Introducing new features added to next version of Chameleon, part 1.

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Posted 3. February 2009

Finally, we’re getting there. I have no doubts about the most demanding feature is should be a graphical user interface for the boot loader. We have reached to a stage where I can show you something really cool. Yes, we have a fully customizable GUI.

Article is written by Tamás KOSÁRSZKY.

How do you mean customizable?

You can replace all the images, the icons, the funny chameleon artwork, the fonts. Also you can set the background color, the transparency levels, the dimensons, positions of certain user interface elements. The image resource files can be either embedded into the booter or can be loaded at runtime by using a special .plist style configuration file.

Doesn’t embedding the images makes the boot loader too large?

With the current set of icons, images, fonts embedded, the booter size is about 300k. Without embedding the resources you will get about a 110k large booter. The maximum size of the booter is 392704 bytes (383.5k).

What image formats are supported?

The booter has built-in support for true color 24 bit PNG images with 8 bit transparency layer. We wanted to offer a high quality lossless image format which can be created, edited with many graphics applications across all platforms.

What if I still prefer the text mode interface?

We can’t switch between text mode and graphical mode at the moment after the booter has been started, but you still have a Boot.plist option to disable the GUI. This way you get the well known text based Darwin boot menu.

Ok, this is all fine. Can I see something?

Sure! Click below on the pictures in the gallery to see these shots in full size.

Can I have it now?

No. Please don’t ask for it as you will get it when it’s released.

What’s next? Do i have to wait for next christmas ;-)?

We’re still fighting with issues and polishing the code but freezed the features. So instead of staying quiet, we’re going to reveal other features in the next post on this week.

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