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Linux Journal: Emulate This!, Part 3

Apr 23, 2002, 13:00 (8 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Marcel Gagné)

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"Hello, everyone, and welcome to another episode of the SysAdmin's Corner. In this article, I'm going to take you a little deeper into the world of emulation, from software emulation to hardware emulation. This is a story about thinking inside the box or, rather, inside the Bochs.

"Bochs is an emulator for the x86 hardware platform. In other words, it can emulate a PC of varying hardware configurations. When you boot into Bochs, it will appear as though you are booting another PC from inside your own PC, and in a way, you are. Bochs emulates the entire PC platform, I/O devices, memory and its own BIOS. What's even more interesting is that you don't have to be running PC hardware to run Bochs. It will emulate x86 hardware on any platform on which you compile it. By changing the configuration, it is possible to specify the type of processor (386? 486? 586?), the amount of memory and so on. Bochs is a box inside your box. In fact, Bochs is as many boxes as you want it to be. It even has its own power button.

"All right, that's cool. But what can you do with this thing? Ever wanted to try out other operating systems, perhaps another version of Linux, but didn't want to be bothered with partitioning your disk? You could just load everything up on another machine, but maybe your don't have another machine to play with. If any of this sounds like you, head on over to the following URL and pick up your own copy of Bochs..."

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