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Main »» Tutorials

A Guide for WinUAE: 2. Creating an advanced emulated AmigaOS environment  Popular
(Read 26600 times)
Here you can download the latest version of WinUAE. WinUAE is the Win32 version of the multi-platform Amiga emulator UAE. UAE stands for UNIX Amiga Emulator, although the "U" originally stood for "Unusable" as in 1996 on a 90Mhz Pentium the emulation was still about one third as fast as a 7 MHz A1000 from 1985. However the Windows version has meanwhile become the most user friendly and widely used version and due to new JIT CPU emulation and much faster PC hardware has now become fast and advanced enough to offer an interesting and useful AmigaOS 3.x emulation experience.

After executing the installer, you will be asked for a location for WinUAE to be stored; you can leave the given location unchanged. After hitting the install button, WinUAE will be installed onto your system within a couple of seconds.

The AmigaSYS 1.7 additional pack comes with a Napalm demoEspecially if you don't own Amiga Forever, I recommend to download one of the following pre-configured software packages: Amiga In a Box (AIAB), AmigaSYS (also requires Extras 3.1 adf for OS3.0/3.1) or AmiKit, but you can also use these packages in parallel for instance for comparison purposes (you can easily use these packages side by side!). These are freely available packages containing freeware and shareware utilities which have been configured to enhance the user experience of AmigaOS v 3.0 or 3.1. AmigaSYS and AmiKit now also include AmigaOS 3.9 support (requires Kickstart 3.1). With the latest AIAB release you can simply drag the unpacked WinUAE folder inside the same directory as where WinUAE was installed (likely C:\Program Files, WinUAE itself will not be overwritten). With regard to AmigaSYS simply double-click on the archive's icon. But before starting either configuration file from WinUAE you may need to point to the right location of the kickstart file manually, start the emulation and follow the instructions from inside AmigaOS (remember where you stored the Workbench adf, for AmigaSYS you will also need to have the Extras adf at hand).

AIAB step by step instructions, after unpacking and installation:

- Start WinUAE
- Click on "Configurations"
- Single click on the AIAB configuration and press the "load" button
- Click on "ROM"
- @ ' Boot ROM file' point to the right location of your OS3.x kickstart ROM.
- Go back to "Configurations" select the AIAB config and then hit the save button (so you don't have to point to the right kickstart location everytime you load the AIAB config)
- Now double click the AIAB config or hit the "Start" button and follow the instructions.
Another "How to guide" for AIAB @ Green Amiga Alien Guide
"How to guide" for AmigaSYS @ Green Amiga Alien Guide
AmiKit installation guide

The people behind AmigaSYS are clearly demoscene freaks. The additional pack includes some nice artistic bootpics, scenedemos and music mods. But AIAB has a long history and is still my preferred emulation envirionment due to its clean implemation and default presentation.

Regarding using the packages the first thing noticed is that AIAB uses the workbench replacement Scalos and AmiKit uses Directory Opus Magellan II v5.8. Scalos updates are actively developed and freely available for download. A new version of Directory Opus Magellan is also being commercially developed by Guru Meditation and will become available for both AmigaOS3.x (68) and AmigaOS4 (PPC). Some things I don't AmigaSYS about this package was the Packmaster utility and instead I prefer AIAB's GUI frontend Mira-WizARC for (un)archiving or AmiKit configuartion (AmiKit demonstration videos). I also prefer Directory Opus 4.x over AmigaSYS' provided file-management utility 'Filemaster'. For beginners I would recommend using AIAB first before trying AmigaSYS or AmiKit. AIAB comes with a simple and good looking AmigaOS4 inspired theme and seems to be overall best presented and documented of the three packages. All three packages come nowadays with a nicely configured Startbar called 'AmiStart'. Although I prefer AmigaOS4's AmiDock, AmiStart is the most inspiring Startbar / Taskbar I have used so far and offers many powerful features and customization possibilities. For more information regarding more handy utilities turn to section 4.

3D Shooter Genetic Species
I liked AmigaSYS' included game demos as found within the 'additional pack', namely demos of the Amiga classic Napalm by Clickboom and onEscapee by Invictus Team. Napalm is a nicely done 'Command & Conquer' / Dune2-clone and onEscapee is a good 'Another World' / Flashback-clone. Other nice touches include random bootup pictures and animated requesters.

The first full game I tested with these packages was Marble Eyes Development's 3D-shooter Genetic Species, a game which received raving reviews and was even put forth as a Quake (ID Software/ Clickboom) beater by various reviewers at the time. Clickboom's Quake port was its most important rival within the Amiga martket. The game runs well and has been made freely available for download.

Customizing the look of AmigaOS and tweaking everything to work as flawlessly as possible can either be a lot of fun or extremely annoying depending on your personal interests, patience and experience. If you don't like this then both AIAB and AmiKit packages come with a nice AmigaOS4 inspired theme. However the final looks of AmigaOS4.0 is still being worked on, but other than this the next release of AmigaOS will be the biggest upgrade AmigaOS has ever seen in its enitre history so far and is the result of many years of hard labor. So before judging AmigaOS entirely based on old bare bones OS 3.x releases and comparing this to modern day standards doesn't make much sense. In any case these packages offer a good look at the history of classic AmigaOS community and a relative easy way to get familiar with the system. If you like AmigaOS 3.x the commercial Amiga Forever package comes well recommended and already includes a slightly pre-configured OS 3.9 environement by default.

The AmigaSYS 1.7 additional pack comes with an onEscapee demoDid I miss any handy tutorials, guides or software packages? Please let the author know, so they can be added below:

Other useful resources:

Setting Up WinUAE (

Amiga Emulator FAQ

Classic WB - by Bloodwych

The Green Amiga Alien's Workbench Guides

The Amiga Legal Emulation guides

TweakGuides Amiga Emulation Guide

Table of contents
  1. Setup your Emulation Box

  2. Creating an advanced emulated AmigaOS environment

  3. Acquiring legally free software for AmigaOS

  4. 10 freely distributable Amiga software titles

  5. 10 of the best Amiga PD Scene games

  6. 10 ex-commercial Amiga games

- MikeB
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