2.5. What's MGR?
MGR is an alternative windowing environment developed by Steve
Uhler at Bellcore and ported to the UNIX PC by Brad Bosch and Brian
Botton. The MGR windowing environment can replace the standard
/dev/window environment on the UNIX PC quite nicely (it does prevent
some UNIX PC specific programs from being run since the wind.o
loadable device driver is not loaded). MGR's user interface is quite
similar to a SunWindows environment, and raster operations are quite
fast. MGR is a user program, not a driver (besides the pty driver),
so it doesn't take up precious kernel space. It does require a
hardware modification called the VIDPAL. The VIDPAL (developed by
Brian Botton [...!att!iexist!botton]) is a daughterboard that sits
sandwiched between the 68010 CPU and the motherboard and allows direct
access to video memory from a user process.
At one time, Brian had provided VIDPAL kits but no longer does
so. If you want to try out MGR, but can't get a VIDPAL board, you may
want to try out John Milton's VIDPAL emulator -- a software-only
solution to video memory access. It is certainly slower than a real
VIDPAL, but is interesting none the less. The VIDPAL emulator was
posted to comp.sources.3b1 and so should be archived at standard
archive sites like uunet.uu.net.
A beta source distribution of MGR is on OSU, and can also be
gotten via anonymous ftp from max.physics.sunysb.edu (220.127.116.11).
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