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Booting a PC into an Amiga, C64, PET/CBM...



Q: Can I configure the PC so that it boots into an Amiga or CBM 8-bit environment instead of Windows?




Amiga Forever and C64 Forever include multiple mechanisms to set up a startup environment:

  • Drag and drop a title to the Autostart playlist. After logging in, the selected title is then automatically started in fullscreen mode. This works with both Amiga and CBM 8-bit content. If you are not concerned about security, different procedures exist to remove the password-protected Windows logon step.
  • Alternatively, use the Build Image feature (Tools menu) to create a bootable disc or drive image, based on the KX Light boot environment. This feature is experimental (it may not support all hardware), and currently only works for Amiga content.
  • The same Build Image feature also writes the Amiga Forever or C64 Forever Windows software, resulting in a portable environment which is ready to run from any Windows system. No installation or custom boot are required to run the emulation from the resulting medium. This works with both Amiga and CBM 8-bit content.

In either scenario, the emulation environment runs on top of another operating system, such as Windows or GNU/Linux, where it takes advantage of existing hardware device drivers. This underlying operating system can be more or less "thin" and hidden.

Autostart with Automatic Logon

The Autostart playlist uses standard Windows mechanisms, and does not launch a different boot environment (e.g. KX Light based on GNU/Linux, or otherwise).

In addition to adding a title to the Autostart playlist, it is optionally possible to set up Windows to log on automatically after it boots. This enhances the Amiga Forever and C64 Forever Autostart experience, as no user interaction is required before the Amiga (or C64 or other supported system) starts.

Warning: disabling the requirement to log on, any user will have access to your computer (like on an Amiga).

The following pages by Microsoft explain how to enable automatic logon:

In Windows XP, this can also be achieved via Microsoft's Tweak UI tool, which was a component of the PowerToys utilities (a free download from the Microsoft Download Center), and setting the "Log on automatically at system startup" option. Official support for Tweak UI was discontinued with Windows Vista.

Boot Environment

Amiga Forever CDs and DVDs include the same KX Light boot component which can be generated via the Build Image tool. This allows a PC to boot from the CD (or DVD), loading a lightweight GNU/Linux environment before starting the GNU/Linux version of the UAE emulation software, with the Amiga Forever preinstalled Workbench and application environment. This is the same environment which is normally accessible when Amiga Forever is run under Windows (from CD or after installation). No configuration is required on the PC, other than making sure that the option to boot from CD is enabled in the PC bios, and that the CD is in the drive when the CD boots. By default, PC disks are accessed in read-only mode by the KX Light environment, making this a safe environment to experiment with Amiga emulation.

Portable Environment

The Amiga Forever and C64 Forever CDs and DVDs contain a portable environment which is ready to run under any Windows system. It provides most emulation and authoring features while not requiring installation or custom boot. The software can also run from read-only media.

The portable environment can be customized and created from the Build Image tool.

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Article Information
Article ID: 13-129
Platform: Windows
Products: Amiga Forever, C64 Forever
Additional Keywords: None
Last Update: 2017-06-23
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