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Atari TOS 1.0|
Atari TOS Version 1.0
TOS is the operating system designed for the Atari ST and TT series
of computers. The Atari ST and TT use a Motorola 68k based CPU (The same
CPU used by early Macintoshes) and was first manufactured in 1985.
The operating system consists of two parts.
TOS - "The Operating System". Kind of a customized version of CP/M
provided by Digital Research.
GEM - "Graphics Environment Manager". The GUI shell that runs on top
of TOS. This shares much in common with the DOS version of GEM.
Both TOS and GEM are stored entirely in the system's ROM.
This is the GEM desktop running on TOS displaying its desktop info
The actual resolution of the default display is 320*200, obviously
meant for viewing on a TV or composite monitor, but these screen shots
have been enlarged to 640*400 for viewability. (Yet because the file size
of the screen shots is so small I am not bothering with thumbnails for
This is a blank desktop. Instead of disk icons, there are file drawers.
The drives / drawers are assigned letters A, B, C and so on, similar to
how CP/M and DOS organize drives.
Just imagine if IBM had gone with CP/M for the original IBM PC instead
of Microsoft DOS. We might all be running Digital Research GEM 2004 right
The windows in TOS/GEM are Mac-like and can overlap and resize. None
of the versions of GEM for Atari TOS were affected by the Apple lawsuit
so all of the Atari versions retained these features.
Folders can be viewed as icons or by text and sorted by name, data,
size, and type. This is the same as the DOS version of GEM.
Using the control box in the upper right of the folder windows, folders
can be sized to take up the entire screen.
Like on GEM for DOS the trash icon is also not a folder.
The preferences allow you to select different video resolutions. This
screen shot is in Medium resolution. High resolution is not available unless
a special monochrome monitor attached.
An atari ST can run GEM in the following resolutions
"ST Low" -320*200*16 colors
"ST Medium" - 640*200*4 colors
"ST High" - 640*400*2 colors
An Atari TT can run GEM in higher resolutions:
"TT Low" - 320*480*16 colors
"TT Medium" - 640*480*16 colors
"TT High" - 1280*960*2 colors
As for shutting down the computer, there is no shutdown option in the
GUI. You just turn off the power.
A screen shot of TOS 2.06 running in "medium" resolution. Nothing has
radically changed in the UI in this version, but there are a few more options
and settings that can be selected. There are also several other later versions
of TOS as well including 3.x and 4.x versions.