AbiatharOS - For Keening on the go!

Here is where to post about the latest Commander Keen fangame or modification you've finished, a new website you've made, or another Keen-related creation.
Post Reply
User avatar
Tool Smith
Posts: 1376
Joined: Fri Dec 12, 2008 1:21
Location: Abiathar C&C

AbiatharOS - For Keening on the go!

Post by Fleexy »

So with the recent (v2.4) addition of Windows PE support in Abiathar, I did a little "because I can" project to produce a Keening operating system based on it. It's a 32-bit custom build of Windows PE 5 and comes with DOSBox and all the Keen Galaxy games (plus Dreams), pre-UNLZEXE'd. So, why would this be useful?

Well, like I said, this was a because-I-can project. However, it could be useful for people with underpowered/old/Linux computers, or for easy access to modding tools on unfamiliar computers. (The File Emitter includes KeenGraph and the XP MSPaint, among other things.)

Unfortunately, because of licensing issues, I can't just publish an ISO based on Windows PE. Even though WinPE is free for anyone to download, Microsoft isn't OK with people redistributing it or modified versions of it. So, to get the ISO compiled, we have something of a process to go through:
  1. Download the AbiatharOS compiler and the patched resources
  2. Download the Windows Assessment and Deployment Kit for Windows 8.1 installer from Microsoft; run adksetup.exe
  3. In the "specify location" step, click Next (leave the default)
  4. Choose whether or not to join the Customer Experience Improvement Program
  5. Accept the license terms
  6. On the feature selection screen, uncheck "Windows Performance Toolkit" and "Windows Assessment Toolkit", leaving "Deployment Tools" and WinPE
  7. Wait for a while as the setup wizard downloads and installs the tools
  8. When it finishes, launch the "Deployment and Imaging Tools Environment" shortcut as administrator
  9. cd to the place you extracted the AbiatharOS compiler
  10. Run compile.bat
  11. Wait for the compiler to finish
  12. Burn the ISO to bootable media or add the WIM image to a Windows Deployment Services server
If you can't perform the procedure (e.g. you're on Linux, the compilation fails, or you don't want to download 3GB just to build a 200MB image) and for some reason actually want to use AbiatharOS, PM me and we can arrange for alternative distribution means. (Legally.)

When you boot AbiatharOS for the first time, it probably won't see any writable drives. You'll need to use DiskPart to create an NTFS- or FAT32-formatted partition and assign it a drive letter.

Once Abiathar starts, you can work as normal. Under the OS menu, you'll find options to launch a command prompt (from which you can access system tools and accessories), run DOSBox, shut down, or install AbiatharOS to your hard drive.

So yeah, I don't really expect anyone to make serious use of this, but hey, if it helps you, great! I learned a lot from making it, so that's all I need. Happy Keen Day everyone! :)


User avatar
Posts: 4
Joined: Sun Aug 02, 2015 1:00

Post by CMDRASM »

I'm really fascinated by the idea of a minimal OS with key tools preinstalled. Cool idea, I wish it was more common.

User avatar
Posts: 169
Joined: Sat Mar 29, 2008 14:08
Location: Germany

Post by Tormentor667 »

You crazy bitch :D

User avatar
Vorticon Elite
Posts: 1222
Joined: Fri Jan 01, 2016 23:34
Location: The Outpost

Post by Nisaba »

nice thing for virtual machines as well.
think I'm gonna check on that.

Post Reply