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The Unofficial XaAES Page
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Chapter 1 - The Unofficial XaAES Documentation 7. Appendix A – Installation notes

7.1 General information
XaAES is a kernel module for FreeMiNT, and thus can’t run under any other Atari operating system. As XaAES and FreeMiNT have been designed to work tightly integrated, you are advised to update both the kernel and the XaAES kernel module at the same time. If you do not, you might risk that XaAES assumes that certain functions are present in the kernel when they in fact are not.
To learn more about installing FreeMiNT and XaAES you are advised to read through the FreeMiNT documentation carefully.
7.1.1 The FreeMiNT system directory
Until FreeMiNT 1.16.1 was released, the kernel would look for its configuration files (mint.cnf) and all XFS/XDD modules in either c:\mint\ or c:\multitos\ (assuming that c:\ is the boot drive in this example). As of 1.16.1, a new concept was however introduced. The main reason for the change was to allow the user to have an individual set of configuration files and kernel modules for each release of FreeMiNT, to allow users to keep separate installation for e.g. testing purposes.
<sysdir> <bootdrive> <version>   - System directory
- Boot drive (normally c:\)
- The kernel version coded as 8+3 directory name
For example:
  • FreeMiNT 1.16.1 beta release will have a <VERSION> of “1-16-1”.
  • FreeMiNT 1.16.x alpha release will have a <VERSION> of “1-16-cur”
The system directory as of FreeMiNT 1.16.1 now defaults to:
"<bootdrive>/mint/<version>" "<bootdrive>/mint"   or, if this directory doesn't exist:

Example 1)
Your boot drive is c:\ and your FreeMiNT kernel version is 1.16.1
You create a folder on c:\ called "mint"
In this folder you place the XDD/XFS modules you use and the configuration file MINT.CNF.
=>        Your <sysdir> is: "c:\mint"
Example 2)
Your boot drive is c:\ and your FreeMiNT kernel version is 1.16.1 You create a folder on c:\ called "mint". Inside this folder you create a folder "1-16-1" where you place the XDD/XFS modules you use and the configuration file mint.cnf.
=>        Your <sysdir> is: "c:\mint\1-16-1"
7.2 The MultiTOS approach
Here is a quick description on how to achieve a working FreeMiNT/XaAES setup from scratch by using FreeMiNT beta or alpha releases. This example targets a MultiTOS-like installation, which means you will only have the OS kernel and AES installed. If you have an existing installation of FreeMiNT, you should be able to manage by following the instructions too. Before proceeding, make sure to backup your existing operating system files! In the example we are assuming that c:/ is your boot partition.
  • Back up your current installation
    If you have an existing installation of FreeMiNT, you should store a backup copy of the contents of your system directory before making any changes to your system.
  • Install the kernel
    mint.prg (located in subdir /auto/ in the distribution archive) should be placed inside c:/auto/ Make sure that the kernel is the last file in the directory! If you have the file wdialog.prg installed you need to get rid of it, since it is only compatible with TOS! The functions offered from Wdialog are already present inside XaAES.
    NOTE: If there is already a MiNT binary in c:/auto/ you have to disable or remove it! Also, some older versions of FreeMiNT used the filename to decide whether or not to activate memory protection, but today it does not matter which name you give the FreeMiNT binary as long as the file extension is left unchanged.
  • Copy the system directory from the alpha/beta release to c:/mint
    For FreeMiNT beta 1.16.1, copy dir /1-16-1 to c:/mint
    For FreeMiNT alpha 1.16.x, copy dir /1-16-cur to c:/mint
    The default setting is to start XaAES automatically after booting has finished. If you wish to prevent this you need to change the last entry in mint.cnf, the INIT setting.
    NOTE: If you are upgrading from a previous installation, you might want to reuse your old version of mint.cnf. If you then want XaAES to be started automatically you need to verify that the last line in mint.cnf reads:
    • INIT=u:/c/mint/1-16-1/xaaes/xaloader.prg (FreeMiNT beta 1.16.1)
    • INIT=u:/c/mint/1-16-cur/xaaes/xaloader.prg (FreeMiNT alpha 1.16.x)

  • Define which XaAES binary to use
    The launcher (xaloader.prg) will be looking for the file xaaes.km if the system has a 68020 or better CPU. Otherwise it will try to load xaaes000.km which thus is the binary to use for any ST model. If the installation archive contains a file called xaaes040.km you may want to rename it to xaaes.km if you have a 68040 CPU or better. This XaAES binary may offer slightly increased performance compared to the default binary version.
    NOTE: The 040+ version may not be included in future alpha-distributions!
  • Specify which mouse driver to use
    XaAES supports scroll wheel messages provided that your VDI supports vex_wheelv(). Two versions of the AES mouse driver are supplied, mouse.adi and mouse_w.adi, where the latter is the driver to use if you wish to explore the mouse wheel. XaAES will look for mouse_w.adi first, so to use mouse.adi you have to remove mouse_w.adi or change its extension.
  • Configure the XAAES.CNF file
    In order to fine tune the XaAES installation, you should check out xaaes.cnf before rebooting.

7.3 Installing XaAES through EasyMiNT
EasyMiNT is an installation program for FreeMiNT and its components. If you are new to FreeMiNT and are aiming for a flexible OS installation, EasyMiNT will setup the UNIX-like file structure for you as well as offering the options to install e.g. Teradesk (standalone desktop) and MiNTnet (internet stack). EasyMiNT is programmed in GFA/FaceValue by German programmer Marc-Anton Kehr. As of version 1.6 EasyMiNT will allow you to install alpha versions of FreeMiNT/XaAES.
7.4 Updating the EasyMiNT installation
If you have an existing installation of EasyMiNT that you wish to update with an alpha or beta release, you can follow the steps described in the Installation example 1. The only thing that differs is that you need to copy mint.cnf from your old EasyMiNT installation to your after you have installed the new kernel components. Since this file is required to boot your existing EasyMiNT setup, you have to backup this file before installing the files from the alpha/beta release files.
TIP: To start XaAES you can run xaloader.prg from the command line after login or add xaloader.prg to /etc/ttytab in order to launch XaAES.


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