Haiku has hope!

You know, with the excitement of the recent LibreOffice 6 port, and with the promise of a long-awaited Beta release, I really believe there is real hope for Haiku.

I hadn’t looked in the Depot for a while, and found packages like SuperPrefs in there that work kind of like the launcher box and prefs in Xfce. And Scribus, KStars, and other apps can run on it – it’s truly really cool to install them and see Haiku can do, bugs or not.

But the other thing that has me excited is that for the first time, several newer machines I’ve tested with the latest 64-bit Nightly boot up and work! For example, with a safe 1366x768 video mode on one HP I tested, here’s what now appears where before there was a KP:

So I guess I just wanted to share a bit of enthuiastic optimism! Haiku has hope! :smiley:


I have more hope for Haiku than I have ever had. BeOS was almost my primary OS back in the day (I had to use Windows some, especially in the WoN era) and I think Haiku is far superior. The devs have done an outstanding job, and there is a good user community too.

SuperPrefs is awesome, I hope it eventually makes it into core Haiku.


Totally agree; really excited with the progress Haiku is making. I just wish I’d be welcome to add refinements to the user interface. :wink:

And also totally agree that SuperPrefs is definitely something Haiku needs to include; I liked it enough I added it to LaunchBox for easy access on my notebook running Haiku. The ability to type for and launch apps I think is definitely my favorite aspect of it, as I’ve been doing this on Mac (and Xfce) for years.

BeOS was my main OS for a while (I even used it at work) and, as a user, I’m quite happy with the state of Haiku at the moment. One day, it would be nice to use as my main OS.

I’d really be interested in using it on a Pi, though. Raspbian is ok, I guess. RiscOS is… pretty interesting, in it’s own way. But I’d love to see if Haiku would work well on it (which I think it would).


If you just want this part, maybe have a look at QuickLaunch too. It does this and a few other nice things.

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If you liked SuperPrefs you may also like http://depot.haiku-os.org/quicklaunch
I use it all the time and even had to find alternative Windows version for work.


I would love to see Haiku on ARM. I have a RasPi2 and an ODroid XU4 waiting to try it out.

Thanks; I really do like the search feature, and will be sure to try QuickLaunch, but I’ll also add the ‘System Preferences’ like layout it offers is quite handy too.

And I was still serious about the UI part. :slight_smile: If I was welcome to do and merge changes to colors, default background(s), better welcome material, etc. I’d love to do so.

Sadly, I don’t know how to work with any low-level arm (or x86) code to help with porting the OS over to the RPi, but I definitely think booting into qemu from Raspbian may be a partial, slow solution to ‘running Haiku’ on it for now…

What makes you think you are not welcome? There is a well documented workflow for submitting patches. When dealing with such things as the UI, be prepared to face some bikeshedding (everyone has something to say about trivial items) and conservatism (a lot of people do like the current look). So if you take time to explain your changes, why they make things better, etc, it should work. If it’s just about making Haiku defaults match your personal preferences, you will probably be told to keep your config for yourself, however.


Is better a working theme manager with a little more of customizable options

Hey, thanks for the reply. I think it’s something for me to think about. I have to admit I have this half-crazy idea of Haiku being like the Mac and it influences a lot of my thinking. So it’d probably be something I’d have to ask in the future before deciding to present changes.

Oh boy, it would be great if Haiku got half the Apple Inc’s income for a year. That would allow for some serious contributions. :smiley:

P.S. I updated my post to explain my reply. I hope it’s completely clear now. :stuck_out_tongue: If you can have such a half-crazy idea, I can also have one about a fat budget for Haiku. (who works where is completely irrelevant)

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I think you’re completely misunderstanding what I said… I do not work for Apple, nor would I ever plan to attach Haiku to anything corporate, even if I was able to. I do agree Haiku could use more support, and it’d be great, but:

What I was saying or rather trying to say is that I love the Mac and iOS as a fan of the platforms because they have (in my little opinion) the best user experience of computers from the intro of the Lisa to today. And I also like how Palm built things to be usable as well, just like Be. I know some here really love the Amiga to the same extent, but I’ve only tried AROS, and so can’t fairly comment on it. And… the thing called ‘Windows’ is its own subject best left to others to write about. :slight_smile:

(Outside the Mac, I do humbly confess I also like Gnu/Linux in the right setting. Void and Slackware are really great… Debian is not as good as it once was, imho, but it works. Outside of the open edition of RISC OS, Gnu/Linux runs quite well on Raspberry Pi. Systemd is awful and removes user freedom, but there’s still systemd-free flavors out there, and I happen to tinker with a small one. The day systemd is forced on everyone is the day I quit using Linux for good, whether Haiku is at R1 by then or not. But overall, Haiku is better made, has a better community and spirit, and is getting closer to being a system that can replace it with each year. And I’m super excited about that idea — but things like webcams, phone tethering, etc. still don’t work yet. LibreOffice 6 is a huge plus. But being really openly honest, I still tinker with stuff on and use Linux alongside Haiku and Mac because it’s just better supported on my hardware. Several machines do run Haiku as their sole operating system. So I really do like Haiku. But it needs more time before it can replace Linux totally on all the hardware I use. It’s getting closer, but not there yet. And I will continue to write about Haiku alongside Linux, believing it will reach the point of being a full replacement in the future.)

But in getting back to Mac, in my mind, I still think of BeOS as “one candidate for being OS X”. And the similarities between the two in the functional and visual sense which make the Be OS a cousin to Macintosh. The square, lefty close buttons and window management are a lot like the classic Mac, as one example. And with the iconic Gasseè having built Be, it gives the feeling of BeOS being a ‘Mac cousin’ more credence in my mind.

