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Version 0.6.3 and later Edit

Versions 0.6.3 and later are in Category:Releases

Version 0.6.2 Edit

  • The entire configuration can be passed on the command line instead of using an XML file (working towards UML compatibility). Read doc/colinux-daemon.
  • Linux patch ported to Linux 2.6.10. Linux 2.4.x will not be officially supported anymore. (Dan Aloni and George Boutwell).

If you use an old root file image you might need to fix it, read about moving to 2.6.x in the Wiki site (

  • Implemented a Cooperative file system driver in Linux, that makes it possible to mount host OS directories in Linux, similar to UML's hostfs. It lets you access your C:\ without using Samba or other network file systems. Read doc/cofs.
  • coLinux should now work under PAE setups and AMD64 setups that enable the NX bit (specifically, Windows XP SP2).
  • The slirp network daemon was added. This network daemon provides easy-to-set-up outbound network communication from coLinux without using the TAP driver or PCAP library.
  • initrd support was added (teesoft2004 at To activate it you can specify e.g. in the configuration, or initrd=filename in the command line.
  • Bug fix: Reception and delivery of network packets bigger than 2kb.
  • Bug fix: Consoles and/or other daemons fail to connect to colinux-daemon on startup (this is Windows only).
  • Bug fix: Stop reboots where different gcc compiler versions are used to compile linux.sys & vmlinux, with an error/warning (George Boutwell).
  • Bug fix: Proper floating point state preservation in the Linux guest. coLinux now passes the flops20 test program.
  • Bug fix: A tiny memory leak when coLinux is shutting down.
  • Bug fix: Proper reference counting of the driver in the Linux port.
  • Bug fix: The network driver (conet) now verifies checksums (as
  • Changed PCAP handling to use Connection Name instead of Adapter/Device/Driver name. Name is now uniform between PCAP & TAP and multiple devices of the same/make/model should be able to be connected to. (George Boutwell)
  • Support AltGr for both FLTK & NT consoles. (Sascha Kettler)
  • Added a coserial deamon (only Linux for now), that allows one to open a serial terminal to the guest machine. (You can run /sbin/mgetty ttyS0, etc.)
  • Improved debugging - we now have a debug messages "collector" deamon named colinux-debug-deamon, which collects debug messages from all the coLinux components. This also changes the way things are printed when you run the daemon (it is now easier to see what belongs to what). All debug messages are off by default, so things may go a little faster.
  • An API version number was added to make sure that you use the right vmlinux and user-space executables with the right coLinux driver (previously it caused crashes if the APIs changed).
  • Added block device aliasing, e.g alias="hda2". You can specify such an alias in the element in the configuration XML and expect coLinux to mount it, even when passed with root=.

NOTE: The cobdX device and its alias are mutual exclusive, which means that you can't mount both of them at the same time.

  • Implemented a new timer for the Linux guest, this should fix time-going-back issues.
  • Improved message passing, which may boost networking a bit.
  • Win32-TAP driver upgraded to version 8.1. This version doesn't bring any changes to the actual driver code. However it was released in order to notify the other projects that bundle the TAP driver along with their software, to modify the name identifer of the driver so that multiple TAP driver users can coexist (e.g, OpenVPN with coLinux). Therefore, coLinux now installs its TAP driver as TAPxxxxco (where xxxx is the driver version).

After installing it, you will notice " (coLinux)" appended to the device name in the Network Connections manager. The old driver will remain until it is uninstalled.

  • If the MAC address is unspecified, a random MAC is choosed using the familiar TAP prefix (00:FF:XX:XX:XX:XX).
  • Enhanced coLinux keyboard handling support (sends raw scan codes from Windows to linux) (Nuno Lucas).
  • Change memory allocation so that the RAM for the VM is not allocated on startup, but on-demand. This means the coLinux loads faster and less prune to memory allocation failures in the host.

