MiNT And I

by Bohdan Milar


Some of you may remember my short introduction published in MyAtari last year. Now in the anniversary issue I am glad to start a whole series about the MiNT operating system. When I thought about how to start, one of MyAtari's editors told me, "Start with yourself". And I said, "That's not a bad idea".

Well, I am an Atari user from the Czech Republic. My father bought our first Atari (800XL) in June 1987. Then came 800XE and in 1993 a 1040STE. This was also the first computer I used MiNT on. I saw it for the first time at an Atari party. Then I asked my friend to help me with installation and he did. I succeeded, but there were problems with the graphical environment. MiNT specialists helped me to solve it at another Atari party.

Since that time I am able to install and configure MiNT myself. I have been learning more and more of its functions and functions of GNU utilities provided with it. In 1997 I replaced my STE with a Falcon and later a TT came. All these machines run MiNT.

The first installation software I ever used was KGMD. It was a good choice in the 1990s, but it is obsolete now. Thanks to Frank Naumann, SpareMiNT was born. It is a modern collection of MiNT and hundreds of its utilities. But there was no installer for it. So I decided to write one.

I started to write shell scripts in bash, which is quite similar to DOS *.BAT files. But bash is much more comfortable and fully compatible with Linux and other Unix environments. These days I am ready to write a whole accounting system in it, working under MiNT and Linux without any modification.

The final stage is my home Ethernet. It is a standard network platform where all my Atari (MiNT) machines can co-operate with the Linux ones and the TT provides routing to the internet for whole network while connected via a modem.

Of course it took some time to learn all the networking things, but it is nearly the same under MiNT as under Linux/Unix systems.

In the next issues we will take a closer look at how it all works, why there is no reason to be afraid of MiNT and even how to install and configure it to work for you and your Atari.

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MyAtari magazine - Feature #11, October 2003

Copyright 2003 MyAtari magazine