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By: Don Eitner (firstname.lastname@example.org)
The 13th Floor - http://www.tstonramp.com/~freiheit/
No, friends, I am speaking this month of the release of fixpack 13 for OS/2
Warp 4.0 which, to my surprise, appears to have merged the foundations of OS/2 Warp
4 and Warp Server for eBusiness (WSeB, aka Warp Server 4.5). Indeed, after installing
fixpack 13 I ran the VER command at the OS/2 command prompt and was greeted with
the words "The Operating System/2 Version is 4.50". Considering this
to be an unusual move for IBM, as they rarely make any modification to the version
number through fixpacks, I jumped onto IRC and performed a /version command on myself.
Using GammaTech's IRC client and the DMI script I have always gotten the response
that my OS/2 version is 2.40 (which matched the VER command's results at the command
prompt) but on this day it declared 2.45.
The only other visible cue to the version upgrade is a small block of text overlaying
the OS/2 boot logo's bottom left corner which states that this is now revision 14.040_W4.
There used to be no text on this bootup screen.
So what's different about OS/2 Warp 4.5? Well for one thing, if you go to the
OS/2 command prompt and type FORMAT /? it will give some information about formatting
your hard drive using the JFS file system which was introduced with Warp Server
for eBusiness last year. However I have been unsuccessful in actually performing
a JFS format of my drive and believe this to be largely due to a lack of any JFS.IFS
file system driver. Users running in a networked environment with a WSeB server
might be able to perform a JFS format on their workstation machines now but the
rest of us still must do without. There also is no updated information in the system
help files regarding the JFS parameters which have been added to the format.com
Many users have complained of crashes and other odd behavior after applying
fixpack 13. A quick check at VOICE's own WarpDoctor
site confirms a few of these problems but indicates they occur only when certain
other products or services are installed. I have none of those problems as I have
none of those optional products installed. For me, fixpack 13 has been a pleasure
to install and to run. No crashes, no hangs, and it seems that IBM has made a change
so that I could permanently delete my system template objects (well, most of them
anyway). This is something I complained about a few months back, but after applying
fixpack 13 I dragged my templates folder to the shredder and upon rebooting my system
the templates folder, for the first time since I originally installed Warp 4, had
not been rebuilt. However my Multimedia Templates folder was rebuilt, but this
is only about one-fourth of all the templates I used to be forced to keep on my
desktop. I would, however, like to be able to get rid of them at some point in
the near future (fp14?).
Did they release the new multi-processing kernel? Well I can't say for sure
as I haven't got access to a multi-processing PC, but the file date on my OS2KRNL
file is March 31, 2000 and its revision (determined by the bldlevel command) is
14.40, which almost relates to the "revision 14.040" notice given during
Whether installing fixpack 13 is a joyous event for you or not, it does seem just slightly odd that IBM has released four major updates for OS/2 within the past two months. Are they leading up to the long-overdue Warp 4 client refresh which would lay down all of these updates in a single install? I for one fervently hope so, but I've come to not expect much from IBM in the convenience category. Only time will tell.