Version 0.6.1 Edit

  • Multiple virtual NICs are supported (eth1, eth2, etc...).
  • Some small bugfixes.
  • Added the ability to send Ctrl-Alt-Del to the Linux machine.
  • Linux patch updated to 2.4.26
  • Linux port (for systems running kernel 2.6.x)
  • Fixed a crash that could happen on swapoff().
  • Initmem is freed (no more 'missing implementation')
  • The number of maximum cobd block devices was increased to 32.
  • The daemon process is pinned to the first processor until we get the SMP stability issue fixed.
  • Time is not going backward for gettimeofday() users anymore.
  • Support for running more than one instance of coLinux is now functional.
  • No port I/O allowed from userspace: the guest Linux can't change the host's clock, and it also fixed crashes that were caused by trying to run X.
  • Windows:
  • Sizes of raw partition devices are now detected properly. This means that the resierfs problems should be over, plus cat /dev/cobd* would work for you.
  • Suspension of the host machine won't cause colinux-daemon problems like memory leaks.
  • The daemon can install itself as a service (Jaroslaw Kowalski). Stopping the service sends Ctrl-Alt-Del to let the Linux VM shutdown cleanly.
  • The daemon can install the linux.sys driver separately from its run, which can allow you to run coLinux as any user that have access to the installed driver (Daniel R. Slater).
  • coLinux now builds using MingW32 and no longer depends on cygwin1.dll.
  • Added scripts for building the MingW32 cross compiler on Linux, plus scripts that download, compile, and install the libraries coLinux depends on.
  • The name of the TAP device to use can be specified with the 'name' attribute in the XML. NOTICE: The name is matched against the string that appears in Network Connections (e.g., 'Local Area Connection') and not the device name assigned by Windows (e.g., 'TAP-Win32 Adapter')
  • The driver is installed from the daemon's installation directory rather than from the current running directory.
  • Linux port:
  • Sending SIGHUP to the daemon causes it to issue Ctrl-Alt-Del on the Linux VM.
  • Consoles:
  • Fixed a bug in the clear operation: let it clear with the right video erase character so that ncurses apps would appear properly.
  • Fixed virtual console switching (alt-f1, alt-f2, etc.) so it will save/redraw the screen like it should.
  • FLTK: The cursor is visible again.
  • If keyboard focus is taken away from the consoles, it will release any pressed key in the VM.

Version 0.6.0 AKA "Getting even" Edit

  • Ballard, Jonathan H.:
  • fixed implicit declarations
  • added co_os_realloc()
  • fixed overflow with the XML memory config
  • reimplemented os/winnt/user/daemon.c. A threaded implementation with with message queue, wait state, and error recovery.
  • merged the NT-native console.
  • console updates and improvements (cocon, console-nt)
  • update FLTK/console clearscreen (20040305)
  • enabled console-nt exit (20040305)
  • Added more checks to the XML parsing.
  • Made the context switch code more sensitive about the processor's capabilities, running coLinux on old AMD processors will hopefully not cause a reboot anymore.
  • Linux patch upgraded to 2.4.25.
  • Hopefully fixed the %fs/%gs issue for good.
  • vmlinux can now be bigger while not causing the host to boot, this means that you can compile more stuff not as modules.
  • Reimplemented the method in which coLinux allocates memory in the host kernel. It now allocates memory from the unmapped free page pool, which means you can use more than 256MB of RAM, unlike the previous method.

Note that the first coLinux boot may be a little slower since Windows is freeing cache and swapping out stuff in order to provide accommodation for Linux's memory. You can see it in action by looking at the Task Manager.

  • NSIS-based installer for the Windows binary distribution (based on work by NEBOR Regis.
  • gettimeofday() now works. Things that broke because they depended on it should now work. I have to enable port I/O in order to for this to work, but I plan to disable it in the future. If you compile a new vmlinux Make sure that CONFIG_X86_TSC is enabled in your .config file.
  • New daemon switch -t: Type of console to launch. Default is fltk.

