Monday Jan 28, 2008

xlincity, another opensource S\*mC\*ty fork, now runs on OpenSolaris

Now there are two OpenSolaris options for those who spent many long hours playing SimCity in the 1980s and 90s, or those who would like to experiment with city simulations and contribute to the project. The first was micropolis, a port designed with the XO One Laptop Per Child project in mind and promising extensibility via Python modules.

And now I've checked in a spec file and patch which builds xlincity (a.k.a. lincity.) which looks to be a rather old, but ready to play X11 port of the classic game. Xlincity on OpenSolaris For some reason, parts of the lincity source code seemed to have been written with notepad, edlin or some other Windows/DOS text editor, as they had to be run through dos2unix in order to get them to build properly on OpenSolaris. But the SFExlincity spec file sorts that out for you and it applies a small xlincity-01-solaris.diff patch.

The easiest way to build it on OpenSolaris (and possibly Solaris 10?) is:

  1. Install the OpenSolaris Common Build Environment (CBE) from http://opensolaris.org/os/project/jds/contributing/building
  2. Checkout a copy of Spec-files-extra: svn co https://pkgbuild.svn.sourceforge.net/svnroot/pkgbuild/spec-files-extra/trunk SFE
  3. Set your proxy (if needed): export http_proxy=http://your.proxy.server:your_proxy_port_number
  4. pkgtool build-install --download SFExlincity.spec
Have fun!

Thursday Jan 24, 2008

Micropolis (a.k.a. S\*mC\*ty) runs on OpenSolaris!

A long time ago in a galaxy not so far away, Don Hopkins ported Maxis's C64 game "SimCity" to Unix, using the NeWS desktop user interface. Unfortunately Sun canceled NeWS (even though it was decades ahead of other \*nix desktop GUIs.) Many years later Don Hopkins revisited this code, now open sourced and contributed to the OLPC project. With a few tweaks and kludges, I built this codebase on OpenSolaris. This is what it looks like:

Micropolis on OpenSolaris

I checked a new spec file, SFEmicropolis.spec and a patch into spec-files-extra. These along with the help of the CBE, build micropolis-activity.

Known bugs:

  • MicropolisCore Python modules aren't built so any part of the game dependent on this won't work.
  • Micropolis hostname and DISPLAY handling is a little borked so it might not work via ssh -X or other X forwarding.
  • Micropolis depends on shm extentions so it doesn't seem to work on Sun Ray.

To be done:
  • Build a spec file for the Python modules (micropolis, cellengine and tileengine) in MicropolisCore.tgz. This should be easy for anyone who has a little time and an OpenSolaris build with CBE.
  • Clean up the spec file. There are a few kludges in the way I build it for Solaris, but whenever a proper config build is incorporated into the Micropolis codebase, some of this work won't be necessary.
  • Find someone who has played S\*mC\*ty who test can test the Solaris build (I haven't)
  • Try to get OpenSolaris patches accepted into Micropolis codebase.
  • Work with the micropolis community. (We might be able to use dtrace and other OpenSolaris tools to solve problems.)

    Feel free to help if you can, the code is out there!

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