Select low-level emulator in developmentPublished: 22nd Apr 2007, 02:27:39 | Permalink | Printable
RISC OS 5 given dose of SWI OS_AbortTrapA module which emulates low-level Select features on RISC OS 5 is being developed unofficially, it emerged this week. The software, SelectEmu, implements a few core features found on Select 4 RISC OS 6, including ROL's 'abort trap' interface which is useful for developing drivers and virtual memory systems. A prototype virtual memory package already exists for RISC OS 6 and A9home computers, but is expected to work on both RISC OS 5 and RISC OS 6 with the help of SelectEmu.
NetSurf team member and Iyonix user John-Mark Bell said he developed SelectEmu as part of his latest project called MemCheck; the NetSurf developers hope to use this to track memory leaks and related bugs in their web browser. The utility relies on being able to detect when dodgy software accesses memory it shouldn't, and John-Mark said he reused code written for MemCheck to form SelectEmu. Specifically, the module emulates the
OS_ClaimSWI functionality normally exclusive to ROL's operating system.
The software is currently in testing, but is set to be released under a BSD-based open source license.
A SelectEmu tester said: "This isn't really a case of 'reinventing the wheel' because RISC OS 6 doesn't exist for the Iyonix, so this is the first time these low-level interfaces have appeared on RISC OS 5. John-Mark's motivation for SelectEmu was mainly for MemCheck, and he decided he might as well package it up into a module and match ROL's OS_AbortTrap API.
"There could be interesting times ahead if third-party developers decide to implement useful Select functionality into RISC OS 5 by themselves, especially if RISC OS Open's source code does materialise to help this process along."
ROL's abort trap documentation
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