old operating systems

So despite gorgeous weather and a load of gardening jobs that I really need to get on top of, I spent quite a bit of Sunday playing about with libvirt, QEMU and a bunch of old operating system ISOs.

I’d played with some downloaded OS/2 VMs before, but could never got them running under KVM/QEMU. They were all either VMWare VDI/VMDK images or Virtualbox ones. QEMU can convert these into QCOW2 (QEMU’s native format) but whereas I got OS/2 Warp 3.0 running fine. Warp 4.0, 4.52 eComstation VMs all failed to run. However, it turns out that the ISO of OS/2 Warp 4.5.2 is bootable and an installation (I never bothered with 4.0) was surprisingly easy.

I even got OS/2 2.0 running fine.

OS2Warp3 0 Warp4 52 runningQEMU

I also tried with Windows NT 3.5 and 4.0. Both installed nicely.

WinNT3 51 NT4 0 runningQEMU

There are many instructions online so I will not bore you with them anymore (although I should add some links).

I moved from DOS/Windows 3.1 straight to OS/2 Warp 3.0. When I left work and went to college in 1998 at the Freshers Fair there was a goodie bag that included a free licensed CD of OS/2 Warp 3.0. I installed it and never went back. I was even a founder member of WarpUK, a group of enthusiasts. I’d link to them but no trace exists online. Although I do have a few of our CDs. I went to Warp 4.0, then eventually gave up on OS/2 and moved to Linux (Ydraggasil, then Debian and onto Gentoo which I still run now).

I used Windows NT 3.5 quite a bit. I think I had a dual boot system with OS/2 although to be honest I cannot really remember. I installed but never really used NT 4.0.

I’m not sure I miss the joys of downloading 20 odd 1.4MB floppy fixpack images, “burning” to actual floppy discs and updating the OS…! But I do miss OS/2 sometimes! A great OS.