[Wine] ReactOS

Andrew Udvare audvare at gmail.com
Sun Dec 7 20:48:21 CST 2014

> On 2014-12-07, at 14:57, jay at m5.chicago.il.us wrote:
>> If you want a stand alone Wine, you are looking at React OS,
>> which is awful ....
> I have noticed that also.  Does anyone here know anything about the
> ReactOS project?  Is it ever going to be a respectable free non-Unix
> operating system, like Haiku or Plan 9?

Yes. To answer your second question, I do not generally think so unless a company really wants to fund and do it. It has been a 100% voluntary effort from day 1 and has made a decent amount of progress. It borrows a good portion of Wine for its code but also does things Wine does not such as work with devices. ReactOS is pariah-like. People know it exists but almost nobody uses it.

Their main problem is motivation. Who really wants to build a full clone of Windows (as opposed to do something more original)? There have been attempts in the past but none have come so far as ReactOS. I only defend the project (as with Wine) in the sense that someday these old applications may not run and we have an alternative to emulation. However, I do not think ReactOS or Wine will be the norm for running older applications over emulation unless it is fully supported (like how Wine has the commercial product).

ReactOS had a good initial start. A Windows replacement when Windows went south with Vista was the thought. But that faded quickly. Key contributors left the project due to lack of interest, and it got stuck for at least a year, however the website was maintained seemingly. The project recently was part of a IndieGogo funding effort, but even that failed to meet its goal. There clearly is just not a lot of interest. https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/reactos-community-edition

Would it be cool to have a viable Windows replacement? Maybe. Given that I only use Windows VMs to test IE it does not matter to me. It could maybe help people still using Windows 3.x/OS/2/95 move to something modern and supported (if those companies are not getting support from Microsoft), but still runs their old applications. However, I am pretty sure we do not want them on a Windows-like kernel/OS in general.

I would not call ReactOS awful (in fact I respect the effort), but similar to telling some company their product does not work in Wine, it is rather exotic.


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