brlspeak on Windows XP Sro and NTFS

Aldo blinuxman at
Thu Jan 13 16:49:25 UTC 2005

Hi John,

First of all appology for my *very long* delay in replying:

On Tue, Jan 11, 2005 at 11:41:21AM -0600, John J. Boyer wrote:
> has anyone used brlspeak on Windows XP Pro on a NTFS partition.

BrlSpeak is supposed to be installed on a FAT partition, not on a NTFS.
To run the install.bat from the BrlSpeak CD, you need DOS, and there 
is no DOS on NTFS. Or you may build a floppy to boot and install BrlSpeak;
that floppy contains FreeDOS + the BrlSpeak installer.

NTFS was not a goal at the moment we released the 
Debian-loopback BrailleSpeak distro.

> The website says it works on a FAT partition, but I don't see why the 
> filesystem type should make a difference.

1: well, the installer was made to generate a loopback file on a FAT,
fyi it is limited to 2048M.

2: no any support of NTFS comes with it, btw the kernel is quite old.

> The last update was in 
> December 2903. I've been trying to download it, but have trouble getting 
> to the website, 

There is NO new release since 07-10-2003, as you can see here: 

Sometimes there are website info updates.

The developments itself was stopped in 2003 because it seem to be very 
difficult to update the BrlSpeak's kernel, you can't replace it with 
a new kernel-image.deb for example.

On the other side, when using BrlSpeak, you have the incredible 
advantage that it is a *real* Debian, but it is fit on a loopback on a 
FAT; so, apt or aptitude etc may be used on it to add packages, you can 
read and write, etc ... anything exactly as under a REAL EXT Debian Woody.

But as long as we doesn't hear about new maintainers, no any new release 
will be published. Contributors are welcome if they feel this distro may 
be of interests in some specific situations.

Let me just say that I was happy to have BrlSpeak on my FAT disk when my 
big HD crashed in 2003, I was ready with my "safety" debian system in 
less than ten ten minutes, I sincerely prefeer it to Knoppix-alike 
distros but that's my personal choice.

Osvaldo La Rosa -

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