But… that’s also the problem with my state of thought. I do see real areas where Haiku can improve in terms of OOB and UX, and think in general, this would be great, but it could just be me wanting to give Haiku a Mac-like touch with more blue, etc. Yes, we need more ‘welcome’ tools and more focus on accessibility, as well as the ability to run different shells — even if just from the browser or a host app, since the old desktop feel is so deeply integrated into Haiku. But maybe why I feel I’m not ‘welcome’ to do it is because it would go against how things have been done ‘x’ amount of years.

So again, it’s something to think about because of the Be-Mac thing in my head. And like I said, I think it’s something to talk about in the future. For now, I realize this isn’t the right time to talk about changes. But I hope this makes sense now. I’m sorry if I implied any connection with anyone or anything by accident.

Okay. :smile:

Sorry about the rigid, ranting nature of my post; I just didn’t want anyone thinking I was someone I wasn’t, etc. just in case I gave the wrong impression. It’s all totally clear now, (and dreaming of a bigger budget is definitely exciting). :wink:

Hopefully all’s good again. :slight_smile:

Your hope is far-stretched because we take many things for granted. Haiku shows promise, but it actually needs a huge amount of work to become a viable operating system for the masses.

  1. The OS itself needs more work compared to others, and then there’s a ton of hardware requiring drivers.
  2. People need programs for entertainment first, and someone has to port it or build it.
  3. People need programs for productivity, and LibreOffice barely scratches the surface in that department because productivity means a lot more than documents and databases.
  4. People need programs for development, and although there are quite a few tools for this, the (semi-)professional tools are still missing. Even the programming languages and the various servers need porting for the most part.

Sure there’s hope, but realistically Haiku needs a clever strategy to make development as fun as possible while doing the right things in the right order to help accelerate the development of the other missing components.

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  1. Drivers are indeed a big problem.
  2. Entertainment is pretty much covered on the application side. We have video players, audio players, most SDL games and lots of emulators. The games library is still small compared to Windows, but there isn’t much that can be done about that until Haiku starts attracting companies making commercial proprietary games.
  3. This is also an area that is dominated by commercial proprietary software. Nobody can port Sai, Maya, FL Studio, Cubase etc except the owners.
  4. We have IDEs like Qt Creator. More languages would be nice, but otherwise it’s looking pretty good.

systemd is great. With it Linux finally manages to mount my usb sticks without me needing root access, crashed services are monitored and restarted, and I could rewrite crappy hundred lines init scripts into5 line files that my app users can actually understand and fix themselves. It is similar to launchd in macos and launch daemon in Haiku, and is an importantstep in making Linux usable on desktop machines. It is a flexible and versatile piece of software, and definitely not taking away user freedom, unless by this you mean “I want to micromanage every process that runs on my computer, even if the result is slower and more broken”

Back on topic: Haiku isn’t trying to be another macOS. It is similar in spirit but brings in alot of extra things on its own and borrowed from other places. There is room for improvement, as long as it is not about blindly copying macOS, but carefully reviewing each of their innovations and deciding wether it fitswith our UX or not.

I’m surprised how people praise the macOS gui when to me, after all those years it still looks and feels like a Frankeinstein of classic macOS and NeXTstep. Both are great, but mixing them together does not make something better.

  1. I’d say huge. My 2.5-year-old PC (Skylake-based) can’t even boot a Haiku stick - it restarts in less than a second, not even being able to display anything. I need a powerful PC to handle all my shenanigans, so it doesn’t matter my old PCs can handle Haiku, considering I can’t do even light virtualization on Haiku.

  2. Media consumption is very important for people. But even the much popular Raspberry Pi can’t officially play Netflix, HBO GO, Hulu and other web-based streaming services requiring the widevine plugin - proprietary. So the web support, with as many browsers as possible, has become essential nowadays - which is tied to networking support, which still hurts. And gaming is another important thing the users need, which would make Wine a serious target to port to Haiku. Along with decent video drivers, it could serve some quality entertainment. :slight_smile:

  3. True, not even Mac OS X has all the bells and whistles in production-grade software. This is an almost impossible nut to crack, so at least the open source/free software “look-alikes” should be ported for those who can compromise.

  4. It seems pretty good, until the developers get picky about the tools they are comfortable and productive with. Atom, Sublime, Visual Studio Code, Brackets, NetBeans, Eclipse, various JetBrains IDEs, and more. And then servers, debuggers, testing and CI&CD tools… it’s a long and tiresome list.

And then a lot of other unrelated software that make our lives safer, better and/or more fun. And yet, I still have hope for Haiku. :smile: More so now than 10 years ago, I have to admit.

We can have our separate opinions on systemd; I know it has gained realms of support. I’m opposed to what it’s doing to Gnu/Linux, for various and real reasons. If you happen to like what it has done, great. I agree to disagree on this.

Right. And this is where I seriously need to think about what I’d like to do versus what the right thing to do would be. I’m sane enough to realize that though they have closeness in some places, they are really different overall. The Mac would have a visible impact on my thinking. I don’t know if I’d borrow from it outright, but I can say it definitely is an influence. Maybe once I have time to spend on playing with Haiku, I might put together a demo image for fun with my changes, let everyone evaluate and peer through it, and see what everyone thinks about it before proposing any changes to actual Haiku. Or I could just zip up files with changes for review. I don’t know, really. I’d really need to think about it all first. But I do know Dano had pulsing animations in it. :wink: