Making a MMU/OSX port of SheepShaver

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Angelgreat
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Making a MMU/OSX port of SheepShaver

Post by Angelgreat »

Hello, so I like using SheepShaver and it's nice to use on my modern device, and it's easy to use and install. QEMU, on the other hand, is a nightmare to setup. In fact, it was confusing and I ended up never installing and using it. Since SheepShaver is a PowerPC emulator port of the 68k emulator Basilisk II, I propose making a port of SheepShaver that is as powerful and more useful than QEMU.

SheepShaver doesn't have a MMU, but the proposed port could have it. Plus the proposed port can have G4 emulation and run up to 10.5 Leopard, compared to 8.1 for Basikisk II and 9.0.4 for SheepShaver. Since I don't know how to code, I think everyone can help, that way, we can make emulating PPC OSX as easy as using Basilisk II or SheepShaver. It may not fill the void from PearPC, but it could be a better emulator than QEMU. Who's with me?
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adespoton
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Re: Making a MMU/OSX port of SheepShaver

Post by adespoton »

Angelgreat wrote: Tue Nov 09, 2021 3:37 am Hello, so I like using SheepShaver and it's nice to use on my modern device, and it's easy to use and install. QEMU, on the other hand, is a nightmare to setup. In fact, it was confusing and I ended up never installing and using it. Since SheepShaver is a PowerPC emulator port of the 68k emulator Basilisk II, I propose making a port of SheepShaver that is as powerful and more useful than QEMU.

SheepShaver doesn't have a MMU, but the proposed port could have it. Plus the proposed port can have G4 emulation and run up to 10.5 Leopard, compared to 8.1 for Basikisk II and 9.0.4 for SheepShaver. Since I don't know how to code, I think everyone can help, that way, we can make emulating PPC OSX as easy as using Basilisk II or SheepShaver. It may not fill the void from PearPC, but it could be a better emulator than QEMU. Who's with me?
The key bits I'm reading here are:
  • SheepShaver is easier to configure and run than QEMU-PPC
  • I'd like an easy way to run an MMU-enabled emulator
  • I don't know how to code, but would like others to pull off this amazing feat with my encouragement
In response I'd like to suggest:
  • Try the UTM front-end for QEMU. If you're on macOS, it takes all the pain out of using QEMU, so that it's similar to using VirtualBox. On Linux and Windows there are other front ends for QEMU that will help you with setup and configuration.
  • Actual SheepShaver emulation code hasn't really been updated since around 2005, and is unlikely to be further updated. How the emulator works is it takes a set of minimal requirements, patches the ROM to pass through as much as possible to the host, and runs some standard PPC emulation code to do the instruction translation. This means a significant rewrite (essentially a new emulator) would be needed to add new emulation level features like MMU support. And that was done -- resulting in PearPC. QEMU, on the other hand, is more in the vein of MAME and MESS, where it's an abstracted framework designed to emulate specific pieces of hardware. As a result, it can sometimes be slower, but you can add in new features that get inherited by any hardware set that has those components. This means more people working on the feature code, and the ability to quickly iterate to similar hardware specs. It also means things can be a bit slower, and there's LOTS of configuration options, some of which don't work with particular emulation targets.
  • The people on here who know how to code are for the most part focused on QEMU-PPC now, and have been since around 2013. There are some awesome exceptions to this like KanjiTalk755 and rickyzhang82, who are still adding new features to SheepShaver; these are generally for host support and new technologies though, not improvements in the emulation core itself.
Angelgreat
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Joined: Tue Nov 09, 2021 3:29 am

Re: Making a MMU/OSX port of SheepShaver

Post by Angelgreat »

adespoton wrote: Wed Nov 10, 2021 10:13 pm
Angelgreat wrote: Tue Nov 09, 2021 3:37 am Hello, so I like using SheepShaver and it's nice to use on my modern device, and it's easy to use and install. QEMU, on the other hand, is a nightmare to setup. In fact, it was confusing and I ended up never installing and using it. Since SheepShaver is a PowerPC emulator port of the 68k emulator Basilisk II, I propose making a port of SheepShaver that is as powerful and more useful than QEMU.

SheepShaver doesn't have a MMU, but the proposed port could have it. Plus the proposed port can have G4 emulation and run up to 10.5 Leopard, compared to 8.1 for Basikisk II and 9.0.4 for SheepShaver. Since I don't know how to code, I think everyone can help, that way, we can make emulating PPC OSX as easy as using Basilisk II or SheepShaver. It may not fill the void from PearPC, but it could be a better emulator than QEMU. Who's with me?
The key bits I'm reading here are:
  • SheepShaver is easier to configure and run than QEMU-PPC
  • I'd like an easy way to run an MMU-enabled emulator
  • I don't know how to code, but would like others to pull off this amazing feat with my encouragement
In response I'd like to suggest:
  • Try the UTM front-end for QEMU. If you're on macOS, it takes all the pain out of using QEMU, so that it's similar to using VirtualBox. On Linux and Windows there are other front ends for QEMU that will help you with setup and configuration.
  • Actual SheepShaver emulation code hasn't really been updated since around 2005, and is unlikely to be further updated. How the emulator works is it takes a set of minimal requirements, patches the ROM to pass through as much as possible to the host, and runs some standard PPC emulation code to do the instruction translation. This means a significant rewrite (essentially a new emulator) would be needed to add new emulation level features like MMU support. And that was done -- resulting in PearPC. QEMU, on the other hand, is more in the vein of MAME and MESS, where it's an abstracted framework designed to emulate specific pieces of hardware. As a result, it can sometimes be slower, but you can add in new features that get inherited by any hardware set that has those components. This means more people working on the feature code, and the ability to quickly iterate to similar hardware specs. It also means things can be a bit slower, and there's LOTS of configuration options, some of which don't work with particular emulation targets.
  • The people on here who know how to code are for the most part focused on QEMU-PPC now, and have been since around 2013. There are some awesome exceptions to this like KanjiTalk755 and rickyzhang82, who are still adding new features to SheepShaver; these are generally for host support and new technologies though, not improvements in the emulation core itself.
Thank you for the suggestion, but I think a OSX PPC version of SheepShaver is still the best option. I tried using a Front end for Windows since I do use Windows 10, but there's no OS9 option. Also, even with it, it's still hard to get OSX on it.
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