Version 0.5.4 AKA "Focal Segmental Glomerulosclerosis" (%gs/%fs) release Edit

  • Fixed an issue with i686-optimized pthread and the preservation of %gs and %fs. The crashes that were caused by the i686 Gentoo image should now disappear. WINE would also work now ;)
  • cobd: Fixed accessing large block devices (1GB >). cobd0 was passing wrong information to userspace.
  • conet: Statistics are now gathered (patch by Pat Erley)
  • Tuned the time conversion between Windows and Linux. The machine is now initialized with the right date, not 4 days backwards.
  • Applied a configuration parsing fix (patch by Ballard Jonathan)
  • Some improvements of the switch code. We now preserve more registers, (MMX/SSE/SSE2/FP), and coLinux now has its own GDT. These changes should assure stability on more systems and processors. This fix also appears to solve the problem where processes were stuck on nanosleep() calls.
  • conet-pcap: pcap-based daemon (contributed by Alejandro R. Sedeno).
  • Network configuration is now handled in the coLinux configuration XML.

For backward compatibility, add: <network index="0" name="TAP" type="tap"></network>

If you want to use pcap (i.e, bridged Ethernet), add: <network index="0" name="XXXX" type="bridged"></network> (Where XXXX is a substring of your network adapter's name)

Optional attributes: mac="XX:XX:XX:XX:XX:XX" - specifies the MAC address of the interface in the Linux side. Recommended on bridged networking setups, where more than one Windows machine will be running coLinux on the same subnet.

I also prepared the ground for supporting more than one network device (i.e, eth1, eth2, etc.), but it is not yet completed. * linux: avoid more I/O in time.c.

Version 0.5.3 AKA "Valentine release" Edit

  • Virtual CMOS system time is now passed to Linux, you no longer need to update the time using ntp on boot. Note that the virtual CMOS time is GMT, so the coLinux machine needs to set its own timezone.
  • cobd's devfs support was added to the Linux patch. Gentoo would work now (based on a patch from Pat Erley).

A Gentoo root filesystem was created and released by Pat Erley.

  • Fixed an unwanted termination that was discovered when devfs was compiled in to the kernel.
  • Fixed an issue with mxml and the passage of boot parameters.
  • colinux-console: Fixed the CPU utilization issue.
  • colinux-console: Escape doesn't close the window now.
  • coLinux RAM is configurable, using a memory element in the XML under <colinux>, like: <memory size="64"></memory>. Minimum is 8MB, maximum is 192MB.

WARNING: high values might destabilize Windows, because the memory is allocated from the non-cached pool which has a maximum of 256MB system-wide, meaning there's less left for Windows drivers and subsystems.

  • bin/ Thomas Fritzsche contributed this script which automates the creation of a cross compilation cygwin environment on Linux.

Version 0.5.3-pre2 Edit

  • Fixed the reported (and unreported) network bugs.
  • Worked out some scheduling issue.

Version 0.5.3-pre1 AKA "flamed chicken" Edit

  • Fixed a BSOD bug (thanks Richard Goodwin for the memory dump stacks)
  • No longer depending on the Microsoft DDK for the build (review doc/building), (thanks Nir Perry for the encourgement)
  • The daemon launches the console by default when it is launched (can be turned off with '-d', see '-h').
  • The daemon is killable just like a normal Windows process. Doing so stops the Linux machines cleanly (from Windows' standpoint), so feel free to close the window, end the task, CTRL-C, etc.
  • It no longer depends on the Microsoft DDK for the build.
  • An almost complete rewrite - we now use message passing instead of hardwired ioctls(). Only the daemon communicates with the driver. The console and the network daemon communicate with the daemon using a named pipe.
  • Fixed the block device bug that fsck triggered (thanks Daniel Glockner)
  • Hopefully addressed the network corruption issue (thanks Daniel Glockner again)
  • Boot parameters are now passed to the kernel. Make sure you update your XMLs with 'root=/dev/cobd0' if you still want to boot from the first block device.
  • The conet daemon is a separate process (shouldn't affect you).

Version 0.5.2 Edit

  • Added some missing files to the build tree
  • doc/cygwin-cross-build - How to build a cygwin cross compilation tools on Linux.
  • Made the daemon more proofed to mistakes. It's logic about loading/ unloading the driver is much more sane now.
  • Added a cursor support to the console.

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