Installing NeXTSTEP on Qemu

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This is my notes on installing NeXTSTEP onto Qemu. I had originally posted this on bsdnexus, however the links I had used for the graphics are nolonger working.

Please note that I’m not going to build an 'accelerated' version of Qemu, I’m trying to keep this build as 'stable' as possible. I'm going to assume you know how to use vi. I would recommend trying the 0.9.0 before you try anything else. 0.8.0 seems somewhat unstable, and the busmouse driver doesn't work on 0.9.1 .

I've tried to keep links to QEMU up to date, but official site no longer carries the old stuff so it'll probably fall into disrepair eventually.

It is worth nothing that my Pentium 3 cannot start the GUI portion. I really don’t know why. (I did try -O1 for CFLAGS)

Also with regard to the NeXTSTEP part I'm using ISO images. I have just had too many problems with the physical media.

Required Downloads

Download the following to c:\install\qemu-build



I've tried to mirror as close as I could to the versions that I built with... Since they are newer they may even work on Vista/7..

Aditional Dependancies


Boot diskette image for NeXTSTEP

Drivers for NeXTSTEP 3.3

Busmouse patch

For Qemu 0.8.0


For Qemu 0.9.0


Installation of the compiler environment

Installation of MinGW

  • Install MinGW

Choose the 'current' version, then check the following options:

  • MinGW Base tools
  • G++ compiler
  • MinGW make

Allow it to instal into c:\MinGW

Installation of MSYS

  • install msys - default options
Do you wish to continue with the post install? [yn ] y

Do you have MinGW installed? [yn ] y

Please answer the following in the form of c:/foo/bar.
Where is your MinGW installation? c:/mingw

Installation of the msysDTK

  • install msysDTK - default options

Installing gcc/g++ 3.4.5

Start -> run -> mingw -> msys -> msys

cd /mingw
tar -zxvf /c/install/qemu-build/w32api-3.13-mingw32-dev.tar.gz
tar -zxvf /c/install/qemu-build/mingwrt-3.15.2-mingw32-dev.tar.gz

gcc -v should return:

Reading specs from c:/mingw/bin/../lib/gcc/mingw32/3.4.5/specs
Configured with: ../gcc-3.4.5-20060117-3/configure --with-gcc --with-gnu-ld --wi
th-gnu-as --host=mingw32 --target=mingw32 --prefix=/mingw --enable-threads --dis
able-nls --enable-languages=c,c++,f77,ada,objc,java --disable-win32-registry --d
isable-shared --enable-sjlj-exceptions --enable-libgcj --disable-java-awt --with
out-x --enable-java-gc=boehm --disable-libgcj-debug --enable-interpreter --enabl
e-hash-synchronization --enable-libstdcxx-debug
Thread model: win32
gcc version 3.4.5 (mingw-vista special r3)


With the c compiler looking good, it's time to extract the dependancies for Qemu.

cd /
mkdir -p /usr/src
cd /usr/src


Extract and build SDL 1.2.13.

tar -zxvf /c/install/qemu-build/SDL-1.2.13.tar.gz
cd SDL-1.2.13
make install


Extract and build zlib

cd /usr/src
tar -zxvf /c/install/qemu-build/zlib-1.2.3.tar.gz
make install

Configuring Qemu

To compensate for qemu's configure, and some oddities in MinGW's handling of /usr/local you'll need to do some fixes..

cd /mingw/include
ln -s /usr/local/include/zconf.h .
ln -s /usr/local/include/zlib.h .
ln -s /usr/local/include/SDL .
cd /mingw/lib
ln -s /usr/local/lib/libSDL.a .
ln -s /usr/local/lib/libz.a .
cd /bin
ln -s true.exe texi2html.exe
ln -s true.exe pod2man.exe

qemu-0.8.0 NOTES

Extract Qemu and integrate the patch.

cd /usr/src
tar -zxvf /c/install/qemu-build/qemu-0.8.0.tar.gz
cd qemu-0.8.0
cat /c/install/qemu-build/qemu-0.8.0-openstep-busmouse-2.diff | patch -p1

Now configure Qemu

./configure --target-list=i386-softmmu

qemu-0.9.0 NOTES

Extract Qemu and integrate the patch.

cd /usr/src
tar -zxvf /c/install/qemu-build/qemu-0.9.0.tar.gz
cd qemu-0.9.0
cat /c/install/qemu-build/qemu-0.9.0-openstep-busmouse-2.diff | patch -p1

Now configure Qemu

./configure --target-list=i386-softmmu

So far this is the 'best' version of Qemu for NeXTSTEP.

qemu-0.9.1 NOTES

I've heard the reason this version will not work on Vista is something trivial:

My patch to hw/ide.c:

just revert guess_disk_lchs function to the same from 0.9.0'.

