferred until version 2.1.
The current version of eComStation, 2.1, was released only a year after version 2.0, in May 2011.
Version 2.1 has two significant new features. The first is support
AHCI disk controllers, via a newly developed device driver. The
second is the replacement of the old
eComStation 2.1 also updates some of the included applications,
As of version 2.1, much of the former branding by Serenity Systems has been removed from the released product, and replaced by that of Mensys BV.
eComStation 2.1 is currently available in English and German NLVs. A preview release of a Japanese NLV is also available to certain customers. Other NLVs, including Dutch and Italian, are reportedly under development.
Beta versions of eComStation 2.2 were released in March and December 2013.
eComStation is currently developed by XEU.com and various third party
companies and individuals. Although
SUMMARY OF RELEASES
Date of last edition taken from the installation CDs, the official release dates may be different. Release dates refer to the US English editions unless otherwise noted.
* 2000-09-29 - eComStation preview * 2001-07-10 - eComStation 1.0 * 2003-04-18 - eComStation 1.1 * 2004-08-12 - eComStation 1.2 * 2005-11-04 - eComStation 1.2R (media refresh) * 2007-06-18 - eComStation 2.0 RC1 * 2007-12-25 - eComStation 2.0 RC4 * 2008-07-04 - eComStation 2.0 RC5 * 2008-12-06 - eComStation 2.0 RC6 * 2009-08-11 - eComStation 2.0 RC7 Silver * 2010-05-15 - eComStation 2.0 GA * 2011-05-07 - eComStation 2.1 GA * 2013-02-28 - eComStation 2.2 Beta Demo CD * 2013-03-25 - eComStation 2.2 Beta 1 * 2013-12-13 - eComStation 2.2 Beta II (AKA Beta 2) (announcement)
OPEN SOURCE SOFTWARE
eComStation is also complemented by several open source applications that are included in the installer:
* XWorkplace which is
Workplace Shell enhancement software under GNU
A SELECTION OF FOSS SOFTWARE FOR ECOMSTATION
The following open-source packages are available for eComStation and are actively maintained:
* GCC * Open Watcom * Harbour , a Clipper -compatible compiler for the xBase family of programming languages * Qt (versions 3 and 4)
* A palette of