Kickstart and Workbench: How to check version numbers


According to “version” in the CLI and SysInfo I have

Kickstart 40.68, Workbench 39.29

But for uploading my software to Aminet, compatibility of the authors work is shows like this:

m68k-amigaos >= 2.0.4

I’ve never seen ROM level higher than 3.x before. Is there a chart or something where I need to map the values reported by “version” to Aminet friendly terms?

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Best Answer

Slightly confusingly, the Amiga OS use two different versioning systems. The first is the overall release number, which is the familiar 1.3, 2.05, 3.9 and so on. These are analogous with the Windows XP, Windows 7, Ubuntu 16.04 etc. way of easily identifying different releases.

The second system is the version system used to embed version and revision information in a file or object. This is expressed in version.revision format, and generally is analogous with the build number on other systems. In system files, these numbers are much higher than the release number. Every file or object can have this information embedded, and it’s normally specific to just that file meaning in one release you can have different version numbers on different files.

Since files can be updated and modified within a particular release, it’s generally the embedded version details that are used to identify a component. Broadly speaking, a particular release will mostly use one major version number for all of its components. These are as follows:

Release   Version
1.2       33.x
1.3       34.x
2.04      36.x
2.05      37.x
2.1       38.x
3.0       39.x
3.1       40.x
3.5       44.x
3.9       45.x
4.0       50.x/51.x
4.1       53.x

There are exceptions however. Sometimes components from earlier releases aren’t updated and so retain their earlier version numbers, for example Release 2.1 used the 2.04/2.05 Kickstart, so components were a mixture of 36.x and 37.x versions, and similar applies with ARexx remaining unchanged between releases 2.x and 4.x. Conversely, many releases had individual components updated with corresponding newer version numbers. For example, many people use Setpatch and scsi.device files which were updated for release 3.1 and thus have 43.x version numbers.

Calling the Workbench->About requester or using the version command will give you the version numbers of Kickstart and Workbench, two of the key components of the OS (and in your case you can see you’re running Workbench 3.0 with Kickstart 3.1 installed – maybe time to update Workbench?). The version of an individual file or component can be found using the version command followed by the name, for example:

Version scsi.device

Or, if running OS 3.9 or above, by clicking the version gadget in the file’s icon information window.

Edit: I can’t find a definitive source for this chart beyond my own memory, but this is reasonably close:

It does contain a couple of slight errors however (kickstart version 37.x was used on all A600s from the factory as release 2.05, etc., and there wasn’t a 38.x ROM for the 2.1 update, which was purely software) but in general it’s a good guide.

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