Installing NeXTSETP

Ok now lets start with nextstep. Im going to populate a standalone copy of qemu

mkdir /c/install/nextstep
mkdir /c/install/nextstep/keymaps
cp i386-softmmu/qemu /c/install/nextstep
cp keymaps/* /c/install/keymaps
cp /usr/local/bin/SDL.dll /c/install/nextstep
cp pc-bios/bios.bin /c/install/nextstep
cp pc-bios/vgabios-cirrus.bin /c/install/nextstep

Lets create the 2 gig disk image..

qemu-img create -f qcow /c/install/nextstep/ns33.qcow 2G

Ok now here is the iso's that Im going to use in my c:\install directory:

04/15/2006  09:10 PM       373,764,096 NeXTSTEP 3.3 User (m68k, i386).iso
04/15/2006  10:04 PM         1,474,560 3.3_Beta_Drivers.floppyimage
04/15/2006  10:04 PM         1,474,560 3.3_Boot_Disk.floppyimage
04/15/2006  10:04 PM         1,474,560 3.3_Core_Drivers.floppyimage

Ok lets get started! Im using the cmd.exe so I can paste stuff in & out. Also I copy the disk images ontop of 'disk' because some qemu hosts dont have the ctrl-alt-2 function...

cd \install\nextstep
copy ..\3.3_Beta_Drivers.floppyimage beta
copy ..\3.3_Boot_Disk.floppyimage boot
copy ..\3.3_Core_Drivers.floppyimage core
copy boot disk

Launching Qemu Install

Now let's run Qemu like this:

C:\install\nextstep>qemu.exe -L . -m 32 -hda ns33.qcow -cdrom "..\NeXTSTEP 3.3 User (m68k, i386).iso" -net nic,model=ne2kpc -net user -soundhw sb16 -fda boot -boot a

Step 1

NeXTSTEP install 1.png

-v (enter)

I like the verbose booting so I can see what is going on.

Step 2

NeXTSTEP install 2.png

1 (enter)

Step 3

NeXTSTEP install 3.png

1 (enter)

Step 4

NeXTSTEP install 4.png

It's time to copy the core disk onto 'disk' and press enter to continue. From a 2nd cmd.exe do a :

copy core disk

Step 5

NeXTSTEP install 5.png

Time to copy the beta disk onto the 'disk' and press enter to continue. From the 2nd cmd.exe do a:

copy beta disk

Step 6

NeXTSTEP install 6.png

Now this part of the disk is corrupt (its on all the beta 3.3 disks) so we have to select some scsi driver in order to get to the ATAPI. I choose #2

2 (enter)

Step 7

NeXTSTEP install 7.png

Now we can proceed to the ATAPI

7 (enter)

Step 8

NeXTSTEP install 8.png

2 (enter)

Step 9

NeXTSTEP install 9.png

1 (enter)

Step 10

NeXTSTEP install 10.png

NeXTSTEP kernel booting...

NeXTSTEP install 11.png

NeXTSTEP kernel booting...

Step 12

NeXTSTEP install 12.png

I like the advanced install. So lets go with #2

2 (enter)

Step 13

NeXTSTEP install 13.png

We are going to install on the #1 (and only) disk

1 (enter)

Step 14

NeXTSTEP install 14.png

Since the ne2000 currently doesnt work, I want a small partition to copy files on & off the vm.

2 (enter)

Step 15

NeXTSTEP install 15.png

Lets go with 32 megabytes

32 (enter)

Step 16

NeXTSTEP install 16.png

Ok looks good!

3 (enter)

Step 17

NeXTSTEP install 17.png

1 (enter)

Step 18

NeXTSTEP install 18.png

Now the disk is being partitioned & formatted. This could take a minute.

Step 19

NeXTSTEP install 19.png

files are being copied.

Step 20

NeXTSTEP install 20.png

Ok we are done here. Press enter


Step 21

NeXTSTEP install 21.png

Now at this point you can kill the emulator. For the sake of being 'easy' lets copy the core file back ontop of the 'disk' Now we re-launch qemu as follows:

C:\install\nextstep>qemu.exe -L . -m 32 -hda ns33.qcow -cdrom "..\NeXTSTEP 3.3 User (m68k, i386).iso" -net nic,model=ne2kpc -net user -soundhw sb16  -fda core

Step 22

NeXTSTEP install 22.png

Again lets boot verbose

-v (enter)

Step 23

NeXTSTEP install 23.png

1 (enter)

Step 24

NeXTSTEP install 24.png

copy the beta onto disk.

1 (enter)

Step 25

NeXTSTEP install 25.png

Step 26

NeXTSTEP install 26.png


copy core onto disk


There may be an 'error' that it cannot mount the floppy.. Don't worry, just hit ok and try again and it'll work.

Click on the monitor (from the top). We are going to install the VGA driver for now.

Select the Default VGA Adapter (v3.30) and press the 'Add' button

Now sleect the mouse button (from the top), then select the "PS/2-Style Mouse (v3.30)". Click the remove button.

Now select the audio icon (the speaker icon from the top) and lets add the "Sound Blaster 16 (v3.30)" driver.

You will get a warning about an irq conflict, you can close it. (this is why we changed the sb16.c file from irq 5 (the busmouse) to irq7.

Select IRQ 7.

Now press the Done button.

press enter. (enter)

At this point NeXTSTEP 3.3 is installed. Pressing enter will sync the disk & reboot the VM. Next you select your keyboard, and you are good to go.

Hopefully this has helped someone out there!

Final Notes

After you install update #3 the keyboard will not work right.. you need to specify a keymap.

Here is how I like to run Qemu 0.9.0 for NeXTSTEP

qemu -L . -m 32 -hda ns33.disk -boot c -net nic,model=ne2kpci -net user -soundhw sb16